The Mandalorian season 2 episode 4 recap: Baby Yoda and Mando reunite with old buddies – CNET

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Greef Karga, Cara Dune and Mando get shooty, while Mythrol cowers.


                                            <p class="speakableTextP1"><span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">The Mandalorian</a></span> season 2 took a nostalgic turn in <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">episode 4</a></span>, as <span class="comLink nolinks norewrite " section="commerce-link" data-track="commerceLink"><a href="" data-omitnoreferrer data-component="leadsTracker" data-leads-tracker-options="{"numNodes":1,"trackingData":{"asid":"","assetguid":"c7fb3e03-31f0-4cf6-9c4e-413ba5382a52","contype":"review","destUrl":"","devicetype":"desktop","ctype":"cpc","leadcpc":"","ltype":"manual","merid":"","merchantName":"","pagetype":"","pid":"","rsid":"cbsicnetglobalsite","siteid":"1","topic":"","ttag":"","viewguid":"","event":"","_destCat":""}}" section="commerce-link" data-shortcode="the-mandalorian-season-2-episode-4-recap-baby-yoda-mando-reunite-with-old-buddies" rel="noopener nofollow noreferrer" target="_blank">Disney Plus</a></span> brought us back to the live-action <a href="" data-annotation="true" data-component="linkTracker" data-link-tracker-options="{"action":"inline-annotation|Star Wars|CNET_TAG|306"}" section="annotation">Star Wars</a> show's roots. Where <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">last week's episode</a></span> was a major treat for fans of <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">The Clone Wars</a></span>, this one pays homage to George Lucas' <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">Original Trilogy</a></span> in delightful style.</p><p class="speakableTextP2">Episode 4, titled The Siege, was directed by <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">Carl Weathers</a>, who also plays charming bounty hunter boss Greef Karga. Written by series creator <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">Jon Favreau</a>, it sees Mando (<a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">Pedro Pascal</a>) stopping for repairs as he brings <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">Baby Yoda</a></span> (aka The Child) to find former Jedi <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">Ahsoka Tano</a></span>.

Let's get into SPOILER town. 


Cara the Marshal

Mando returns to Nevarro, the Outer Rim world we got to know in season 1. Since we left, Rebel Alliance soldier-turned-mercenary Cara Dune (Gina Carano) has been dispensing justice as Karga's enforcer, while he tries to transform the place into a respectable trading post. 

Mythrol (Horatio Sanz), the first bounty we saw Mando collect, is Karga's bookkeeper as he works off his debt. It turns out he went on the run after engaging in some “creative accounting” — presumably stealing money from Karga. Whoops.

Cara and Karga are bringing order to Nevarro.


While the Razor Crest is being repaired, Mando joins them in wrecking an Imperial Remnant base, the final step in making Nevarro safe. The action in this episode is killer — watching them sneak and shoot around the base and take out TIE fighters evokes the imagery of A New Hope, while the speeder bike chase echoes Return of the Jedi.

In a deeper cut, the boxy Imperial Troop Transport that Cara, Karga and Mythrol use to escape is based on a 1979 Kenner toy — the first that didn't appear in one of the movies. It showed up regularly in CGI animated series Rebels and briefly in season 1 of this show, but this is the first time it's gotten the spotlight in live action.

Baby Yoda's midi-chlorians

On the base, our heroes are horrified at the sight of some twisted creatures in test tubes — beings that look like First Order Supreme Leader Snoke and the clones seen in Emperor Palpatine's lab on Exegol in The Rise of Skywalker.

A holographic message from Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi) to Moff Gideon reveals exactly why they want Baby Yoda. They tried to use the blood harvested from the Force-strong little guy to replicate his powers in others, but apparently it didn't go so well.

The twisted test subjects look quite like Supreme Leader Snoke.

Lucasfilm/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

“There were promising results for an entire fortnight, but sadly the body rejected the blood,” Pershing says. “I highly doubt we'll find a donor with a higher M-count though.”

He's referring to Baby Yoda's midi-chlorian count, a concept introduced in The Phantom Menace that makes many Star Wars fans grit their teeth because it brought a scientific element to the Force (which had been mystical up to that point). Midi-chlorians are microscopic life forms in the cells of living beings — an individual's midi-chlorian count determines their ability to use the Force, and can be determined through a blood test.

Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito) is seemingly trying to create Force-strong beings with Baby Yoda's blood, but it's unclear if he's doing this for his own ends, knowingly working the reborn Palpatine or unknowingly doing the hidden Emperor's bidding. My money's on the third option — we know from The Rise of Skywalker novelization that Palpatine was having difficulty making Force-strong clones for his consciousness to live in.

It's likely the experiments Gideon is overseeing will result in the creation of Supreme Leader Snoke, the twisted, Force-strong being who'll lead the First Order — which is basically the Empire — as Palpatine's surrogate around 20 years after the events of this show (The Force Awakens takes place 30 years after Return of the Jedi).

The speeder bike chase has major Return of the Jedi vibes.


‘The new era'

New Republic Captain Carson Teva (Paul Sun-Hyung Lee), is apparently tracking the Razor Crest after saving Mando and Baby Yoda from spidery death. He shows up on Nevarro looking for the ship, but Karga ain't sayin' nothin'. 

Teva also appeals to Cara's sense of duty by asking her to assist the New Republic in policing the Outer Rim. We also learn that Cara lost “everyone” when the Empire destroyed Alderaan, her homeworld.

“There's something going on out here. They don't believe it on the Core Worlds, but it's true,” he says, referring to the insidious activities of the Imperial Remnant.

In a shot that directly references the opening of A New Hope, we cut to an Imperial cruiser. One of the mechanics who repaired the Razor Crest also planted a tracker on the ship (again, like A New Hope, because yay 1977) and Gideon is back on Mando and Baby Yoda's trail. That'll probably bring trouble their way soon.

Gimme dem macarons.

Lucasfilm/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

Baby Yoda cuteness

The little guy gets some delightful character development here, along with some meme-able moments. In the opening on the Razor Crest, he tries to help Mando with repairs and seems reasonably good at it — I blame Mando for the wire mixup. He also tries to sneak a look at Mando's face as they sip their drinks together.

It's also lovely to see him going to school, and using the Force to steal a kid's space macarons (that kid should've learned to share). It's the first time we've seen him use his powers this season, but the reminder was clearly timed with the revelation about the nature of Gideon's experiments.

He also eats too many space macarons before Mando pulls his fancy flying maneuvers to take down the TIEs, and gets carsick. We've all been there! Expect to see “Baby Yoda puking blue” GIFs forever. 

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<ul><li>A protocol droid teaches class, and reminds us about the New Republic's rotating capital world -- it's currently on Chandrila, the homeworld of former Rebel Alliance leader (and current Chancellor) <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer nofollow" data-component="externalLink">Mon Mothma</a>. (She uttered the immortal "Many Bothans died… " line in Return of the Jedi.)</li><li>By the time of The Force Awakens, the capital will be Hosnian Prime, which is destroyed by Starkiller Base.</li><li>There's a <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">statue of IG-11</a> in the town square on Nevarro, presumably in honor of <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">the sacrifice</a></span> he made to shake off Imperial rule. </li><li>"I still can't see out of my left eye." Mythrol is apparently suffering from hibernation sickness after being frozen in carbonite. Han Solo was similarly afflicted in Return of the Jedi and was temporarily unable to see -- he still managed to <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">beat Boba Fett</a></span>, though.</li><li>A <span class="link" section="shortcodeLink"><a href="">person in a T-shirt and jeans</a></span> is visible during one of the action scenes in the base -- you can see them under Karga's arm in the photo at the top of this article. Whoops.</li><li>The music that plays as our heroes look at the Imperial test tubes is a little like <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer nofollow" data-component="externalLink">Snoke's theme</a> from The Force Awakens and <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer nofollow" data-component="externalLink">Palpatine's Teachings</a> from <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">Revenge of the Sith</a>, implying a connection.   </li><li>In the episode's final moments, Gideon appears to be in a room containing armored figures It's hard to make out the details of this armor, but it seems likely that they're Dark Troopers. These were first seen in the <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">non-canon</a> 1995 video game <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-component="externalLink">Dark Forces</a>, and hopefully we'll get to see them in action this season.</li></ul>

Join us for more Easter eggs and observations next Friday, after episode 5 of The Mandalorian season 2 hits Disney Plus.

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