The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3, “The Heiress” introduces Bo-Katan Kryze, but why is she so desperate to take the darksaber from Moff Gideon?
Warning: Contains SPOILERS for The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3, “Chapter 11 – The Heiress/”
Bo-Katan Kryze emerges in The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3, “Chapter 11 – The Heiress” and she has her sights set on Moff Gideon and the Darksaber, but why is it so important to her? Played by Katee Sackhoff, who also voiced the character in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, Bo-Katan is among several new characters in The Mandalorian season 2. Though perhaps not as well-known as someone like Boba Fett, who returned in the season 2 premiere, Bo is nonetheless a key figure in Star Wars, especially in terms of Mandalore, its history, and its culture.
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The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3 has Bo-Katan rescue Mando from some treacherous Quarrens (on two separate occasions), in return asking for his help in stealing weapons from an Imperial cruiser. Aboard the ship, she interrogated one of the captains as to the whereabouts of the Darksaber; while it was obvious, as he said, that she already knew, it was similarly apparent that the Darksaber is her ultimate goal.
While it’s unknown exactly what Bo-Katan has been up to since fans of the animated Star Wars shows last saw her, it becomes clear that she lost a lot of people during the Great Purge, and that the Darksaber was taken from her. The black lightsaber made its live-action debut in The Mandalorian season 1 ending, wielded by Moff Gideon – with whom Bo-Katan seemingly has a personal grudge. Since Gideon played a critical leadership role in the Great Purge, it’s possible that he took the Darksaber directly from a beaten Bo-Katan; with the Mandalorians so heavily defeated, it wouldn’t be surprising that even a warrior as great as herself might fall, though the question of how she survived is one that needs to be answered. Indeed, it may be that Gideon did not honorably take the Darksaber from Bo-Katan, which would further drive her desire to get it back.
That rivalry alone gives Bo-Katan a compelling reason to want to defeat Moff Gideon and reclaim the Darksaber, but there are others that tie more into what it represents to Mandalore as a whole. The Darksaber, created by Tarre Vizsla – the first (and so far, only) Mandalorian Jedi – is a special artifact in their culture, especially to those Mandalorians who didn’t conform to the pacifist ways that became the norm. For generations, then, the Dark saver has been so much more than just a lightsaber (not least because the weapon is anything but regular): it is a symbol of liberation and power; of the Mandalorians’ warrior customs, of their fights to rule themselves, rather than be ruled; and a testament to the legacy of House Vizsla and Tarre in particular.
The Darksaber is respected by all Mandalorians, but it’s of even greater importance to Bo-Katan, who believes herself the rightful owner of the blade and the true ruler of Mandalore, a notion that gives The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3, “The Heiress” its title. The lightsaber has a messy history, which is hardly surprising since ownership is taken by defeating the current holder: it passed from Pre Vizsla to Maul, to Gar Saxon and then Sabine Wren, who in Star Wars Rebels gave the Darksaber to Bo-Katan, with her clan and many others proclaiming her the Mand’alor, the leader of the Mandalorians.
It’s impossible to overstate the significance of that moment to Bo-Katan, and the importance of what the darksaber now represents. With so many Mandalorians dead, then the burden of carrying on their lineage and legacy, and leading them into a brighter future, falls on her, and she needs the Darksaber to be able to truly perform that role. It’s clear that various factions are divided, and only with the blade can she hope to unite them all once more under her rule. That is why it matters so much to her, and why it’s likely she’ll stop at nothing to take it back from Moff Gideon, be it in The Mandalorian season 2 or beyond.
Next: Why The Darksaber Is Star Wars’ Only Black Lightsaber
The Mandalorian Season 2, Episode 3 Cast & Cameos Guide