It was recently reported that Timothy Olyphant will be appearing in the second season of The Mandalorian, but there were no details on his role. Well, today, Slashfilm’s Peter Sciretta reports that Olyphant will wear Boba Fett’s iconic armor in the show.
But with Temuera Morrison reportedly portraying Fett, that means that Olyphant is playing Cobb Vanth!
I wrote an article recently about how Boba Fett’s survival had been hinted at for years, and that’s mainly in the Aftermath trilogy of books, written by Chuck Wendig. Though the main story focused on the New Republic in the final days of the Galactic Civil War, Wendig also interspersed interlude chapters in the story. One such interlude that received a chapter in each of the books was about a mysterious gunslinger named Cobb Vanth. It’s very heavily implied that he gets Boba Fett’s acidic armor from some Jawas and wears it around, proclaiming himself the sheriff of Freetown, a village on Tatooine.
All we really know about him is that he was previously a slave, but freed himself and wound up in Freetown. As already mentioned, he winds up wearing Fett’s armor and fighting off criminals who attempt to cause trouble. He’s a gunslinger, Wild West type.
In that recent article, I speculated that in the years between the Aftermath books and The Mandalorian, Fett must have retrieved his armor from Vanth, because I figured they would want Fett wearing the armor for the show. But that apparently isn’t the case, and I’m really thrilled and intrigued by this addition. I think they’ll need to explain why Boba Fett is there but not in this armor, and who this Cobb Vanth guy is, since most people wouldn’t have read the books (and they’re not even close to the first Star Wars books I’d recommend if someone wanted to read some anyway). But I’m confident they could do that in a way that doesn’t take a ton of time yet makes perfect sense to the casual viewers.
My bigger question is how it’ll work out story-wise. Will Boba Fett actually remain dead, and Morrison only portray the character in a flashback? Or, perhaps more likely, will Fett show up and confront Vanth in an effort to get his armor back? The original report about Fett’s inclusion in the show mentioned that it’s a small role, so maybe Vanth is in the show but Fett appears, taking the armor back and setting things up for season three? Obviously this is total speculation, but I’m really curious to see how they handle it.
I trust the showrunners, though, and I think it’s awesome that Olyphant will be playing Cobb Vanth. I’m really excited to see the character fleshed out a bit further and think it sets up some interesting potential for storytelling.