This week’s episode of The Mandalorian season 2 is undoubtedly one of the biggest, most important instalments of the show so far – maybe even the most important. Not only does it see the debut of Ahsoka Tano in live-action, but it also reveals the real name and backstory of Baby Yoda, which we’ve been wanting to know ever since the series opener. And right at the end of its 47 minute runtime, it then goes and squeezes in a name-check of an iconic Star Wars villain.
We begin with Ahsoka storming the subjugated city of Calodan on the forest planet of Corvus. The former Jedi Padawan reaches the tyrannical ruler, Morgan Elsbeth AKA the Magistrate, who had power during the Empire’s reign as she helped construct the Imperial Navy, and demands answers on the whereabouts of her master, but she’s forced to retreat back into the woods.
Djarin is later sent to kill Ahsoka by the Magistrate, but the bounty hunter never intends to do so and instead teams up with the heroine to take hold of Calodan, end the Magistrate’s reign and liberate the city’s people. This leads to Ahsoka having another duel with Elsbeth, with the villain facing down her dual white lightsabers with a staff made of pure beskar. Ahsoka wins, though, and again demands information about her master. And this time, she says his name: Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Of course, Ahsoka and The Ghost crew faced off against Thrawn in Star Wars Rebels, though the villain comes from the old Expanded Universe originally. At the end of Rebels, both Thrawn and Jedi Ezra Bridger went missing and Ahsoka and Sabine Wren headed off in search of their lost friend. It’s clear that she’s still in the midst of this and if she locates Thrawn, she’ll find Ezra.
This plotline could be further explored on The Mandalorian, but it seems more likely that it’s setting up that live-action spinoff series for the character that we’ve heard about. Expect more details on the project to arrive now that this episode’s been released.