Viewers are now speculating that season 3 of The Mandalorian might have been set up in Star Wars: The Bad Batch. This isn’t impossible because Lucasfilm has been recently trying to build up a Mandoverse with spin-offs of The Mandalorian. These shows are all set up around the same time period as The Mandalorian as well.
So it’s very much possible that the hints for the next show might be embedded in another one. And that seems to have happened with The Bad Batch. The season 1 of the animated show ended with the Empire completely destroying Kamino cities.
Thus, removing the power of the last Clone Wars. But the city was evacuated before it got destroyed. Also, Nala Se, the Chief Medical Scientist who was in charge of the cloning program was escorted to a secret Imperial base so that she could continue working on cloning.
In an interview with StarWars.com, Jennifer Corbett, the executive producer and head writer of The Bad Batch didn’t quite confirm the direction that the Nala Se story was going. Instead, she simply said that she “hopes to explore that in the upcoming season.”
But where can the story realistically go and be explored in the Mandoverse? Let us discuss that.
This vague comment has been enough to rile up fans who want to see The Bad Batch connect to The Mandalorian in a shared universe way that’s similar to the MCU.
As for the cloning, since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has already confirmed the future of cloning in the Empire, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see this used as a story that might be told elsewhere.
Also, The Mandalorian has links to cloning as well. And since The Bad Batch is doing it too, especially after they name dropped baby Yoda, so there are pieces that could easily fit together. Corbett hasn’t made comments about her future plans regarding the show, but concept art has revealed an exciting link with the old Expanded Universe.
And this might set up season 3 of The Mandalorian perfectly.
Nala Se was escorted to an imperial secret facility that had been built inside of a mountain on an unknown planet. The lab was heavily fortified and as established in the previous Star Wars: The Bad Batch episodes, impervious to scanning. And so it’s difficult to locate them from the orbit.
Fans speculated that this was Mount Tantiss present on the Wayland planet, that was a huge stronghold of the Emperor in the Expanded Universe of old. Palpatine kept his trophies and did cloning experiments here.
Lucasfilm released concept art that showed this Legends connection. The art was labeled, “weylandMtTantiss” and “Weyland concept art by Chris Madden.” It’s not clear if this title change is significant in any way because planet Wayland has already been talked about once in canon.
Nala Se has been sent to Mount Tantiss to give her knowledge to the Imperial scientists who stay there. The uniforms donned by these scientists are similar to the ones seen decades later in The Mandalorian, when Mando came across Dr. Pershing, an Imperial Clone Engineer.
He was the one who was conducting experiments on Baby Yoda and extracted his midi-chlorians in an attempt to transplant them into new host bodies. As per the new uniforms, Dr. Pershing likely was one of the scientists who was trained by Nala Se.
It’s also notable that he was working in the very same place on the Outer Rim as Wayland. So it’s possible that Mount Tantiss might still be in operation 5 years since the Return of the Jedi. This was decades after it was introduced in Star Wars: The Bad Batch.
So, the Imperial forces are in fact still conducting experiments there.
The Mandalorian was an unprecedented success for Lucasfilm, and so the studio is increasing the number of Star Wars Disney+ shows set in that time period. The first one that viewers will get to see is The Book of Boba Fett that will premiere in December 2021. It will follow the adventures of the galaxy’s most famous bounty hunter.
After that comes Ahsoka starring Rosario Dawson. She will reprise her role as Anakin’s former padawan after appearing in the role in The Mandalorian season 2. Along with this, there seems to be a story that is being developed in this time period, centered on Grand Admiral Thrawn’s return.
After all, most rumors tend to focus on the fact that Thrawn will be involved in the Ahsoka series in some capacity. This is because she was looking for him in season 2 of The Mandalorian.
Originally a Legends character, Thrawn was then re-canonized in Star Wars Rebels as a high-ranking Empire member. Since then multi canon novels have been written by famous fantasy and sci-fi author Timothy Zahn. But he hasn’t been limited to just the novels.
Star Wars animated series Rebels ended with Jedi Padawan Ezra Bridger completely outmaneuvering Admiral Thrawn and sending the flagship of the Grand Admiral into the Unknown Regions.
As per season 2 of The Mandalorian, 5 years after the events of Return of the Jedi, Ahsoka Tano can be seen cutting into the Imperial bases across the Outer Rim.
She seems to know about this Imperial Remnant whose existence is completely not known to the New Republic, is being led by Thrawn. She wants to find out what has happened to Ezra.
Along with this hint, Lucasfilm’s Dave Filoni has indeed hinted at a scene in Star Wars Rebels that shows Ahsoka asking Sabrine Wren, her old friend to help accomplish this goal. Note that this might have been set after the events of The Mandalorian.
So right now, It does look like Thrawn has been set up as the main villain of this time period. This means that his story could be told in all the 3 Star Wars Disney+ TV shows that are set during the time period of The Mandalorian.
It seems likely that Lucasfilm is looking forward to telling a Legends-accurate Thrawn story. Fans of the galaxy far far away will know that it was Timothy Zahn’s “Thrawn trilogy,” which really started off the old Expanded Universe.
In the story, Thrawn came back from the Unknown Regions to lead an Imperial Remnant. He went to Mount Tantiss, where he worked with Joruus C’baoth, a Jedi Master who was cloned. He helped him during the New Republic battle.
But unfortunately, the attempt to clone a Force-sensitive didn’t quite work. However, that wasn’t all C’baoth’s scientist mind has also fragmented. In the end, Grand Admiral Thrawn found himself defeated when the Republic was able to outsmart him.
Luke Skywalker was able to defeat both his own twisted clone and C’baoth. It’s interesting to note that Luke Skywalker’s clone was named “Luuke” by Zahn so that he could be differentiated from the original Luke we know.
Overall, all of the pieces are in place for a version of the Thrawn trilogy to get adapted in The Mandalorian as well as its spin-offs or other related Star Wars Disney+ shows. After all, The Imperial Remnant is still active in the Outer Rim. And in the very same place of space as the Mount Tantiss base and Wayland is.
A cloning place has been set up at Mount Tantiss, and Imperial cloning experts are still carrying out experiments in that part of space. Also, Thrawn is back in action, and he could have a Force-sensitive clone with him. As such, he could just use that clone as a weapon against Ezra Bridger.
This certainly won’t be an exact Thrawn Trilogy reproduction, after all, no one really expects Leia Organa and Han Solo to show up in any way. However, there’s a possibility that they might be name-dropped. But even then, it’s certain that the story beats probably won’t be the same as the novels.
But the more interesting question is whether Thrawn will be working alone, or will he will be working with the now resurrected Palpatine, thus providing a distraction so that no one can focus on the fact that he came back to life.
Right now, we will have to wait for more clues in season 3 of The Mandalorian and its other related Star Wars Disney+ shows.
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