Skip to main content

The Mandalorian, season 2: Episode 7 Easter eggs and secrets explained

The Mandalorian | Season 2 Official Trailer | Disney+

Lock and load, Star Wars fans, because the latest episode of The Mandalorian on Disney+ dives back into the action. Episode 7 of the second season of The Mandalorian finds bounty hunter Din Djarin embarking on a dangerous mission in order to rescue his adorable traveling partner, Baby Yoda (aka Grogu).

Titled The Believer, the sixth episode of season 2 was written and directed by Rick Famuyiwa. The episode has Djarin enlist the aid of a former enemy to infiltrate an Imperial stronghold, only to have the mission test their resolve in unexpected ways. There’s a lot to absorb in every episode of The Mandalorian, so we provide a recap of the latest chapter each week and take a deep dive into some of its noteworthy elements. (There will be a discussion of plot points from the episode, so consider this a spoiler warning.)

More on The Mandalorian

Image used with permission by copyright holder


In order to retrieve the access codes Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) needs to rescue Grogu from Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito), Cara Dune (Gina Carano) frees ex-Imperial sharpshooter Migs Mayfeld (Bill Burr) from the prison colony where he’s been working since the events of season 1’s sixth episode (titled The Prisoner).

The group travels to the planet Morak, where Djarin and Mayfeld plan to sneak inside an Imperial mining station, but they run into trouble when the pair — disguised as Imperial troopers — are forced to fight off pirates en route to the station, then must shoot their way out after a confrontation with an Imperial officer turns deadly. Along the way, Djarin is forced to violate one of the oaths he swore as a Mandalorian when he removes his helmet to get the necessary codes. They’re ultimately able to retrieve the codes, and both Dune and Djarin later agree to let Mayfeld go free.

Now in possession of a way into Moff Gideon’s ship, Djarin sends the Imperial officer an ominous warning: He’s coming for Grogu.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Operation: Cinder

When Mayfeld and Djarin are forced to have a drink with Imperial officer Valin Hess, the conversation takes a dark turn when Mayfeld brings up Operation: Cinder. This might sound like a throwaway title for another horrifying Imperial operation, but Operation: Cinder has deep roots in Star Wars lore. First introduced in the Marvel Comics series Star Wars: Shattered Empire and then addressed again — and in greater detail — in the video game Star Wars: Battlefront II, Operation: Cinder was the scorched-earth plan enacted by Emperor Palpatine in a post-mortem message to his most loyal officers.

The command to initiate Operation: Cinder was delivered via a hologram of Palpatine set to run in the event of his death, and it instructed his most trusted officers to begin destroying the weakest planets still under the Empire’s rule. By eliminating the weaker worlds under Imperial control, Palpatine intended to strengthen the core of the Empire for a return to power in the future, since only the most devoted and loyal believers in the Empire would remain.

Given that Mayfeld was an Imperial soldier stationed on one of the planets targeted by Operation: Cinder — the planet Burnin Konn, to be exact — it’s easy to understand why his loyalty to the Empire took a hit after that experience, and why he still holds a grudge against the Imperial officer who gave the order to destroy the planet.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Who’s that guy?

Imperial officer Valin Hess has a brief but potent role to play in the episode, and if he looks both familiar and frightening, there’s a reason for that. Hess is portrayed by veteran actor Richard Brake, who has played a long list of iconic, sinister characters over the years. One of his first mainstream roles was in 2005’s Batman Begins, in which Christopher Nolan cast him as Joe Chill, the man who murders Bruce Wayne’s parents — the impetus for his decision to become the masked vigilante Batman.

More recently, Brake portrayed the enigmatic character known as The Chemist in 2018’s cult hit Mandy alongside Nicolas Cage, but the actor is probably best known for playing one of television’s most iconic villains of the last decade: The Night King. Brake played the (literally) chilling villain of HBO’s Game of Thrones from 2014 to 2015, during the show’s Emmy-winning fourth and fifth seasons.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Behind the camera

Serving as both writer and director of the episode, Rick Famuyiwa returns behind the camera for The Believer, having previously directed the second and sixth episodes of the first season. Those episodes include The Child, in which Djarin must battle a vicious Mudhorn to win back his ship from Jawas, and in doing so, discovers Grogu’s powerful abilities, as well as the Prisoner, in which Djarin first encounters Mayfeld while helping a group of mercenaries break a criminal out of a New Republic prison ship.

Famuyiwa hit Hollywood’s radar with his critically acclaimed 2015 coming-of-age film Dope, and was briefly attached to direct the DC Comics superhero solo movie The Flash for Warner Bros. Pictures before exiting the project in 2016. He’s currently attached to direct an adaptation of novelist Tomi Adeyemi’s young-adult fantasy novel Children of Blood and Bone for Disney.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

One episode left

It seems like there’s still a lot of story to tell, but only one episode of The Mandalorian remains in the show’s second season. The final episode of season 2 premieres December 18, and it’s difficult not to wonder how all of the narrative threads the second season has created can possibly be tied up in one episode — but at this point, Disney and showrunner Jon Favreau have earned plenty of trust that they’ll be able to pull it off.

Disney’s The Mandalorian is available to stream on Disney+, with new episodes premiering each Friday on the streaming service.

