Editor's Note: The following article contains spoilers for season two, episode five of 'The Mandalorian.'
Episode five of The Mandalorian's second season was released on Nov. 27th, in accordance with Disney+’s weekly release schedule. There are now only two episodes yet to premiere, and before episode five, I was one of many wondering if Mando was ever going to reach Corvus. However, in “Chapter 13: The Jedi,” Mando finally reaches the forest planet where Baby Yoda will be trained by the Jedi Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson).
Last episode, Mando helped his former companions take out an Imperial base on Nevarro, and his skills prove useful in this adventure as well. This episode is heavy in backstory and plot, providing viewers clarity to many questions about Baby Yoda that have been stirring since the series’ beginning. Additionally, this chapter takes Mando fully out of his cultural comfort zone, where his fatherly companionship to the Child intersects with his first real exposure to the Force and the Jedi.
Corvus is a forest planet, but it’s a very downtrodden place with dead, barren forests. Despite this, the episode has excellent visuals, with the steel hull of the Razor Crest beautifully cutting through the greens and yellows of the foliage as it makes its landing descent. Mando enters the city of Calodan, where he hopes to find Ahsoka, but he quickly realizes that something is wrong. The city is run by a dictator known as “the Magistrate" (Diana Lee Inosanto) who rules with an iron fist, arbitrarily imprisons settlers, and lives in luxury while the rest of the city rots in poverty. After hearing about the presence of a bounty hunter in her city, the Magistrate recruits Mando to assassinate Ahsoka Tano, who has continuously probed her for a secret unknown to the audience. Seeing this as an opportunity to complete his mission, Mando sets out for the forest, Baby Yoda in tow.
The plot thickens when Mando and Ahsoka actually meet. Explaining that Bo–Katan sent him, Mando tells Ahsoka about his quest to reunite the Child with the Jedi. After meditating and mentally communicating with Baby Yoda, Ahsoka sheds some light on the Child’s origins. Baby Yoda, formally named Grogu, was trained extensively at the Jedi Temple on Coruscant before being hidden during Order 66. Ahsoka is unable to get Grogu to use his Force powers, but Mando connects with him and eventually gets Grogu to display his unique abilities.
Ahsoka explains that she cannot train Grogu, as his emotional connection to Mando makes him vulnerable to anger and fear—a concern stemming from the downfall of her former master, Anakin Skywalker. However, she eventually agrees to train Grogu if Mando helps her take down the Magistrate and gain the whereabouts on Grand Admiral Thrawn, a prominent figure in the Star Wars: Rebels animated series.
Each episode of The Mandalorian contains tense sequences, but “The Jedi” takes this a step further by prioritizing one–on–one battles during the liberation of Calodan. The episode displays gorgeous shots that capture the emotion of two opponents in combat. Ahsoka fights discreetly and assassin–like, silently taking out the Magistrate’s security detail before engaging in a final battle with her. Mando, on the other hand, worries about saving the civilians before reaching a standoff with Lang (Michael Biehn), the Magistrate’s hired mercenary.
This episode was particularly interesting in its plot design. Mando met his first Jedi, and gained understanding as to how the Force worked. Even though the Jedi are such a central component to the Star Wars universe, this series illustrates a perspective and time period where Jedi and Force abilities are few and far between. The audience is aware of the lore, but the Jedi are nothing but a long–forgotten fable to Mando—until now. Additionally, this episode introduces another major character from the animations, presumably setting up for a series of major crossovers by the season two finale.
At the episode’s conclusion, Ahsoka explains that she still cannot train Grogu. Instead, she instructs Mando to take him to the ruins of a major Jedi Temple on the planet of Tython, where Grogu will connect with the force and choose a path for himself. Episode six was released on Friday, December 4th. Despite a reported runtime of 32 minutes—the shortest in season two—the imminent return of Moff Gideon and his army indicate that audiences will have no shortage of entertainment in Mando’s next outing.