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The Mandalorian season 2 episode 3 recap: the best episode so far

Koska Reeves The Mandalorian season 2 episode 3
Mandalorian warrior Koska Reeves comes out of the shadows in The Mandalorian season 2 episode 3. (Image credit: Disney)
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About this episode

- Episode 3 (of 8), ‘Chapter 11: The Heiress’
- Written by Jon Favreau
- Directed by Bryce Dallas Howard
★★★★★

Spoilers for The Mandalorian season 2 follow.

The Razor Crest limps its way to the estuary Moon of Trask. The ship’s landing array and guidance system aren’t responding, meaning that Mando has to attempt manual re-entry. The ship plunges into the atmosphere and starts to burn up. As it approaches the ground at high velocity, Trask Flight Control requests that it reduces its speed to “port protocol” – the Mandalorian points out that he’s trying. 

At the last minute, he manages to engage reverse thrusters and the Razor Crest appears to make a soft landing on a landing pad – before it tumbles inelegantly into the sea, as a local Mon Calamari dock worker shakes his head in disappointment.

A giant walker crane lifts the ship out of the water and returns it to the landing pad. Mando pays the dock worker to fix the ship – he says he can’t fix it but he can make it fly – and walks into town with the Child and the Frog woman. She spots her husband and they reunite. The Mandalorian asks the husband where he may find others of his kind, and he’s pointed in the direction of an inn. A hooded human woman looks on before disappearing into the shadows. 

The Mandalorian orders a bowl of chowder for the Child and pays the Mon Calamari bartender for information about “others that look like me”. The Mon Calamari says he knows someone who may be able to transport them to other Mandalorians. A squid in Baby Yoda’s soup jumps out and attaches itself to his face, Alien-style. A Quarren at the bar tells Mando he can take him, and that it’s only a few hours sail – but it will cost him.

The Mandalorian and the Child head out to sea. The Quarren asks if he’s ever seen a mamacore eat, and suggests the Child might take an interest. They open a metal grille over a hole in the deck, and drop in some fish. As the water starts bubbling, the Quarren intentionally knocks the Child’s floating cradle into the water. A giant mouth comes out of the water to engulf him, and the shell of his capsule instantly snaps shut. Mando dives into the water to save him, and the Quarren close the grille, trapping Mando. One of them gloats that the beskar in the Mandalorian’s armor is now theirs, as they attempt to drown him.

Unexpectedly, three Mandalorian warriors jet onto the deck of the ship and eliminate the Quarren. One of them pulls Mando out of the water, while another dives in to rescue the Child. He’s safe and well inside his capsule.

Bo Katan

(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

Mando thanks his rescuers and tells them he’d been looking for more of their kind. They remove their helmets, so Mando tells them they are not Mandalorian because they are not covering their faces. “He’s one of them,” says the male Mandalorian. “One of what?” asks Mando.

The leader says she is Bo-Katan of Clan Kryze, that she was born on Mandalore, fought in the Purge and is the last of her line. She says that Mando is a “Child of the Watch” – the Children of the Watch are a cult of religious zealots that broke away from Mandalorian society, with the goal of re-establishing a more ancient way of life. “There is only one way,” says Mando. “The way of Mandalore.” He jets back to shore with the Child.

Back in town, they’re set upon a bunch of Quarren whose leader says Mando killed his brother. Again they’re saved by Bo-Katan and her associates, Koska Reeves and Axe Woves. “He didn’t kill your brother,” says Bo-Katan. “I did.”

They take down the attackers, and Bo-Katan asks if they can at least buy Mando a drink. She tells him that Trask is a black market port, staging weapons bought with the plunders of Mandalore. They’re seizing those weapons so they can use them to retake their homeworld. Mando points out that the planet is cursed, that anyone who goes there dies, and suggests that when the Empire realized they couldn’t control it, they made sure no one else could either. “Don’t believe everything you hear…” teases Bo-Katan.

Mando says that getting involved not part of his plan and explains that he’s been quested with returning the Child to the Jedi – he’d hoped they’d help him by Creed. Bo-Katan says she can lead him to one of their kind – on condition that Mando help them on a mission.

They scope out an Imperial Gozanti freighter that’s being loaded up with weapons. Bo-Katan explains that it will maintain trawling speed while inside the shipping lanes, before ascending into orbit – flight control won’t allow them to take off until they’re properly out of port – and that there’ll be a squad of Stormtroopers on board.

Mando leaves the Child with the Frog woman and her husband to act as babysitters. They look on as the first of the egg hatches. 

The freighter takes off with the four Mandalorians in jetpack pursuit. They throw the Troopers guarding the deck overboard, the bridge crew suspecting pirates. The quartet move through the ship, killing Troopers as they go. A Stormtrooper tells the ship’s commander that there are at least 10 attackers, maybe more, though the scanners show there are only four lifeforms. “Wait, they’re Mandalorian…” says the Trooper, before being cut off. The ship’s captain tells his pilot to break port protocols and start climbing early to escape the Mandalorian threat. The captain orders his crew to hold them off until they can make the jump to hyperspace.

THE MANDALORIAN SEASON 2 RECAPS

The Mandalorian: Season 2

(Image credit: Disney)

Remind yourself what's happened so far with our recaps of The Mandalorian season 2 episode 1 and The Mandalorian season 2 episode 2.

