Dr. Penn Pershing, played by Omid Abtahi, made his reappearance in “Chapter 19: The Convert,” the third episode of season 3 of The Mandalorian. However, he was deceived by New Republic Officer Elia Kane, a character that is portrayed by Katy O’Brian. With a rising scandal surrounding the Empire’s cloning program, the storyline of The Mandalorian season 3 is definitely building on the Imperial comeback teased in the previous two seasons. Dr. Pershing was motivated to carry on his work because he thought it was important; however, he made the mistake of putting his faith in the wrong person..
The third episode of season 3 of The Mandalorian does not actually provide any indication as to whether Elia Kane is serving for the Imperial Remnant or whether she is an agent of Palpatine himself. It’s possible that the answer lies in the fact that her scenes are accompanied by music that evokes the Sith. Since Palpatine stands to gain the most from Dr. Pershing’s cloning work, he would be wise to have an agent erase Dr. Pershing’s memory or win back his loyalty. Because it was established in Skywalker that some senior Imperials, such as Allegiant General Pryde, were working covertly for Palpatine, it is possible that Kane is also one of Palpatine’s agents. There is also the possibility that Elia Kane is indeed working with Moff Gideon, who is said to have evaded capture by the New Republic. In this version of events, Moff Gideon is trying to hide his own studies, the results of which may or may not be related to those of the Emperor.