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The Mandalorian: The Convert

“I witnessed it. You bathed in the Living Waters. You are Mandalorian again. Can we leave now?”

Chapter Nineteen

Having saved Din Djarin from the depths of the living waters, Bo-Katan attempts to return to her home only to be ambushed by Imperial Tie-Interceptors. Together Bo-Katan and Din Djarin fight off the squadron, but not before her home is destroyed. With few other options, they escape into hyperspace to the one place the Mandalorian feels is safe, the Covert...

I liked the opening and closing of this episode but I’m really not sure how to take the extended middle section. So let's get those bookends out of the way first. The dog-fight with the Imperial ships was exciting and really well done. It felt like classic Star Wars adventure stuff, and the back and forth between Bo-Katan and Mando established their connection even further. I don’t know exactly what they are doing with her, but I really like it so far. Plus I can’t be upset with more screen time Katee Sackhoff. She’s always been a favorite of mine, even if she does spend the rest of the season in a helmet.

The fact that Bo-Katan is now a part of the covert, at least until she takes her helmet off, is an interesting choice. I had a feeling they were going in that direction when she didn’t remove her helmet when she got into her ship. Perhaps she did that intentionally, especially with the droid and Grogu there to confirm that she had honored the creed by keeping it on. She doesn’t have people right now. Is this a way of manipulating her way into a new group so she can rise to become leader of Mandalore? That would be kind of disappointing if she is that crafty, but at the same time she did lie about the Mythosaur sighting in the living waters. So I guess we’ll see.

So, the rest of the episode was a major departure from the norm. We spend the bulk of the episode following Dr. Pershing, the one who did experiments on Grogu. He had some mildly sympathetic moments before, but here he is cast as a lead, a man lost and trapped in a situation from which there is no escape. The New Republic’s efforts to help Imperial officers reintegrate into some form of a normal life by providing anti-brainwashing therapy, housing and work seems on the surface like a humanitarian effort. Their laws prevent Pershing from pursuing his previous experiments, and at first he seems to accept that fact.

This whole section of the episode was a really fascinating look into the everyday life of someone living on a city planet. There were so many little details, like the mountain monument (if you think about it for a minute it is just nuts). Coruscant is so overbuilt that the ground floor of those skyscrapers towering thousands of feet in the air start at the top of the highest peak on the planet. Or the little details like glowing popsicles and the train using droids as ticket takers/enforcers. Then there is how the Republic is handling all Imperial equipment and weapons as junk, refusing to use any of it. While this segment wasn’t quite as serious as Andor, it did give that same feeling of the lived in universe that Star Wars was always known for.

Then Pershing meets Elia Kane, whom he recognizes from Moff Gideon’s ship. She claims she was a communication officer, but in reality she acted as basically Gideon’s right hand. She seemed so nice to Pershing, although I kept getting set up vibes during every interaction between them. So when they went to a scrapped Star Destroyer for supplies, I couldn’t figure out her end game. The fact that it was a long con to get him on a brainwashing table was just gross, wiping away his mind or possibly killing him.

Apparently this nearly forty minute chunk was originally written as part of the proposed series Rangers of the New Republic, which has since been abandoned. Elements of that series are likely to be absorbed into The Mandalorian. Since Gina Carano was set to star in that show, it is unknown how much will be incorporated, but it is possible Genevieve O'Reilly as Mon Mothma may make an appearance. Her character’s fate is still unknown after the events of Return of the Jedi, although it is assumed she survived to help build the New Republic.


When Dr. Pershing yells out “it was a trap” to the Mon Calamari technician, this is of course a reference to the famous line from Admiral Ackbar in Return of the Jedi.

Paz Vizsla has appeared a few times at this point in the series. He does have a physical actor doing the on-screen performance. But his voice was at first played by John Favreau himself, and now he is rumored to be voiced by Neil DeGrasse Tyson.

So when the droid starts chasing Dr. Pershing and Elia through the train, there is a brief musical homage to the theme from The Terminator.

This is the first time we’ve seen Coruscant since the fall of the Empire in Return of the Jedi. Although that brief scene of the Emperor’s statue falling was added as a nod to the then upcoming prequel trilogy in the Special Edition theatrical release of the original films.


Mando: "Where'd they come from?"
Bo-Katan: "I've scugged off a lot of Imperial warlords."
Mando: "They tend to get mad when you hijack their ships."
Bo-Katan: "Now you tell me."

Mando: "Bring me to my ship and I'll be on my way. You will forever have my gratitude."
Bo-Katan: "I would invite you in for a feast, but I'm guessing that helmet isn't coming off again."

Dr. Pershing: "What is that?"
Elia: "That is the peak of Umate, the highest mountain on Coruscant. They say it's the only place on the entire surface where you can see the planet itself."

I'm having a hard time figuring out how to rate this one. On one hand it was a really interesting and layered look into the deeper Star Wars universe, and gave us a bleak but fitting end to a complicated antagonist from previous seaons. On the other hand, this was a major jarring departure from the series that didn't quite feel connected.

3 out of 4 Glowing Popsicles

Samantha M. Quinn spends most of her time in front of a computer typing away at one thing or another; when she has free time, she enjoys pretty much anything science fiction or fantasy-related.


  1. Everyone I’ve talked with has pretty much the same reaction as you. Generally, “Why on earth did they waste my precious Mando time with such a long segment of characters I don’t like or even care a flip about?”I hope there’s a good reason. At least the bookends were exceptionally good.

    Gotta admit, most of the layered look into the deeper Star Wars universe went right over my head. Maybe tonight’s installment will shed some light. Without taking away almost 40 minutes of the good stuff.

  2. I liked the New Republic Coruscant segments, but it feels like they are trying to justify what happened in The Force Awakens.Namely that the New Republic was just a bunch of idiots (in the episode the New Republic feel like a lighter shade of grey Empire with brainwashing and segregating former Imperials instead of treating them like humans who were victims of the regime) without a fleet (scrapping not only the imperial stuff but alos their own fleet!) so that Leia had no choice but to form the resistance.

    The sequel trilogy was so bland (episode 7), insulting (episode 8) and beyond stupid (episode 9) that it also makes the Mandalorian feel worse by association.

  3. I liked the Coruscant sequence overall. I thought the parallels to Operation: Paperclip were interesting and showed how easy it is for bureaucracies to get complacent and be infiltrated by bad actors. It reminded me of the admins from The Good Place -- good is good, but good + nice can be a pushover.

    Still unsure what Kane's goal was; punishing perceived traitors to the Empire?


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