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Small Details You Missed In The Mandalorian Trailer

It's almost here. The Mandalorian, the first-ever live action Star Wars TV show, arrives on November 12, 2019 on Disney's new, very geek-friendly streaming service, Disney+. That's right around the corner, but you don't need to wait until Thanksgiving season to see what Lucasfilm has in store. The first trailer for The Mandalorian dropped at Disney's bi-annual D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, and boy, is it something.

Series creator Jon Favreau — yeah, the same guy who kicked the Marvel Cinematic Universe into high gear when he directed Iron Man back in 2008 — described The Mandalorian as a peek at "the darker, freakier side of Star Wars." He wasn't kidding. You've seen Star Wars, but you've never seen that galaxy far, far away look quite like this.

Favreau is drawing heavily on the old Star Wars movies, especially Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope, for The Mandalorian, and the trailer isn't subtle about its influences. From nods to past Star Wars films to some classic cinema heritage, here are all the Easter eggs, references, and other details you probably missed in The Mandalorian's debut trailer.

The death troopers are back in black and after the Mandalorian

Stormtroopers, the Empire's most common (and endlessly expendable) foot soldiers, are famous for their iconic all-white armor, but that's not the only color they wear. Mudtroopers, who first appeared in Solo: A Star Wars Story, wear green. Sith troopers, who are set to debut in Star Wars: Episode IX — The Rise of Skywalker wear red. Death troopers, who we first met in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, dress in all black.

And it's death troopers that you're seeing in The Mandalorian's first trailer, standing in a firing line. That's bad news for our anti-hero. According to Star Wars lore, death troopers are the Empire's elite fighting forces. Not only are death troopers plucked from a selection of the most promising soldiers in Empire's ranks, but they undergo hardcore training and receive surgical augmentation in order to make them something "beyond human." Basically, they're scientifically-enhanced Navy SEALS — except, y'know, also space Nazis.

In other words, most people don't want to mess with 'em. It looks like the Mandalorian didn't get the memo. Seemingly led by a character played by Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad's Gus Fring), the death troopers look poised to live up to their name. We can't wait to see them in action.

Oh, blurrg!

The Star Wars universe is full of weird little critters, and there's not nearly enough time in the feature films to spotlight them all. Take the blurrg, for example. These oddly-shaped bipedal creatures are popular among a certain set of fans, but they've never actually appeared on the big screen. In fact, they've barely appeared in Star Wars media at all. Blurrgs debuted in Ewoks: The Battle for Endor, a made-for-TV movie that aired in 1985, popped up in a few episodes of The Clone Wars and a handful of video games, and that's more or less it... until now.

Roughly 40 seconds into The Mandalorian's trailer, the titular bounty hunter faces off against a blurrg with a rider on top. If you look carefully, you'll see another blurrg, presumably dead, lying on the left side of the screen. Hopefully, they'll play a big role in The Mandalorian. They look a lot better in CGI than they do in stop-motion animation.

Also, if you were wondering, the alien riding the blurrg is called an Ugnaught, a race that's common in Star Wars spin-offs, but haven't been seen in a live-action production since Return of the Jedi debuted in 1983. That was 36 years ago. It's nice to have the little guys back.

An assassin droid and a bounty hunter walk into a bar…

The Mandalorian takes place on the Outer Rim, far, far away from most of the action in the Star Wars universe. As such, you're probably not going to see many familiar faces pop up. During The Mandalorian era, Luke, Leia, Han, and Chewie are busy establishing a new government elsewhere in the galaxy, making any cameos unlikely.

However, some fans think they've caught sight of one well-known character in The Mandalorian trailer. In fact, he's kind of hard to miss: he's the droid who spins his limbs around willy nilly and pumps his opponents full of blaster fire. Many viewers think that's IG-88, one of the bounty hunters that Darth Vader sends after Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back. You can understand their confusion. IG-88 and the Mandalorian droid look very similar.

That's not IG-88, though. It's a new character called IG-11, and he's voiced by What We Do in the Shadows and Thor: Ragnarok/Love and Thunder director Taika Waititi. If you compare pictures of the two droids, you'll find that they're not exactly the same — IG-11 is rustier than his original trilogy counterpart, and he wears two bandoliers instead of one — but they're both extremely deadly. If you see either one coming, steer clear.

The clothes that make the Mandalorian

If the Mandalorian reminds you of Jango Fett or his son, Boba, that's on purpose. While Disney's new canon makes it hard to tell whether Jango is actually Mandalorian or if he is, as Mandalore's nobility claim in The Clone Wars, a pretender and a fraud, Jango, Boba, and Disney+'s nameless bounty hunter all wear Mandalorian armor. It's a good choice for a bounty hunter. Made from a precious metal called beskar, the armor can withstand heavy blaster bolts, and goes a long way towards keeping its wearer safe.

However, the Mandalorian's outfit isn't a complete set of Mandalorian armor. Some pieces are missing, and he's been forced to cobble together an outfit from whatever he can find. For example, look at the right shoulder pad. It's not rust red metal like the rest of his suit — it's blue and grey.

As it turns out, the shoulder pad may not be Mandalorian at all. If anything, it resembles a piece of Stormtrooper armor — or, more specifically, Shoretrooper armor, as seen in Rogue One. One Reddit user has a pretty good comparison. For the Mandalorian's sake, let's hope he keeps that shoulder out of danger. Shoretrooper armor is better than a regular Stormtrooper's, but it's still no match for a blaster — and when you're in the middle of a battle, your enemies will exploit any weak spot.

