Summary: Gideon gives Mando, Cara and Greef until nightfall to lay down their weapons. IG-11 saves Baby Yoda and attacks the town. Mando's group emerges and tries to fight out but everyone ends up trapped in the building again. They escape into the sewers with IG-11's help as flame troopers burn down the building. Mando finds that the group of Mandalorians have all been killed, save the armourer. The armourer tells Mando that he is in charge of fathering Baby Yoda now, and gives him a jet pack and the mud horn insignia. The group goes to escape, only to find storm troopers blocking the exit. IG-11 self-destructs to ensure that everyone else can escape. Gideon arrives in his TIE fighter and Mando uses his newly acquired jet pack to take it out. Mando leaves the planet with Baby Yoda, while Cara and Greef stay on Nevarro. Gideon emerges from the wreckage wielding the Darksaber.
The Good: This was an action-packed and wildly entertaining finale to a strong first season. There's a lot to like about this episode as it brings the season to a memorable and emotionally satisfying close while also laying down the foundation for season 2.
Surprisingly, there was a lot of humour in this episode and it worked very well. Unlike the new trilogy, the humour here is organic and clever, and I found myself laughing out loud a number of times. Greef was given loads of excellent lines in this episode, and I especially liked the joke when he tried to get the baby to do the "magic hand thing". The opening moments were also incredibly well done. The conversation between the two scout troopers was funny and filled with personality. It added some depth to the world by developing the foot soldiers while also giving us an idea of the kind of relationship the soldiers have with the higher-ups. Plus I got a big laugh when the scout troopers proved to be inept at aiming their shots, poking fun at a common trope of "Star Wars" movies and TV shows.
The main plot was pretty exciting. The heroes were left in quite a pickle at the end of the last episode, so we got to follow them attempt to escape. The action sequences early in the episode were a lot of fun and managed to include plenty of brilliant moments. I liked IG-11 blasting its way through town, Mando turning the tables by grabbing the E-Web Cannon, and Gideon making the smart move to take out Mando. The sequence was well done and allowed the heroes to do a lot of damage without ever making the villains look like chumps, which is actually quite impressive. It felt like the heroes were lucky to escape alive, without it feeling cheap. I really appreciate the extra thought that was put into this sequence, and I thought that it opened the episode on a great note.
Mando's story is what carried this episode, and there were so many brilliant moments with him. I'm very impressed by how much the show has invested me into this character across just 8 episodes. Mando had several strong moments here. His near-death experience was very well done, and for a couple of moments I was left wondering if the main character would actually be killed of at the end of the first season. These scenes had a defined impact however. For the first time we got to see the face underneath the mask, and that really helped humanize the character and let us fully realize that Mando is just an ordinary man in fancy armour. I can't fully explain why this moment is what did it for me, but after that I fully accepted Mando as a human character with emotions regardless of how he had been portrayed earlier in the season. There were more strong moments with Mando. I really loved the moment when he decided to play the father to Baby Yoda and raise him. It was a long time coming, but it felt like a suitable next step for the relationship the two had been developing. I also really liked Mando's interactions with IG-11. It was nice to see Mando gradually begin to trust the droid as the episode went on, and Mando's obvious unwillingness to part with the droid at the end of the episode felt like an earned moment. I really like how Mando has evolved as a person as this series has went on, showing more and more of his softer side in every passing episode.
IG-11's sacrifice was an excellent moment. The scene was executed really well, and I did feel for the droid after seeing it do everything it could to save Baby Yoda. The kicker of course was Mando finally coming around to the droid as it died. The story was simple, yet effective, and is exactly the kind of thing I want to see in a "Star Wars" TV show.
I was pleased to get a little more background on Cara. In just a single line from Gideon, we know exactly why she rebelled against the empire. We learn she is from Alderaan, and I imagine that she lost her family when the empire destroyed the planet. Furthermore, Cara got a little more characterization in this episode which is welcome. We see her attempt to solve almost every problem she faces by shooting something, which tells us all that we need to know about her.
The climax sequence was very good. The TIE fighter attack was scary and I thought that Mando got to defeat it in a way that managed to both provide an effective climax and take out Gideon in a way that feels earned but doesn't diminish how much of a threat he is.
The Bad: What I didn't like was mostly just little inconsistencies that bothered me throughout the episode. What would Gideon have done if he accidentally killed Baby Yoda when burning down the building? That seemed careless on his part. Why did he keep Baby Yoda so far away from him with so few guards? That didn't make much sense either.
The Unknown: The reveal that Gideon has the Darksaber was a big surprise. For those who don't know, the Darksaber is a Mandalorian relic that was a major part of "The Clone Wars". How did Gideon obtain the Darksaber? Did he kill the previous owner?
Best Moment: IG-11's sacrifice was the moment that resonated most with me.
Character of the Episode: IG-11.
Conclusion: This was an excellent finale. It was extremely fun with great action and some strong character moments. It didn't quite engage me in the way that a lot of the best TV shows do, but then again, I never expected this show to do that. This was everything I wanted it to be, and I'm very glad I watched it.
This ended up being a really good first season. It had some rough parts in the middle when there were some episodes that weren't entirely necessary, but overall I enjoyed myself. The characters were well done, there was strong world-building, good casting choices, superb direction and fun pacing. This show doesn't threaten to be anything particularly special, but it's a lot of fun to watch and I appreciate that. Something fresh like this is exactly what "Star Wars" needed to continue to be successful as a franchise. This show will be considered a gift for many "Star Wars" fans, and I think that casual fans can even get a lot of enjoyment out of this show as well. Is it flawless? No, of course not. But is it a harmless, easy-to-watch show? Absolutely. I will be eagerly awaiting season 2.
Summary: Mando receives a transmission from Greef who organizes a meeting with him, regarding working together to murder The Client. Mando picks up Cara and Kuiil as backup and meets with Greef. Greef reveals his plan but the group is suddenly attacked by Mynocks which almost kill Greef, but Baby Yoda heals him. Greef murders his men and reveals that the plan was to kill Mando but he has had a change of heart. Greef, Cara and Mando enter the town and meet with The Client while Kuiil takes Baby Yoda back to the ship. Mando is pretended to be captured and is secretly given a blaster to kill The Client. But The Client suddenly gets a transmission from Moff Gideon who has his men kill The Client and surround the building. Gideon arrives in person. Some scout troopers on speeders hunt down Kuiil and appear to kill him to take Baby Yoda.
The Good: This episode felt very important. After watching three stand-alone stories, it feels refreshing to return to the central plot. Many of the characters we were introduced to earlier this season made a welcome return that made all of the patient procedural-based storytelling feel like it had a purpose. Now that Mando has gone all over the galaxy on the run, he now calls in all of the friends he has made along the way to come to his aid. It's quite satisfying to see everyone return, engaging me more into the events of this episode.
Baby Yoda's role in this episode was wonderful as we got to see more of his abilities than ever before. He proves to be very helpful as he saves Greef's life by healing his arm, but also proves to be dangerous as he mistakes a friendly round of arm wrestling for a threat and force chokes Cara. It's quite shocking to see cute little Baby Yoda almost attempting murder because he isn't old enough to comprehend what he's seeing. This episode does a lovely job of teasing deeper and more meaningful storylines for Baby Yoda, and it makes me want to see more.
The main story ended up being exciting and dramatic. There were a lot of twists and turns that made things consistently unpredictable. But unlike many lesser stories which sacrifice logic for plot twists, the writers were able to make every twist feel organic with a lot of impressive moments. The early half of the episode rode on the suspense created by the question of if Greef will betray Mando or not. The episode manages to squeeze in a twist in a very unexpected way by having Greef actually side with Mando after realizing Baby Yoda's true worth. Moments like this work very well because the writing delivers.
The climax of the episode was fantastic. The Client returned in all of his intimidating glory. His dialogue was as creepy as ever and the scene was packed in palpable tension. Then everything exploded in a very unexpected way as a huge Imperial force arrives and guns down The Client, setting the stage for Moff Gideon to make his big entrance. Gideon immediately carries authority and comes off as even more intimidating than The Client. The standoff in the building will be an exhilarating start to the next episode. Then of course there is Kuiil's dramatic death which ended the episode on a shockingly dark and dramatic note (see: Best Moment).
The Bad: I'm not sure that we needed a whole 2 minutes dedicated to how Kuiil repaired IG-11 and nursed it back to health. The sequence wasn't that interesting and we didn't learn anything we couldn't have otherwise guessed.
