The Mandalorian Season 3: Moff Gideon’s Twist Ending Explained

By Jennifer McDonough Updated:
The Mandalorian, Baby Yoda, Imperial Shuttle, Moff Gideon

The latest episode of Disney+'s The Mandalorian featured a major twist in the ongoing story of Giancarlo Esposito's Moff Gideon.

The man known as Gideon, an ex-Imperial moff who commanded a squadron to capture the Force-sensitive foundling Grogu, was apprehended at the end of The Mandalorian Season 2.

From there, it was explained that the former agent of the Imperial Security Bureau was remanded to the New Republic so he could stand trial for his innumerable crimes.

Gideon has not been seen in the MandoVerse since Mandalorian’s second season finale. Thus far, he’s only been mentioned in The Book of Boba Fett and The Mandalorian Season 3, but it seems he might be about to again make his presence known.

Moff Gideon Gets Taken by Mandalorians

Warning - The rest of this article contains spoilers for "Chapter 21" of The Mandalorian.

Moff Gideon in The Mandalorian

In the closing moments of The Mandalorian "Chapter 21" (“The Pirate”), New Republic Starfighter Corps Member Carson Teva is seen patrolling space in his X-Wing when he comes across a derelict Lambda-class shuttle.

After his lieutenant informs him of a recent classified shuttle attack, Teva has his astromech unit launch a probe so he can further investigate the vessel.

A damaged Lambda-class shuttle in The Mandalorian

Teva and his wingman confirm that they are looking at a New Republic prison transport, the very shuttle that was carrying Moff Gideon.

Carson Teva in The Mandalorian

Using all available information at hand, Carson Teva deduces that Moff Gideon never made it to trial, confirming his long-held suspicion. 

What’s more, since Gideon’s body isn’t present inside the ship, Teva determines that Gideon was extracted. 

Previously, Giancarlo Esposito teased that the moff was "behind bars" prior to the season's start. Whether fans will get to see his escape play out on screen remains to be seen.

Beskar alloy embedded in shuttle debris in The Mandalorian

To make matters worse, Gideon's jailbreak comes with a twist: the probe detects a fragment of beskar alloy embedded in the hull, raising the concern that Moff Gideon could have been taken by Mandalorians.

With The Armorer now seeing a way to unite the Mandalorians through Bo-Katan's sighting of a Mythosaur, will Gideon's forming up with another sect of bounty hunters thwart these plans altogether?

Who Actually Saved Moff Gideon?

The Mandalorian, Moff Gideon
Star Wars

It’s confirmed: Moff Gideon was able to escape New Republic custody and was likely saved from his fate by Mandalorians. For what purpose remains to be seen.

But what is the former Imperial officer up to? Rumors indicated that this season of The Mandalorian will feature the character wearing Mando armor of his own. Is it possible that Gideon was inducted into a separate Mandalorian convert?

The Mandalorians live by a creed and respect honor. Gideon has no honor and committed multitudes of wrongdoings in his career with the Empire. But perhaps he’s allied himself with Mandalorians who share similar sentiments and values to his own.

This would not be entirely out of the question for the Mandalorian people. During the Galactic Civil War, Gar Saxon and his followers joined up with the Empire and attacked those who opposed the Emperor’s will. Gar Saxon and his troops even allied themselves with Darth Maul during The Clone Wars, who certainly doesn't have the most sound of characters.

Perhaps Gideon was able to earn the favor of certain Mandalorians during his brief time with the Darksaber. Knowing it was a weapon of great importance to the creed, he may have used this to his advantage to get a few Mando friends on his side, only for them to later have his back upon his capture. 

With a new team of Mandalorians under his purview, Esposito's character may have what he needs to take down the Children of the Watch, take back the Darksaber, and add a new group of warriors to his army.

Gideon's Thrawn-Term Plan

Bo-Katan, Thrawn, Din Djarin, Grogu
Star Wars

With Thrawn rumored to be on the horizon, it's likely that Gideon's plans all but lead back to the Grand Admiral.

With Gideon's Imperial ties, he may be attempting to prop up the remnants of the Empire in preparation for Thrawn's return.

And what about Elia Kane? She’s obviously up to something. Fans will know she served directly under Gideon on the Moff’s battleship and has been slyly pulling the strings for her nefarious purposes in her two Season 3 appearances.

It’s largely assumed by viewers that Kane is operating on the behalf of Gideon, since she still seems to be loyal to him. Her role in the story has yet to be fully revealed, but it seems likely that she’s still in cahoots with her old boss. 

Perhaps Kane could be planting the seeds of the Empire from within the New Republic itself, allowing for Gideon and Thrawn to have control of the organization from the inside.

Whatever the case may be, Gideon’s actor, Giancarlo Esposito, is confirmed to appear this season, so with only three episodes remaining, he’ll be showing his face sooner rather than later.

The Mandalorian releases new episodes every Wednesday on Disney+.

- About The Author: Jennifer McDonough
Jennifer McDonough has been a writer at The Direct since its 2020 launch. She is responsible for the creation of news articles and features. She also has a particular affinity for action figures and merchandise, which she revels in discussing in the articles she writes, when the situation calls for it.