The good news? Episode two of The Mandalorian’s second season features an awful lot of Baby Yoda (see our The Mandalorian review). The bad? also includes some downright terrifying monsters (arachnophobes, stop reading now).
In the episode, titled The Passenger, Mando (Pedro Pascal), Baby Yoda and a frog-like passenger become stranded on a frozen planet, a world inhabited by some very gruesome ice spiders.
However, although this is the first time the creepy crawlies have appeared in the live-action Star Wars universe, the monsters have a long history in the franchise’s lore. In fact, the spiders first appeared in concept art for 1980 film The Empire Strikes Back, envisioned to be roaming Yoda’s refuge planet of Dagobah.
Interestingly, the albino arthropods didn’t feature in that film, but their design was evolved and utilised for animated series Star Wars Rebels, where they became known as the Krykna.
Not only could the white spiders be massively influenced by Star Wars Rebels, but The Mandalorian showrunner Jon Favreau could have also taken inspiration from fantasy series Game of Thrones. Ice spiders may not have featured in that show, but head writer Dan Weiss is known for wanting to incorporate the monsters into the final season’s Battle of Winterfell.
Speaking about The Mandalorian’s second season, Favreau previously told EW: “As we introduce other characters, there are opportunities to follow different storylines. The world was really captivated by Game of Thrones and how that evolved as the characters followed different storylines — that’s very appealing to me as an audience member.”
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