Editors' Recommendations

Rick Marshall
A veteran journalist with more than two decades of experience covering local and national news, arts and entertainment, and…
Want to enjoy the Star Wars TV shows more? Watch the cartoons, already!
Ahsoka Tano prepares for battle in an episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars

I’m pretty nerdy about a lot of things: turntables, vinyl records, barbecue, Game of Thrones, and yes, Star Wars. To a fault, I can be hard to shut up once my string is pulled, and lately, much of my blathering has been focused around a couple of Star Wars TV series -- The Mandalorian and the upcoming Ahsoka, the latter of which I am super-excited for. But I’ve had a few conversations about these shows with friends recently that have been driving me nuts. The latest involved me gushing over a live-action cameo of the animated Star Wars: Rebels series character Zeb Orrelios in season 3, episode 5 of The Mandalorian. My friend exclaimed that he had no idea who Zeb was and that he'd never watched "that cartoon," and here we are.
But a couple of notes before I continue: First, I know that Star Wars: Rebels and its precursor, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, are “cartoons.” Second, I’m aware that I’m a grown man. The point is, I’m often amazed to learn that, for those and other reasons, many people have avoided these excellent animated Star Wars series -- and this is a mistake. Much of what happens in The Clone Wars and Rebels has direct ties to shows such as The Mandalorian, Obi-Wan Kenobi, The Book of Boba Fett, and especially Ahsoka, as they introduce incredible characters and crucial backstories. Do you need to watch them to know what's going on? No. You don't even need to watch every episode to get a better understanding of the live-action shows: We have great essential episode guides for Clone Wars and Rebels to set you up. But time and again I’ve been rewarded with excitement, a better understanding of characters and plotlines, and a more satisfying cathartic payoff because of watching these "cartoons." Plus, they’re just really good.
And whether you’ve just started watching The Mandalorian or are, like me, waiting eagerly for Ahsoka in August, here are a few good reasons you should take the next few months and get caught up on some of the best cartoons you’ll ever see.
Note: There are Mandalorian spoilers ahead.
Ahsoka Tano gets her due

Making her live-action debut in season 2 of The Mandalorian, Ahsoka Tano began her journey as Anakin Skywalker's tenacious young Padawan, and her adventures throughout seven seasons of the animated Clone Wars made her one of the most exciting and loved Jedi characters in the Star Wars universe. Not only does she endure betrayal through Anakin's transformation into Darth Vader, but her arc connects her to the warrior Mandalorians when she helps Bo-Katan Kryze liberate the planet Mandalore from occupation. The series concludes when Darth Sidious issues Order 66, which triggered the betrayal and extermination of the Jedi, aligning the show with the film Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith.

Read more
Spotify celebrates Star Wars Day with soundtracks and audio books
The Mandalorian and Grogu in a poster for the Disney+ series.

In May 1977, the original Star Wars hit theaters and changed cinemas forever. And although the actual release date was May 25, 1977, fans have embraced May the Fourth as the annual Star Wars Day celebration (for obvious reasons). To celebrate this year's Star Wars Day, Spotify has something special in mind for music fans and audio book connoisseurs.

Composer John Williams' iconic Star Wars music from all nine of the main feature films is streaming under Spotify's Best of Star Wars Playlist alongside some more recent additions to the musical canon. That includes Stephen Barton and Gordy Haab's score for Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, the hit video sequel that just hit stores at the end of April. Kevin Kiner's music from Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels, and Star Wars: The Bad Batch is also featured, as is Michael Giacchino's powerful score from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Additionally, Spotify's Playlist for The Mandalorian now has Joseph Shirley's score from season 3 alongside Ludwig Göransson's soundtracks for the first two seasons.

Read more
Every time we’ve seen Order 66 in Star Wars movies, video games, and TV shows
Anakin marches to the Jedi temple in Revenge of the Sith.

Twenty years ago, if you asked a Star Wars fan to name the most pivotal moment in the franchise’s fictional history, you could be confident that they’d answer with the Battle of Yavin, the climax of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope. After all, this event serves as the starting point of the official Star Wars calendar; fans and producers alike measure time in Star Wars in terms of years BBY (Before the Battle of Yavin) or years ABY (After the Battle of Yavin), endowing the destruction of the Death Star with a historical importance within the fictional galaxy that's equivalent to the birth of Christ. Though the BBY/ABY calendar is still in service today, the ever-expanding Star Wars continuity now revolves around a different moment of historical import: Order 66, the flashpoint of the Jedi Purge and the rebranding of the Galactic Republic into the Galactic Empire.
First depicted in Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith in 2005, Order 66 has become the most revisited moment in the current Star Wars canon, and explored from a multitude of perspectives. Then-Supreme Chancellor Palpatine’s directive to execute the entire Jedi Order, from the ruling council to the youngest student, is now the inciting incident for Star Wars as we know it. Every character active in galactic affairs in the year 19 BBY has their own Order 66 story, and several of them have been depicted in film, television, and video games. Let's takea look back at each substantive on-screen portrayal of the Jedi Purge to determine what (if anything) each of them adds to our understanding of the tragedy and its repercussions on the Star Wars galaxy.

Revenge of the Sith shows the broad strokes of the Jedi Purge

Read more