No matter where he goes, trouble always seems to find the Mandalorian, and in episode 6 it’s no different as he joins a group mercenaries on a mission to free a captive.
Still on the run, Mando makes contact with Ran (Mark Boone Jr.), an old acquaintance prior to his Guild days. Ran asks about what happened with the Guild but relents when Mando cites the “no questions” policy these rogue mercenaries abide by. It seems Mando’s old contact operates strictly off the books but has a job for the beleaguered bounty hunter. He’s neither Dom Toretto, Nick Fury, nor Woody Harrelson’s character in Solo, but he’s putting together a crew. Their mission: spring an associate out of captivity. Ran already has most of the team in place, he just needs Mando and, more importantly, the Razor Crest — which Mando is none too happy about.
He introduces Mando to the rest of the crew: Mayfeld, (Bill Burr, confirming Boston’s existence in the galaxy far, far away), a former Imperial sharpshooter and mission lead; Burg (Clancy Brown), the Devaronian serving as the muscle; Q9-0, a droid called Zero (Richard Ayoade, in an excellent casting decision); and Xi’an (Natalia Tena), a flirty, volatile Twi’lek and former associate of Mando’s.
While checking out the Crest, Zero stumbles across a jumbled old hologram message from Greef. Meanwhile, Mando learns a bit more about the mission, namely that the captive is on a New Republic prison ship — he’s not a hostage, he was arrested. Already disappointed in the mission, it gets a lot worse when Mando’s told he’s not piloting the mission, the droid is. Ran tells Mando he’s needed as a shooter. Mando, who is famously wary of droids due to his very traumatic experience as a kid, is wildly incensed.
On the ship, things shift from tense to contentious very quickly when Mando finds Burg going through his cache of weapons. Mayfeld inquires as to whether Mando actually possesses the famous Mandalorian fighting skill before asking about his helmet — joking that he’s actually a Gungan underneath, which is a tough dig for Jar Jar Binks. Burg makes a move to take off Mando’s helmet and the two scuffle, accidentally exposing Baby Yoda in his secret compartment. Mando tries to play Baby Yoda off as a pet but is alarmed when Mayfeld makes a comment about keeping Baby Yoda for a pet himself. Luckily, and without warning, Zero lands the ship and Mayfeld loses his grasp on Baby Yoda, allowing Mando to secure him back in his safe hideaway.
With Zero leading communications, the ragtag quartet embark on their mission, heading towards the prison ship’s mission control. They don’t get far before Burg shoots a small droid, alerting a team of armed droids towards the mercenary group, which Mando fights off as the rest of his stunned team watches.
Despite being told the ship was exclusively guarded by droids, they run into a nervous New Republic soldier (Matt Lanter, the voice of Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: The Clone Wars), who weakly commands them to put down their blasters. Panicked, he pulls out a tracking beacon — which would alert the New Republic fleet of some sort of distress — intensifying the situation. Mando tries to calm the situation but makes things worse when he tells the soldier they’ll let him live if he lets them go on with their mission. Mayfeld directly refutes Mando’s claim and soon blasters are being pointed in all directions. Xi’an takes things into her own hands, killing the officer with one of her knives. Unfortunately, before he died, the the soldier activated the distress signal, giving the team 20 minutes to complete their mission.
The prisoner is revealed to be Qin (Ismael Cruz Cordova), Xi’an’s brother and another of Mando’s former associates, who Mando had previously left behind on a mission. But it seems there was a more sinister intent behind Mando’s inclusion in this rescue mission as the bounty hunter is double-crossed by his team and locked in Qin’s cell.
Back in the Razor Crest, Zero unscrambles Greef’s message regarding the asset. Minutes later, Baby Yoda, having emerged from his hiding spot, pops into the ship’s cockpit, startling the droid, who reaches for a blaster. But when he turns to aim, the little green child has disappeared.
Naturally, it doesn’t take long for Mando to break out of his cell and go after his traitorous team. Having returned to mission control, he severs the power, cutting all ties with Zero and forcing the mercenary group to split up. First, Mando encounters Burg, who appears to have the upper hand before the bounty hunter uses the very heavy doors to incapacitate the Devaronian. Next, he goes after Xi’an, who attacks with her knives but is no match for the famed fighter. Then he goes for Mayfeld, whose paranoia has only increased amidst the eeriness of the ship–lights flashing and doors opening. Finally, there’s Qin, who Mando confronts as he’s about to climb back into the Razor Crest. The former captive begs for his life, giving the ol’ spiel about Mandalorians and honor, also promising an increase on Mando’s payment.
Having searched the entire ship, Zero finally encounters Baby Yoda back in his hiding spot. As the droid raises a blaster, it appears the little tyke is attempting to use the force to save himself. But Mando arrives in time and takes out the droid.
Sans his team, Mando returns from his mission, turning Qin over to Ran. However, it appears the plans to double-cross Mando aren’t through as after the Razor Crest takes off, Ran immediately gives the order to kill his former associate. Luckily, Mando always has a contingency plan. Assuming this would be the case, the bounty hunter planted the activated distress beacon in Qin’s pocket and the Razor Crest passes a trio of X-wings — piloted by episode director Rick Famuyiwa, series executive producer Dave Filoni, and episode 6 director Deborah Chow — closing in on Ran’s base ship. Back on the prison ship, we learn that Mando spared the lives of the trio of mercenaries, locking them up in a cell and surely saving them from a better fate than Ran and Qin.