Baby Yoda in Star Wars TV show The Mandalorian could be the last of its species. Since the 1980s, fans have wondered about Master Yoda's backstory, but more specifically, his race. The unnamed child that the lone bounty hunter rescued in the Disney+ series is just the third member of Yoda's species we've seen on screen.
Master Yoda is one of the most beloved characters within the Star Wars franchise. The wise Jedi Master played a role in Luke Skywalker's journey in the original trilogy before returning as a prominent piece to the prequels. Even after the death of the green-skinned creature, Star Wars found a way to incorporate Yoda as a Force Ghost. Despite Yoda's role in Star Wars, details regarding his species or homeworld have never been revealed.
The Mandalorian may finally open up Yoda's backstory by using the child as a key to unlock the decades-long mystery. It's no question that Yoda's species is special, especially when taking into consideration their Force sensitivity. Here's why Baby Yoda could very well be the last of Yoda's species and what that could mean for The Mandalorian and the future of Star Wars.
Yoda's Species Is Very Rare In Star Wars
Yoda was first introduced to the Star Wars universe in 1980's The Empire Strikes Back. Since then, details regarding the character's background have been few and far between, particularly his species. Yoda's race is unknown and it currently stands as one of the biggest ongoing mysteries within the franchise. The only clear aspect regarding Yoda's species is that it's extremely rare in Star Wars.
Besides Master Yoda, the only other character from the same species in Star Wars canon was Yaddle. The only known female of Yoda's species was seen in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Like Yoda, Yaddle was a Jedi Master and known for her great wisdom. Yaddle served on the Jedi High Council and was present when Qui-Gon Jinn brought forth the "Chosen One," Anakin Skywalker, to the ancient Jedi Temple. Following the Battle of Naboo, Yaddle left the Jedi High Council.
Baby Yoda's presence in The Mandalorian means that there are three known figures of the race, all of which are Force-sensitive. George Lucas made it a rule that Yoda's race not be investigated, even joking that Yoda himself was the love child of Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy. Star Wars creators followed the discouragement but Lucas allowed the EU to explore more characters derived from Yoda's species. Minch, Oteg, and Vandar Tokare were all Jedi Masters that appeared within the EU. Following Disney's acquisition of Star Wars, the EU was deemed non-canon and rebranded as "Legends," making the child even more significant to The Mandalorian and the franchise as a whole.
Theory: Baby Yoda Is The Last Of His Species
The Mandalorian is set five years after the fall of the Galactic Empire. While the galaxy believes that the surviving members of the Empire retreated in defeat, they have actually been staying under the radar while planning their next move. Considering their heavy interest in "the asset," Baby Yoda must be highly significant. It's probable that the child is the last of Yoda's species, explaining why the infant is so sought after by The Client (Werner Herzog) and the Imperial scientist, Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi).
Since The Mandalorian takes place after Return of the Jedi, Master Yoda had already passed away after living for 900 years. The fate of Yaddle remains unknown but there's speculation that she too passed away before the Empire was formed. The child could be directly related to Yoda or Yaddle but signs are pointing to Baby Yoda as being the last of the mysterious species. If there were other existing figures from Yoda's race, the Empire could send their operatives into obtaining one of the Yoda-like beings. Instead, they hire a revered bounty hunter (Pedro Pascal) to track down the target. Not only that but they strike the deal under-the-table with loads of Beskar steel up for grabs.
The Mandalorian may have been the right man for the job but the Empire has clearly been in contact with a large number of hunters who failed at finding the 50-year-old target. Kuiil (Nick Nolte) states that many hunters arrived on Arvala-7 in search of the asset, and all have failed. Even when the bounty hunter goes back for the child, all of the fellow hunters have tracking fobs linked to Baby Yoda. The Empire put a lot of effort into finding this child and it's probably because it's their only option at giving them what they need.
Whereas The Client isn't concerned about the child's well-being, Dr. Pershing requested him Baby Yoda be kept alive. There are reasons to believe that Dr. Pershing is a clone scientist ordered to use Baby Yoda as a way to produce more subjects of the species. In The Mandalorian's third episode, The Client told Dr. Pershing "to extract the necessary material and be done with it." The line suggests that Dr. Pershing has the capability to use biological substances from Baby Yoda for the purpose of other means.
What This Means For Star Wars' Future
The Mandalorian follows the rules of the bounty hunter guild but he instantly feels a moral responsibility when it comes to Baby Yoda. He puts his own life of the line by infiltrating The Client's base of operations to get the child back. In addition, the Mandalorian threatens his future as a bounty hunter by taking Baby Yoda and escaping to a location that the Empire will hopefully not be able to easily find. The future episodes will presumably focus on the bounty hunter keeping Baby Yoda out of the wrong hands.
The Mandalorian is a veteran in his field, but could he be aware of the rarity regarding Baby Yoda's species? He seemed to understand that his target was significant the moment he laid eyes on the infant. The bounty hunter's work has surely taken him to the outer circles of the galaxy where he could have picked up some key intel. He may know more about Master Yoda and the rare qualities that the species holds. These revelations could come out over the course of the Disney+ series or come into play in the feature films.
If the Empire gets a hold of Baby Yoda's biological makeup, it could be detrimental to their enemies. They could be using the child's midichlorians to create new Force users or creating some type of clones. This storyline hasn't come up in the sequel trilogy but the science behind Baby Yoda may have been passed on to the First Order. The fact that a whole TV series is dedicated to this mysterious infant implies that it's a key piece to the bigger picture. Maybe an older version of Baby Yoda will appear in future Star Wars projects revealing insight into the species. Or there's always the chance that the child isn't the last of the species and it could lead to other figures from Yoda's race to make their Star Wars debut.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019