Star Wars fans have long dreamed of Bruce Lee becoming part of a galaxy far, far away. Just put in the fighter’s name along with Star Wars and Google will give you an overwhelming list of fan videos showing Lee handing out some serious dope action with a lightsaber. But apparently this isn’t as distant a dream as the latest installment of The Mandalorian goes for a subtle Bruce Lee Easter egg that is also on a very special day.
[Spoilers ahead for The Mandalorian Season 2 Episode 5, “The Jedi”]
This week’s episode of The Mandalorian titled “The Jedi” is undoubtedly an absolute treat. Not only does it introduce Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano through a kickass introductory scene, but it also sets the stage for future live-action debuts of more war of stars animated characters. We learn the child’s real name (although fans will likely continue to call him Baby Yoda), his or her story, real age, and more when the former Jedi interacts with him telepathically.
But it also introduces a new character – Morgan Elsbeth, the ruthless magistrate of the city of Calodan on the planet Corvus, who is linked not only to Ahsoka’s past, but also to the legendary Bruce Lee.
Who is Morgan Elsbeth?
The episode deviates from the usual opening style of the Mandalorian, ie with Mando and The Child to introduce Ahsoka Tano, who, as Bo-Katan announced, is on the forest planet Corvus. She’s chasing someone and Morgan Elsbeth, protected by her Legion of Boy Scout Guards and the tall walls of the city of Calodan, is the one with the answers. Morgan works for the Empire, plundering vast planets under which she deprives them of their natural resources in order to rebuild the Imperial Starfleet.
Given the Corvus State, it is evident that it has faced a similar fate and its citizens are now forced to live in slum-like conditions under Morgan’s cruel dictatorship. Seeing Ahsoka’s ability to dispatch dozens of her armed scouts with ease, Morgan tries to get Mando as a hired assassin to end Ahsoka, but he makes a deal with her and free the city.
Ahsoka manages to corner Morgan and asks her a million dollar question (ahem, Beskar?) – which sets the stage for better-known Jedi faces and another Star Wars villain. While it is not known whether or not Morgan will spit out vital information or what her final fate will be after Ahsoka is through with her, anyone who has had trouble recognizing the actress who plays the magistrate has their doubts about the stellar lightsaber against Beskar confirmed – duel between the two warriors – It’s Diana Lee Inosanto.
But who is Diana Lee Inosanto?
Diana Lee Inosanto is the daughter of the well-known martial arts teacher Dan Inosanto and Sue Ann Reveal and is also known as the godchild of Bruce Lee. Her father is best known as Lee’s training partner, whom he also taught the art of wielding nunchaku, a traditional Okinawan martial arts weapon. Until his last film Game of Death, he was seen in many films with Lee in small roles. Dan was a constant companion of Lee in the 1960s, accompanying him on television shows and film sets.
Diana continues her family’s legacy as a world-class stunt woman and martial artist, in addition to being an actress, writer, and director. She also took to Instagram to excitedly rave about her cameo as Morgan Elsbeth.
“What a galaxy of change! I love the way the planets and the stars have aligned, and I’ve been given the opportunity to express myself as an actor … as an artist. I’m just so excited about this momentous episode. ( I am extremely grateful and deeply humble at the moment. (It’s overwhelming! I am so honored to have worked with this amazing cast and crew.) As a lifelong #StarWars ‘fan-girl’, I got myself an ocean of joy (maybe even the size of the planet Kamino) and of having fulfilled my childhood dream! I feel the true essence of gratitude. Mabuhay! May the force be with you! ”
While Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka is undoubtedly an absolute treat, Diana as Morgan Elsbeth proves to be a worthy opponent and a villain who manages to beat fear with a single terrifying look. And since her fate isn’t revealed at the end of the episode, we may not have seen the last of her on The Mandalorian.
Surprisingly, the air date of “The Jedi”, ie November 27th, also coincides with the 80th birthday of the late actor. Coincidence? Probably not, which makes the episode even more special. You can check out the latest episode of The Mandalorian which is now streamed on Disney +.
Topics: The Mandalorian, Star Wars, Disney Plus, Streaming