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The Mandalorian: The Mines of Mandalore

“This was once a beautiful civilization. My family ruled it all. Now it's a tomb.”

Chapter Eighteen

Mando and Grogu venture to Mandalore in search of the fabled Mines of Mandalore which are said to house the living waters. With the recently acquired R5 they discover Mandalore is not quite as dead as it was believed. So together they fight their way into the bowels of the planet, only to find something unexpected...

This is probably about as close to horror as Star Wars goes, and it was really effective. The entire opening act after they landed was tense. From the giant Morlock-looking monsters to the creepy lizards waiting to ambush them, until finally a previously unseen enemy shows up and captures Mando in a completely unexpected way.

The creature design on this new monster is totally unique as far as I’m aware: a tiny being, which may be a cyborg type creature a la General Grievous, that fits into two different bigger machines to suit its purposes. The larger cage prosthetic felt almost impossible to destroy, then the sleeker humanoid-ish model looked like something straight out of a nightmare, complete with dirty medical equipment. I don’t know why it was ambushing and killing Madalorian survivors, but I got the impression it was somehow living on whatever it was attempting to extract from Mando.

That left Grogu alone and vulnerable, and wouldn’t you know it, he immediately jumps into action and saves the day. Wait... seriously, I wasn’t expecting Grogu to just leap into his hover cradle, I really need to think of a better name for that, and make a bee line for the ship. Then following Din’s guidance on navigation he heads towards the only person that makes sense, Bo-Katan.

We don’t see Mando in trouble like this very often, but what this gave us was an opportunity to explore the greatness of Bo-Katan. I know she is popular enough from the Clone Wars series for people to be excited about her showing up last season. Those introductory episodes were fine, but I didn’t really get a sense of who she was as a character.

This episode, however, gave us some really lovely character building for Bo-Katan. I’ll admit I was somewhat on the fence about her, but given how she threw herself so completely into his rescue I have a much better opinion of her. Does that mean she is a new ally, friend or even a potential romantic interest? I don’t know, but at least she seems to be noble and capable and perhaps not an enemy.

Also, can I say that I almost want her to have the Darksaber, because she seems to have similar goals as Mando and can actually use the thing. Watching her fight the spider-droid thing was one of the cooler action scenes in the series, and gave us a taste of what a Mandalorian can really do with their armor and proper weaponry. I also loved her interactions with Grogu, I think he gained her respect in a big way during the episode, to the point where she was actively training him in what it meant to be a Mandalorian.

Then there was the whole ending sequence with the actual living waters of Mandalore. Mando must’ve been in poor shape to falter so badly. I loved that Bo just dove right in without a single second of hesitation, and even when she spotted the legendary Mythosaur lurking in the waters, she still kept going. It was a really beautiful sequence, and really made me like her even more than when she joined Grogu for the rescue.

The only real flaw I can see in the episode is the somewhat poor use of lighting. On occasion, especially during the underground fight sequences, the action was hard to follow. This was helped in Bo-Katan’s fight with her glowing blue shield and the Darksaber, but was still hard to track on occasion. I will say the creature designs and atmosphere were really creative, with some impressive attention to detail.


This episode is absolutely full to the brim with Star Wars Easter eggs, mostly related to the animated Clone Wars which featured Mandalore heavily before it fell.

In The Clone Wars, Ahsoka Tano pursued Darth Maul through the same sewers that Mando, Grogu and Bo-Katan ventured through in this episode.

Bo-Katan mentions to Grogu that she once knew many Jedi. She was shown to have worked and allied with Ahsoka Tano, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Anakin Skywalker. She also knew of Kanan Jarrus and Ezra Bridger, whose fate is still unknown at this point in the timeline.

The Alamites, the monsters trying to eat our heroes, were an homage to the Morlocks from H.G. Wells novel The Time Machine, specifically from the theatrical version of The Time Machine (1960).

The sound of Mando’s helmet pressurizing mimicked the one used when Darth Vader’s helmet pressurized for the first time in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

Bo-Katan’s sister Satine was very close to Obi-Wan Kenobi, to the point where it was implied he might have been tempted to leave the order for her. Satine was also the one who gave him the nickname Ben.

There are also a couple of potential goofs. The first was kind of a continuity error. When Grogu jumps into the ship, he does it without his floating pod then takes off immediately. Unless he has a second one, this doesn’t make sense. Also, the way these fighters work, there is no way for the droid to fall from the bottom of the ship as seen in The Phantom Menace. I suppose Peli made some modifications to allow this function, so it isn’t as big of an error.

Another common thing some assume is an error, is the fact there is no air supply for Mando’s helmet and it isn’t connected to the armor in any way that would allow for a perfect seal. This is actually established canon; those helmets can seal by themselves and remove most kinds of toxins from an atmosphere so this is more of a futuristic gas mask than a rebreather.


Mando: “I must continue to the Mines of Mandalore so that I may be redeemed.”
Bo-Katan: “I honestly think that's adorable that you actually believe these children's stories. But there is nothing magic about the waters.”

Mando: “I'm here on business.”
Peli: “Oh, are the Hutts back? Are you takin' out Boba Fett?”
Mando: “I need a droid part.”
Peli: “Ugh. Boring!”

Bo-Katan: “The Empire set out to punish us. To wipe away our memory.”
Mando: “It must pain you to see it like this after witnessing its beauty.”
Bo-Katan: “What pains me is seeing our own kind fight one another time and time again. Killing each other for reasons too confusing to explain. It made us weak. We had no hope to resist being smashed by the fist of the Empire.”

Bo-Katan: “The Living Waters. Hold on. I want you to get the full tour.” (Reading a plaque) “These mines date back to the age of the first Mandalore. According to ancient folklore, the mines were once a Mythosaur lair. Mandalore the Great is said to have tamed the mythical beast. It is from these legends that the skull signet was adopted and became the symbol of our planet."

This was a fabulous episode, improving both character backstory and motivations.

3 ½ out of 4 Mythical Mines, Waters and Monsters

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. Wahoo! Sorry, I tend to go all fangirl over reviews on this site and The Mandalorian is currently my favorite. Thanks so much for all the knowledge on the Star Wars canon. It gives me a bit of a headache to keep it all straight.

    Grogu is developing as a character. Bad baby, smart baby, powerfully baby.

    The Mythosaur is real! Knew that would happen as soon as Bo Katan read that plaque.

    Bo Katan saved Mando twice in one episode.

    That thing that caught Mando was gross. Seemed kinda steam punk to me. Like the Wild Wild West.

    My favorite quote:
    Bo Katan: What, did you think your dad was the only Mandalorian?

    Wondering…. Hey, Bo Katan has now bathed in the waters of Mandalore as well. Does it count if you didn’t really mean to?

  2. That cyborg creature is what I Imagined Calvert to look like from the Howling Dark, the 2nd novel in the Sun Eater series by Christopher Ruocchio.

  3. Måge I had the same thought about Bo jumping into the waters. I doubt she will be willing to just keep her helmet on though.

    Patryk, I have never heard of that series. I'm assuming it is recommended?

  4. It's the life story of a famed hero/villian who ended a war with aliens by making a sun go nova as told by himself at the apparent end of his life. It draws heavily from Dune and Book of the New Sun whille having the format of Name of the Wind (1st person narration revealing the true story behind in-universe exaggerated exploits)

    The author himself desribes the story as: What If Anaking becoming Vader was a good thing.

    So yeah recommended. ;)


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