- “The Mandalorian” is the first live-action “Star Wars” TV show, which means there are plenty of opportunities for Easter eggs, callbacks, and cameos.
- We’re rounding up the best of these smaller details that some viewers might not have noticed.
- This article contains spoilers for all of season two.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The rich history of “Star Wars” lore comes to life in “The Mandalorian,” where the production design team and cocreators Dave Filoni and Jon Favreau delight in making references back to George Lucas’ movies.
We’ve rounded up some of the best details, callbacks, and cameos that some fans might not have picked up on the first time around.
In the opening scene, part of the graffiti looks like a Tusken Raider, AKA one of the Sand People with whom the Mandalorian teams up with later.
As the Mandalorian and the Child entered the city, large swaths of graffiti art were shown on nearby buildings. Among the painted figures was one face that looked awfully similar to a Tusken Raider.
The presence of the street art might also tie into the next detail you might have missed: A cameo from David Choe.
Artist David Choe had a cameo as one of the fight spectators.
Choe was listed in the credits as “Ringside Spectator.” He confirmed the appearance in an Instagram post in which he also revealed sketch drawings of his character’s “facebonez.”
Gor Koresh was played by John Leguizamo.
Actor John Leguizamo (who you might know for his roles in “Ice Age” or “Moulin Rouge!”) voiced the one-eyed crook Gor Koresh, who threatens the Mandalorian in the opening scene of season two.
The R5 unit that works for Peli Motto appears to be the same one Luke and Owen Skywalker refused to buy from the Jawas in “Episode IV: A New Hope.”
When the Mandalorian arrives back to the docking bay on Tatooine, he’s greeted by Peli Motto (played by Amy Sedaris). She calls over an R5 droid unit, and it looks like it’s the same one from the very first “Star Wars” movie.
In “Episode IV: A New Hope,” Luke and Owen Skywalker almost purchase that R5 droid from the Jawas. But when they realise it has a bad motivator, they buy R2-D2 instead, which is how Luke is eventually led to Princess Leia and Obi Wan Kenobi.
W. Earl Brown plays the bartender in Mos Pelgro, which means “The Mandalorian” had its own mini reunion for “Deadwood” stars.
The bartender (who is unnamed, but identified as a Weequay species) is played by actor W. Earl Brown, who also had a role as a bartender in HBO’s “Deadwood.” Timothy Olyphant, the guest star who plays Marshal Cobb Vanth, also costarred in “Deadwood,” which makes their shared scenes in “The Mandalorian” extra special.
Brown tweeted about joining the Disney Plus series as a guest actor and the secretive process.
“It’s been almost a year to the day since I met The Child,” Brown said. “In that time, I have forced myself to use restraint and not shout my news to the high heavens … But now [‘Chapter Nine’] has aired, I can speak freely – I AM IN STAR WARS!!! I AM IN STAR WARS!!! I AM IN STAR WARS!!!”
The Marshal’s speeder looks like it’s made out of a podracer engine — one very similar to young Anakin Skywalker’s.
Fans of the “Star Wars” prequel movies likely recognised Cobb Vanth’s speeder bike engine as half of a podracer.
The core design elements definitely look like Anakin Skywalker’s podracer from “Episode I: The Phantom Menace,” which takes place long before “The Mandalorian.”
Perhaps Vanth’s bike is made from scrap parts that have survived in junk piles on Tatooine for many years.
One of the Tusken Raiders was played by a deaf actor, and he helped create the Sand People’s sign language.
As one person shared on Twitter after the episode aired, actor Troy Kotsur helped develop the Tusken Sign Language (TSL) for “The Mandalorian.”
“I did research on the culture and environment of Tusken Raiders,” Kotsur said in an interview with the Daily Moth. “My goal was to avoid ASL [American Sign Language]. I made sure it became Tusken Sign Language based on their culture and environment.”
Developing new sign languages for Manadolorian’s third seasons pic.twitter.com/8NPThkEqTF
— Troy Kotsur (@TroyKotsur) October 26, 2020
The mysterious figure shown at the end of the episode was very likely Boba Fett.
The presence of Boba Fett was heavily teased throughout this episode of “The Mandalorian.”
First, Cobb Vanth turned up wearing Fett’s armour. Then a sarlacc (the sand-dwelling creature who seemingly ate up Boba Fett in “Episode VI: Return of the Jedi”) was mentioned when Vanth and the Mandalorian were discussing the Krayt dragon.
Even the way the Mandalorian escaped from the inside of the Krayt dragon seemed designed to show the audience how Boba Fett could have survived the sarlacc pit. So when the mystery man turned up at the end, it seemed all-but-confirmed that he was the real Boba Fett.
Which brings us to the other key point: Actor Temuera Morrison’s reappearance.
Actor Temuera Morrison returned to the “Star Wars” universe to play Boba Fett. You first saw him as Jango Fett in “Episode II: Attack of the Clones.”
Just in case you need a refresher on the Fett family and clones, Jango Fett was a bounty hunter, who wore Mandalorian armour. He was used as the basis for the clone army, created by the Galactic Republic.
One of the clones made was raised personally by Jango, who called him “son.” That younger boy was Boba Fett.
In “Attack of the Clones,” Boba watched the Jedi kill his “father.” Now he’s returning to the live-action “Star Wars” universe and played by Temuera Morrison.
Since Boba is a clone of Jango, it makes sense that he would be played by the same actor who first portrayed his “father.”
In “Chapter 10,” the alien who nearly kidnapped the Child is the same species spotted in “The Force Awakens” with Rey.
At the start of “Chapter 10,” the Child is almost killed by another bounty hunter. That would-be kidnapper is the same species as the alien who was forcing Rey to clean faster at the scrapyard in “The Force Awakens.”
Dr. Mandible’s character was a likely nod to director Peyton Reed’s “Ant-Man” movies.
“Chapter 10” was directed by Peyton Reed, who most recently directed Marvel’s “Ant-Man” and “Ant Man and the Wasp” movies. The appearance of a gigantic ant creature on Tattooine seems like a fun way for Reed to pay homage to his popular Marvel films.
The show’s cocreator Dave Filoni made his second cameo in “Chapter 10” as a rebel pilot
“The Mandalorian” coshowrunner (and writer/director) Dave Filoni first appeared as Trapper Wolf in season one, “Chapter Six.” In season two, he reappeared to help rescue the Mandalorian from attacking creatures, before saying his goodbyes once more.
Speaking of the attacking critters, the spider-like creatures in “Chapter 10” were based on original concept artwork made for “The Empire Strikes Back.”
Artist Ralph McQuarrie famously created concept art for George Lucas’ original “Star Wars” trilogy. On the official “Star Wars” website, you can see a gallery of McQuarrie’s original drawings made for “The Empire Strikes Back.”
Among the drawings is an image of Luke Skywalker facing a gigantic spider-like creature – and it looks exactly like the monsters who attacked the Mandalorian after the Child began eating their eggs.
In “Chapter 11,” the Mandalorian paid for info on other Mandalorians using the money he earned in episode one.
In the pilot episode of “The Mandalorian,” Din Djarin returned from a successful hunt to collect his payment from Greef Carga. At first, Garga wanted to pay Djarin with Imperial Credits. But the bounty hunter refused.
The only other currency Carga had on him was Calamari Flan – but he said he could “only pay half.” Djarin took him up on the offer, giving the audience one of the first major indications that he was staunchly anti-Empire.
So in “Chapter 11,” it was neat to see the money resurface once Djarin was on a whole new planet and surrounded by Mon Calamari who would favour the currency.
Bo-Katan was the first major character from “The Clone Wars” animated show brought into the live-action series.
Bo-Katan, played by Katee Sackhoff in “The Mandalorian,” is a character from Dave Filoni’s animated “Star Wars” series, “The Clone Wars.” The Disney Plus show went to great lengths to match Sackhoff’s appearance to the animated character, including her signature headband and cropped hair, and angled eyebrows.
Later in the season, “The Mandalorian” pulled off the same effect with Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano.
When Din Djarin returns to Nevarro, you can see a statue of IG-11 in the background.
IG-11 was the droid (voiced by Taika Waititi) who sacrificed himself to protect Grogu, Din, Cara Dune, and Greef Carga in the season one finale of “The Mandalorian.”
Now that Cara and Greef are running things in Nevarro, it looks like they set up a small monument dedicated to IG-11’s heroic efforts.
Ahsoka Tano, the other major character from “The Clone Wars” who appeared in “The Mandalorian,” made a reference to Anakin Skywalker while talking to Din Djarin.
When Ahsoka was telling Din why she didn’t want to train Grogu, she made an allusion to Anakin Skywalker’s turn to the dark side.
“I’ve seen what such feelings can do to a fully trained Jedi Knight,” she said. “To the best of us.”
This reference might have gone unnoticed by people who haven’t seen the animated “Clone Wars” series and animated movie. That storyline takes place in the time period between “Episode II: Attack of the Clones” and “Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.” As a teenager, Ahsoka was assigned to be Anakin’s apprentice, and the two grew extremely close. She was deeply affected by his presumed death after the “Order 66” of the Jedi, and then the subsequent revelation that Anakin had actually become Darth Vader.
Ahsoka knows that Anakin’s love for Padme (and fear of her death) led him to the dark side, which is why she is so wary of Grogu’s affection for Din and their adopted father-son relationship.
Boba Fett told Din Djarin the same thing he once heard his father say when confronted by Obi-Wan Kenobi in “Attack of the Clones.”
In “Chapter 14: The Tragedy,” Boba Fett finally confronted Din Djarin to ask for his armour back. When Din asks who he is, Fett has a vague response.
“I’m a simple man making his way through the galaxy,” he says. “Like my father before me.”
This is almost word-for-word what Jango Fett told Obi-Wan Kenobi in “Episode II – Attack of the Clones.”
“I’m just a simple man trying to make my way in the universe,” Jango told Obi-Wan during their confrontation. Young Boba was in the room, so he heard that exchange and then echoed it many years later when he was similarly questioned.
The man playing Bib Fortuna in “The Mandalorian” post-credits scene was the same actor from “Episode I: The Phantom Menace.”
In Disney Plus’ behind-the-scenes documentary about the making of “The Mandalorian” season two, you can see the real man behind the makeup. His name is Matthew Wood, and not only did he play Bib Fortuna in “The Phantom Menace,” but he currently works as a sound supervisor on “The Mandalorian.”
Wood also points out in the documentary that Fortuna’s staff in “The Mandalorian” is a throwback to the ’80s “Star Wars” merchandise.
Fortuna first appeared in “Episode VI: Return of the Jedi” (1983). His staff wasn’t seen in that film, nor in “The Phantom Menace” (1999) when Wood first played the character. But the staff was sold as part of the character’s action figure sold in the 1980s.
“The Mandalorian” creator Jon Favreau had the staff created in full-scale for the short scene that comes after the season two finale’s credits when Boba Fett kills Bib Fortuna.
- Read more:
- The 13 best tweets and memes celebrating Baby Yoda’s return on ‘The Mandalorian’ season 2 premiere
- A quick guide to every ‘Mandalorian’ character you should know
- See when ‘The Mandalorian’ takes place in the overall ‘Star Wars’ timeline
- ‘The Mandalorian’ recreated a tiny detail from the original ‘Star Wars’ trilogy that fans might have missed