The Mandalorians advance on the Stormtroopers, so the officer orders his Troops to close all of the doors. They think they have the Mandalorians trapped in the cargo control area – by the time the freighter’s captain realizes their error it’s too late, as the Imperials are sucked out through an airlock. 

Bo-Katan talks to the bridge crew, thanking them for packing up their gear so nicely. The captain tells them they won’t get away with the weapons, and that his forces will hunt them down until they are dead. “Put some tea on, we’ll be up in a minute,” she says. 

Bo-Katan tells Mando that the plan is now to take the ship. He says that he didn’t sign up for that, but she counters that she’ll only tell him the location of the Jedi if he continues to help.

The captain calls up Moff Gideon to request back-up, while admitting that he was unable to eliminate the Mandalorians. When the captain admits that they’ve taken most of the ship, Gideon says back-up is no longer an option: “You know what to do. Long live the Empire.” The captain kills the two pilots and puts the ship into freefall towards the planet’s surface. 

The four Mandalorians accelerate their assault on the bridge, now heavily defended by Stormtroopers. “Cover me,” says Mando as he runs towards the Troopers, getting close enough to throw a couple of grenades. They take the bridge just in time to remove the captain from the controls and pull up the ship.

Bo-Katan asks the captain if Moff Gideon has the Mandalorian’s sacred Darksaber, a weapon she previously carried. “If you’re asking, you already know,” he replies. She demands that the captain take her to Gideon, but he says that Gideon won’t let him live, even if she does. He electrocutes himself with a suicide pill.

Koska points out that the captain sent a distress signal, so they have to go quickly. They get set to leave the atmosphere and Bo-Katan asks Mando to join them. He says he has something he needs to do. She tells him to take the foundling to the city of Calodan on the forest planet of Corvus, and that he’ll find Ahsoka Tano there: “Tell her you were sent by Bo-Katan.” She tells him that his bravery will not be forgotten, and that he’ll always be welcome to join them. “This is the way.” The Mandalorian jetpacks away from the ship.

Mando picks up the Child, who’s busy playing with the new baby. They return to the Razor Crest which has been repaired – in a way… They get inside to find the ship held together by rope and string – as if it’s a boat. As Mando bemoans the craftsmanship and powers up the vessel, an octopus-like creature moves to attack Baby Yoda. The Mandalorian grabs it, and feeds it to the Child.  

Bo Katan

(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

Verdict: 
The Mandalorian season 2 episode 3 may be barely half an hour long, but it packs a lot into its taut, exciting runtime – in fact, it’s season 2’s best episode so far.

It’s always a pleasure to see a group of Mandalorian warriors in live action – why they’ve never been a mainstay of the Star Wars movies is a mystery – and the sequences where they’re taking down Stormtroopers and Quarren attackers are brilliantly choreographed.

Even better, however, is the way the episode ties into mythologies established in animated series The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels. The return of former Mandalorian leader Bo-Katan Kryze was hardly unexpected, but learning about her quest to rebuild her world and recover the sacred Darksaber is a gift to fans of the wider Star Wars universe. 

Your enjoyment doesn’t depend on your knowing who Bo-Katan is – or recognising the name of Ahsoka Tano, the former Jedi who may just hold the key to solving the mystery of the Child – but it adds layers of depth if you do. Meanwhile, the hints Bo-Katan gives about fighting the Empire in the so-called “Purge” offer a tantalizing glimpse of what’s to come.

‘The Heiress’ is also a brilliant piece of world building – even by the exemplary standards of The Mandalorian. With the exception of Kamino in Attack of the Clones, live-action Star Wars rarely heads out to sea, but the brilliantly realized location of Trask shows what we’ve been missing. From the grimy, industrial boats to the crane attached to a walker, this feels like a living, breathing world that’s always been there just waiting to be found. Exploring the outer reaches of the Star Wars universe with the Mandalorian and the Child really is a treat.

Force the facts 

  • Bo-Katan Kryze was an important character in both The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels. Although she’s making her live-action Star Wars debut here, former Battlestar Galactica star Katee Sackhoff also voiced the character in the two animated shows. As a former leader of Mandalore, Bo-Katan once carried the Darksaber, the legendary Mandalorian weapon that Moff Gideon revealed at the end of season one.
  • Despite the rumor mill saying that pro-wrestler Sasha Banks would be playing Star Wars Rebels’ resident Mando Sabine Wren, she’s actually a new Mandalorian character, Koska Reeves. The actor's credited under her real name, Mercedes Varnado.
  • The episode sees the return of some familiar Star Wars species. Originally known as ‘Squid Head’, a Quarren first appeared in Jabba’s Palace in Return of the Jedi. The most famous Mon Calamari, meanwhile, is Admiral “It’s a trap” Ackbar. Both species hail from the water world of Mon Cala.   
  • The episode’s director is Bryce Dallas Howard. The Jurassic World star also helmed season one episode ‘Sanctuary’.
  • This show loves former Deadwood actors! After Timothy Olyphant turned up as Cobb Vanth in ‘The Marshal’, this week it’s the turn of Titus Welliver (Silas Adams), who stars as the unfortunate Imperial captain.

New episodes of The Mandalorian are available to stream on Disney Plus every Friday.