Editor's Note: The following contains some spoilers for Season 2, Episode 2 of 'The Mandalorian.'
Episode two of The Mandalorian’s highly anticipated second season was released on Disney+ on Nov. 6th, in accordance with the streaming service’s weekly release schedule of the latest season. The new season premiered big. Viewers were treated to the beginning of a new set of galactic adventures with Baby Yoda and Mandalorian bounty–hunter Din Djarin, or Mando.
This episode picks up right where “The Marshal” left off, with Mando still skidding through the Dune Seas of Tatooine during the opening sequence. Chapter 10, or “The Passenger”, is only a side story in Mando’s quest to reunite Baby Yoda with his species, but it’s still thrilling and keeps viewers engaged. While framed as just another pitstop in Mando’s seemingly endless journey across the galaxy, “The Passenger” adds depth to his character by treating fans to a Star Wars adventure that skims the lines of horror.
The episode takes viewers back to where The Mandalorian began: the icy planet of Maldo Kreis. Mando is still trying to find more Mandalorians that can help him relocate Baby Yoda to his species. Mando’s previous search was fruitless, as the person he located ended up just being Cobb Vanth—The titular character in “The Marshal”—wearing the Mandalorian armor donned by Boba Fett, who also isn’t a Mandalorian.
Back at square one, he learns there's a Mandalorian covert on the moon of Trask. But as payment for that intel he has to transport a Frog character—currently only known as “Frog Lady”—to the planet so she can rebuild a life with her husband. The journey is quickly sidetracked when a pair of New Republic traffic officers suspect Mando’s ship, the Razor Crest, to be involved in criminal activity, igniting a chase sequence that forces Mando to crash–land on Maldo Kreis.
Baby Yoda was much more prominent in this episode. The chemistry that an otherwise heartless Mando formed with the Child during season one is really what drew so much attention to this series. "The Passenger" highlights this well. Despite being a warrior and gunslinger, Mando reinforces his assumed position as a guardian and caretaker for Baby Yoda in this episode—and it’s honestly really cute. When the pair are ambushed in the beginning of the episode, Mando negotiates with a desert bandit for the safe return of Baby Yoda. Of course, he kills the bandit anyway in classic Mando fashion.
Mando’s protection of the Child persists throughout the episode. He clutches Baby Yoda tightly to ensure his comfort through the frozen landscape of Maldo Kreis while fighting for his safety against a seemingly–endless army of foes. Beyond the highly dangerous situations the pair stumble into, Mando and Baby Yoda also share wholesome moments. Mando frequently scolds the Child for attempting to eat the eggs of his amphibian passenger, and the two even share a bedroom bunk–bed style. Despite being one of the most high–value children in all of the galaxy, “The Passenger” reminds viewers that at the end of the day, Baby Yoda is, well, a baby. The organic interactions between him and Mando deeply resonate with viewers.
“The Passenger” seems as close to horror as Star Wars has gotten thus far. From the moment that Mando enters a cave on Maldo Kreis, viewers can tell that things are eerily silent. This silence is broken by Baby Yoda’s dooming curiosity, as the Child accidentally awakens an army of Krykna, a species of ice spiders meant to debut in The Empire Strikes Back (1980). Mando, Baby Yoda, and Frog Lady are suddenly in a race against time, desperate to return to the Razor Crest while outrunning thousands of these arachnids. As if things couldn’t get any worse, a gigantic Krykna appears out of nowhere, presenting an ultimate threat to the heroes. The close–quarters Mando narrowly escapes elevate the tension created in the episode’s climax. The arachnid army pushes Mando’s fighting ability to the limit, forcing the Mandalorian to utilize deadeye shooting precision and various gadgets to fend off the creatures. These monsters are absolutely terrifying, and the danger at stake is highlighted through the characters’ entire battle against the Krykna.
This episode doesn’t seem to contribute largely to the overarching story of The Mandalorian—but it still serves as a fun and thrilling story. "The Passenger" strengthens the relationship between Mando and Baby Yoda while simultaneously introducing a new alien species into the Star Wars universe. Additionally, the episode could end up serving a bigger purpose moving forward, as the series has previously reintroduced seemingly–unimportant events or characters into larger narratives. Hopefully Mando locates the Mandalorians that he’s looking for, but until then, we can only speculate where in the galaxy his journey takes him.