Disney+ Star Wars

The Child and The Force

*SPOILERS FOR Mandalorian Episode 7!*

*I’M SERIOUS. LIKE, HUGE SPOILERS*

I am super….duper cereal now.

….

Okay, we’re good now.

So, on the most recent episode of The Mandalorian (aka The reason we pay for Disney+) we find Mando and the tiny god of the internet receiving a message from his good buddy, Greef Karga. Greef wants the two to come back to where it all started and end the Imperials chokehold on the Guild’s town. Mando realizes that the remnants of the Empire will never stop chasing them, and the child will never know peace. Mando takes the job and seeks out Cara Dune, his ex-shock trooper buddy from a few episodes earlier.

Now, I’m not here to give a synopsis, and there’s so much crazy shit going on in this episode that this one little scene wouldn’t seem as important as others if not for its implications. In this scene, Mando and Cara are killing time arm wrestling. As Mando begins to lose, Cara suddenly begins choking to death. In shock, they glance over at the little guy to see him extending a tiny, murderous claw towards Cara. He is Force choking her.

They stop him, the episode goes on and I can barely live my life after that cliffhanger ending…but that’s not why we’re here. While never implicitly stated that Force choke is a strictly Darkside move, choking someone is not something a peaceful person, such as a Jedi, would be compelled to do. The Jedi were far from pacifists, but strived for peace and as such, would likely not resort to such cruel and brutal methods. Jedi only kill when necessary, and try to end their opponents swiftly and painlessly. Man, Obi Wan could have used that mindset with Anakin. Not cool, brocohontas.

Oh yeeea, that must be soooo painful to watch, Ben.

Practitioners of the Dark Side of the Force believe that Force users should allow emotion to guide them in battle, giving into anger, hatred and other negative feelings. The Force choke is a signature move of many a Sith lord, most famously used by Vader. So why is sweet, infinitely meme-able Baby Yoda using such a power?

At the time that The Mandalorian takes place, the Empire is all but destroyed. Luke is wherever he is, trying to train a new generation of Jedi. If Sith exist, they are in hiding. Mando is the only family The Child has ever known. He has no training. That also means The Child had not been exposed to either ideology, so to him, the Force is just a thing he can do. He can’t distinguish between Light and Dark side. To our knowledge, he’s never had anyone point out that this duality exists.

For ten minutes after I watched this episode, I was angry. Most of all, I was worried about The Child. They got him! Kuiil…poor Kuiil. Anyway, the more I thought on the subject, the more I started to think about the situation. The Child had been taken from the closest thing we’ve seen to a parent. I mean, ball is still on the ship. He’s gotta be upset. Maybe even a little angry.

Let us not forget that while he is an child, he is still fifty years old. Even with a slow growth and development period, the little guy has seen and experienced fifty years. While he likely doesn’t know Light from Dark, he has been through some shit. He wanted to protect Dad. He might not understand that they were just having a friendly competition, but he knows how to defend himself and those he cares about somewhat. Also, Force healing is canon now. So badass.

I digress. By the end of my pondering, I came to the conclusion that it is not us who should fear for The Child, but that dollar store Vader knock-off who should possibly be concerned a little. He’s old enough to have known Vader and is a high ranking Imperial, so its likely he served with him. He’s seen what the Dark side can do. He had better be careful unless he has a fetish for getting Force lightning’ed.

So, do I think Baby Yoda is secretly evil? Not at all. Hell, I don’t think he’s Light side. They went out of their way to show him using the very Light side power of Force healing later in the episode, but again, showcased earlier that he is totally okay with throwing out one of the most iconic Dark side powers in Star Wars history. This heavily implies that he is a complete gray area in the grand scheme of the Force. He’s likely never even heard of the Force. He’s just using it. All of it. I can’t wait to see where this goes. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go pour a 40 on the curb for poor, poor Kuiil.

I made this video in tribute. Press F.

All photos of the Mandalorian are property of Lucasfilm and Disney. All rights belong to their respective owners. The video is a parody using a picture, also property of Disney and Lucasfilm.

Al Gore meme gif property of South Park, Comedy Central and I guess maybe Al Gore in some way.

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