This Star Wars: The Mandalorian article contains spoilers.
The Mandalorian Chapter 13, “The Jedi,” gives us answers to many of the biggest questions surrounding Baby Yoda, the former Jedi youngling whose actual name is Grogu, while also introducing new mysteries about the ancient order. In fact, the episode has just set the stage for what will likely be an explosive conclusion to the second season, as Mando and Grogu set off to find what could be the birthplace of the Jedi.
While Mando manages to locate Ahsoka Tano on the planet Corvus, this proves to be just another stop in a much longer journey. Mando means to leave Grogu in Ahsoka’s care so that the former Jedi can train the child, but when she senses the deep connection between the bounty hunter and his ward, Ahsoka says she can’t take the youngling as a student. She doesn’t leave them completely in the lurch, though.
Ahsoka points our heroes to Tython, a mythical planet located in the Deep Core (or the center) of the Star Wars galaxy that’s home to the ruins of what some scholars believed to be the first Jedi Temple. Inside this temple, which is at the top of a mountain, is a seeing stone that can amplify a Force user’s power. It’s there that Ahsoka says Grogu has to make a choice.
“If he reaches out through the Force, there’s a chance a Jedi may sense his presence and come searching for him,” Ahsoka says. “Then again, there aren’t many Jedi left.”
To some fans, this line implies that the only other known Jedi active five years after Return of the Jedi is on his way to The Mandalorian. Yes, we’re talking about Luke Skywalker. But that’s a whole other article for another time. The biggest question at the moment is: what other Jedi knowledge might Mando and Grogu find on Tython?
The planet was first introduced in the old Legends continuity in the pages of the novel Darth Bane: Rule of Two by Drew Karpyshyn, and even then it was treated as a place of great importance to the early history of the Jedi. This ancient history was more heavily explored in the comic book series Dawn of the Jedi by John Ostrander and Jan Duursema. In the series, they explored the birth of the Jedi, how the concepts of the light side and dark side of the Force were first established, and how the conflict between the two sides first began.
In the year 36,453 BBY (Before the Battle of Yavin), in a cosmic event reminiscent of the appearance of the monoliths in 2001: A Space Odyssey, massive pyramid ships known as the Tho Yor arrived on several planets across the galaxy to ferry “pilgrims” to Tython, where they learned to use the Force. These early Force users formed the Je’daii Order, the group that eventually became the Jedi Order.
Tython was orbited by two moons, Ashla and Bogan, celestial bodies that represented the Je’daii belief in balance between the light side and dark side of the Force. Ashla represented the light while Bogan was the physical manifestation of the dark. When a Je’daii strayed too far to the dark side, he was sent to Ashla to reconnect with the light, and vice versa. Neither side was treated as good or evil by the Je’daii, who believed that both sides were key to wielding and understanding the Force.
But eventually the pull of each side was too strong and a bloody civil war known as the Force War broke out in the third volume of Dawn of the Jedi. Although the soldiers of the light eventually won, many of them left Tython for other parts of the galaxy, eventually forming the Jedi Knights. Meanwhile, Tython eventually became part of the Republic and the Jedi even returned to establish a temple there as seen in The Old Republic video game.
It’s unclear just how much of this Legends lore will be re-canonized in The Mandalorian, if ancient history is addressed at all, but establishing some version of Dawn of the Jedi’s plot could, for example, go a long way to explain the connection between Tython and Ahch-To, which the Sequel Trilogy established as another possible birthplace of the Jedi. Perhaps the Je’daii who abandoned Tython settled on Ahch-To to form the Jedi in Disney canon?
Showrunner Jon Favreau and executive producer Dave Filoni, who wrote and directed “The Jedi,” have a track record of re-canonizing Legends characters and lore, so it wouldn’t be too surprising to hear mention of the Je’daii whenever Mando and Grogu finally arrive on Tython. There’s a big opportunity here for Disney to define the ancient history of the Jedi, but ave Favreau and Filoni proven themselves worthy of writing (or at least alluding to) the origin story of the beloved order? That’s perhaps a debate for another day.
Keep up with all of The Mandalorian season 2 news here.