The franchise is uniquely positioned in the world of branded merchandise simply because of the sheer volume of Star Wars toys in circulation at any given moment. When new Star Wars merch drops, people pay attention, and in this instance, the public’s attention’s being drawn to a commercial in which a young boy is having the time of his life taking care of a baby, which isn’t something you see in toy advertisements all that often.

Stories about gruff men becoming father figures to young people they don’t understand are very much a part of our pop cultural canon (see: Logan, Stranger Things, The Witcher, etc.), but it’s rare to see the paternal, caring aspects of those characters elevated outside the context of the stories they appear in. To be fair, The Mandalorian itself does explicitly focus on how Mando comes to care for the Child the way that a parent would. But considering how the vast majority of toys focused on nurturing are primarily aimed at young girls, the animatronic Baby Yoda still stands out if only because it’s saying “I literally do not know what gender roles are, please pick me up.”


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