Greef's change of heart happened a bit too quickly for my liking. I can understand him making the decision, but I feel like it could have been given more time to properly develop.
The Unknown: Is Kuiil dead or just hurt? I assume that he's dead.
What does Gideon want with Baby Yoda? What are his plans? What does he know about the force?
There was some interesting discussion about how some people prefer the rule of the Empire. Are the people of Nevarro happier under the rule of Gideon?
Best Moment: Kuiil makes a mad dash for the ship as he is being chased down by speeders. The scene builds tension wonderfully and is shot brilliantly to convey how close Kuiil is despite the speeders catching up to him. Then we cut away briefly and the camera slowly pans to reveal to us that Baby Yoda has been captured and Kuiil has been taken out along with his Blurg. It's quite a shocking death that has a big impact as Kuiil was a pretty beloved character.
Character of the Episode: Greef.
Conclusion: This was an exciting episode that set up the finale in a big way. I'm sad that this first season is already close to over since it has been very fun, even with a couple of weaker episodes in the middle.
Summary: Mando meets with an old friend Ran for work. Mando uses his ship and joins Mayfeld, Burg, Zero and Xi'an to go rescue Qin, Xi'an's brother who has been arrested. The team get into the spaceship, and after fighting security droids, they make it to the control panel where a soldier calls for the New Republic before he is killed. Now on a time limit, the group go free Qin, but the group betrays Mando and leaves him to die. Mando escapes and defeats each member of the crew before leaving with Qin and returning to Ran. Mando collects his pay. Ran prepares to kill Mando as he flies away but it's revealed that Mando put the tracking beacon on Qin, allowing the New Republic to arrive and blow up Ran's shuttle.
The Good: This was a very fun concept for an episode. Having Mando interact with a crew working for a man he was formerly partnered with was pretty interesting. There was a lot of tension throughout the episode and I was always on edge, expecting the crew to turn on Mando at any given moment. It was never a matter of if, only when they would betray him, and that gave the episode more tension than it otherwise would have had. Furthermore, the dynamic between Mando and the crew allowed for some neat moral exploration, most notably when the group encounters the soldier who threatens to call for backup.
What really made this work was how different it felt from everything that came before. I'm really enjoying how "The Mandalorian" is paying homage to tons of different genres, taking tropes from various different genres in each episode. Before this, there were references to westerns, monster movies and war movies, and now we get an episode dedicated to heist movies and thriller/horror movies. It was a wonderful change of tone, and it adds a degree more excitement for each episode when we don't know what kind of story to expect.
This episode really nailed the heist and horror aspects. The first half of the episode was an exciting heist as the crew breaks into the ship and there is a wonderfully choreographed fight scene between Mando and the security droids. But when the crew turns on Mando, the tone turns ominous and we get a wonderful parody of a horror movie as Mando hunts down each crew member one after the other. The sequence is brilliantly executed, and manages to include just about every trope possible, making it both tense and funny, which was very impressive. I also liked the parallel with Baby Yoda hiding from Zero in Mando's ship, showing us a much goofier type of thriller.
The Bad: Nothing outwardly bad. I'm still a little disappointed that the show has gone for a more procedural style of storytelling, but I'm alright with it as long as the episodes are as well done as this one.
The Unknown: Where is Mando going next? What kind of episode are we getting next?
Best Moment: The end of the episode was really well done. Mando escapes with Ran's money, and after what happened with Toro in the last episode, and the crew in this one, he is anticipating a betrayal. So in a master stroke, he sneakily leads the New Republic to Ran's shuttle and get shim killed without any trouble. It's a wonderfully satisfying moment as Qin and Ran get outsmarted, made better by the return of X-Wings, which will please any "Star Wars" fan.
Character of the Episode: Mando.
Conclusion: This was really strong stuff. While there isn't much of importance for the plot or characters, this was just fun. What this episode lacked in meaning, it made up for with pure entertainment value. I would be fine with more episodes like this.
Summary: Mando's ship is damaged in a space fight with another bounty hunter so he lands on Tatooine to get it fixed. Short on money, Mando helps out Toro, a fellow bounty hunter trying to get accepted into the guild. Mando and Toro hunt down Fennec, a mercenary hiding out in the desert. They capture her and Mando leaves to organize transport. Toro realizes that Mando is wanted by the guild and kills Fennec, with the intent of turning Mando in instead. Toro threatens Baby Yoda but Mando is able to kill him. Mando and Yoda leave Tatooine. A mysterious person approached Fennec's dead body.
