The Mandalorian Season 3 Premiere Raises a Bizarre Baby Yoda Question
Is Baby Yoda no longer a baby?
It’s been a long time since Din Djarin strolled through Nevarro, and the neighborhood has changed. But Grogu hasn’t, and thus a question about The Mandalorian remains unanswered.
Earlier this week, The Mandalorian producers Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni revealed that years have passed in the Disney+ series, despite what you may have previously suspected. Favreau confirms Grogu spends “many years” with Mando, including a two-year gap between The Mandalorian Season 2 and The Book of Boba Fett.
Season 3’s premiere proves that years have passed. Nevarro, once a charcoal gray wasteland overrun by outlaws and mercenaries, has been space-gentrified into a scenic town. Saloons are now schools, a transformation that doesn’t happen overnight. So yes, time has passed. But this raises a question: just how old is Grogu?
As fans know, “Baby Yoda” was 50 when he met Mando, which is still young for his species (Yoda lived to be 900). It’s unclear precisely how much time has occurred throughout The Mandalorian, but Favreau’s statement of “many years” says a lot about the scope of the story. Grogu could be in his mid-50s by now, if not pushing 60.
But if years have passed to the point that Nevarro has changed, then why has Grogu not visibly aged a day? Why is “Baby Yoda” still a baby? Maybe he’s not. While Grogu is tiny and adorable in a nod to The Mandalorian’s main source of inspiration, Lone Wolf & Cub, Grogu lived a long life before meeting Mando. As Ahsoka told Mando in Season 2, Grogu had been trained at the Jedi Temple until the Empire rose to power. “Someone took him from the Temple. Then his memory becomes dark,” Ahsoka says.
Grogu’s behavior isn’t that of an infant, but of a being whose development has stunted. There’s still a lot we don’t know about Grogu’s species — even Ahsoka says she only met one other like him, Yoda — but Grogu should theoretically be talking, communicating, and growing, as all species do. Maybe Grogu’s species matures at a glacial pace, but maybe the traumas of his past have prevented him from growing up.
Season 3 of The Mandalorian will hopefully reveal much more about the Star Wars universe and Grogu’s place in it. Maybe we’ll even get hints of the powerful and wise warrior he could become. At the very least, it would be nice to know why we keep getting older, but Grogu keeps staying the same age.