Ranking the top ten moments from The Mandalorian season 3

Now that the third season of The Mandalorian has wrapped up, it seemed like a fitting time to look back on the season and highlight some of the great moments that occured.

There are way too many great moments than could be listed here, but below are ten of my favorites. What about you? Which ones would you have liked to see included?

10. Grogu and Bo-Katan to the rescue

Chapter 18: The Mines of Mandalore

As Din Djarin explores Mandalore, he is attacked and captured by a creepy alien. It forces Grogu to play the role of hero, saving Din, highlighting how their relationship is quickly evolving and how Grogu is not treated like the kid who needs protecting but as the Mandalorian foundling he really is. Grogu enlists the help of Bo-Katan Kryze, who arrives to save the day – by picking up the darksaber and fighting with it. She’s obviously fought with the weapon before, but this marks the first time we actually see her use it (much less seeing it in live-action), which is thrilling. It’s also the event that establishes the heroic trio of Din, Grogu, and Bo-Katan for the remainder of the season, with plans to retake their home planet.

9. A song not yet written

Chapter 23: The Spies

Another moment between Din and Bo-Katan that is worth mentioning comes late in the season, as they have returned to Mandalore, this time with many others. The friction between the conflicting Mandalorian clans is palpable, however, and Kryze wonders aloud in the calm of the night about whether she can actually lead them. She’s just admitted her previous failures, and she doesn’t know if she can keep it from turning out different this time. All she has is the darksaber, and she’s not convinced it’s enough… but Djarin tells her that the darksaber means nothing to him, and that he follows her because of her honor, loyalty, and character. “These are the reasons I serve you, Lady Kryze,” he tells her. “Your song is not yet written. I will serve you until it is.” This is far more than a touching moment, however: it’s a pivotal point for both of them. Djarin admits that it’s not the outer symbol of something but the inward character, while Kryze needs to hear that a Mandalorian from a rival faction is following her for reasons that don’t have to do with the darksaber. It’s a quiet scene that summarizes so much of the development of the season while foreshadowing what’s still to come, highlighting the unity shared between the two protagonists.

8. Dogfight on Kalevala

Chapter 19: The Convert

One thing that season three of The Mandalorian really stepped up was the starfighter action (it makes sense why they gave Din the N1 starfighter in The Book of Boba Fett, because he really gets to show it off all season). A close second is seeing Djarin (in the N1) and Kryze (in the Gauntlet) fighting Gorian Shard’s pirates, but the best of these moments in my mind was the dogfight on Kalevala in the third episode. It builds the Imperial intrigue and sees both pilots get to show off their skills, accompanied by some terrific visuals and a fantastic score.

7. The Mythosaur

Chapter 18: The Mines of Mandalore

The big reveal at the end of the second episode wasn’t just that Din Djarin bathed in the mines of Mandalore… but that beneath the waters, a Mythosaur is awake and alive! Din slips and falls into the pool, and Bo-Katan has to rescue him – and when she does, she sees the Mythosaur, a creature that she assumed only existed long ago or in legends. The Mythosaur doesn’t show up again until one more little glimpse in the finale, but it casts a shadow over the events of the season. It’s the Mythosaur’s appearance that truly begins Bo-Katan on her season-long journey of uniting her people, and it’s the Mythosaur that is said to usher in a new age of Mandalore. Seeing a Mythosaur show up in live-action is simply incredible.

6. The Imperial Shadow Council

Chapter 23: The Spies

This scene, providing the cold open for the penultimate episode, was a Star Wars nerd’s dream – which is surely the reason I love it so much. We see Moff Gideon for the first time all season. We see that there are plenty of other Imperial warlords leading different remnant groups, which seems important. We see Captain Pellaeon and Brendol Hux, both of whom make their live-action debuts, and both of whom are very significant figures in expanded Star Wars stories. And we get the most open discussion yet about Thrawn’s looming return, which is said to be imminent. It’s a great scene in its own right for the show, but it’s also carrying a ton of worldbuilding packed into it. For more on why it’s so significant and what it all means, check out my article specifically about that here.

5. Zeb!

Chapter 21: The Pirate

As a massive fan of Star Wars Rebels this was one of my absolute favorite parts of the season. It has almost no relevance whatsoever for the larger story, which is why it’s not higher, but it’s the perfect kind of Star Wars cameo. Zeb (short for Garazeb Orrelios) is one of the main characters of Rebels, a member of the Spectres who fights back against the Empire. This is the first time we see him in live-action, and we see that in this post-war period he’s still with the New Republic. He looks absolutely fantastic, and is voiced again by Steve Blum, and it foreshadows the re-emergence of the Spectres later this year in Ahsoka. Sabine Wren, Hera Syndulla, and Chopper are all appearing in that series, as is Ezra Bridger (whom they’re searching for), and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Zeb does too. The crew’s getting back together, and I loved seeing Zeb here. It made me so happy.

