This Star Wars: The Mandalorian article contains spoilers.
Chapter 11 of The Mandalorian, “The Heiress,” packs an absolute punch. Not only does the episode mark the live-action debut of Mandalorian warrior Bo-Katan Kryze, who is played once again by the wonderful Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica), but it also brings Mercedes Varnado (better known as the WWE superstar Sasha Banks) to the franchise. After weeks of speculation, we finally learn during the action-packed half-hour that Varnado plays a new Mandalorian character named Koska Reeves.
Koska is a member of Bo-Katan’s group of Mandalorian operatives known as the Nite Owls, a faction that goes back all the way to the Clone Wars and wasn’t always on the side of the Jedi or the established order on the planet Mandalore. But now Bo-Katan, Koska Reeves, Axe Woves (Simon Kassianides), and who knows how many other Nite Owl operatives plan to take back their home planet now that the Empire has fallen.
We don’t know much about Koska’s motivations beyond “get Mandalore back” but she seems to be very loyal to Bo-Katan and is clearly a capable fighter, easily taking down a platoon of stormtroopers with her blaster. It’s unclear what her ranking is within the Nite Owls but it seems that she’s one of Bo-Katan’s top lieutenants since she takes part in the pivotal heist aboard the Imperial cruiser on Trask.
Will we see more of Koska on the show? It does seem like the episode ends on a big “To Be Continued,” as the Nite Owls head off on the stolen ship to parts unknown. With the weapons in hand, it’s likely that they’re ready to make final preparations for their own siege of Mandalore.
But the episode also teases that Bo-Katan has a score to settle with Moff Gideon, the Imperial leader who now wields the Darksaber, the ancient Mandalorian weapon that was stolen from her sometime between Star Wars Rebels and The Mandalorian. Her people believe that the one who carries the Darksaber is the Mand’alor, leader of the Mandalorian people, and for a brief time that’s Bo-Katan before the Empire slaughtered most of the Mandalorians during the Great Purge often mentioned on the live-action series. Did Bo-Katan also lose the blade during this Imperial attack on her home planet?
While this isn’t as much of a surprise to those fans who’ve watched The Clone Wars and Rebels animated series, the episode also explains that the Nite Owls and Mando’s tribe, the Children of the Watch, have very different belief systems. Bo-Katan, who has no problem removing her helmet so that others can see her face, at one point calls Mando’s group “religious zealots.”
We know from the first season that Din Djarin was rescued by the Mandalorian extremist group Death Watch (which the Nite Owls briefly partnered with during the Clone Wars) and was raised with their belief systems and customs. Mando owes the Watch his life, which is why he’s so stringent about the traditions and “religion.” This is the way.
More on The Mandalorian season 2 as we learn it!