We can’t quit Boba Fett. Ever since he wandered into the Star Wars universe via the infamous, yet hypnotizing Holiday Special, fandom has been obsessed. You see, despite not doing much in the films (he’s an effective enough tracker in The Empire Strikes Back and a useless hunk of Sarlacc kibble in Return of the Jedi), Boba Fett is simply too rad an action figure to let go. The stories we fashioned for him in our sandboxes demand justice. While he was granted quite a healthy history through the extended universe of comic books and novels, we won’t be happy until he’s kicking butt in live-action.
Hope rests in the second season of The Mandalorian. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Temuera Morrison is set to command the role of Boba Fett when the series returns later this year. The actor originally played Jango Fett, the bounty hunter whose genetic material was used to build the titular clones, in Attack of the Clones. He only asked that he be given one to raise on his own, without the technological fiddling that the rest received (no inhibitor chip in that kid’s brain).
Jango Fett may have had his head severed by Mace Windu, but his clone kiddo went on to pester Han Solo until the blind smuggler got the best of him on Tatooine. Or did he? During the final moments of The Mandalorian: Chapter Five, we heard a pair of jangly spurs strut up to the corpse of Ming Na Wen’s Fennec Shand. The cadence is remarkably similar to Fett’s Empire Strikes Back stride, indicating that the Bounty Hunter did indeed crawl his way out of the Sarlacc’s digestive tract.
Rumors of a Boba vs. Mando confrontation have swirled ever since the show was announced, but after a season of the latter, real name Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), establishing himself as a more thoughtful and interesting character than Boba Fett ever was, do we want the OG bounty hunter to steal his spotlight?
There is a twisted part of me that would love to see Fett introduced only to have his ass handed to him by Djarin in a duel that would last even less time than Fett’s final confrontation with Solo. Mando dominating Fett would firmly establish him as the top dog in The Mandalorian hierarchy, and decades of coulda-woulda-shoulda fanboy conjecture would be put to bed (lol, as if that could ever happen). Besides, even if Djarin dismisses Fett in one episode, that doesn’t mean there won’t be plenty for Morrison to do going forward.
Joining Morrison in The Mandalorian will also be Rosario Dawson, bringing live-action life to The Clone Wars champion Ahsoka Tano. The seventh and final season of the cartoon series firmly established the disgruntled Jedi as the ultimate hero of the Star Wars universe, and there is already quite a bit of excitement surrounding the possibility of exploring her time during and after the Rebellion era.
With Ray Park spreading rumors of Darth Maul’s possible involvement with The Mandalorian as well, there is a darn good chance that this second season will act as a massive Clone Wars reunion. In addition to playing Boba Fett, Morrison could very likely be doing double duty as Captain Rex, the clone trooper who turned against Tano when the Emperor executed Order 66 and spent the rest of his days (as seen in Star Wars: Rebels) atoning for the sin.
The Clone Wars went a long way in establishing the complicated relationships that the clones had with the war they were created to fight. They lived to be cannon fodder, charging to an end goal that would make their purpose obsolete (of course, the joke’s on them as the Empire would forever require their work as Stormtroopers — see the Star Wars Special Editions). Many saw Rex and his brothers as one degree removed from Battle Droids, but as Yoda says in the very first episode of Clone Wars, the clones are connected to the Force like all living things. They deserve their life.
During Rebels and after, Rex became a successful soldier in the Rebellion, fighting alongside Han and Leia at the Battle of Endor (if you have your pause button ready, you can find a background extra who bears a striking resemblance to the white-bearded Rex seen in the cartoon series). Rex and Tano were thick as thieves in Rebels, and it’s a good bet that if Tano crosses paths with Mando, then Rex will be matching her steps. Rex is Tano’s Chewie. He owes her a life debt.
The Clone Wars was showrunner Dave Filoni‘s sandbox. All of his childhood dreams came true on that series, and in the process, so did a bunch of ours. As executive producer, writer, and director on The Mandalorian, he is a massive creative force (pun intended). He can bring dignity to Boba Fett if he so chooses.
As someone who has learned to let go of his boyish Fett fantasies, I would much rather Filoni show those that refuse to partake in the animated Star Wars universe how damn rad Tano and Rex truly are. With Dawson and Morrison filling their shoes, now is their time to dominate Star Wars action figure culture.