Penn Pershing is a scientist who worked for the Empire and specialized in cloning and genetic sciences. The character is played by Omid Abtahi.
The first time Dr. Pershing appears on The Mandalorian, he is working for “the Client” who hired Din Djarin to acquire Grogu and bring the younglings to him.
While his intentions were purely scientific and benevolent, the fact that he worked for the Empire meant that his research was used for all the wrong reasons. When Din Djarin decided to go back for Grogu, he decided to spare Dr. Pershing’s life.
Serving under Moff Gideon
Pershing conducted experiments using samples of blood he collected from Grogu under Moff Gideon at a research facility on Nevarro. His experiments did not yield successful results, however, and he soon ran out of blood samples.
He informs Gideon that he would require more of Grogu’s blood and after Gideon captures Grogu, Pershing is transported on a shuttle which is attacked by Boba Fett, Din Djarin, and his allies.
Pershing lets Djarin know that Grogu is alive on Gideon’s light cruiser and tells them how to get on the ship, and ends up being spared once again, even though his ear is grazed by a blaster shot after Cara Dune shoots the officer holding Pershing hostage.
A new lease on life
Dr. Pershing finds himself on Coruscant as part of the Amnesty Program that gives members of the former Empire a chance at living a normal life and contributing to the development of the New Republic.
Even though he is praised for his research in cloning technology, he isn’t allowed to continue working on it according to law and Pershing accepts that. He has no interest in getting into trouble with the new government and would prefer to live a mundane life.
Things begin to change when he meets Elia Kane, a former communications officer on Gideon’s ship. She convinces him that his research could help the New Republic and he must bend the rules a little to prove it to them.
She builds a rapport with him and he talks about how he knew he wanted to be a scientist ever since he was a child and his mother was a doctor in the local town.
However, it all turns out to be a ruse as they get caught trying to smuggle some items required for a mobile lab from the Imperial disposal yards. Elia reveals to have sold him out to the New Republic for reasons unknown.
As his punishment, he is hooked on to a mind flayer device and while the officers insist that he isn’t getting his mind wiped and will only feel some mild vibrations, Elia turns up the intensity when no one is around which fries his brain.
Also Read: Anna’s death in The Last of Us explained