The Mandalorian Season 2: Bo-Katan Kryze’s Return Explained

Katee Sackhoff will reprise her role as Mandalorian warrior Bo-Katan Kryze on the Star Wars live-action series. What does this mean for the show?

Star Wars Bo-Katan Kryze
Photo: Lucasfilm

This Star Wars article contains spoilers.

There are a few well-known characters from other parts of the Star Wars saga coming to The Mandalorian season 2, including Boba Fett and Ahsoka Tano. Next up is Bo-Katan Kryze, the character voiced by Battlestar Galactica star Katee Sackhoff in The Clone Wars and Rebels who could be deeply rooted in Din Djarin’s past.

A Mandalorian soldier who fought to unify her people as an independent society connected to their warrior ideals, Bo-Katan lived during the Clone Wars and participated in the struggle against the Empire in the early days of the Galactic Civil War. Her return in The Mandalorian could mean that she survived the war against the Empire, although that’s not been confirmed. It’s also possible Bo-Katan will appear in a flashback to Din’s past on Mandalore.

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With The Clone Wars, Rebels, and The Mandalorian all dealing with the political footing of Bo-Katan’s people, she could become the pin that holds these three different stories together. Here’s a look at how she might fit into The Mandalorian:

Who Is Bo-Katan?

As the last-known Mand’alor, Bo-Katan is the rightful holder of the Darksaber, the symbolic weapon of the leader of the Mandalorian people. But at some point, the Empire ravaged Mandalore’s surface during a great purge, which scattered the remaining Mandalorians across the galaxy and sent them into hiding. It might have been during this time that Bo-Katan also lost the Darksaber to Imperial Moff Gideon, who is seen holding the weapon in The Mandalorian season 1 finale. We still don’t know what happened to Bo-Katan herself, though.

A stern warrior, Bo-Katan has a deep affection for Mandalorian heritage and a wary eye toward outsiders. She came to power in a tumultuous time. During the Clone Wars, Bo-Katan switches sides at just the right moment to influence Mandalore’s role in the war. Her role in The Clone Wars is first as a leading member of the militant Mandalorian faction Death Watch, who want to connect with ancient Mandalorian tradition and build up their planet’s military might. During his stint as a crime lord, Maul sees this group as the muscle he needs to grow his criminal empire. In an effort to make Mandalore his base of operations, Maul killed Bo-Katan’s sister, Duchess Satine Kryze, and takes over the planet. 

Bo-Katan had been willing to cause unrest against her sister’s government when it was for the Death Watch cause but drew the line at Maul killing her kin and installing himself on the Mandalorian throne. In The Clone Wars season 7, she asks the Republic for help in subduing Maul and returning peace to Mandalore. We see as Ahsoka Tano and her clone troopers free the planet and capture Maul. For the moment, it seems Mandalore can enjoy peace once again. As fans of Rebels know, this peace won’t last very long.

Flash forward several years and Bo-Katan is still trying to free Mandalore, this time working with the Rebel Alliance to rid the planet of the Empire. In the Rebels season 4 episode “Heroes of Mandalore,” the Mandalorian resistance and the rebels succeed in freeing the planet, and Bo-Katan is named Mand’alor and given the Darksaber. At last, she can lead her people to a brighter future…

How Does She Connect to The Mandalorian?

We know that the victory Bo-Katan and the people of Mandalore enjoyed in Rebels didn’t last. Five years after Return of the Jedi, what was left of the Mandalorian culture had been was now scattered in the Outer Rim, once great warriors now underground refugees. By the time of The Mandalorian, Din operates as a bounty hunter while the rest of his people are in hiding.

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This raises some questions about what happened to Bo-Katan during the Great Purge and where she went after her people fell on Mandalore. With so much focus on Mandalorian history, the live-action series will undoubtedly fill in a few blanks about Bo-Katan’s past and where she’s been since the end of the war.

Beyond being the apparently deposed leader of the Mandalorians, Bo-Katan has another very personal stake in the story. The Darksaber rightfully belongs to her. She may be on a quest to get it back in The Mandalorian season 2. With it in hand, Bo-Katan could rally Din Djarin and his culvert against the Imperial remnant to restore Mandalorian independence once and for all.

But The Mandalorian doesn’t focus on galactic politics as much as The Clone Wars did, instead telling Djarin’s individual story with a tighter focus. Season 2 may very well change that, broadening the scope, or feature Mandalorian politics in the background of the more personal story of Din Djarin and Baby Yoda. 

What Does Bo-Katan’s Return Mean for the Show?

Sackhoff is no stranger to live-action science fiction and it’ll be exciting to finally see her in Star Wars, wearing the Mandalorian armor herself. It seems most likely that Bo-Katan’s role on the show will have something to do with Moff Gideon and the Darksaber. Whether she’ll play a large part, her story playing out in parallel to Din Djarin’s, or a small cameo, is unknown. Maybe Bo-Katan will be like the Armorer in season one, presenting to give Djarin with more tools to add to his arsenal as well as a bit of warrior wisdom. 

The other big question tying all of these events together is: what will happen to Baby Yoda? Bo-Katan has had direct dealings with Jedi, and, even if she doesn’t trust them, she might be able to tell Din what she knows about Obi-Wan Kenobi and Ahsoka Tano, and perhaps help him find where the Child came from.

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With her no-nonsense attitude and proficiency with the kind of jetpack Din Djarin has just begun to use, Bo-Katan could be a Mandalorian mentor or a disillusioned rebel. Whatever her role ends up being, it’s likely that it’ll involve fighting for what’s left of her people.

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