This Star Wars: The Mandalorian article contains spoilers.
In “The Rescue,” one major cameo takes The Mandalorian season 2 finale home. Din and his friends have discovered where Moff Gideon has taken Grogu, and it doesn’t take them long to launch an attack on his flagship. Once there, the finale delivers on all the blasting, darksaber fights, and surprise cameos you could want, playing coy only with Grogu himself.
“The Rescue,” directed by Peyton Reed and written by showrunner Jon Favreau, has a couple major Star Wars connections and not as many little Easter eggs. Let’s just say you might want to re-watch Return of the Jedi.
Here are all the Star Wars easter eggs and references we spotted in this episode:
– Mark Hamill returns as his iconic Original Trilogy character, although it’s a bit of a ship of Theseus situation, with Hamill providing the voice and providing his likeness for the CGI face effects. It’s British actor Max Lloyd-Jones actually wearing the robes in the scene.
You can read more about Lloyd-Jones here.
– The green lightsaber he uses is the one he built in a deleted scene from Return of the Jedi. This is the same lightsaber he uses throughout the inter-trilogy era. Rey will return Luke’s first lightsaber, which was also Anakin Skywalker’s weapon, to him in The Force Awakens.
– Despite his high status as a leading member of the Rebel Alliance, Luke never took a flagship of his own, preferring to fly the battered old X-wing, which he flew as callsign Red Five in the first Death Star battle in A New Hope. We see him zoom into the Imperial cruiser on his trusty starfighter just before he completely demolishes the dark troopers.
– Alongside Luke is his faithful astromech droid companion R2-D2, who kept the Jedi Knight company on most of his adventures throughout the Original Trilogy and after Return of the Jedi. Luke parted ways with R2 when he chose to exile himself on Ahch-To right before the Sequel Trilogy.
– Luke emerging through the smoke in the bridge scene reminds us of his father before him: Darth Vader had a similarly ominous intro in the iconic massacre scene in Rogue One.
– The bar where Din finds Bo-Katan Kryze seems to be on a new planet. Anyone recognize those smoke stacks or the desert landscape?
– Bo-Katan reiterates her backstory: she’s the deposed leader of Mandalore, and needs the Darksaber to get the planet back. She’s leaving some tidbits out though, including the role of she played in toppling her sister, Duchess Satine, from power and her former affiliation with the violent Mandalorian extremist group Death Watch.
– Bo-Katan’s ship, with its tall wings folded above the living quarters for landing, is a Kom’rk-class fighter also seen in The Clone Wars.
– The Darksaber lore Moff Gideon and Bo-Katan talk about in this episode doesn’t quite match what we’ve seen in canon before. Gideon says in order to be the rightful ruler, a Mandalorian has to win the Darksaber in combat, ut Bo-Katan took it from Sabine Wren without fighting her in Star Wars Rebels.
Read more about the Darksaber here.
– Koska Reeves is once again at Bo-Katan’s side in this episode. She’s played by Mercedes Varnado, who is better known as the wrestler Sasha Banks. You can read more about this new Mandalorian character here.
– We’ve already covered the dark troopers on other guides, but since this is the first time we truly see them in action, putting up quite the fight against Mando’s team (but less so against Luke’s lightsaber, we’re bringing them up again. You can read way more about their history in classic Star Wars lore here.
– It should be noted that the Imperial comms officer played by actor and martial artist Katy O-Brian was the subject of much speculation ahead of the finale. One popular fan theory suggested that this comms officer was actually Sabine Wren in disguise. That would’ve been quite the twist! Wasn’t meant to be, though.
– Another major Return of the Jedi setting makes an appearance in the post-credits scene: Jabba’s Palace. It’s especially fitting because it’s the first place fans saw Luke don his all-black costume.
– Twi’lek dancers are a common trope in Star Wars, and the last woman we saw chained to Jabba’s throne didn’t survive her first appearance. Fennec Shand makes this a much kinder scene than the one in which the previous dancer was fed to the rancor: she shoots her chain free and lets the dancer run.
– All kinds of alien races and creatures are represented in the Jabba’s Palace scene, most of which have appeared previously on The Mandalorian. But one reference of note is the rancor decoration in Jabba’s main hall. The rancor is, of course, the beast Luke had to fight in the depths of the palace.
The Twi’lek on the throne is Jabba the Hutt’s former majordomo Bib Fortuna, who has apparently taken over his former master’s role five years after his death.
He’s played by Matthew Wood, an accomplished Lucasfilm sound designer and editor and Star Wars regular under special effects characters. He’s best known for voicing General Grievous in Revenge of the Sith and The Clone Wars, and also played Bib Fortuna in The Phantom Menace in an uncredited role.
– Bib’s dialogue features a shoutout to one of the more recent Star Wars memes. He says what sounds like “maclunkey,” which is actually “ma klounkee,” a threat in Huttese. The word’s inclusion in the most recent version of A New Hope‘s famous and heavily-edited confrontation between Han and Greedo confused fans, and stands as one of Lucas’ final edits to the Original Trilogy before turning the Star Wars rights over to Disney.
Read more about Bib Fortuna here.