2019's biggest pop culture phenomenon was undoubtedly "Baby Yoda," the adorable alien toddler in The Mandalorian. We've been calling him "Baby Yoda" because he's a child member of the same species as Yoda, but that name isn't quite accurate. Does he have a real name? According to the show's creative team, the answer to that question is yes, but it could be a while before we learn it.
While walking the red carpet at the Golden Globes, star and director Taika Waititi reminded New York Times reporter Kyle Buchanan that "Baby Yoda" is, technically, an incorrect moniker for the character. "He's not named Baby Yoda! . . . but I'll wait for [series creator Jon] Favreau to give [his real name] away."
Favreau, for his part, talked to USA Today about the viral nickname for the character, who is officially referred to in the credits of the series as "the Child." "There's no name for the Yoda species, [so] it's the easiest, shortest, most hashtag-able way to identify that character." The species that includes both the real Yoda and "Baby Yoda" is famously mysterious in the Star Wars world, with almost nothing known about them other than their typical appearance and their penchant for Force sensitivity.
Of course, "Baby Yoda" isn't a correct name for the character, since he's not literally an infant version of Yoda. Remember, The Mandalorian takes place in the post-Empire New Republic era after Return of the Jedi but before The Force Awakens. At this point in the Star Wars timeline, the real Yoda has died and become one with the Force, so "Baby Yoda" is quite obviously not his infant self. Are they related at all, or are they just members of the same species? Favreau won't say.
"Well, now you're getting into spoilers. I can't say. But there are a lot of theories about that," he told USA Today. Perhaps the truth of Baby Yoda's origins, including his name and his place in the wider story, will be revealed in season two of The Mandalorian, which is scheduled to debut on Disney+ sometime in Fall 2020.