The tail end of 2019 was pretty gigantic for Star Wars fans, what with the long-awaited (if not resoundingly appreciated) release of The Rise of Skywalker, the acclaimed video game Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, and the initial eight-episode run of the franchise's first live-action TV show, Disney+'s The Mandalorian. Arguably the biggest takeaway was somehow the instantly huggable creature affectionately dubbed Baby Yoda, and even The Mandalorian's villainous actor Giancarlo Esposito can't deny the power of Baby Yoda's charms.
As a standout cast member from AMC's stellar dramas Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, Giancarlo Esposito was a major acting commodity when he joined the Star Wars franchise. Though it took some time for him to appear, his character Moff Gideon made quite an introduction, taking out The Client in an effort to put down Mando and take possession of The Child, which is the fan-favorite puppet's official name on The Mandalorian.
It’s very exciting to have a Baby Yoda. In the original Star Wars series, we fell in love with Yoda. And to have a Baby Yoda, who was born with such brilliant intelligence to really give us the idea that you could have someone very, very young, and so very cute and so very smart and significant to the story, is a fantastic thing.
To be very clear, Giancarlo Esposito's Moff Gideon definitely would not share these opinions in the slightest, although I'd love to see the character talking about falling in love with something very young and very cute. It would certainly add some interesting shading to the hard-nosed character that viewers were introduced to in the final two Season 1 episodes of The Mandalorian. SPOILERS BELOW for the season finale.
The Mandalorian's first season ended by reversing the presumed defeat of Moff Gideon, who broke free from his crashed vehicle by using a darksaber, which has some extremely intriguing ramifications. Unfortunately, the episode didn't connect many of the dots between the character and Baby Yoda, so viewers are still in the dark over what it all means for the big picture. (I mean, we're all begrudgingly aware now that Stormtroopers are truly monsters, thanks to Jason Sudekis.)
However, it would be really easy to read too far into his Baby Yoda comments to The Wrap. Particularly in the way he talks about The Child being "very, very young." It's already been set up that Baby Yoda is actually a 50-year-old member of its species, so we know that these creatures age far more slowly than most humanoid beings. (Which we technically already knew from Yoda in the first place, but whatever.)
Having Giancarlo Esposito comment on the very, very young age of the character makes me wonder why its youth is so important at this stage in the show's narrative. Is it entirely due to the burgeoning Force powers, or is it mostly because a younger Baby Yoda wouldn't be able to easily communicate with others?
It's perhaps even more interesting that Esposito commented on Baby Yoda being born with "such brilliant intelligence," considering Mandalorian viewers haven't seen very many instances where such brilliance stood out. Aside from working out how to use Force powers, Baby Yoda has been largely an observer under Mando's care, though it's been pretty obvious when the character is going through emotional shifts. However, when The Child proves itself to be a rascal by messing with Mando's ship, it doesn't exactly make me think it's a little wrinkled genius. Though by all means, Season 2 might introduce some game-changing element that has Baby Yoda quoting Proust and speaking only in iambic pentameter.
The moral of the story, though, is that no one who watched The Mandalorian should have any issues with falling in love with Baby Yoda. If the man who played Gus Fring can be won over, the rest of us don't have a shot in Nevarro.