In the space of just two months the Star Wars franchise debuted both The Mandalorian on Disney Plus and the last chapter in the current movie trilogy, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The movies are done (for now) but The Mandalorian continues. Season one of The Mandalorian is over, but we’re looking forward to what’s next in The Mandalorian Season 2.
(Just a heads up, we’re going to get into spoiler territory for The Mandalorian season one. If you haven’t watched yet, one, stop reading, and two, go watch it. There are only eight episodes, they’re all available, and short, and you can easily squeeze them into a free trial of Disney+.)
While they’ve had animated series like The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, The Mandalorian marks Lucasfilm’s first foray into live-action episodic television. The first season just wrapped up and by almost any metric, it was a pretty rousing success. It has detractors, for sure, but by and large, it was met with critical acclaim, tons of folks watched and discussed every episode, and who among us has a social media feed not besieged by Baby Yoda memes?
Because it’s a Star Wars IP, a second season was almost inevitable. Success and a warm reception just made it even more of a sure thing. But what do we know about The Mandalorian season two?
The answer is, right now, we have many more questions than we have concrete answers. That said, come along as we dig into what we do know, explore some of the questions we have, and speculate, wildly or otherwise, about what the future of the series may hold in The Mandalorian Season 2.
Will The Mandalorian Return for Season 2? When?
The short answer is yes, we will see The Mandalorian season two. Disney and Lucasfilm didn’t invest this much time, effort, and money into a one-off. The larger success is just icing on the cake.
While it was assumed, and we heard rumblings the writing and production process was already underway, we hadn’t heard anything official. Though showrunner, executive producer, writer, and general overseer, Jon Favreau, did share this from the set of season two.
The real stir, however, came on December 27, the very day The Mandalorian released the final episode of season one, when Favreau, tweeted this:
(We’ll get to the photo in a bit.)
Not only does this confirm what we all expected, we also have an idea of when. And it’s not that far off. According to Favreau, and he’s one who would know such information, The Mandalorian season two arrives in the fall of 2020.
This indicates a couple of things. First, that a second season was likely in the works from the beginning. Again, not much of a shock. Barring all but the most stunning debacle, we were likely always in for this.
Second, the rumors that Favreau and company have actually started work are true. Again, there have been reports that shooting on The Mandalorian season two has already started. Given the timeline that makes perfect sense. This is a big production full of elaborate sets and costumes, large action scenes, and more special effects than your usual series.
There are a ton of moving parts to arrange in a relatively short time, which is much easier to pull off if things are already in motion. Though we don’t know much about the next chapter in the saga of Mando and Baby Yoda, with things moving forward, we could hear new information almost any time. (Also, I know, I know, the official designation is “The Child,” or “The Asset,” but the internet has trained me too well, I’m going to call it Baby Yoda most of the time.)
Who Will Return for Season 2 of The Mandalorian?
This leads right into the next question, who is coming back for season two of The Mandalorian?
Again, we haven’t heard much in the way of official announcements, though that could change soon. There are, however, some obvious ones.
Since Pedro Pascal plays the helmeted title character and all, he’ll be back. Though there were those reports that he’s not always the one under the armor. And as the story developed as it did, Baby Yoda will return and the meme-making community can breathe a collective sigh of relief.
Given how the final episode of season one, “Redemption,” ends, expect to see more Giancarlo Esposito as Moff Gideon. The former-Imperial-turned-outer-rim-warlord is too good a villain not to use—and too good a villainous actor—and he’s set up so he could easily be the big bad moving forward.
But what about Carl Weathers’ Greef Karga or Gina Carano’s Cara Dune? At the end of “Redemption,” they head out on their own side adventure, leaving Mando and the Child to their own devices, but it’s hard to imagine season two without either of them. In fact, Weathers indicated he’ll return, tweeting out:
That seems to be it since most everyone else dies. I’d love to see more Ming Na Wen (Fennec Shand, we hardly knew ye), Werner Herzog, or Nick Nolte, but they’re all sadly toast, so we’ll have to see what The Mandalorian season 2 has cooked up in the way of new characters.
Who’s Coming Back Behind the Scenes?
On the creative side of things, we have at least some idea who will return. As you probably expect at this point, little is official, but there have been rumors and reports and scuttlebutt. Jon Favreau will be back in his showrunner role and there have been reports he might direct some in The Mandalorian Season 2.
Season one put together an interesting crew behind the camera and from what we’ve heard, season two should follow suit. Dave Filoni is rumored to be back to direct, which isn’t super surprising given his deep involvement with the Star Wars universe in both Rebels and The Clone Wars. He made his live-action directorial debut, helming two episodes of the first season of The Mandalorian.
Taika Waititi is also expected to return, though strictly in a behind-the-camera role since his droid character, IG-11, met an untimely demise while protecting Baby Yoda. This is only good news as he helmed “Redemption,” which was one of the best of the season.
Perhaps the most interesting tidbit is the rumor that Carl Weathers will direct an episode in season two of The Mandalorian. Though he’s most known as an actor, he’s directed a number of TV shows off and on starting with Renegade in the mid-1990s and continuing through an episode of Hawaii Five-O in 2019.
Given that The Mandalorian assembled a unique, diverse, interesting slate of writers and directors for season one—and that it’s Star Wars and who doesn’t want to work on a Star Wars project?—The Mandalorian season two promises to be equally intriguing.
What’s The Plot of The Mandalorian Season 2?
If you’re sensing a theme, you’re not wrong. While we have a vague idea of where the plot will take us in The Mandalorian season two, and even more theories, specifics are tough to come by.
In a big sense, now that the Mandalorian, or Din Djarin as we learned is his real name, is responsible for the Child, at least a significant portion of the action will revolve around finding its home and people. Since no one really knows what to make of the little tyke, and since even fans don’t know the name of Yoda’s race—it was a secret George Lucas never revealed—that’s going to take some doing.
We do know now that the Child does HAVE a name. Director Taika Waititi told the NY Times that the Child has a name and he knows it. Since Taika is a key component of the team making The Mandalorian season 2, it’s safe to assume we’ll learn Baby Yoda’s name in season 2.
It may also be that Baby Yoda, aka The Child is somehow related to Yoda, not just another random member of his species. When asked about this possibility Mandalorian showrunner Jon Favreau all but confirmed it by pleading, “Well, now you’re getting into spoilers. I can’t say.”
The Villain Of Season 2
The end of “Redemption” also sets up Moff Gideon as a major antagonist. Though season one was largely episodic—a friend said it reminded him of Kung Fu—there was a narrative that spanned the season. It looks likely that in season two we’ll see Moff Gideon’s obsessive hunt for Baby Yoda. And hopefully some more of his Darksaber, which has a special significance for Mandalorians. (The black-bladed lightsaber was originally made by Tarre Vizsla, the first Mandalorian accepted by the Jedi. Since then, it’s had a long, storied history and passed through many hands.)
Why Gideon wants the Child remains a mystery, but Giancarlo Esposito the actor who plays him did offer us this clue….
“I know … Like any great leader or scientist — clue, clue, clue — with someone who is advanced in a certain way, yeah, you could want to be their best friend, or you could want to co-opt what is inside them to figure out how to make all of us a little better at humanity. So it’s that power and control of a Moff leader who is trying to put the universe back together. But, how does he know everything? How does he know everything that’s going on? He’s a very interesting character and I’m so honored to be a part of this production.“– -Giancarlo Esposito on why Moff Gideon wants The Child
He later added a few more details when talking to IGN…
“You have something I want. You may think you have some idea of what you are in possession of, but you do not. … It means more to me than you will ever know.“– -Mandalorian actor Giancarlo Esposito on why Moff Gideon wants The Child
Cloning was mentioned, but the endgame for Gideon is still unclear. An army of Force-strong Baby Yodas would be a powerful weapon for sure.
It’s also unclear if Moff Gideon is working on his own or if he answers to a higher power. He may be a warlord striking out on his own after the fall of the Empire, making his fortune in the wreckage. But perhaps he’s part of one of the factions still clinging to the Imperial ways, trying to regroup and rebuild. Maybe he’s even a Palpatine loyalist, which would make sense given the Emperor’s connection to the Force.
This also begs another question. From the outset, there was talk that The Mandalorian would show the beginnings and rise of the First Order. There wasn’t a ton of that in season one, which focused more on the lawless, chaotic, wild-west-in-space reality that took up after the Rebel alliance emerged victorious. Perhaps there will be more of the First Order moving forward in The Mandalorian Season 2, especially if Moff Gideon is involved in some capacity.
With Star Wars so focused on the Skywalkers, it’s easy to forget that the Force isn’t something at the forefront of most people’s minds. In the timeline, the action in The Mandalorian is still close to the original trilogy. We’re not far removed from the Jedi being a thing of myth and legend, if they’re remembered at all. Even with Luke Skywalker showing up on the scene, most people weren’t there to see it first hand, and given the size of this far, far away galaxy, word may not have spread. Or if it has, it may be treated as rumor, not fact.
When Baby Yoda shows his powers, people don’t know what to make of it. The Jedi get mentioned as “this thing I heard of,” and it drives home this idea. It’ll be interesting to see what, if any role that plays in The Mandalorian Season 2 and beyond.
While the action in The Mandalorian has been removed from the main Skywalker storyline, that could change some in season two. There have been reports of “several established characters” from the Skywalker saga could appear. What that means remains to be seen. That’s super vague, not to mention unsubstantiated, so it could be almost anyone, from characters playing a major role to familiar faces with little more than a walk-on cameo.
Now back to the photo John Favreau shared.
It features a figurine of a Gamorrean. The pig-looking creatures first appeared in Return of the Jedi, but have since appeared elsewhere in the years since. They’re most known as guards or mercenaries, and while Favreau gave no indication of their role in The Mandalorian season 2, their presence makes sense.
They hail from the planet Gamorr, which is in the Outer Rim, where the series takes place. The Gamorreans are generally a war-like people, and if various warlords and criminal factions are on the rise, battling for turf in the wake of the Empire’s fall, it’s no stretch to imagine turning to them for a bit of additional muscle.
George Lucas And The Mandalorian
Some have wondered if Star Wars creator George Lucas might get involved in the show at some point. He’s been absent from any involvement in the Star Wars universe since he sold the franchise to Disney in 2012. The answer is probably not, Lucas seem pretty happy in retirement. That doesn’t mean he isn’t keeping tabs though and, perhaps more importantly, he has met Baby Yoda…
So apparently Lucas has visited The Mandalorian season 2 sest, but that doesn’t mean he’s involved in it. He’s probably just checking in with Favreau.
Excitement For The Mandalorian’s Return
The Mandalorian’s season 2 is a long way off, but excitement for the series is at a fever pitch. One fan decided to take matters into his own hands, and create what he thinks should be the next big character introduced in season 2: Baby Jabba.
It’s unlikely Jon Favreau wants to repeat the whole Baby Yoda thing, but if he did, I can’t imagine them doing any better than this. Sorry Baby Yoda, you’re pretty cute, but Baby Jaba may actually have out-cuted you.