The Good: The opening scene was a fun way to start the episode. It's not "Star Wars" without an exciting spaceship battle at some point. The scene was well shot, and it was an impressive scene to include in a TV show.
It was nice to see Tatooine again, and there were some nice callbacks with Mos Eisley, the Tusken Raiders and the two suns. The desert setting worked well for the main story as well. I was interested by Toro's mission to get Fennec, and I thought the story built up well and had a logical, yet entertaining climax. Fennec and Toro were solid one-off characters and I ended up enjoying this storyline much more than the village story. Although it is worth mentioning that this story was much more original and that likely played a part in me enjoying it a lot more.
I don't think I've mentioned this yet, but I really love this show's music. It's so unorthodox, yet the style somehow blends perfectly with the "Star Wars" universe. I also appreciate that we are getting a minimum of one new track for each episode. I find myself constantly looking forward to whatever new music I'll hear while watching this show.
The Bad: While it was fun to see Tatooine again, I'm also quite disappointed by the planet's return. Part of the allure of this show is that it could present "Star Wars" in a way that's wholly unconnected to the main series, giving us potential to explore new corners of the galaxies. Yet in just 5 episodes we're already looking backwards and returning to the same old planet that we have been accustomed to for years and years. It wasn't outwardly bad seeing Tatooine again, but it didn't capture my imagination like a brand new planet would have, and because of that I find the decision to go back to Tatooine quite perplexing. Hopefully we can head somewhere new in the next episode.
The fanservice didn't really work for me either. I'm fine with subtle moments of fanservice as well as some well-placed Easter Eggs, but this was too much. Tatooine was pretty much thrown into our face, and disappointingly, I don't even think the show was able to accurately present the planet to us. Mos Eisley felt dead, and the cantina was a far cry from the lively, intimidating and fascinating location we were introduced to back in "A New Hope". I understand that this is all likely due to budget constraints, but if you can't recreate Mos Eisley in all of its glory, then why bother?
This episode still felt a lot like a filler episode. I'm not opposed to these one-off plots, and I think they do work decently well in shows like "Person of Interest". But in a season with only 8 episodes, it's downright criminal to waste 2 entire episodes on slow-moving filler plots that don't necessarily need to be included.
The Unknown: Who was that person at the end that fond Fennec's body?
Was there a reason other than budget for the cantina being so empty? Is there some significance to this?
Best Moment: Fennec negotiating with Toro was a great scene. It built tension in an organic way, while also being one of the few moments in the episode where I wasn't entirely sure what was going to happen next.
Character of the Episode: Toro. His short arc was a pretty fun one. Also I can't keep putting Mando here every week.
Conclusion: This was a fine episode that was a breeze to watch. But I do feel that there should be more plot movement, and that "Star Wars" should really be focusing on treading new ground instead of drudging up the past.
Summary: Mando lands on a quiet planet to lay low for a while. He swiftly comes to blows with Cara Dune, an ex-imperial shocktrooper who is also hiding on the planet. Mando decides to leave the planet upon Cara's request so that they both won't draw attention to themselves. Some villagers come to Mando asking him to help their village which is being attacked. Mando and Cara go to the village to help and they work together with the villagers to fight off a horde of bandits, destroying an AT-ST in the process. Mando is offered to stay at the village, but he decides to leave when a bounty hunter tries to kill Baby Yoda.
The Good: The production of the show remains wonderful. The visuals in this episode were stunning, ranging from the outstanding village set to the frightening red eyes of the AT-ST. The entire episode was put together very well. The show also continues to pay homage to Westerns in a unique way, and there was even a nod to Jurassic Park in this episode with the AT-ST which I appreciated.
The examination of Mando remains interesting to me. Here we learn why the Mandolorians don't take off their helmets in front of others, and it was a good question to answer as there was a certain disbelief to the idea that Mando never removes his helmet. I also thought it was a good idea to explore why Mando refuses to stay in one place for a long time, and the story of him grappling with the idea of staying at the village is a good one.
