The Mandalorian's Emily Swallow Reflects On The 'Pressure' Carrie Fisher Faced As Princess Leia, Plus Playing The Armorer In Season 3
The Mandalorian has made its long-awaited return for Season 3 to bring Pedro Pascal’s Din Djarin and Emily Swallow’s Armorer back to their own show after appearing in The Book of Boba Fett. After the departure of Cara Dune (from which she’s unlikely to return) and Ahsoka heading off to her own spinoff, The Armorer is arguably the most important female character in the Star Wars TV show going back to its earliest days. Swallow recently weighed in on the franchise now including far more women than back in the original trilogy days when Carrie Fisher’s Princess Leia was the only one of prominence.
Emily Swallow opened up about The Mandalorian as well as Supernatural (where she played Amara) during her panel at FAN EXPO Cleveland, and she was asked how she feels about the representation with more Star Wars women as opposed to the first three films with just Princess Leia as one of the major characters. Swallow responded:
I mean, what a lot of pressure that put on Carrie Fisher to have to be the one hero female for a while! I think it's wonderful the range of women now that we have in Star Wars and the fact that it's not that remarkable that they're women. They're just people. I really love that about The Armorer. I love that she's in this position of leadership and she is respected and looked up to and it doesn't seem to be anything exceptional that she's a woman. She is this powerful spiritual leader of these people and it doesn't seem like she's an exception to the rule. And I love that. I love that we notice she's a woman and then that stands out to us, but she's just awesome.
It wasn’t until the trilogy of prequel movies that Star Wars fans got another important female character on screen, since I for one don’t count Aunt Beru or Mon Mothma as key characters in those first three films. The animated shows then fleshed out the Star Wars ensemble with female characters, and The Mandalorian debuted The Armorer in the series premiere as a guiding force to Din Djarin. The show hasn’t made any special note that she’s a woman any more than it has for Katee Sackhoff’s Bo-Katan Kryze, and she’s proof of how far Star Wars has come from the days of putting the pressure of female representation on just Carrie Fisher!
Of course, The Armorer doesn’t appear as often as Din or Grogu, but she has been a consistent part of The Mandalorian going back to the beginning. Mando doesn’t question her authority, and she seems to be the uncontested leader of the group of Mandalorians that he and Bo-Katan joined after having to flee Mandalore and then her home. So, even though Emily Swallow has yet to show her face on the hit show (and it’s possible she never will), she has a lot to love about her character. And not just because she got an action figure!
There are still a lot of questions about The Armorer, not the least of which is whether or not she believes Bo-Katan’s claim that she saw a real mythosaur on Mandalore. She seemed to be deliberately misunderstanding Bo-Katan’s words, and with her helmet firmly on, we can’t make any guesses based on her expression. For now, fans can just keep checking out new episodes of The Mandalorian on Wednesdays with a Disney+ subscription.
You can also hear directly from another star of The Mandalorian with a visit to FAN EXPO Cleveland, where Carl Weathers (Greef Karga) will be featured in a panel of his own. Both Weathers and Emily Swallow will be available for photo ops at the convention as well.