A new set photo from The Mandalorian season 3 reveals the return of Bo-Katan Kryze’s right-hand man. The upcoming season of the hit Disney+ Star Wars series has been highly anticipated ever since its sophomore season concluded in December 2020. The hype has only continued to build since Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) made his return in The Book of Boba Fett episode 5, which added even more depth to Din’s upcoming season 3 journey.
With Grogu in Luke Skywalker’s care, viewers expected to see Din either go back to bounty hunting for a while or turn to Bo-Katan (Katee Sackhoff) to help in their efforts to retake Mandalore. After he won the Darksaber from Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito) in combat and was unable to hand it over to Bo-Katan, a journey to Mandalore seemed inevitable for Din. His appearance in The Book of Boba Fett saw him returning to bounty hunting solely to seek information about the location of his tribe, which only consisted of the Armorer (Emily Swallow) and Paz Vizsla. There, Din learned more information about the fall of Mandalore, the Night of a Thousand Tears, and the Darksaber itself. After Din was banished from the tribe for removing his helmet and told he could only earn atonement in the “living waters beneath the mines of Mandalore,” his path seemed to be confirmed towards Mandalore.
Now, a set photo shared by Bespin Bulletin (via Star Wars News Net) sees the return of a key character from The Mandalorian season 2 whose appearance further suggests a journey to Mandalore. Actor Simon Kassianides was spotted on the set of The Mandalorian season 3 as Axe Woves, the Mandalorian right-hand man to Bo-Katan in the series’ season 2. Axe was last seen helping Bo-Katan, her Nite Owls, and Din take over an Imperial freighter in “Chapter 11: The Heiress,” and his absence was noted in the season 2 finale when he wasn’t found with Bo-Katan and Koska Reeves (Sasha Banks). At the time, Sackhoff had insisted that Axe wasn’t there for a reason, but she wasn’t sure if it was something she was “supposed to tell.” It seems that the answer will come in The Mandalorian season 3, after all.
The return of Axe is likely evidence of the return of Bo-Katan and the rest of her Nite Owls as well, though that’s already been highly expected amongst viewers for season 3. What’s still as of yet unknown is the role Bo-Katan will take on in this part of Din’s journey. The heiress to Mandalore was adamant about being the one to retrieve the Darksaber from Gideon, and with Din doing that instead, there’s no doubt that animosity has grown between her and Din. Din’s duel with Paz in The Book of Boba Fett proved that Din does, in fact, want to wield the blade himself, which could set up Bo-Katan to be a more antagonistic character in The Mandalorian season 3 should she decide to duel him for it.
Despite this, Bo-Katan’s words from The Mandalorian season 2 are still important to remember: “Our enemies want to separate us. But Mandalorians are stronger together.” Mandalorians have had a complicated past with each other, from the Mandalorian Civil War, to the Death Watch’s conflicts, to the divide between Imperial-sympathetic Mandalorians and those who had broken away in the years before the Galactic Civil War. They have seemed to always be in conflict with one another, but if they’re to earn their planet back from whoever remains there, they will all have to come back together. With Din in possession of the Darksaber, it will likely become his responsibility to unite all the clans and tribes of Mandalore to retake their home planet. Since Grogu’s now back at Din’s side, it seems that his journey in The Mandalorian season 3 will be focused on how Din can reunite himself with more of his kind, just as he once did for Grogu.