Of course, it’s not a stretch in the “Star Wars” universe for characters once presumed dead to suddenly reappear again. Remember when Boba Fett lived to fight another day after tumbling into a Sarlacc pit and showed up in both “The Mandalorian” and the spin-off series, “The Book of Boba Fett”? Or when Sith lord Darth Maul managed to survive being sliced and diced in “The Phantom Menace,” returning for a long-awaited rematch against Obi-Wan Kenobi in the animated “The Clone Wars” series?
But there comes a point when fake-out deaths start to strain even the low standard “Star Wars” set for the suspension of disbelief, and everything tips into much more hackneyed territory. “The Force Awakens” took that route by magically having R2-D2 wake himself up from a droid coma at the end of the film, just when it was most convenient for him to complete the missing map to Luke Skywalker. A couple movies later, J.J. Abrams returned to this well with “The Rise of Skywalker,” going even further with a double-whammy of pulled punches involving two of the most beloved characters in the entire franchise: C-3PO and Chewie.
Fast-forward to “The Mandalorian,” and it seems like we’re in for a repeat of Rey’s “Chewie must’ve been on another transport!” retcon and C-3PO’s inexplicably restored memories. Mando’s journey to find atonement on the devastated Mandalore homeworld takes a detour when he finds a statue made up of parts from his old friend IG-11, giving him the idea to try reviving the droid in the hopes that he can help him on his quest. Things … don’t go as planned when he wakes up and reverts to his old violent programming, but the setup is in place for an ill-advised return from the dead.