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The Anakin Easter Egg You Missed In The Mandalorian Season 2 Premiere

It's been almost ten whole months since the last time we caught up with Mando, the Child, and the Carl Weathers character who lives in space but somehow isn't the one named Apollo Creed. On October 30, 2020, nerds across the world breathed a sigh of relief as The Mandalorian returned for its second season. Expectations were high. Some viewers wanted to see callbacks to olds Star Wars movies. Some hoped to see Timothy Olyphant. Few dared to dream that they'd get both at the same time, but lo, Jon Favreau provides.

From the Deadwood actor's first second on screen, it was clear that his character, Cobb Vanth, would be swinging for the nostalgia fences. The obvious moment up front: He was wearing some familiar Mandalorian armor, the kind you don't often see outside of a sarlacc's transverse colon. There was also his affinity for blue drinks, either a callback to the bantha milk from A New Hope or just more evidence that you can't find good bourbon outside of Kentucky, let alone in the depths of space.

Cobb and Mando set off on a first-act call to adventure together, with Cobb offering his ill-gotten armor in exchange for our hero's help killing a krayt dragon. Most of the settlement Cobb calls home is upcycled scrap, not unlike the repurposed Mandalorian cosplay that he rocks. And if wearing Boba Fett's armor made him seem like a junkyard fanboy, his ride cements him as the closest thing Tatooine has to a Storage Wars contestant. As Mando hovers forth on Peli's speeder bike, Cobb keeps pace on the last prequel callback fans expected to see outside of the Gungan bubble city.

Now that was pod racing

See that? That right there? Gosh, that strung-together means of conveyance sure looks familiar. If you need a hint, ask anyone who had LEGO kits on their birthday wishlist circa 1999.

Cobb's rig is made up of around a third of Anakin Skywalker's old podracer, the one he flew to freedom back in Episode I when benevolent space wizards showed up and told a nine-year-old to race for his slavery pinks.

It makes sense that Anakin's handiwork would have survived, at least in part, for this long. Remember, this isn't the first thing he built with a decades-long shelf life. C-3P0 has been kicking it around a galaxy far, far away for nine movies now.

Now, is it a weird flex, calling back to the Star Wars film that few people admit to liking? Maybe. But one of the aspects of The Mandalorian that fans have come to love is its willingness to embrace all of the movies' contributions, weaving them into a larger world. During season 1, we see that Mando's family was killed in an attack by prequel-era battle droids in a scene that made them scary, arguably for the first time in the franchise. Peli Motto, played by Amy Sedaris, works with a small contingent of pit droids. We even got to hear Bill Burr say the word "gungan" out loud back in season 1, which basically no one had on their 2019 bingo card. Is the constant bevy of references to episodes I, II, and III working for the show?

To quote Anakin? "It's working. It's working."