The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 5 “Return of the Mandalorian” wasn’t what most Star Wars fans expected to watch when they tuned into the week’s newest episode. But it brought the larger Mandalorian narrative forward in ways so profound that it’s now impossible to deny Book of Boba Fett is just one smaller part of a very large ongoing story.
Mandalorian history was a major talking point both within the episode and in online discussions after it aired, especially since The Armorer didn’t hold back in her distrust of those disloyal to what she called the “Mandalorian creed.” Her frame of mind is so biased, in fact, that fans have settled on calling her an “unreliable narrator.” Unfortunately, she’s much worse than that.
Literally speaking, The Armorer is very much an unreliable source of information, though Din Djarin doesn’t know that; he doesn’t know what he’s “allowed” to believe because of how he was raised. The Children of the Watch is a cult, an offshoot of Mandalorian culture that has taken Mandalorian’s core beliefs and foundational customs to the absolute extreme. Removing one’s helmet is grounds for expulsion. The rules are strict, and there is no easy means of forgiveness for wrongdoing.
But Din is a product of this cult. He doesn’t have another frame of reference through which to view the world. The Armorer blames Bo-Katan Kryze for the entire downfall of Mandalore when that’s logically not possible. But Din trusts her. Why? He’s never been given any other choice.
The Armorer is more than unreliable. She’s manipulative and cruel, because she knows she can be. She’s the one who can declare whether or not a Mandalorian is allowed to call himself the name.
She may not mention Sabine by name in her story of Mandalore’s destruction, but even that in itself carries its own disastrous weight — Sabine went to great lengths to put Mandalore in a place where it could stand up to the Empire’s regime once and for all. Even though a series of tragedies ended in a great massacre, Sabine gave Bo-Katan the Darksaber because she believed in a better future for Mandalore. Not because she wanted to see it destroyed.
Bo-Katan, as well, never had any ill intent when accepting the Darksaber. She wanted the best for Mandalore, and to honor her sister. Many things may have led to the Great Mandalorian Purge, but to put all that blame on one person to support your cult’s core foundations isn’t unreliable; it’s shameful.
The Book of Boba Fett has now made a great case for The Armorer serving as the main antagonist of The Mandalorian moving forward. At first, the story framed her as someone who could be trusted, someone Din could rely on for support. Now we know she views Mandalore’s past through a very specific lens — one that could prevent the Mandalorian people from ever rebuilding in a sustainable way.
Here’s hoping Din, perhaps even with the help of Bo-Katan and others, can eventually come to see that being Mandalorian doesn’t have to come with so much baggage.
The Book of Boba Fett is streaming now exclusively on Disney+.