Baby Yoda, AKA The Child, AKA The Cutest Thing, this side of the galaxy finally has a name! That revelation was among many that were revealed in the fifth episode of Season 2 of The Mandalorian Chapter 13: “The Jedi.”
After waiting over a year and countless adventures, “The Jedi” finally told us the name of everyone’s favorite force-sensitive youngling: Grogu! (let the debate over his name begin!).
However, that was not the only juicy tidbit that was unveiled in this episode’s panoply of information.
Ashoka lives! Diehard fans of The Clone Wars and Rebels rejoiced around the world as fan-favorite former Jedi Ahsoka Tano graced our television screens for the first time in live-action.
Rarely is there a casting so perfect in Hollywood, but Rosario Dawson’s brilliant portrayal—and spot-on likeness—of Ashoka sent giddy shockwaves across the fandom; giving a truly satisfying payoff years in the making.
While Disney’s oft-criticized handling of the Star Wars franchise has been well documented since it was sold by creator George Lucas in 2012—especially in regards to character development (see Rey as a prime example)—The Mandalorian seems to be doing a course correction as a mea culpa and focusing this episode on one of its truly deep and well-developed characters.
When we last left the former Jedi at the end of Star Wars: Rebels, she was scouring the galaxy with fellow Mandalorian Sabine Wren searching for Jedi Padawan Ezra Bridger. When we finally catch up with her, she is facing off with the ruthless Magistrate of the planet Corvus, Morgan Elsbeth (played by Diana Lee Inosanto) and a key piece of dialogue reveals she still may be searching for Ezra.
After defeating Elsbeth in an epic lightsaber vs. Beskar spear battle, Ashoka asks where she can locate Elsbeth’s master: Grand Admiral Thrawn. Thrawn–who also has a rich history in the now non-cannon Star Wars Legends and more recently in Disney’s new Thrawn books and Rebels TV series–was last seen with and defeated by Ezra Bridger. Thrawn and Ezra then disappeared into the Unknown Regions.
Ashoka takes a detour from her search for Ezra by meeting with The Mandalorian (Pablo Pascal) and giving an insightful exposition dump that revealed much about Grogu.
Ashoka reaches out in the Force to Grogu’s memories and reveals that he was raised in the Jedi temple and was trained by many Jedi masters before being hidden from the Empire during the Jedi Purge of Order 66.
“Someone took him from the temple,” Ashoka laments sadly, “then his memory becomes dark.”
She later says that she cannot train the youngling but advises Mando to take him to the planet Tython, where he’ll find the ruins of an ancient Jedi temple that is strong in the Force. She tells him to place Grogu “on a seeing stone at the top of the mountain. Then Grogu may choose his path. If he reaches out through the Force, there’s a chance a Jedi may sense his presence and come searching for him.” Ashoka and Mando go their separate ways, and this revelatory episode comes to an end.
Let’s just hope Ashoka’s and Mando’s path crosses in the future. Their dynamic was palatable.
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