There may have been clues regarding a secret Darksaber vulnerability during the Clone Wars, which Mandalorian season 3 might elaborate on and clarify.
The renowned lightsaber at the core of The Mandalorian, the Darksaber, may have a secret vulnerability known only to Palpatine and Darth Maul. The Darksaber, first shown in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, was fashioned long ago by Mandalorian-Jedi Tarre Vizsla. It became the ancestral sword of leadership for the Mandalorians, going from one leader to the next. It has now reached Din Djarin, who had no idea what it meant when he unintentionally obtained the Darksaber.
According to legend, the legitimate owner of the Darksaber acquires it via fight. The Darksaber was first held by the Death Watch’s leader Pre Vizsla in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. His partnership with Darth Maul and his Shadow Collective resulted in a Darksaber combat between Vizsla and Maul, which the former Sith Apprentice won. Maul asserted power over Mandalore by virtue of his possession of the Darksaber. However, Maul’s personal experience with the Darksaber suggests the weapon may be more restricted than many imagine.
Palpatine and Darth Maul both chose not to use the Darksaber.
Interestingly, Darth Maul utilised the Darksaber just a few times. He used it to slay Duchess Satine Kryze after killing Vizsla. He then used his original lightsaber to fight Palpatine, finally drawing the Darksaber as a last choice when Palpatine murdered his brother Savage. Although Maul eventually recovered the Darksaber after escaping from Palpatine’s captivity in the canon Son of Dathomir comic, when he returned to Mandalore, he utilised a modified version of his traditional lightsaber rather than the Darksaber. This was the blade Maul used against Ahsoka in Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
Weirder, in Star Wars Rebels, Maul forged a brand-new lightsaber from an Inquisitor’s blade, retaining the Darksaber as little more than a memento before Sabine Wren snatched it from his house on Dathomir. As a result, Maul only ever wielded the blade for show or in times of tremendous need and despair. Weirder, after defeating Maul, Palpatine elected to abandon the Darksaber on Mandalore, where it was retrieved by Maul’s supporters. This is strange, because Palpatine, who is always seeking power, could be expected to seize the unique sword for himself. Given that the Darksaber is the only black lightsaber in Star Wars, the Emperor would have realised it made him the absolute ruler of another universe.
What Did Palpatine and Maul Understand About The Darksaber?
It’s been hypothesised that the Darksaber may be useful to the Sith as a dark side weapon, especially if it bears an obsidian crystal with qualities similar to the Sith Lords’ more typical red kyber. But, Maul and Palpatine’s undeniably odd conduct around the Darksaber suggests they both knew something spectators don’t. For some reason, they both thought the Darksaber was a weapon they’d prefer not to use as if they were aware of a flaw. Because the Darksaber needs its bearer to commit to and accept its power in order to be used successfully, it’s possible that a Sith Lord cannot achieve that degree of subjugation.
It’s also plausible that because the Darksaber was invented by a Mandalorian Jedi, Maul and Palpatine disliked it. In this era of the Star Wars chronology, Maul undoubtedly seemed to cherish it more as a way of gaining control of Mandalore than as a weapon. Nonetheless, when The Mandalorian season 3 premieres on March 1st, fans will hopefully better understand the Darksaber.