Another reason Ahsoka may not want to become Grogu’s mentor is that she is quite busy at the moment. She tried to free the long-suffering citizens of the city of Calodan from the tyrannical power of Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth (Diana Lee Inosanto). The two locked the horns for a while, each using maximum pressure to demand the surrender of the other – Ahsoka regularly killing Elsbeth’s creepy masked goons and Elsbeth imprisoning and torturing any Calodanian who aids Ahsoka.
While this episode adds important new pieces to the series’ larger storyline, it almost plays like a backdoor pilot for a new ‘Star Wars’ live-action series starring Ahsoka. (The character has been well portrayed in the “Star Wars” animated shows, appearing in both “The Clone Wars” and “Rebels.”) After meeting Mando – and after a brief but thrilling fight – she helps him out. only understand a little more about Grogu before she returns to her day job, fighting evil. The Mandalorian plays a minor role in this chapter’s climactic action sequence. He helps free Calodan, then finds himself stuck in an old-fashioned standoff with Morgan Elsbeth’s right-hand man, Lang (Michael Biehn).
The main showdown this week is between the Magistrate and the Jedi, who have a battle royale in the Corvus equivalent of a Zen Garden, much like something out of an old martial arts movie. (Inosanto is a seasoned stuntwoman and stunt coordinator familiar with the genre.) Ahsoka fights with two lightsabers while Morgan has a spear made from the beskar lightsaber resistant metal – aka “Mandalorian Steel.” It’s a fantastic fight, which ends with the villain revealing yet another important name: his master, Grand Admiral Thrawn, a character who appears in several of the fan-favorite ‘Star Wars’ novels.
Yet even though the Mandalorian is a spectator for much of the roughly 45-minute span, it’s a gripping and meaningful episode, drawing its emotional pull and tension from the hero’s personal code – and his relationship with Grogu. There is a lot of talk this week about contracts and promises, and how Din Djarin feels obligated to complete the tasks he has accepted, without taking any compensation unless he is successful. But it remains unclear who he’s supposed to serve as far as the Child is concerned, who might be better off traveling the galaxy in Razor Crest than parking with tough Jedi who won’t let him have fun.
There is a moving moment at the start of the episode where Ahsoka attempts to test Grogu’s powers by having him move a small boulder with his mind. When he refuses, she asks Mando to try – “to see if he will listen to you.” He jokes: “It would be a first.” But then he has a brilliant idea, and he pulls his ship’s gearshift knob out of his pocket. Grogu, who loves this little bullet, immediately shoots it into the air by telekinesis.