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[This story contains spoilers for episode three of The Book of Boba Fett.]
An iconic actor showed up in the latest episode of The Book of Boba Fett — and his fans were equal parts shocked and thrilled to see him become a part of the Star Wars universe.
Danny Trejo — yes, Machete himself — made a brief appearance in the latest chapter of the Disney+ series as a rancor handler who accompanies a bull rancor given to Boba Fett by the Hutt twins as an apology for trying to have him assassinated by the infamous Wookiee bounty hunter Black Krrsantan.
The episode is directed by longtime Trejo collaborator Robert Rodriguez. Trejo was among the top Twitter trends Wednesday morning as fans shared reactions.
As for the gift, it is clearly a Trojan horse. However, through the ruse, a funny moment in Return of the Jedi is better explained. Trejo’s character tells Fett that rancors are actually docile unless threatened, and that the creatures are mainly bred to fight, which is why most assume they are nothing more than deadly monsters.
Trejo’s character also explains that a rancor “imprints” on the first person it sees and “forms strong bonds” with them. Of course, Fett thinks he is the first person the bull rancor sees and seems to assume he will be its beloved owner. But there is a quick tease toward the end of the scene hinting that Trejo’s character and the rancor are working together.
All that leads back to a moment in Return of the Jedi, taking place after Luke Skywalker successfully kills Jabba’s rancor. Afterward, the rancor’s keeper comes into the dungeon and is inconsolable over the creature’s demise. It was a throwaway gag that anyone could mourn such a hideous monster. However, even with Trejo’s character up to something, it stands to reason that what he said about rancors is true, which explains why the keeper in Jedi was so upset. Yes, Jabba was its owner, but the keeper was likely the first person it laid its beady eyes on.
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