4. Grogu breaks up the fight

Chapter 23: The Spies

This one might come as a surprise to see so high on this list, but it’s one of my absolute favorite moments from the season. As the scouting party on Mandalore presses on toward the forge, Paz Vizsla and Axe Woves play a game against each other and, fittingly, they can’t agree on the rules – which leads to a full-blown fight between them. It’s a not-so-subtle allusion to how they can’t seem to agree on the rules on being a Mandalorian, but it’s Grogu who steps in to stop it. Using the “no” button on IG-12 (those yes and no buttons were a home run development, by the way), he holds both of them off and stops their fighting. Din admits that Grogu didn’t learn it from him, which is a reference to Grogu’s time spent with Luke Skywalker. The Mandalorians are a group that fights others at every chance they get; the Jedi are a group that tries to avoid fighting except as a last resort. To see Grogu, a Mandalorian Jedi, able to blend the two and put his skills to use is terrific. A major theme of this season (we might even say the major theme) is that Mandalorians are stronger together, but can’t stop fighting each other. Grogu is a key force in helping to facilitate peace, and it’s no surprise nor coincidence that shortly after this, both Paz Vizsla and Axe Woves risk their lives in heroic acts of courage facing the Empire, putting their lives on the line so that their Mandalorian brothers and sisters can survive. If not for Grogu, perhaps they wouldn’t have been able to set aside those conflicts to do it.

3. Stronger together

Chapter 24: The Return

While on that same subject, the climactic duel with Moff Gideon was one of the best moments of the entire season. Seeing Din face off against Gideon, seeing Bo use the darksaber against him, seeing Din and Grogu against the Praetorian Guards, and then seeing all three heroes join forces to defeat Gideon, it was fantastic. And it highlighted how these three Mandalorians really are the ones to unite their people. Everything about this fight was really well done, and seeing all three use their respective abilities and tools to overpower their foe was also poetic: Gideon was left all alone, while the Mandalorians truly did come together. The season’s storyline culminated in a fitting, and thrilling, fashion.

2. Kelleran Beq!

Chapter 20: The Foundling

This one almost is enough to take the top spot, but it’ll settle for number two. We finally get to see the completion of Grogu’s flashback to Order 66, and we see who it is that rescued him: Kelleran Beq! He was first introduced in Jedi Temple Challenge as a Jedi Master training younglings, and he was nicknamed the sabered hand for his skills with a lightsaber. We got to see those skills on display, and it also fits in perfectly and organically to the story, as of course he’d want to look out for the younglings in this moment. We see him fight off clone troopers, evade gunships through the Coruscant skies, and race away aboard a Naboo cruiser. It’s an absolutely awesome moment, but the thing that makes it even better is that Ahmed Best got the chance to return to the screen in Star Wars. He was treated horrendously by a certain segment of the fandom for his underrated portrayal as Jar-Jar Binks, so this is a chance for the fandom to right their previous wrongs – and to see him so widely accepted and celebrated is so heartwarming. It works great from a story perspective and is an exciting scene, but the real reason it’s so great is because of all it represents with Best returning.

1. For Mandalore!

Chapter 24: The Return

My favorite moment of the season, though, was seeing Bo-Katan lead the Mandalorian forces into battle against the Empire. It’s something that I never thought we’d see in live-action, and seeing it play out was so great. We see the Mandalorians using their jetpacks and Gauntlet fighters to regroup and launch an offensive against the Imperial stronghold on the planet, and what follows is some tremendous action sequences in the air as they battle – and it’s clear that the Empire is no match for the Mandalorians. It’s such a fitting theme, too, because the Empire (and Gideon) prides itself on being able to take from all these different cultures, but they don’t bother to actually understand them. Just because the Empire equips their troopers in beskar armor doesn’t mean they’re equals with Mandalorians, who have been trained from a young age on how to use it. The Empire assumes that it’s simply these tools that make a Mandalorian, but it’s so much more than that. And let’s be honest: Bo-Katan igniting the darksaber as she leads the forces into battle is as much of a fist-pumping moment as this season had. It’s so good.

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