The Bad: This episode didn't work. This show as a whole works so well because of how it blends live action drama with animated TV shows. This episode simply felt like a 40 minute animated TV show episode in a lot of ways, and that completely destroyed the balance between live action and animated. In the end, this felt less like "The Mandalorian" and more like a live action version of "The Clone Wars". Now I do enjoy some episodes of "The Clone Wars", but my least favourite episodes were often the ones which had generic, predictable plots which I was never given much reason to invest in. I understand that Jon Favreau is a fan of "The Clone Wars" and wanted to reference that show's style of storytelling in this episode, but I feel like there is a better way to reference "Clone Wars" without having an episode that falls into the same trappings.
I found it difficult to get invested in the villagers. They were very simplistic and 1-dimensional, like they were designed specifically so kids could like them. That's an issue because these characters seem designed specifically for kids. The best characters in family friendly shows can appeal to both kids and adults. Just look at the success of a character like Han Solo and the failure of a character like Jar Jar Binks as an example of this. In this case, the show missed the mark and ended up creating characters that felt silly. The biggest misfire was the mother who immediately took a liking for Mando. We don't know why she likes Mando, we are given no reason for her to like him, and we are given no reason to care for their relationship. That's an issue, especially considering how important this relationship was for this episode.
The action sequence at the end of the episode was okay, but there was never any tension. It's a shame that the fantastic visual of the AT-ST was wasted in a subplot where the main characters were never in any danger. Now if the AT-ST appears again in a scene that tries to be suspenseful, it won't feel as special. The action sequence never got me to the edge of my seat, and it was crystal clear that nobody would die and that the bandits would be easily defeated.
I had dozens of nitpicks for the plot of this episode, but I won't bother to list them here. I'm pretty sure that most readers will know what I'm talking about even without me listing some examples. The problem with making an episode that is designed to appeal to kids is that there are almost always going to be plot holes and questionable character decisions that break your immersion, and most people who watch the show will notice them. That is another factor that worked against this episode.
This episode also had the underlying feeling of being filler. Nothing significant happened here outside of Cara's introduction, and this feels like a waste of an episode in an 8-episode season. It's also quite disappointing that this uninteresting plot was somehow the longest episode of the series so far.
The Unknown: Cara Dune is an interesting new character and I really hope that there is more depth to her than what we have seen so far. Her imperial background could be a good set-up for some backstory for her, which would be very good. As it stands right now, her character seems like the generic "strong female type" that Disney likes to include nowadays in order to avoid controversy. I've put her introduction in The Unknown because I'm not sure if I'll look back and like her inclusion in the story or dislike it, as my feelings for her are quite mixed.
Where will Mando go next? Will the bounty hunters keep following him? What happens with Cara? Will she go with him? Or will she stay on this planet?
Best Moment: I'll go with the reveal of the AT-ST. Such a brilliant visual.
Character of the Episode: Mando.
Conclusion: This was disappointing. With Mando free to go anywhere in the galaxy following the last episode, I was expecting to get something new. To retread old ground that "The Clone Wars" had already visited was a poor choice, even if it was made with the intent of honouring a TV show that the showrunner enjoys very much. Hopefully this episode was just a bump in the road and we can get to better content in episode 5.
Summary: Mando gives Baby Yoda to The Client and gets a lot of Beskar as a reward. He takes it to the armorer and gets a full suit of armor made, attracting the attention of many local Mandalorians in the process. He takes a new job from Greef, but finds himself unable to abandon Baby Yoda. Mando infiltrates the compound and breaks out by force with Baby Yoda. The bounty hunters are notified of Mando's betrayal so they all corner him and attack him, intent on getting Baby Yoda back. The other Mandalorians arrive and help Mando escape.
The Good: This was really strong stuff. The pacing was fantastic throughout the episode, and I was almost always at the edge of my seat.
The opening scenes of the episode were really well done. This show has been remarkable with the little things so far. The meeting with The Client is built up in an extremely sinister way as the show gives us Baby Yoda's POV when travelling through the town. It's made explicitly clear how alien this all is for him, and it increases our fear that something bad is going to happen. The ensuing scene with The Client is filled with tension because it's so hard to predict what happens next. The story could conceivably go in a number of directions, and the mysterious, threatening nature of The Client only amps up the mystery. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time, and by the time the scene ended I was exhausted.
