Season 3, Chapter 24, The Return

Resolution, Retribution and Homecoming. The season finale solves a mystery while providing the viewer a sense of peace and satisfaction.

1. Escape. Din Djarin is a formidable warrior. Two of Gideon’s troopers were not enough to hold him down. Picking his spot, he used the walls to force himself free from the troopers where he gave them more than they could handle. After subduing one, the other trooper was about to either stun or kill Djarin when IG 12 showed up

2. Hope. The remnant Mandalorians eventually lead Bo-Katan and her remaining troops to a cave oasis. Bo-Katan was surprised to learn that native plant life could still survive on Mandalore. This simple, yet important revelation should give hope for all of the remaining Mandalorians that they can rebuild and repopulate their home.

3. The Hunt. Djarin and Grogu decided to hunt down Moff Gideon once and for all. R-5 helped by providing schematics of the base. He had some amusing interactions with a few mouse droids. Of note, R-5 can fly!

4. The Plan. Axe Woves isn’t a traitor. He was sent to get help. Mandalorians can seal up inside their armor via their flight suit and have a limited amount of air should they need it. This feature is useful when an enemy is trying to gas them in a tight spot. In this case, Axe was able to fly to the fleet and deliver the plan. All remaining Mandalorians were to go to the surface immediately leaving the Light Cruiser as a decoy. Thankfully Axe warned his people just in time. As the Komr’ks and Fang Fighters disappeared under the clouds, the TIE Interceptors and TIE Bombers ascended above the clouds making their attack run on the Cruiser. It is a small wonder that none of the Imperial Remnant pilots executed any critical thinking skills. Of note, the bombers appeared just as fast as the Interceptors.

5. Warrior. Djarin’s search led him to Moff Gideon’s gated walkway. Each gate held two beskar armored troopers. Djarin had no weapons. It didn’t matter. This scene is one of my favorites in the whole series. As R-5 deactivates the shield doors a gate at a time, we watch as Djarin systematically disarms and dispatches every pair of troopers till he gets to the final gate way. He uses the weapons of the troopers against them. At first, he uses their own knives, then he moves to a pike and shield, then a blaster and shield and finally he finds a pair of blasters he likes. Ferocity, cunning and aggressiveness highlight Djarin’s combat style. He noted the weaknesses in his opponent’s armor and took advantage. This scene highlights the many skills Djarin has honed over the years as a bounty hunter. You take and use what is available. It was almost as if I was watching the video game Halo. Of note, the final pair of blaster pistol’s Djarin ends up with, appear to be the next generation of Westar blaster pistol’s. First of all, Westar’s are notoriously hard to find. Second, they are almost all exclusively used by Mandalorians. Finally, they are banned on most Worlds as they are some of the most powerful blasters available.

6. Mystery Solved. It turns out Moff Gideon was clearly interested in cloning. He was cloning himself! Djarin destroys these clones. We don’t need any more Gideon’s running around. Later, Gideon laments the destruction of his clones. However, as he hinted to in the last chapter, the only reason he really wanted Grogu was to attempt to clone “the force”.

7. As One. Gideon’s armor is a bit of a puzzle. I have come to the conclusion that it wasn’t just armor, but it was also a mechanized suit. That is the only thing that can account for the noise as he stomps around everywhere. It certainly explains the extraordinary grip strength required to destroy the Dark Saber. The final act of the Chapter is the big boss fight. While the Mandalorian forces engage the remaining troops, Din Djarin is holding his own against Gideon. This prompts the three Praetorian Guards to enter the fray and they quickly subdue Djarin. Grogu gains their attention allowing Djarin to refocus his efforts on Gideon who was proving quite formidable. Soon Bo-Katan joined the fight. “Mandalorians are Stronger Together.” This has been her mantra and it served her and Djarin well as they, along with Grogu, worked together to defeat Gideon and the Praetorian Guards. As this melee combat was concluding, Axe Wolves flew the light cruiser directly into Gideon’s hanger bay. The last we see of Gideon is he is engulfed in flames. Did he survive? Imperial baddies have a cockroach quality about them. They seem to survive just about anything. Perhaps we see him again….

8. Ceremony. Ragnar finally takes the creed. This time, he is baptized by the holy waters of Mandalore. Then, in an emotional scene, Din Djarin adopts Grogu as his son. Grogu is now considered an apprentice. Perhaps the most important thing that occurred is the fact that Grogu’s mind touched the Mythosaur’s mind. Now two Mandalorians know for sure that the Mythosaur exists. Finally, a second ceremony occurred. The great forge was re-lit. I expect the Armorer will be quite busy in the coming months.

9. The Road Ahead. Din Djarin has now offered his services as a bounty hunter almost exclusively for the New Republic. It is likely that Season 4 will be the buildup to the final confrontation with whatever Imperial Remnants opt to stay in the known galaxy before absconding to Exegol. I also think the road head includes Grogu’s continued journey as he grows to be a Mandalorian. This will have to include whatever relationship he forges with the Mythosaur. I also believe that Grogu will end up re-making the Dark Saber for himself. At least Din Djarin and Din Grogu have a nice cabin on Nevarro to rest and relax. Additionally, an old friend, IG-11 will be the town Marshal. I wonder who managed to put IG-11 back together? Lastly, the Armorer’s words to Din Djarin stuck with me. She hinted about Djarin’s own apprenticeship as a bounty hunter. I wonder if we will see any flashbacks to Djarin’s own training.

10. Final Thoughts. This chapter was beautifully shot. There were several things happening at once and the cuts and edits were perfect to give the viewer a sense of urgency and intensity. It was really cool to see the Armorer and Bo-Katan flying and fighting together. The Mandalorian arial combat was very impressive. While this was a great chapter, I noted a few loose ends. One, where did the Gozanti Cruisers go? It’s likely they landed somewhere on the planet. Two, will Din Djarin replace his Whistling Bird Launcher? It was noticeably missing off his left gauntlet. Three, where is R-5? Can we assume he survived? I noted Din Grogu’s bubble hatch on the N-1 was on the ship again. Finally, one has to hope that the remains of the Dark Saber were secured. The crystal inside can still be used. As mentioned before, I believe Grogu will the one to remake the Dark Saber.

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