Episode 7 of The Mandalorian Season 3 has introduced a host of new developments and they all seem to hinge on Project Necromancer, the next big twist in the Star Wars universe. The episode didn’t reveal too many details about what Moff Gideon and the rest of the Empire’s remnants have got in mind, but with mention of Grand Admiral Thrawn it’s all starting to get interesting again.
The discussion about Project Necromancer takes place early on in the episode just after Gideon gets an update from Eleia Kane about the threat of the Mandalorians. Gideon then joins a meeting with the remaining shadow council of the old Empire and challenges them about the promised return of Thrawn.
What they say about Project Necromancer seems to imply that it’s central to their plan for eventual resurgence. As it stands, it seems like they’re trying to hide from the attention of the New Republic while they build things back to strength and complete the project.
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What is Project Necromancer?
The reality is that as things stand we don’t know what Project Necromancer is, but we’re starting to get a good idea about what it could all mean for the future of Star Wars. We know that The Mandalorian Season 3 takes place a little over 5 years after the collapse of the Empire, so it’s possible that it’s related to the covert efforts to protect the Emperor.
A necromancer is someone that can communicate with or resurrect the dead and as we found out in the sequel trilogy, the Emperor was re-animated after he was thrown to his doom by Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars Episode VI The Return of the Jedi. If that isn’t enough, we also know that the remnants of the Empire also rebuilt itself to contest the New Republic.
It went on to become the First Order, led by Supreme Leader Snoke, so it’s also possible that Project Necromancer is the initial plan put in place to forge that future. It was stated that Commandant Hux was leading on the project and while he didn’t look anything like Domhnall Gleeson from the sequel trilogy it’s possible that there might be some link.
The Commandant’s first name is Brendol, so it’s not a recast situation as far as we can tell, but he does go on to say that Necromancer is a place for new leadership, so it could fit the bill for either eventuality. It seems likely then that it is a reference to one of these and we might get to see more of it in the rest of The Mandalorian Season 3.
We also know that Grand Admiral Thrawn has already been teased in the Ahsoka trailer (image above), so we might see a little more about Project Necromancer from then onward. However, there are a few more details from the discussion Moff Gideon has with the shadow council that could hint at what’s to come from the project and the rest of the Star Wars TV shows.
What does Project Necromancer mean for the Star Wars universe?
There are two key factors mentioned during the discussion in The Mandalorian Season 3 Episode 7 with the first being cloning and the second being a reference to Dr Pershing’s work. If you combine these and look at what Gideon says at the end of Episode 3 about combining elements from the Cloners, Jedi and Mandalorians to bring order to the Galaxy, you’ve got a glimpse of his ultimate plan.
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We know he’s got Kane working on the New Republic and Dr Pershing, he’s got a fellow council member as an expert on cloning and he’s already taken Beskar and integrated it into his tech. If he can clone Force-sensitive individuals like Grogu and turn them into an army with Beskar armor then his plans to control the Galaxy will get a fast track to success.
We should find out a little more about Project Necromancer and it’s impact on the wider Star Wars universe in the 8th and final episode of The Mandalorian Season 3. However, it might still just be a fleeting mention building to future shows like Ahsoka and beyond.
This could give us the foundations of a bridge between the original and sequel trilogies for the Disney+ TV shows. What’s clear is that the project isn’t just the brainchild of Moff Gideon, so even if Din and Bo can deal with him by the end of the season there are others that will continue the work.
Who is Grand Admiral Thrawn and what’s his link to the project?
Grand Admiral Thrawn was a high ranking officer in the Imperial army with direct links to both Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine. However, he disappeared to parts unknown when he was defeated by Ezra Bridger in Star Wars Rebels with a little help from a pod of purrgil.
You actually see the Star Wars space whales in the episode of The Mandalorian when they’re flying in hyperspace with Grogu looking out in wonder at them. It adds to the ongoing links between the live action and animated TV series on Disney+, which look set to continue with the next few shows.
Thrawn has also been teased as the next Star Wars big bad to be fully revealed in Ahsoka, so he’s clearly going to be important to the future of the TV shows on Disney+. A part of this should be the full deployment of Project Necromancer unless Moff Gideon beats him to it in the last episode of The Mandalorian.
It definitely looks like he’s back from his whaling adventure, so he’s clearly going to have his blue-skinned Chiss thumbs in a number of pies. If it’s to do with the Emperor then he would be a strong candidate to lead things having worked directly with Palpatine before.
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It’s also possible that this will include kick-starting the First Order, so it could be a very big story-line for Ahsoka to deliver on. We know that there are no cloned Force-sensitive troops during the time of the sequel trilogy, so this has got to run its course somewhere, either in The Mandalorian or one of the other shows.
Project Necromancer is clearly linked to bringing something back from the dead, so this has got to be either the remnants of the Empire or the Emperor himself. Thrawn looks set to be a part of this, so it’s going to be a lot of fun seeing it all play out in the last episode of The Mandalorian Season 3 and the next Star Wars TV show.
Check out our TV news section to see other big releases, or visit the Disney+ website to see more on the show at https://www.disneyplus.com/. You can also read more about Grand Admiral Thrawn’s history for more hints on how it might link to the Star Wars Project Necromancer over on Wikipedia or with the Star Wars Databank at www.starwars.com/databank/grand-admiral-thrawn.