Star Wars: Why Moff Gideon Could Wield the Darksaber When Mando Couldn’t

In The Book of Boba Fett, the Darksaber was too heavy for Mando, but that wasn't the case for Moff Gideon. Here's why.

With the tail end of The Book of Boba Fett looking like more and more like The Mandalorian Season 2.5, it’s becoming clearer that all of the shows in this timeline will continue to overlap. Fans don’t seem to have an issue with that, though, because nearly everyone has loved the last two Mando/Jedi-centric episodes. Chapter 5 focused on Din Djarin and how he returned to bounty hunting after The Mandalorian Season 2 finale. And, to everyone’s delight, he still had the Darksaber.

Wielding the ancient weapon, though, proved to be a challenge for Mando. In the opening scene, he performed a brutal kill to successfully collect a bounty, but he wounded himself in the process. Then, when he trained with the Armorer, he explained why he was having so much trouble with the blade. It was simply too heavy. That, however, posed a very good question. If Din Djarin had so much trouble with the Darksaber, why was Moff Gideon able to wield it without any problems? Turns out, the answer might have to do with the Darksaber itself.

According to legend, Tarre Vizsla created the Darksaber during his time as a Jedi – the only Mandalorian to ever be a member of the Order. After that, the weapon was kept in the Jedi Temple, until the Mandalorians reclaimed it for their people. Over time the weapon became a symbol of power, and only the ruler of Mandalore could wield it. Moreover, as befit their warlike society, anyone could challenge a current ruler for possession of the Darksaber and the right to the throne.

Because Kyber crystals are living organisms, all lightsabers have a sense of life. However, the Darksaber has a level of sentience above and beyond what any other lightsaber has displayed. Accordingly, anyone that wields the Darksaber has to put special attention into aligning their will with that of the saber. Any emotional baggage will hinder their ability to do so, making the saber feel much heavier than it should. That’s what happened to Sabine Wren in Star Wars Rebels.

However, emotional baggage isn’t the only thing that could make the ancient weapon unwieldy. Because of the Darksaber’s sentience, the weapon has proven to be very aware of its wielders, and if it doesn’t approve of a wielder, it will fight against them. That’s what has happened to Mando in The Book of Boba Fett. Although, Djarin acquired the saber according to Creed, he immediately tried to give it away, thus, declining the responsibility of ruling Mandalore. Because the Darksaber’s sentience intertwined its fate with the rulers of Mandalore, Mando’s rejection of that role meant that their wills could never align. That’s why he has so much trouble wielding the weapon: it doesn’t want to be wielded by a selfish bounty hunter, who doesn’t care about Mandalore.

Moff Gideon, on the other hand, had an entirely different perspective of the Darksaber. Although we don’t know how he acquired it, it must have been according to Creed because the saber never objected. On top of that, when Gideon was in possession of the weapon, he did accept the responsibility of ruling Mandalore. Sure, he was a as a self-righteous, ambitious bit of bantha poodoo, but he still wanted to see Mandalore thrive under his leadership. Thus, the Darksaber accepted him like it would any other Mandalorian leader. That makes perfect sense because being Mandalorain isn’t about race. It was about possessing a warlike, domineering ideal, and Moff Gideon definitely displayed that attitude during his time as rule of Mandalore, making him a perfect wilder of the Darksaber.

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