“The Child” continues the Mandalorian’s adventure on Arvala-7 after the first episode’s stunning cliffhanger. Retrieving “the asset” isn’t as easy as shooting down a few thugs and taking a long walk through the desert, though. Nothing is ever that easy in Star Wars. Instead, Mando has to deal with a few…unforeseen obstacles on his return journey. Along the way, we’re treated to a few easter eggs and references to the larger Star Wars universe that you don’t want to miss!
Below is a list of we’ve found so far. Do note that we didn’t cover the basic stuff introduced in the first episode here, such as who Kuiil is, the Mandalorian’s real name, info on the Mandalorian tribe, and more on Yoda’s species. You can find our discussion about all that in our episode 1 easter egg guide. As for episode 2, shoot us a comment if you spot anything we didn’t…
– Mando — or should we call him Dyn Jarren? — makes a reference to disintegrating a few Jawas. This is a callback to when Darth Vader warned Boba Fett that the bounty was not to disintegrate Han, Leia, or Chewie. It looks like Mandalorians love poofing away their targets.
– The Mandalorian uses an arm-mounted flamethrower during his fight with the Mud Horn. Plenty of bounty hunters have used this weapon, desginated the ZX miniature flame projector, through the years, including Jango and Boba Fett.
– There’s also the grappling hook, which seems to be standard equipment for Mandalorians. Both Jango and Boba Fett used this gadget.
– The Jawas return in full force in episode 2. We spotted only one or two Jawas in the first episode, walking around one of the outposts, but there’s a sandcrawler full of them on Arvala-7. Speaking of the Sandcrawler, this giant mobile fortress is the Jawas’ transportation of choice. With a cargo capacity of up to 1,500 droids, according to Wookieepedia, there’s plenty of room in a Sandcrawler for scrap from Mando’s ship, the Razor Crest. This fortress is also great at repelling attacks from lone, pissed off bounty hunters.
Jawas and their Sandcrawelers were, of course, first introduced early on in A New Hope when C-3PO and R2-D2 are kidnapped by the little crooks, who plan to sell them at a high price to customers around Tatooine. In fact, the Jawas put out a lineup of things to sell similar to the one seen in A New Hope, and even shout their classic “Utinni!” as Kuiil and Mando approach.
– As cute and nonthreatening as these Jawas may look, they’re scrappy in a fight. They even carry powerful ion blasters good for disabling droids and taking down assailants. As Mando learns this episode, an ion blast can really hurt.
– Baby Yoda can use the Force! Does this mean that all members of Yoda’s species are Force-sensitive? And that they can use the Force before they can even talk? There’s Yoda, Yaddle, and now this little dude, who needs a long nap after lifting the Mud Horn a few inches off the ground. The way Baby Yoda lifts the creature is reminiscent of how Master Yoda lifted the X-wing out of the swamp in The Empire Strikes Back.
Also, earlier in the episode, it almost seems like Baby Yoda wants to help heal Mando’s wound through the Force. If Baby Yoda is revealed to be a Force healer, well, we’re going to fall out of our chairs. Force healing has been around since the earliest days of Star Wars — Obi-Wan used this technique to help Luke mend after his run in with the Sandpeople.
– Neither Mando nor Kuiil seem to know what the Force even is, as they’re both left in awe by Baby Yoda’s abilities. This lends credence to the idea that, three decades later, Rey and Finn wouldn’t believe that Luke Skywalker, the Force, or the Jedi were ever real.
Arvala-7 might as well be called Tatooine. There are deserts, canyons, Jawas, Sandcrawlers, and moisture farms. And it’s dangerous as hell. Kuiil is basically the old hermit living far out in the outskirts of civilization. All the planet is missing at this point is a Hutt or two. Oh, and an extra sun.
– Early in the episode, Mando and Baby Yoda are attacked by a group of Trandoshan bounty hunters, who also have a fob to track “the asset.” Trandoshans made their first appearance in The Empire Strikes Back in the form of Bossk, one of the bounty hunters Darth Vader hires to chase down the Millennium Falcon.
– Baby Yoda works up an appetite during his journey with Mando, so when he sees a friendly little frog hanging around Kuiil’s moisture farm, he decides to chow down on it. While this particular species of frog doesn’t look like the Klatooine paddy frog from Return of the Jedi, the scene where Baby Yoda swallows the frog whole is reminiscent of how Jabba consumed these amphibian treats.
– The Jawas make fun of the way Mando speaks their language, saying he “sounds like a Wookiee.” I don’t need to tell you what a Wookiee is, right? (See: 10,000 pictures of Chewbacca)
– The only way Mando can get back the parts he needs to fix the Razor Crest is by retrieving a hairy egg guarded by a Mud Horn, a species that makes its first appearance in episode 2. The Mud Horn heavily resembles the Reek that tried to kill Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Padme on Geonosis in Attack of the Clones.
The way the Mud Horn drags Boba Fett through the mad also reminds us of how the Reek dragged Obi-Wan during their battle in the Geonosian arena. The Jedi Master didn’t get as dirty, though.
– The Mandalorian has so far leaned heavily on the aesthetics and tropes of the Western genre. It’s perhaps the most Western-y Star Wars has been since A New Hope. There’s plenty of imagery in this episode that’s reminiscent of the Westerns of old — shots of Mando and Baby Yoda traveling through the big, lonely desert, for example — and it all looks so beautiful.