What if the spy in The Mandalorian Chapter 23 Isn’t The Armorer, but….

(L-R): Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff), the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) and Grogu in Lucasfilm's THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2022 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.
(L-R): Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff), the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) and Grogu in Lucasfilm's THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2022 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved. /

Episode 7 of the third series of “The Mandalorian” was titled “The Spies,” and, like most chapter titles in this series, that could reflect the plot in a number of different ways.

All the Shady Ladies

One spy is already accounted for: The gimmie ID is Elia Kane, the triple (?) crosser who took the forefront with Dr. Pershing during the the season’s now-infamous third episode, in which the show became “Mando and Friends But Not Necessarily Mando All That Much.” But what about the other one(s)?

So far, the smart fan money is on The Armorer to fulfill the plurality of the title. We know virtually nothing about her. She never accepts anyone’s friend requests and always swipes full left on anyone trying to lean in.

The Armorer was conveeeeeeeeeeeeeniently off-world when the scouting party consisting of  nearly all of the major Mandalorian characters full-on Akbared their way right into an active and shiny neo-Imperial hangar. Therefore, she gets the side-eye.

The Walk Down Last Week’s Memory Lane

Kids, always, always pay attention to what the showrunners choose to pay attention to in the “Last time, on The Mandalorian…” Sometimes it’s spoiling in plain sight.

The recap for Episode 7 concentrated on the following:

1) Din Djarin meta-recapping, out loud to no one but himself and his old green baby, who was sitting right there, that “Bo-Katan was right” and that “Mandalore is not cursed.” She now knows for absolute certain it’s ripe for the retaking. Because who doesn’t want a planet containing nothing but depressingly wrecked infrastructure and 8 feet of blacktop over the soil?


2) Axe Wolf asked Bo-Katan if she was collecting Mandalorian mercenaries, but Bo answered in the form of jetpacking directly into his face, specifying  that nope, she was there for the fleet.

Did you catch that? The fleet.

She can recruit other Mandalorians, including the newcomers in their janky spring break Air BnB pirate ship. Starting a warrior culture from zero using a full-sized Arquitens-class command cruiser? Well, now let’s talk.

The whole reason Bo-Katan was even trolling around that acid trip of a planet (the title of which, “Guns for Hire'” could refer to Bo herself) was to gain access to the Mandalorian outpost. It was easy to forget this once viewers finally got to the end of CSI: The Mid-Rim

Congratulations are in Order

Speaking of Axe, please note that he is a whole school of red herrings. He’s so obviously hostile towards everyone and everything that there’s no way he’s the other spy, and even if he is the other spy, then Jon Favreau…? You just got guessed out by a writer who is so awful at understanding plots that she went and got an entire Master’s degree in nonfiction so she’d never have to worry about plots again.

The Heel-Turn

Early in the season, her initial farewell to Mando,  “Goodbye… Din Djarin” seemed unnecessarily hostile.  And, when Grogo FedExed himself to her Castle of the Sadz for help when Din was captured in the mines, Bo ran to the rescue (twice.)

This was confusing, since the sight of his N1 soaring past her (many) windows brought the following response: “Let’s get rid of him once and for all.”

*one Baby Yoda in an otherwise empty fighter later*


There four three ways to interpret this heel-turn:

  • Bo-Katan’s friendship-oriented love language is murder threats
  • She was truly worried about Din as a fellow Mandalorian, and wanted to at least ensure he survived as Baby Yoda’s protector
  • She knew the Darksaber was with him– she asked him about this specifically– and if he were badly injured or dead, she wanted to keep track of it. Didn’t want any random person picking it up in a cave, because gaining the Darksaber that way is ridiculous.
  • Star Wars writing is now actually that terrible.

I know what’s probably true, what’s clearly me reading far too into things, and what I don’t want to believe about the current state of Star Wars.


Bo-Katan’s command of the scouting party to Mandalore does not measure up to her performance on other missions in Season 3. When under attack by baddies in beskar armor, she did not call for them to take to the air, did not encourage hand-to-hand combat (which is where the Mandos began actually to make some progress in the skirmish) and, most importantly, ordered everyone to advance.

This involved running pell-mell down a dark rocky area, right past a very obvious transition from natural material to organic, and into a well-lit, immaculately maintained hangar bristling with Imperial architecture and an impressively large and well-maintained array of Imperial weaponry.

The “whys” of Bo’s ill-chosen tactic was the frustrated question of the fandom in the immediate aftermath of this episode.  Bo-Katon would not still be alive at this point in the Star Wars timeline if she were an idiot. Mandalorians in general have never been depicted by Star Wars as idiots. They might be so gosh-darn stubborn that they’ll refuse to leave a settlement to the point where they allow their children to be snatched up by giant birds on the regular with the sole remedy of chasing after them with jetpacks that cannot hold sufficient fuel to catch them, but their entire civilization has war as its foundational ethic.

And not merely defensive war or war to advance an otherwise flourishing civilization– just war. War in general. Mandalorians, in preschool, were probably taught how to establish a perimeter and plan effective airborne operations. The rest of the landing party knows that she grew up on this planet and was likely familiar with its features. That, plus Bo’s role as the originator of this operation, is probably why they all dashed after her and into a dicey situation to begin with.

That said, Bo-Katan’s highly questionable order to jog after the stormtroopers is… questionable.

The Mythosaur Brings the Party

The Mythosaur presented itself to both Bo-Katan and Din, but only Bo was conscious at the time. Going eye to eye with the Mythosaur, which she previously thought never existed, likely called forth a reassessment of what she thought about what truly grounded Mandalore.

