When The Mandalorian premiered, fans weren't honestly sure what to expect. But there was a sense a show that centered around "Mando" — one of the few remaining warriors of Mandalore — would delve somewhat into the mythos of the people, their planet, the war with the Jedi, etc. But for most of the series, Mando never talked about himself or his people, preferring to be all business. So when a massive piece of Mandalorian history turned up in the finale, it was significant. But what is the Darksaber in The Mandalorian? Warning: Spoilers for The Mandalorian and a whole lot of Star Wars nerd lore follow.
The Darksaber hasn't been in any live-action Star Wars films or TV shows until now. But that doesn't mean it's not a known item in the fandom. Both the Star Wars: The Clone Wars cartoon and Star Wars: Rebels had significant plot points hinging on it.
The Darksaber isn't just a black lightsaber made by a Jedi who was feeling particularly goth that weekend. It is ancient, and dates back thousands of years to the first Mandalorian inducted into the Jedi temple in 1019 BBY. This unique, black-bladed lightsaber was created by Tarre Vizsla, a Force-sensitive Mandalorian. Vizsla went on to rule the planet of Mandalore with the Darksaber as the symbol of his house.
When Vizsla passed on, the Jedi kept his saber on display as a sign of respect (and to prevent anyone else from wielding it). That ended when his descendants broke into the temple and liberated it during the fall of the Republic. It was used to unite the Mandolare people, who already viewed the Jedi as the enemy.
The Darksaber first turned up in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. It was held by House Vizsla and carried by Pre Vizsla, Governor of Concordia. He eventually lost it in a duel to Darth Maul. The Sith claimed the Darksaber as their own for several years, and it wasn't until Sabine Wren, a female Mandalorian, defeated Maul in combat that it came back into the rightful possession of its people. (This is why fans are theorizing the Armorer in The Mandalorian is Sabine.)
Star Wars: Rebels ended on a note of hope. Sabine passed the Darksaber to Bo-Katan Kryze, who hoped to use it to reunite her people and join the rebellion. But something went wrong. The Darksaber is now owned by Moff Gideon, an ex-Imperial who knows way too much about Mando for comfort.
He knows Mando's real name — something he could only have discovered on Mandalore. He knows about the massacre of the Mandalorian people in something called "The Night Of A Thousand Tears." And Cara Dune notes Gideon was supposed to be executed for war crimes. Could those crimes be the slaughter of the Mandalorians?
Could Mando be the next one to hold the Darksaber? The Mandalorian Season 2 just got a lot more interesting.