This Star Wars: The Mandalorian article contains spoilers.
The seeing stone on Tython has done its job: Grogu is now in the care of the galaxy’s greatest Jedi, Luke Skywalker himself. The Mandalorian‘s finale, “The Rescue,” brings Luke in as both a surprise connection to the larger saga and a new mentor for the child. And the baby shows an immediate affinity for Luke, reaching out to touch even the screen Luke is shown on. They seem like a good match.
The episode is a delightful return of the saga’s leading man but also one that leaves us with lots of questions. Before we can get any answers, we watch the elevator doors close on Luke and Grogu in the final scene of the episode but don’t know what’s next.
During the time of The Mandalorian, we know Luke is traveling around the galaxy trying to find relics and writings left by the generations of Jedi who came before. It’s during this quest that he finds the sacred texts Rey encounters in The Last Jedi, as well as some records belonging to the High Republic‘s foremost Jedi, Avar Kriss. He has recovered a Force-sensitive tree that once grew in the Jedi Temple on Coruscant before the Empire took over, and he’s also trained his sister, Leia, to use the Force.
He’s in possession of a Jedi star compass found on the planet Pillio, which will eventually point him to Ahch-To, the planet where Luke will later go in his self-imposed exile right before the Sequel Trilogy. Just a few years after The Mandalorian, he will also set out to find Jedi ruins with his nephew Ben Solo and Lor San Tekka, the Force devotee who appeared briefly at the start of The Force Awakens.
So, in short, Luke has a whole galaxy to explore in order to figure out how best to build a new Jedi Order. He already has some information, but as far as we know, has not canonically started training anyone else in the ways of the Force at this point. In fact, until “The Rescue,” it seemed like Ben was Luke’s Jedi apprentice. Now Grogu might fill that spot. But Luke doesn’t have an academy to go home to yet.
But did Grogu eventually become one of the Jedi students who died when Ben Solo destroyed Luke’s academy? For one thing, Grogu isn’t around in the Sequel Trilogy, which might leave some people wondering if the little Jedi did die just before The Force Awakens. You can probably rest easy, though. He doesn’t appear in the comic book miniseries The Rise of Kylo Ren by Charles Soule and Will Sliney, which chronicles Ben’s fall to the dark side and shows the very moment Luke’s former apprentice destroyed the Jedi Temple. Since Grogu isn’t one of the Jedi students featured in those comics, you could reason he was no longer with Luke by the time the Jedi Master set up his academy. Of course, you could also make the very reasonable counter-argument that Grogu just didn’t exist in the Lucasfilm creative vault when the studio began crafting its Sequel era stories.
Just like with Luke taking Grogu on as his first(?) student, whatever fate awaits Grogu could just as easily be retconned into the timeline, meaning that his absence from the Sequel Trilogy will very likely be explained in another story. This does open up the possibility that the Lucasfilm Story Group could just decide that Grogu died off-screen during the destruction of Luke’s academy. But Disney wouldn’t kill off a beloved (and lucrative) character in such an unceremonious fashion.
Does this mean Grogu made it back to Din Djarin at some point between “The Rescue” and the Sequel Trilogy? This is very possible — and even likely. It’s no secret that Din and Grogu’s connection is at the core of what has made The Mandalorian so successful. Forget all of the nostalgia, references to classic cinema, and all of the Jedi and bounty hunter action. People ultimately care about this show because of this found family and what they mean to each other. This show wouldn’t hit quite as hard if its main characters weren’t so fully realized.
Disney seemingly breaking away from the central relationship on the show is likely more about building tension for a reunion at a later date as well as moving some pieces around on the galactic chessboard. At the end of “The Rescue,” it’s clear where Din is off to next. He’s allied himself with Bo-Katan and promised to help her retake Mandalore from the Empire once and for all. A battlefield hardly seems like a place for a mostly defenseless baby. Pulling Grogu out of the equation also makes it easier to tell a story as big as the reclamation of Mandalore without having to check in with the little Jedi every episode. And when Grogu’s on the show, you want him front and center, too.
Whether the Mandalore story will be told in season 3, or if it’ll pop up in The Book of Boba Fett, remains to be seen. What does seem inevitable is that Din and Grogu will reunite eventually to continue their story.
But in the meantime, it’s exciting to think about where Luke and Grogu might be headed to first in the Jedi’s trusty X-wing. Could Luke take Grogu back to what’s left of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant to explore the little padawan’s past with the old Jedi Order? Or might they be headed to Chandrila, the capital of the New Republic at the time? Or maybe Luke will just set course for the next ruin or treasure trove of Jedi knowledge, a clear opportunity for Grogu to learn more along with him.
A more captivating destination could be Grogu’s home world, the mysterious birthplace of Yoda’s species. Ever since Yoda was introduced in The Empire Strikes Back, fans have wondered where the Jedi Master hails from, a well-kept secret that George Lucas refused to reveal while he was at the controls of the franchise. And Disney doesn’t seem any closer to answering that question…yet. With Grogu proving such a hit with fans, could Disney be tempted to explore more about the little Jedi’s roots in the undoubtedly mystical location?
It’d fit Luke’s story perfectly, too. He’d be able to learn more about his Jedi Master while in the process of becoming a master himself and passing on what he’s learned about the Force to another of Yoda’s species. It’s the kind of rhyming poetry Star Wars loves.
Whatever might be next for Grogu, we have many more months to speculate. The Mandalorian season 3 is scheduled to arrive in December 2021.