This shock to the system might have forced Bo-Katan to think about a new window through which she could retake (again) Mandalore. Why not try The Way– or at least pretend to convert? Because her tried and untrue route of forming coups and stumbling her way into the Darksaber wasn’t working.

And as we’ve seen, Bo-Katan Kryze has always been perfectly willing to betray other Mandalorians… including her sister. She has always sided with whichever faction stood to benefit her and her goals.

Right now, that splinter is the Children of the Watch. They are now her cultural toehold into Mandalorian culture.  She uses them, but she feels queasy about it, as they have accepted her when her original band did not. In addition, as shown during their trip to the Living Waters, Din’s reverence for the Creed reminds her of just how far she’s drifted from the example and principles of her father.

The DNA and the Triple-Cross

This season, we’ve seen a major, if otherwise incomprehensible, theme of vulnerable people reluctantly coming to trust another. This was outlined in the otherwise bizarrely placed Dr. Pershig episode (which suffered greatly for its hamfisted insertion– this would have worked well as its own miniseries or in another show, but to wallop casual fans in the face with DNA strands and Imperial biscuits when Pedro Pascal is suited up and the Grogu puppet is plugged in was… not entirely wise, from an audience retention standpoint.

Twice this season, we’ve heard discussions of combining the warrior traits of the Mandalorian with the Force abilities of the Jedi. Still, there could be more to this seemingly throwaway side adventure. In Chapter 19, the Pershing business was seen as a bridge footing for the jaggedly constructed cloning plot in the sequel trilogy.

The first focus on cloning took place in the Dr. Pershing episode when, on Coruscant, he Jurrasic Parked his discussion of the scientific work he was desperate to continue. We know that at least one of the apparently power-tussling Empire factions has part of what it wants for cloning in the form of Force-enriched blood from Grogu. Elia Kane functioned as a double–possibly triple–agent in this episode by feigning friendship to Pershing. Her looming presence in this episode could reflect the similarly divided loyalties of Bo-Katan.

And the other cloning discussion dropped in Gideon’s Villain Gloat after he captured Din Djarin in Episode 7. Who might serve as the contemporary ideal iteration of the Mandalorians, perfect for warrior enhancement? Which Mandalorian has distinguished himself before Gideon? Our Mandalorian.

Someone wants Din Djarin, and it ain’t the Pedro Pascal stan accounts on TikTok.

Din Rides Shotgun

All of this frustrating Game of Thrones maneuvering-which is all just going to end in “Somehow, Palpatine returned” anyway– could show Bo-Katan becoming crossed herself by Gideon and another warlord, or Palpatine, or the New Republic. Maybe she originally promised to deliver information or bring all the Mandalorians in one place in exchange for outside help in gaining control of Mandalore, but Din was off the table.

Or maybe she’s working with an entirely different faction we’ve not even met yet. We’re in a time and place where I don’t put anything past anyone anymore. Texas has its own spaceport, ffs.

The buildup of Bo-Katan could explain why Din Djarin has been largely reduced to standing back and to the left of her all season. This focus on Bo, even if it ends in her death and changing teams one last time to save Din, will bring a fitting end to the arc that traced all throughout Clone Wars and Rebels.

To simply off her from the stray laser beam of a late-model stormtrooper will not do. Bo-Katan is one of Dave Filoni’s babies. The showrunners knew viewers would expect all kinds of Darksaber drama, and this presents an opportunity to do something the animated series have never done: Place Bo-Katan completely front and center. If that’s accomplished at Din’s expense to train the audience to accept the widening of the Mandoverse, so be it.

The Invasion Pregaming Party

The battle fireworks in Episode 23 hazed over one of the finest, most moving monologues in all of Star Wars.  Din’s chivalric masterpiece of a speech was from a knight in military service to a queen.  He delivered it at the worst possible time for Bo-Katan; she had just explained her role in the destruction of Mandalore to the other Mandos, and she was doubting herself.

The Mandalorians’ ultimate high-minded practitioner of the Way accepting her as the Mand’alor left Bo with primarily not-so-nice feelings; that was not the face of a woman who was grateful that the most honorable knight in the kingdom had sworn fealty to her.   If she was intent on initially delivering Din, this was the point at which she could have decided to forgo turning him over to whichever enemy could benefit her the most.

On the other hand, with Din disarmed and kneeling on the floor behind the world’s best plastic COVID shield, she only started mouthing off to Gideon when he gave the order to destroy her fleet. Take Din and his button-pressing child, but leave me the secondhand laser-emitting tools of socialism.

Din’s vote of confidence was underlined when Bo-Katan called for volunteers to form her doomed search party. Din volunteered himself plus his baby to kick off the bidding on this fundraiser. The optimal next moment in the scene should have been Grogu hitting the “No” button– preferably from offscreen, somewhat faintly, like he was only half-listening to all this but from what he heard he wanted exactly zero percent of it.

Which, in the end, would have been the right decision.

…Or This Is Just Bringing You In Cold

I realize that this post has the approximate shelf life of the cup of yogurt I once accidentally left at my hot yoga class, so Bo-Katan’s reactions to apparent setbacks and shock from the ambush could be authentic. Or she’s an outstanding actor. Or… well, I must concede that the writing for Star Wars has now reached the point of a bunch of hardbitten Mandalorians displaying the military smarts of battle droids.

So let’s end this on either a solid “I TOLD YOU” or “LMAO, just spitballin’ for the byline.”