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The History Behind The Mandalorian's Krayt Dragon Pearl

Contains spoilers for The Mandalorian season 2, episode 1

The Mandalorian is finally back, and on the first episode of season 2 (entitled "Chapter 9: The Marshal"), fans got treated to the sight of a beast that has been referenced since the earliest days of the franchise but has rarely been seen in the flesh. Krayt Dragons have an incredibly cool name, look like a giant Dune Sandworm crossed with a Megalodon shark, and contain within them some valuable loot. On the episode — which, by the way, is full of Star Wars Easter eggs – our favorite Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) teams up with some Tusken raiders on Tatooine to take down one of these mammoth reptiles.

Krayt Dragons aren't merely a giant inconvenience to the desert dwellers. As they wiggle their way through the desert sands, these monstrous creatures create stunning pearls in their gizzards that are used to help them digest food. After Mando helps defeat the Krayt Dragon, we even see a raider harvesting a pearl from its corpse. Pearls aren't the only valuable trade goods to be plucked from a Krayt Dragon, but they're extra-special in that they can be used in the production of lightsabers. Not bad for a rock that's created within the digestive system of a giant monster.

The Mandalorian isn't the first time Krayt Dragon pearls have appeared in the Star Wars universe. Though not often seen in the main movie entries, when looking back through other properties in the franchise, there are many examples of these sought-after pearls.

Where else Krayt Dragon pearls have appeared in the Star Wars franchise

Krayt Dragon pearls have either appeared or been mentioned in several Star Wars properties throughout the franchise's lifespan. For the most part, the pearls have come into play in the novels, comics, and other written additions to the canon. For instance, the short story "Skin Deep: The Fat Dancer's Tale" by AC Crispin contains a scene in which its main characters crash-land in proximity to a sleeping Krayt Dragon. After dispatching it, they mine the beast's stomach for the valuable pearls. In that story, the pearls come in multiple colors and are small enough for someone to hold a handful of them at once.

One of the most notable on-screen appearances of the Krayt Dragon pearls other than The Mandalorian season 2 premiere is in the video game Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. One of the game's quest lines takes players to Tatooine, where they must help some of the locals with a few bits of housekeeping, including dispatching a Krayt Dragon. By completing the quest, the player receives a Krayt Dragon pearl. The in-game description of the item reads, "Taken from the gullet of the Krayt Dragon, this crystalline 'pearl' appears to have refractory qualities that might allow it to function as a lightsaber crystal once properly adapted" (via IGN).

Even though Krayt Dragon pearls aren't unique to The Mandalorian, the inclusion of them is unique enough within the franchise that it's a thrill to see them in a live-action setting. Now, we just wonder what they'll be used for. A nice pair of earrings, or a lightsaber? It's hard to say, especially when there are much bigger questions to answer.