The Mandalorian continues to impress audiences with every passing week. On Nov. 13th, Disney+ released “Chapter 11: The Heiress,” episode three of their hit original series’ second season. After last week’s horror–esque episode, where thousands of spiders put the safety of Mando, Baby Yoda, and Frog Lady at risk, this episode takes us to the estuary moon of Trask, where Mando hopes to finally reunite with fellow Mandalorians. Written by showrunner Jon Favreau and directed by Bryce Dallas Howard, this episode keeps viewers on the edge of their seats for the entire runtime, despite clocking in on the shorter end at 35 minutes. This episode really ups the tension, proves the strength that lies in numbers—all while providing some deeper Mandalorian history and introducing key characters into the Star Wars universe.
From the opening shots of “The Heiress,” we are subject to a tense sequence that challenges Mando’s ability to think on his feet. With the Razor Crest still suffering from serious damage after Mando’s arachnid assault on Maldo Kreis, Mando’s reentry quickly turns into a dangerous freefall, with his ship nearly burning up in Trask’s atmosphere before crashing into the water. The moon of Trask is beautiful, and the fishing port that Mando docks at gorgeously juxtaposes the planet’s ocean surface with gritty objects of industrialization.
This episode takes a turn to the high seas after Mando goes on his usual search for information. A Quarren at a local cantina tells him that he can take Mando to a Mandalorian covert a few hours away by boat, and while on the ship, he shows him a live feeding of a mamacore, a shark–like carnivore native to the planet. While Mando and the Child observe, the sailor throws Baby Yoda into the mamacore pit, where Mando immediately dives in after him after Baby Yoda’s cradle is swallowed whole. Mando was truly tricked in this instance, as the sailors lock him in the pit in hopes of killing him for his valuable armor. Mando can't use his normal creative methods to escape this situation, and it seems like the end for him until several “familiar” faces pop up.
Mando and Baby Yoda are actually saved by the Mandalorians he was looking for. This trio of Mandalorians is led by Bo–Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff), the deposed leader of the Mandalorian homeworld who has a significant role in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Mando usually doesn’t have the luxury of fighting in numbers, and this episode shows just how deadly a quartet of Mandalorians can be.
After they recruit Mando to help hijack an imperial cruiser, the group of warriors absolutely tear shit up, flawlessly taking out any assailants that get in their way with a range of creative fighting tactics. This episode packs action throughout nearly every scene in its relatively short runtime, and that really keeps the audience engaged. The final scenes of the episode’s climax even reintroduce Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito), the series’ main villain that has so far been absent from season two.
“The Heiress” introduces the first real Mandalorians since season one of the series, and it’s a culture shock to the viewers and Mando himself. He's instantly flabbergasted when his rescuers remove their helmets, a huge taboo within the Mandalorian Code that Mando was raised under. However, after accusing the trio of stealing Mandalorian Armor—similar to how Cobb Vanth usurped Boba Fett’s armor in “The Marshal”—Mando learns that he is a Child of the Watch, a cult of Mandalorian religious extremists who follow the ancient ways, one of which includes never removing their helmet.
This revelation was super interesting. Mando follows the Way of the Mandalore in every aspect of his life, and throughout the entire series he keeps to his beliefs. Mando even prioritizes his religion in the face of dangerous situations, like when he agreed to protect Frog Lady after a crash landing on Maldo Kreis, citing that Mandalorians always keep their promises. Mando’s revelation that he was raised under ancient extremists will likely challenge his character development, especially as he encounters more Mandalorians in the future after the episode implied a larger role in store for Bo–Katan.
This episode was—in a word—great. It had more action than last week’s episode, and also delivered some substantial world–building visuals and narrative. Mando was able to finally find more Mandalorians, and even received guidance for uniting Baby Yoda with the Jedi. Bo–Katan instructs him to take Baby Yoda to the planet of Corvus, where he will find Ahsoka Tano—a name unbeknownst to Mando—but extremely significant to Star Wars fans, as Ahsoka was Anakin Skywalker’s apprentice and one of the only Jedi to survive the infamous Order 66. It’s amazing to see The Mandalorian bring together so many pieces of the Star Wars universe into one cohesive storyline—one that continuously impresses new and old fans of Star Wars, one galactic adventure at a time.