The Mandalorian carries a familiar weapon

Like any good bounty hunter, the Mandalorian is armed to the teeth. In the trailer, he wields a blaster-pistol. He has a "fibercord whip," which he uses to snag a runaway foe. He hides a knife in his boot, and has Boba Fett-style dart launchers built into his gauntlets.

The Mandalorian's most interesting weapon, however, is one that you might've seen before. It's the rifle slung on his back, which has a cattle-prod-like barrel. You never actually see the Mandalorian shoot the rifle in the trailer (although he does point it at an opponent), but that doesn't matter. Hardcore Star Wars fans know exactly what it does.

Boba Fett wielded that exact same kind of weapon in "The Faithful Wookiee," the animated short that introduced Fett to the world. If you haven't seen it, don't worry — it's not easy to find. See, "The Faithful Wookiee" originally aired as part as the infamously terrible Star Wars Holiday Special, a Star Wars spin-off so atrocious that George Lucas once said he wants to destroy every copy. Thanks to the internet, that's impossible, and that's a good thing. While the live action segments live up (or down) to their reputation, "The Faithful Wookiee" is quite good, and it's fun to see Favreau and company pay tribute to it in The Mandalorian.

The Mandalorian will explore strange new worlds

While the Skywalker homeworld, the desert planet Tatooine, gets a lot of love in The Mandalorian trailer (if the desert planet in the footage isn't Tatooine, it sure looks a lot like it), Favreau has promised that the show will take us to many planets never before seen in the Star Wars universe. Aside from that Tatooine-like planet, the Mandalorian trailer also features a few glimpses of a lush forest world full of trees and water.

That's two planets in the trailer, right? Look again. In the trailer's most memorable scene — the one in which the bounty hunter drags a bad guy through an open doorway, then shoots the door controls, closing the door and presumably chopping his victim in half — you can see the world outside. It's not a desert. It's not a forest. From what we can tell, it's full of snow.

So, that's three different planets in one brief preview. If you're tired of the same old Star Wars locations, that's a good sign of things to come. Oh, and by the way — think this is the first time in Star Wars that someone's been killed via closing security door? Sorry. The Clone Wars did it first.

Werner Herzog, Imperial agent

At the end of The Mandalorian teaser, Pablo Pascal's bounty hunter stands in the office of an old man. You know, the guy who says, "Bounty hunting is a complicated profession. Don't you agree?" Yeah, him. Casual viewers might dismiss the man as just another actor, but film buffs will recognize him as Werner Herzog, director of countless unflinching documentaries and dramas like Grizzly Man and Aguirre, the Wrath of God and one of the most critically acclaimed filmmakers of all time. He does occasionally act, too — see his cameo in the final season of Parks and Recreation and now, The Mandalorian.

Herzog's involvement in The Mandalorian isn't a surprise. We've known he'd be part of show since last December. Herzog's character, however, is still a complete mystery. Well, The Mandalorian trailer might've just dropped a big clue about his identity. In the final scene, Herzog seems to be wearing a medallion engraved with a six-point symbol — one that looks a heck of a lot like the insignia of the Galactic Empire.

The medal implies that Herzog is playing a former Imperial officer, raising all kinds of concerns. The Mandalorian is set a few years after the Battle of Jakku, where the Empire made its last stand. So why is Herzog's character still in charge? And why are there so many Stormtroopers lurking about if the Empire is dead and gone, anyway? Hopefully, The Mandalorian will answer these questions. November can't come soon enough.

A long time ago, in the wild, wild west

The Mandalorian doesn't just draw inspiration from the Star Wars movies. It also owes a huge debt to spaghetti westerns, especially those by The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly director Sergio Leone. It's not subtle about it, either — the show's official synopsis calls the Mandalorian a "lone gunfighter," and the trailer doubles down with tons of classic western imagery.

Like Clint Eastwood's Man With No Name, the Mandalorian is a man of few words. In one shot, he walks across a dusty plain as the sun sets behind him, his long duster fluttering in the breeze. In another, he taps the side of his blaster, about to draw on a distant opponent. An old fashioned saloon fight provides some action, and the whole trailer is infused with a sense of quiet isolation, just like Leone's best films.

If you've seen The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, you know that it ends with a Mexican stand-off between, well, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Guess what? There's a Mexican standoff in the Mandalorian trailer, too. In the footage, it's hard to tell exactly what's going on, but according to reports from Star Wars Celebration 2019, the scene takes place in Werner Herzog's office, and is between the Mandalorian, a Stormtrooper, and American Gods' Omid Abtahi, who plays a character named Dr. Pershing.

Everybody's doing the carbonite freeze

Late in the Mandalorian trailer, a quick shot shows an alien frozen in carbonite, much like Han Solo was at the end of The Empire Strikes Back. If you're a Star Wars fan, that's hardly surprising. Carbonite-encased Han is one of the most iconic images in the original series, and it's linked with Boba Fett, who also wore Mandalorian armor.

But look closer. You'll see that there's not just one person frozen in carbonite. There are four of them, all standing in a row. That's a big change from the original Star Wars trilogy, which implies that freezing living creatures in carbonite is extremely dangerous. In The Empire Strikes Back, Darth Vader wants to encase Luke Skywalker in carbonite, but isn't sure that the process won't kill the young Jedi. So, Vader decides to conduct a test and freeze Han first. So what if Han dies? Vader doesn't care.

By the time that The Mandalorian takes place — between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, according to the official synopsis— those concerns are gone. In The Mandalorian, people are freezing others in carbonite en masse, and it looks like it's now standard practice among bounty hunters and other ne'er-do-wells. Hey, it worked for Boba. It can't be that bad, right?