Warning: This post contains spoilers for “The Gunslinger” episode of The Mandalorian.
Tatooine has always loomed large in Star Wars mythology. After all, it’s the planet where Anakin Skywalker was born and C-3PO was built; where Luke Skywalker grew up and Ben Kenobi grew old; and where Han Solo ended up in Jabba’s palace and Boba Fett got ingested by the Sarlacc beast. But there are plenty of other planets to explore in the Outer Rim of the far, far away galaxy, so recent Star Wars movies have mostly steered clear of the desert world where the Skywalker Saga began.
That’s why it was a delightful surprise when fugitives Mando (Pedro Pascal) and Baby Yoda took the franchise home again in the fifth episode of The Mandalorian, “The Gunslinger.” After narrowly avoiding having his ship reduced to space debris, the bounty hunter landed the wounded Razor Crest at Tatooine’s own Mos Eisley spaceport... the same place where Luke previously hitched a ride on the Millennium Falcon en route to becoming the Rebel Alliance’s new hope. That sound you heard was millions of voices crying out in joy at this sudden, and unexpected, homecoming.
ep 5 of the mandalorian being set at tatooine.... the new hope vibes... my heart...— megan ⚢ (@khufuus) December 6, 2019
Episode 5 of @themandalorian feels like Star Wars again, and not just because it takes place on Tatooine— Aaron Cheater (@AaronCheater) December 6, 2019
SEEING TATOOINE AND ALL THE NOSTALGIA HAS ME CRYING! THE MANDALORIAN MADE MY DAY— 𝑔𝒶𝒷𝒷𝓎 🎈 (@neondiversion) December 6, 2019
So I noticed the moons of Tatooine are in the same positions over the planet when the Razor Crest arrives in Chapter 5 of "The Mandalorian" as they were when the Tantive IV arrived in Episode IV of the Skywalker saga... you know, in case you were wondering how big of a nerd I am. pic.twitter.com/aLPATWJt2y— Greg (@GregularJoe) December 6, 2019
The above observation about the similar placement of Tatooine’s moon in the opening scenes of Episode IV and “The Gunslinger” was just the tip of the iceberg when it came to New Hope flashbacks. Written and directed by beloved Star Wars content generator Dave Filoni, the 35-minute episode is packed with homages to the 1977 movie, as well as The Phantom Menace.
Humanizing Tusken Raiders? The Mandalorian is good Star Wars.— Emotional Support Nate (@N_Batts) December 6, 2019
oh my god those 3 little pit stop droids in the new mandalorian episode are so cute— ♤ 𝖒𝖊𝖑 ◇ (@mord0r) December 6, 2019
it's probably the nostalgia talking but ep. 5 of the mandalorian I think is my favorite so far. Pit droids, banthas, "shes no good to us dead"— Ludwing Hernandez (@este_ludo) December 6, 2019
The episode also shows how life on the planet has changed since the Skywalkers brought down the Empire. Many noted, for example, that the strictly enforced “no droid” policy at the Mos Eisley cantina has been relaxed considerably.
One thing that hasn’t changed in that hive of scum and villainy is the presence of charming space pirates lurking in dark corners of the cantina. While looking to score some credits to pay spaceport gearhead, Peli Motto (a hilarious Amy Sedaris) for repairing his ship, Mando crosses paths with aspiring bounty hunter, Toro Calican (Jake Cannavale). Armed with a roguish smile and a casual slouch, Toro reminds us of someone — just can’t put our finger on who.
The fact that Chalmun's Cantina is now owned by a droid was so ironic. Also, it was cool seeing Toro Calican sit where Han Solo sat.— Carson Fel (@fel_carson) December 6, 2019
Toro Calican in Han Solo’s spot in the Mos Eisley cantina: pic.twitter.com/HHXv4DUFMw— Blue Milk Boys Podcast (@BLUEMILKBOYS) December 6, 2019
Here's my #TheMandalorian ep5 tidbit. If this is the same booth at the Cantina that Han Solo met with Greedo, then could it be possible that Greedo never fired as is the original theatrical edition, because there is no laser burn on the wall by Toro Calican's head #hanshotfirst pic.twitter.com/m7H4kkCc1Q— Dan Sanguineti (@DanSanguineti) December 6, 2019
As the episode goes on, of course, Toro started sounding less like Han Solo and more like the Schofield Kid — the in-over-his-head amateur outlaw that Clint Eastwood’s William Munny schooled in the classic 1993 Western Unforgiven. Striking a deal with Mando to capture ace assassin Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) in the hopes of proving his mettle to the Bounty Hunter Guild, Calican instead reveals his inexperience almost immediately. He makes an even bigger mistake when he attempts to double-cross his partner, which only results in a one-way trip to an early grave. Fennec also takes a laser blast in the course of the episode, but smitten fans are wishing Wen a speedy recovery.
Fennec Shand stan first, human second pic.twitter.com/lSNBqZqRpm— nick (@fitzgrayson_) December 6, 2019
Those wishes will apparently be granted. The final shot of “The Gunslinger” shows a figure kneeling down next to Fennec’s prone form, cutting to black before we can see their identity. While odds are likely this Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito), an ex-Imperial governor who will presumably factor into the final three episodes, fans are hoping that it’ll turn out to be none other than Boba Fett, back from the dead.
The guy at the end of The Mandalorian episode is BOBA FETT. No one can change my mind #TheMandalorian— Criz (@CrizBTW) December 6, 2019
Yo idk if anyone else watched the Mandalorian but I totally think that was Boba Fett at the end of Chapter 5.— Connor (@conninja_) December 6, 2019
I don't want to believe it, because I want him to be digested for 1000 years in the stomach of that sarlacc, but is The Mandalorian trying to tease Boba Fett???— Orrin (@_Orrin) December 6, 2019
It’s no secret that Star Wars has been trying to resurrect the original Mandalorian-armor wearing bounty hunter for awhile, first as the star of a spin-off movie that has since been abandoned. With such characters as Obi-Wan Kenobi and Cassian Andor scoring Disney+ shows, the streaming service seems like an ideal place for Boba to re-emerge out of Great Pit of Carkoon. He’s gonna have to find a sidekick that’s as adorable as Baby Yoda, though.
The Mandalorian is currently streaming on Disney+
With Read more from Yahoo Entertainment: