The Mandalorian is one of the most beloved Disney+ Star Wars series yet, but the existence of the sequel trilogy inevitably limits its storytelling potential. The series has drawn most of its inspiration from the original and prequel trilogies. The cruel remnants of the Empire continue to strip the Mandalorians of their Beskar steel as well as their freedoms. Meanwhile, the majority of cameos in the series come from the prequel era, with characters like Ahsoka Tano and Bo-Katan Kryze playing crucial roles throughout the show.
The first two seasons of The Mandalorian heavily reference and draw material from the trilogies before it, but so far, The Mandalorian avoids the sequels’ major plot points. The series largely ignores what will end up happening in the sequel trilogy and only hints at future events on the most basic of levels. This is a good thing, however, since the sequel trilogy completely ignores that The Mandalorian ever happens. Like with most Star Wars prequels, The Mandalorian will have a tough time marrying its timeline to that of the sequels. In other words, it needs to give its characters a satisfying conclusion that the sequels do not.
The Star Wars Sequels Make The Mandalorian’s Ending More Predictable
Since The Mandalorian is ultimately heading toward the beginning of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the ending becomes far more predictable. The sequel trilogy begins 34 ABY, so there are almost 25 years between it and The Mandalorian. This means that if Grogu lives, the sequels include a 76-year-old Baby Yoda somewhere in the universe. Din Djarin is pushing 60–70 as well. Grogu, a member of Yoda’s mysterious species, would still be as young and spry as he is in The Mandalorian, as his species are graced with long life.
However, that an older Din plays no role in the sequels could hint at a dark fate for the character. As sad as it may seem, The Mandalorian may eventually kill off Din before the time of the sequels for the sake of continuity. Star Wars has a habit of using premature deaths as an excuse for why characters do not show up later in canon. A prime example of this is Jedi Master Ima-Gun Di, George Lucas’ wildest Jedi joke, who Star Wars: The Clone Wars kills off before his presence can complicate the original trilogy. In turn, either Din dies before the sequels occur, or there is some other reason why he and Grogu aren’t present during the final trilogy.
The Sequel Trilogy Means Mando Can’t Go On Indefinitely
Eventually, The Mandalorian must come to some sort of conclusion to make way for the sequels. Regardless of what fate is in store for Din and Grogu in The Mandalorian, the sequel trilogy stands to end the series. What could have been a whole new franchise frontier for Star Wars is relegated to a mere spin-off status. The Mandalorian is expected to get a season 4, but the sequels only provide so much wriggle room for the showrunners to play with.
Despite mostly staying away from referencing the sequels, The Mandalorian’s Grogu and Snoke theory continues to solidify. What Doctor Pershing and Moff Gideon really want with Grogu and his blood have yet to be fully revealed, but there is a real possibility it’s to create Snoke, and whatever the answer is will likely spell the end of The Mandalorian. When the show ties up its loose ends enough to usher in the New Republic and First Order, Grogu and Din’s story will come to a conclusion.
The Mandalorian Would Have More Freedom Without The Sequels
Despite having 25 years’ worth of content to explore before The Force Awakens, The Mandalorian could have been so much more thrilling if it didn’t have something to tie into. It wouldn’t need to set up the First Order or the New Republic and could instead, for example, reinstate Mandalore as a major power at play in the galaxy. The Mandalorian doesn’t need the sequel trilogy to properly tell its tale.
The Mandalorian would be the first Star Wars media to explore what happens after Return of the Jedi. Since the first episode in the series has such a strong hook, it could work equally well as The Force Awakens (or better) in reintroducing the fans to the Star Wars galaxy. Rather than have Luke Skywalker as a defeated old man, The Mandalorian could introduce audiences to a young Luke who is just starting his new Jedi Order. It could explore the rebuilding of the post-Empire galaxy without needing to allude to the First Order.
Mando Could Write A Better Star Wars Future
The Mandalorian could create a more interesting Star Wars future with its own breathing space. Its version of the sequels could start with Baby Yoda instead of jumping all the way to Rey. That way, the Mandalorian’s relationship with Grogu could kick off the films in new and intriguingly unfamiliar territory. Without the need to tie into the First Order or the New Republic, The Mandalorian could continue exploring the true power behind Mandalore along with Grogu’s Force abilities. While The Mandalorian would still draw from the prequels and originals, Din and Grogu would stand alone as compelling and rounded protagonists of Star Wars‘ new era.
Perhaps the most important change The Mandalorian could explore is the reuniting of all three original trilogy protagonists. Luke has already been seen in The Mandalorian, but to see him reunite with Han and Leia is something that the sequels never gave the fans. Instead of Luke, Han, and Leia dying for Kylo’s redemption in the sequels, the Mandalorian and Grogu could unite them all to help liberate Mandalore. With their help, Din, Grogu, and Ahsoka could become one of the most legendary team-ups in the Star Wars universe.
While The Mandalorian could have successfully dictated the future of Star Wars, there is no denying that it is an enjoyable series as it is. Din and Grogu have come a long way since first meeting each other as bounty hunter and quarry. The series has done a fantastic job so far with making the most of the time period it’s in, despite inevitably having to tie into the sequels. With a Mandalore civil war brewing between Bo-Katan and Din Djarin, The Mandalorian season 3 will likely be a thrilling ride.
Next: Grogu Doesn’t Have To Talk Like Yoda, After All