Why Is Boba Sick on ‘The Book of Boba Fett’?


[WARNING: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for The Book of Boba Fett, Episodes 1-2.]

Thank goodness Jabba the Hutt had a bacta tank lying around in his palace, because Boba (Temuera Morrison) needs it.

The fearsome bounty hunter-turned-crime lord seems to be having a tough time, health-wise. A brief scuffle with some assassins—which probably wouldn’t have even left him winded, once upon a time—now requires him to be carried back to the palace by his loyal guards, and he appears to be undergoing daily healing sessions in the tank. But why? What happened between the flashbacks and the present storyline to whittle away at Boba’s health?

Here we break down two theories as to why Boba is ailing, and what it might mean for his future.

temuera morrison the book of boba fett


Theory No. 1: It’s All the Sarlaac’s Fault

Being digested by a Sarlaac is unpleasant, but surviving it might be worse. On top of losing his armor to the Jawas and getting all those scars from the Sarlaac’s acid, it’s possible the whole ordeal left Boba with additional issues that require bacta to treat.

Usually, when someone is swallowed by a Sarlaac, the beast injects the victim with a painful neurotoxin to immobilize it. Then, over thousands of years, the prey is digested alive. Boba skipped that last part, but he may have some of the neurotoxin in his system, and it may be causing complications. (We’re guessing he doesn’t have a telepathic link to the Sarlaac like he did in an Extended Universe tale, but who knows? He is having bad dreams…)

Boba seemed fine in The Mandalorian, but he might’ve only started to feel the effects of his Sarlaac escape after that. Or—he very well might’ve been unwell during that time, too, but since those fights weren’t as intense as the one in “Stranger in a Strange Land,” he wasn’t hurt as badly by them. At any rate, if his troubles are caused largely by the Sarlaac, maybe he just needs a good, long healing session to fix them? Either that, or he may continue to require bacta treatments at certain intervals.

the book of boba fett, temuera morrison and ming-na wen as boba and fennec

Theory No. 2: It’s Tied to His DNA

Boba is a clone, and clone DNA in Star Wars can be an unpredictable thing. The clones that fought in the Clone Wars had limited lifespans. They were engineered to age rapidly through childhood, ushering them quickly to maturity where they could serve the Republic on the battlefield. Even if they were lucky enough to make it through the war, their lives were shortened: Clones were typically engineered in such a way that they lived only half a “regular” Star Wars lifespan (50ish years as opposed to the usual 100 or so) before they died.

Now, Boba is an unaltered clone of Jango, so he isn’t suffering any of the side effects of accelerated aging—because he was unaltered, he aged normally. But it’s still possible that something from the Sarlaac messed with his DNA, and that’s why Boba is spending so much time in the bacta tank.

If Boba’s health troubles are tied to his DNA and are not general Sarlaac side effects, the show might use it as a way to introduce The Bad Batch’s Omega in live-action. She’s Boba’s “sister,” in a way: She’s also an unaltered clone of Jango, but she’s female. She’s the only other source of “original” clone DNA in the galaxy besides Boba, so it’s possible she either would have the knowledge to help him or could use her DNA to save him somehow. It’s not clear whether Boba knows about his “sibling,” but Fennec (Ming-Na Wen) does, as she helped Omega escape the bounty hunters that were after her. If it’s revealed that Boba’s health issues are tied to clone DNA, they might track Omega down.

The Book of Boba Fett, Wednesdays, Disney+