Grogu (a.k.a. the Child or Baby Yoda) and Din Djarin have been through a lot together—and not just in the sense of learning their names and where they were headed. From the first episode of The Mandalorian, we watched as Din Djarin went from a Man (dalorian) on a mission to someone who was questioning what he was doing, in a father/son relationship with a baby alien.
In the most recent episode, titled “The Jedi,” Din is faced with the reality of something he only ever teased: the idea of letting the Child go.
Prior to this episode, he only referred to our Baby Yoda as “kid” because there wasn’t a real way for them to understand each other, but as Ahsoka Tano talked to Din about what Grogu had been through, she revealed his name and there was some kind of switch in their relationship that was fun to watch.
Maybe it was Din needing to know a bit about how Grogu came to be in his care or knowing how he felt about Din being his “father,” but the minute Ahsoka told Din that she couldn’t train Grogu because of his connection to him, it felt like there was a shift to make the two even more of a father/son duo.
And that’s not saying that they weren’t before, just last episode we watched as Din Djarin cleaned up a bit of throw up after Grogu ate too many space macarons. But this shift wasn’t cutesy father and son antics. There was a real bond that was suddenly on screen between them that existed in brief moments before.
Ahsoka told Din that Grogu sees him as a father figure, that he’s incredibly attached to the Mandalorian, and while she was saying this as a reason why she cannot train Grogu as a Jedi, it was more about how dependent both Grogu and Din have become to one another.
When Grogu tries to do his training, Ahsoka tells him to send a rock back to her using the Force. Grogu, seemingly understanding what to do later on, just drops the rock to the ground, but when Din uses the top of his joystick from the Razor Crest, Grogu easily takes it from his hand and the two celebrate their success.
But it also showed Ahsoka that their bond is more than something that was just mutually exclusive in that moment. It’s more about the unconditional love and respect that they have for each other.
One of my favorite aspects of this relationship is the fact that Din constantly pretends like he’s willing to let Grogu stay somewhere. He did it on Sorgan when he found a village for Grogu to live his life safely on, he did it with the “idea” of finding the Jedi so that Grogu could find his own kind, and he did it most recently under the guise of Ahsoka training Grogu.
Every time he played with the idea, it always backfired, or he’d run back to the kid and take him with him because despite the fact that Din Djarin was a lone wolf of a Mandalorian, he couldn’t give up this creature that had somehow become like a son to him.
After “The Jedi,” I don’t think there is a way to go back to pretending like The Mandalorian isn’t the story of Baby Yoda and his Dadalorian. This show is a western and explores a new aspect of the Star Wars universe, but it is, at its core, a story about found family and how these two depend on each other, and I cannot wait to see how their relationship continues to grow, especially now that both Din and Grogu know how the other feels about them.
I would die for this father/son duo.
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