For 99% of The Mandalorian‘s season two premiere, it appeared we finally had a definitive answer to one of Star Wars‘ greatest mysteries: did Boba Fett die in Return of the Jedi? The famed bounty hunter seemed to have met his fate inside the belly of a sarlacc years ago. But fans have often wondered if he escaped. However, with Cobb Vanth walking around Tatooine in Boba’s armor—first found by scavengers—Boba was almost certainly dead. Then, the episode’s final shot flipped everything we thought we had learned.
Boba Fett is alive, just maybe not so well.
Disney made most of the franchise’s supplemental stories “legend” instead of canon when it purchased Star Wars from George Lucas. Before the acquisition, we knew Boba had survived his fall into the sarlacc pit. He got out and was discovered by Jawas. However, after another run-in with Han Solo, Boba ended back in the sarlacc, which he escaped again. And he did so with his armor.
After Disney’s purchase erased that story from the official archives, fans were once again left to wonder what truly happened to him. The Mandalorian‘s season two debut seemed to finally provided closure, though. The show is 100% canon. And what we saw during the episode is that the Jawas had found Boba’s armor. (Maybe sarlaccs don’t like digesting steel and jet packs?) Whatever the reason, Timothy Olyphant’s Cobb Vanth traded for the armor, and used its imposing stature (and high-tech weaponry) to keep his small town of Mos Pelgo safe.
Boba’s best—maybe only—bet to escape the sarlacc was with the aide of his jetpack. And if he had, Boba probably wouldn’t have left his armor behind. Therefore it was likely he died.
But the final shocking shot of The Mandalorjan‘s premiere marked the return of Temuera Morrison to Star Wars. He played Jango Fett in the prequels. Jango was the basis for every clone in the Republic’s Clone Army. He also had one identical copy of himself made—his son Boba.
Jango’s face is the most common in the galaxy far, far away. It’s possible the man we saw at the end was one of the clones, but that wouldn’t make any sense in the context of this episode. A large portion of the story revolved around Boba Fett’s iconic armor. And we didn’t see Temuera Morrison’s silent character until Din Djarin drove away from Mos Pelgo with Boba’s gear.
That obvious connection wasn’t our only clue, though. The character’s appearance and clothes also point to him being Boba Fett. He is battered and scarred, like someone who survived a gruesome encounter with a terrible beast before having to survive for years on a harsh desert planet in anonymity. And anonymity is exactly what an infamous bounty hunter with the most recognizable face would need after the fall of the Empire. Boba worked for Darth Vader directly and had crossed Luke Skywalker and his friends. Even the Outer Rim was unsafe for Boba during this, the time of the new Republic.
But in The Mandalorian, he seems to have found the perfect disguise for hiding on Tatooine. Boba was dressed like a Tusken raider, a race feared by everyone. Boba was wearing the long brown robe of one. He also carried two signature Tusken raider weapons, a Cycler rifle and a Gaderffii stick. Add a Tusken mask and no one would ever know who you really were. They also wouldn’t want to get close enough to find out.
Amy Sedaris’s Peli Motto told Din earlier how little travel there is between cities on the unsafe planet. She didn’t even know who or what exactly was at the former site of Mos Pelgo. It’s a mystery to most people. You could live on Tatooine for years and not know someone was out there walking around in your armor. However, with Cobb Vanth forced to repeatedly travel outside the town to work with the Tuskens, Boba might have finally spotted his old armor.
There are still lots of things we don’t know about Boba Fett and what happened after Return of the Jedi. How did he get out of the sarlacc? How did he lose his armor? Did he trade it to he Jawas for food and water to survive? Or did they take it off his body? And what has he been doing since then? But those are only questions we can ask because The Mandalorian answered one of the biggest in all of Star Wars.
Boba Fett, though battered and forced into hiding, is alive. If he tries to get his armor back though he might not be for much longer.
The Mandalorian is available to stream on Disney+.
Featured Image: Lucasfilm
Mikey Walsh is a staff writer at Nerdist. You can follow him on Twitter at @burgermike, and also anywhere someone is ranking the Targaryen kings.
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