3

In The Mandalorian Season 2, Episode 5: "The Jedi", the Mandalorian teams up with the Jedi Ahsoka Tano to kill a local autocrat (Elsbeth), her mercenary Lang and her troops. When all troops have been defeated, the Mandalorian faces off with Lang while Tano duels Elsbeth. After a bit of tension, Lang says something like "You and me are a lot alike. We would lay down our lives for the right cause... which this is not." Then he lays down his main weapon signaling a truce, but eventually reaches for his smaller blaster to try and kill the Mandalorian.

But aren't his words wiser than his actions? What does he have to gain? Even if he could kill the Mandalorian, Tano still stands in the way between him and any loot (and he couldn't even defeat her with all of Elsbeth's troops).

Does he think he can defeat the Mandalorian? Does he think the Mandalorian is hell-bent on killing him?

What does he think about the Mandalorian: If he believes the Mandalorian will believe his offer, why not make it for real? If he believes the Mandalorian won't, what's the point?

2
  • It's unclear if Ahsoka Tano considers herself a Jedi at this stage. After being accused of bombing part of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant, despite being proved innocent (The Clone Wars), Ahsoka quit the Order and went on to help The Rebellion (Rebels)...One of her most iconic lines is, "I am no Jedi." So while she's still a light-sided force user, she has yet to announce her "creed", despite allowing Din Djarin to believe that is what she is. The episode does makes a point to NOT split those hairs... – Darth Locke Dec 3 '20 at 16:26
  • Is the title to this question as spoilery as it sounds? – Kyralessa Dec 7 '20 at 11:36
5

He wanted to avoid retribution from the population of the city and thought the Mandalorian might prevent his escape.

Lang was the lead strongman in a regime that had oppressed, tortured, and murdered many people in the city. He saw quite clearly that this regime he had been a part of was collapsing. The foot soldiers and droids had been defeated, and the leader was in a one-on-one battle with a Jedi that he did not think she would win (and even if she did, it would be two people against a whole city). He knew that soon, the city would be liberated and the people would be emboldened to seek justice against him, whether the Mandalorian alone honored the truce or not. He needed to make his getaway and he had a brief window where only the Mandalorian stood in the way of him doing so.

2
  • Good angle, but an actual truce with the Mandalorian would make retribution by the villagers less likely than killing him (whether or not the villagers would be aware of the ploy). – Jann Poppinga Dec 7 '20 at 6:11
  • 1
    An actual truce, yes. But they did not hammer out any details about his safe passage off world, did they? We see in earlier episodes that while Mandalorians always keep their word, they're not above letting technicalities take care of things. Like when the Mandalorian promised the guy he "wouldn't die by his hand" and then shot out the light so those monsters who roamed in the dark would kill him. – ruffdove Dec 7 '20 at 11:46
2

Having put my thoughts in writing, I now got something of an answer:

Lang assumed that the Mandalorian entered a truce with some people, but not with others and that he himself would be a corner case. Further either he assumed that Mando would eventually decide against him or he did not want to take his chances. So by offering a truce, he tried to pre-occupy Mando with pondering the offer to increase his chances in prevailing.

I find this just about plausible but not really satisfying, so any other answers are welcome.

6
  • I think your answer is the only current one that makes sense, but it is possible, should he not actually be dead, that Lang could have other motives that could be revealed later, as second in commands are often looking to seek power from their masters AND because *Thrawn association could make him a key player in either a later season or an Ahsoka/Thrawn spin-off, let alone the "resources" factor could tie into Sith Loyalists and the return of Darth Sidious/New Order/Sith Empire... – Darth Locke Dec 3 '20 at 16:39
  • 1
    Also this was for "style"!! To have a "gunslinger western showdown is thematic to the show's western/samurai elements. – Darth Locke Dec 3 '20 at 16:41
  • 2
    I think 'armistice' tends to refer to wars, armies and countries - a 'truce' is probably a closer word. If you disagree you can revert my change. – iandotkelly Dec 3 '20 at 17:11
  • Well, pretty much this. We don't know what his fate would be if he lived, seems he thought his future would be grim and tried to use cunning where force wasn't enough. Who knows, maybe he thought he could also surprise Ahsoka... – Mithoron Dec 3 '20 at 23:15
2

It was a calculated gamble

Lang's actions are very much calculated to provide the biggest chance of his own survival. Let's take it step by step:

  1. Lang faces Mandalorian: At the very beginning of this standout, Lang has two choices: ether start shooting or stall. He knows, that he has low chances of outright killing armed Manalorian. What he doesn't know, is the number and position of his troops and where is Ashoka (IIRC, the sounds of combat between Jedi and the Elsbeth start after the beginning of this standoff).
  2. Ashoka fights with Elsbeth: Now Lang knows where his second enemy is. She still might lose and some survivors from his squad can come back. Shooting is risky, so is running away - stalling then is still the best possibility.
  3. Ashoka wins: Now it is 2 vs 1, but the Jedi is still away. His soldiers are nowhere to be seen, so he needs to run. But, can he really trust Mandalorian to not shoot him in the back? How about any of the local population? How about the revenge of the angry Ashoka, who would see him as an accomplice to the tyrannical rule? His only option is to run away, find a nearest ship and fly off. It seems that the Razor Crest is the nearest ship and local people might think twice about shooting someone who managed to kill a mighty Mandalorian. So he takes a risk and tries shooting. He fails.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .