What’s next for the story of The Mandalorian after season three?

The Mandalorian season three finale felt, in many ways, like a series finale. Yet we know that Jon Favreau has already written season four, so while another season hasn’t been officially announced, it’s all but certain.

There are other spin-off shows happening, like Ahsoka and Skeleton Crew, and we’re also working toward a newly-announced movie set in the Mandoverse as well. So there will be plenty more to come, and as such, I thought it would be appropriate to spend a few minutes thinking about where the story might go from here. The season three finale left several clues toward this end.

There are several important developments that happen in the final minutes of the episode. Let’s unpack them.

1. First, Din Djarin officially adopts Grogu, and the Armorer tells them that they must now travel the galaxy on their adventures as master and apprentice. The adoption ceremony felt a bit odd because, well, I think we all assumed Grogu was already basically his kid, and then the part about them traveling the galaxy kind of came out of nowhere. Earlier in the season, though, Din did tell Grogu that being a Mandalorian is about being able to navigate the galaxy, so I guess that’s where it comes from (even though we kind of already saw Grogu learn from that moment). I think this just mostly came out of nowhere and didn’t really seem to fit naturally, so it didn’t land as well for me. (And, as a side note, I think it’s hilarious that the Mandalorians have this kind of master and apprentice dynamic when the Jedi, who do the very same thing, are their ancient enemies.) But it does tell us something important for the story moving forward: Din and Grogu are back to traveling the galaxy on a series of adventures. That’s the first key piece that we gain.

2. Second, a new era of Mandalore is underway. Bo-Katan Kryze takes the torch from the Armorer and lights the Great Forge, while the assembled -and united – Mandalorians all chant, “for Mandalore!” It’s the beginning of a new age for their people, symbolized by the fact that the Mythosaur is now awake. Though this wraps up the season storyline nicely, we’ve surely not seen the end of these Mandalorians, nor their planet. Remember, the Imperial Shadow Council in the previous episode all agreed that a united Mandalore would pose problems to their plans. We don’t know why, but we do know that these Imperial remnants are concerned about the possibility. Maybe it’s because it was the location of a key base for Moff Gideon, though it’s unlikely that the others would be so concerned about that given their veiled disdain for the Moff anyway. Maybe it’s because the Mandalore system is a key one that could be utilized by assembling remnants. Or maybe it’s because a united Mandalore poses a greater military threat than virtually anyone else in the galaxy. We’ll have to wait and see exactly what comes of this, but I’m guessing Thrawn and the rest of the remnants aren’t going to be too thrilled to hear about these developments on Mandalore.

3. Third, Din meets up with Carson Teva at the Adelphi Base with a proposition: he’s wanting to get back into bounty hunting, but with a far more selective workload. What he proposes is that he could be an independent contractor for the New Republic, hunting down Imperials in the Outer Rim. This is the biggest piece of them all when it comes to understanding where the story is going from here. We can expect a fourth season to return to the more serialized bounty hunting format it began as, but will still tie in to the larger universe through these missions. I think it’s likely that this will bring some of the other members of the Shadow Council into play, as perhaps Djarin needs to hunt some of them down. I think that would make for some really exciting possibilities to explore, and it would all lead into the larger Thrawn crisis that’s emerging too.

4. And fourth, Mando provides Greef Karga with a new marshal, the rebuild IG-11, while Karga provides him with a home on Nevarro. To be honest I’m not sure how much all of this will play into the story moving forward, but at the very least I think it makes it clear that we’re not done with Nevarro. After all, Gideon had an interest in the planet enough to send Gorian Shard and the pirates to seize the planet. We don’t know why the planet is so important, besides the fact that it’s a growing and thriving trade center in the Outer Rim (which might be reason enough). But with one of Shard’s pirates, Vane, set to appear in Skeleton Crew, I’m sure we’ll be seeing more before long.

Taking all of this together, then, I think we’re going to see more of the adventures of Din Djarin and Din Grogu, but as they do so we’ll get to see how the New Republic is responding to these Imperial remnants that are arising. In many ways, I think that season four of this show could be the replacement for the previously-announced-but-now-cancelled Rangers of the New Republic series. That was supposedly to star Cara Dune, but now it might be Din Djarin, Grogu, Carson Teva, and others taking that spot – which, if so, is a far, far better development for this series, universe, and fans anyway. So I’m quite happy about that. We’ll see Din and Grogu again in season four, but something tells me we won’t have to wait all the way until season four arrives to see them next.

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