Found family isn’t just a theme of The Book of Boba Fett and The Mandalorian, but one of the biggest themes resonating throughout all of Star Wars. Rey found Finn and Poe. Luke found Leia, Han, and Ben. Boba found the Tuskens, and Mando found Grogu.
But before Mando adopted his tiny Force-sensitive son, he was someone else’s found family. The Mandalorian established that he was a Foundling, adopted into the strict Mandalorian sect the Children of the Watch. However, his actions in Season 2 forced him out of the community where he grew up, as we saw in The Book of Boba Fett Episode 5. Here’s how that could actually reunite all the Mandalorians.
While Season 1 of The Mandalorian followed Mando on a journey with Grogu, Season 2 focused on something more internal: Faith. While he looked for more Jedi, Mando also had to confront some harsh truths about his own code of conduct. As a Child of the Watch he swore to never take off his helmet, but the latter half of Season 2 shows him doing that twice, each time for Grogu’s sake.
First, he removed his helmet to pass as an Imperial soldier to find Grogu’s location. Then, when he found him, he removed his helmet so Grogu could say a proper goodbye before leaving to train with Luke Skywalker. Both moments broke his vows, but it was a crisis of faith; to Mando, Grogu took priority over his religion.
In The Book of Boba Fett Episode 5, he makes no attempt to hide these sins. When The Armorer asks him if he’s ever taken off his helmet, he answers yes. The Armorer declares him no longer a Mandalorian, or at least no longer a Mandalorian of their sect.
This should be a major shift for Mando. After all, “The Mandalorian” is both the name he often goes by and the title of his Disney+ series. He does ask for forgiveness, but upon being told the only way to be absolved is through the “living waters beneath the mines of Mandalore,” he simply leaves and boards a commercial flight to Tatooine.
The most interesting part of this scene wasn’t Mando’s mea culpa, but what The Armorer called him: an apostate. Mando is no longer welcome with the Watch, and he’s certainly not welcome in Bo-Katan’s group of Mandalorians who interpret some of the rules more moderately, not after he (rightfully) took the Darksaber.
So what will Mando do next? What he’s always done: Forge a path of his own. Mando needs to metaphorically nail his 95 Theses to the door and invent Mandalorian Lutheranism, something that keeps the core elements of the conservative religion but is updated to be more welcoming.
This could have huge implications for the future of The Mandalorian. By striking a balance between the two codes of conduct, Mando could unite all the Mandalorians across the galaxy, becoming the leader the Darksaber gives him the authority to be. If his religion won’t let him make eye contact with his own beloved Grogu, why should he conform to it?
While he’s just playing a supporting role in The Book of Boba Fett, once Mando gets the spotlight back in The Mandalorian Season 3 you can expect a lot more explorations of faith and religion in a quickly changing galaxy. Maybe this rebellious streak will even rub off on Grogu, leading him to reform the Jedi.
The Book of Boba Fett is now streaming on Disney+.