Following news emerging that Temuera Morrison was set to play Boba Fett in Season Two of The Mandalorian, some Star Wars fans have been left perplexed at how the character could return after what appeared to be his death in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, with a series of Legends stories having likely already revealed a simple explanation for his revival: he didn't die. Details about Fett's return in The Mandalorian might be minimal at this point and Legends stories are no longer canonical, but we won't be surprised if Season Two borrows a few plot points from famous Fett stories.
In Return of the Jedi, a number of characters fall into the Great Pit of Carkoon where they are said to be digested in the stomach of a sarlacc over the course of a thousand years. The specific anatomy of the sarlacc means we never quite learned the process under which its victims were digested, leaving audiences to assume there was no return from the pit. What we do know is that digestion wasn't a fast process, so having durable Mandalorian armor would have made Fett that much more difficult to digest, as was confirmed in a 1991 comic book series.
In Star Wars: Dark Empire from writer Tom Veitch, we jump forward many years after the end of the Galactic Empire. At one point in the series, Fett appears in front of Han Solo, much to everyone's surprise, and he merely says that the sarlacc found him "indigestible." In 1996, writer J.D. Montgomery crafted the short story "A Barve Like That: The Tale of Boba Fett" for the Star Wars: Tales from Jabba's Palace book, which explained that Fett crafted a telepathic connection with one of the sarlacc's former victims to convince the sarlacc to eat his jetpack, resulting in an explosion. Add to that some concussion grenades and Boba was able to break free from the sarlacc's clutches.
The fluid nature of Star Wars canon over the years has allowed Boba Fett to appear in a number of Legends novels and comic books, all of which were rendered irrelevant upon Disney's purchase of Lucasfilm. For some fans, this was welcome news, given the messy and contradictory nature of those narratives, while others were disappointed that beloved stories were being ignored by the official canon. However, the power of some of those stories transcends what it might mean to be "canon."
One of the most famous Legends villains is Grand Admiral Thrawn, made popular in a series of novels. With the animated series Star Wars Rebels, Dave Filoni incorporated Thrawn with an attitude and backstory similar to that of his Legends history. The series also revived the formidable Legends foe Rukh, while Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker depicted Emperor Palpatine's survival through the use of clones, another storyline seen in the Legends stories. With Filoni having been involved in the development of The Mandalorian, he might once again find ways to utilize Legends lore.
Interestingly, another Filoni series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, saw the return of Darth Maul after his apparent death in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, a demise which also featured a tremendous fall, while the Emperor also suffered a horrifying plunge in Return of the Jedi. Between Maul, Palpatine, and Fett's returns, it's become evident that you can't believe a character has died merely because they suffered a massive tumble.
While we might have months to go before learning the canonical details of Boba Fett's survival, we can only assume that the series will take the simplest approach possible and merely confirm he just didn't die all those years ago. With less than a decade having passed between Return of the Jedi and The Mandalorian, there's no telling what the bounty hunter had gotten up to in all those years. What's worth noting, however, is that neither Boba Fett nor Din Djarin were born into the Mandalorian culture, which could end up motivating either an alliance or friction between the bounty hunters.
The Mandalorian Season Two is set to premiere in October.
Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.