But surprisingly Mando had made the decision to abandon Baby Yoda. I really appreciate that Mando didn't immediately refuse to give Baby Yoda to The Client. Instead we get a lovely mini-arc as Mando tries to resume his normal life and pretend that nothing is wrong. But he is unable to resolve his inner conflict. He tries his hardest to leave Baby Yoda, but after being reminded of his time as a foundling and his hate for the Empire, Mando doesn't take it anymore and decides to head back. This story ended up being a joy to watch, and that's surprising when you consider how generic it seems on paper. There's something about the execution and the attention to detail that makes this work so well, and I have to give full credit to the director and the writers for that.
The action sequences in the back half of the episode were also done tremendously well. Extended action scenes can be really difficult to do. It's hard to make the audience believe that the protagonists are in danger the entire time, and it's just as hard to create several of these intense scenarios that still offer a logical escape for the heroes. This episode did an exceptional job of avoiding the trappings of extended action scenes. Every sequence was realistically choreographed and filled with dread. Plus the sequences were filled with satisfying moments which followed up on some previously established plot threads. Mando murdering the annoying gatekeeper droid was hilariously satisfying, Greef being saved by his piece of Beskar actually made sense, and the bounty hunters all being sent to hunt down Mando was a brilliant way to justify the many expositional lines explaining tracker fobs. Each of these moments were tremendously satisfying and added to the drama.
This series feels really unique. The faster pace and shorter length makes this feel more like an anime/cartoon series than a TV drama sometimes. This gives the show an identity and unique style to it, and so far it has been working really well. Somehow this series has combined the strengths of both animated and live-action TV series while avoiding almost all the weaknesses of both. It's made for a show that feels different and fun, and I can't wait to see more.
The Bad: The only part that bothered me a little bit was the Mandalorians all arriving to save Mando. The moment made sense and it was pretty enjoyable, but it felt a little too easy. It's a minor quibble though, and it certainly won't detract from the episode's score.
The Unknown: What was The Client planning to do with Baby Yoda? Who is he anyways? What is his connection to the Empire?
Why do the Mandalorians stay in hiding all the time? What happened when the Empire purged their race? Why were they purged? How many are left? Do they have any remaining communities?
What is Greef's future role in the story? I doubt that he is done with Mando after what happened. Will he be an enemy? An ally? A wild card? I'm very intrigued.
Best Moment: There were many suspenseful moments, but my favourite is probably Mando bringing Baby Yoda to The Client. The Client is an unpredictable mystery at the moment, and when Mando overstepped his bounds by askign The Client what his plans were, I became really nervous that something big might go down. Even though nothing happened, that moment was the most engaged I was in the entire episode.
Character of the Episode: Mando.
Conclusion: This was an action-packed episode with a lot to enjoy. This show has found its identity and ha proved itself to be more than competent enough at telling a compelling story. It seems my fears from the first episode were misplaced as this show has been very well done so far. Let's hope that the rest of the season can continue this.
Summary: Mando and Baby Yoda go back to the ship only to find that it has been stripped by Jawas. Mando attacks them and kills a few of them but they escape in the Sandcrawler. Mando goes back to Kuiil who negotiates a deal with the Jawas. Mando has to collect an egg for them and they will trade him the parts. Mando has to fight a mud horn to get the eggs and he nearly dies. However, baby Yoda saves him by using the force. Mando trades the egg, repairs his ship and says goodbye to Kuiil.
The Good: This was a bold episode to make. There wasn't a whole lot of plot development here, and on paper the plot of the episode seems quite thin. But this actually served an important purpose: to get us acquainted to Mando. Mando wasn't an interesting character in the first episode. He doesn't talk much and we don't get to see his face. That means that we must learn about him directly through his actions. This episode allows us to do that perfectly by giving Mando a number of problems to overcome that allow his character to shine through so we can understand him better. In this episode we see that he is hot-tempered, heroic, reasonable and even a little bit caring through his actions alone. That's very smart writing, and it turns Mando into somebody who I'm starting to grow fond of, which is a big improvement on the first episode.
We also get to see more from Baby Yoda in this episode which is also welcome. Presumably he will be the focal point of the season so it is very important that we understand who he is and also understand the relationship he has with Mando. While note much happens in this episode, it is able to effectively convey the bond that Baby Yoda has developed with Mando in such a short amount of time. Even without any stand-out scenes, simply seeing these two traveling together allows us to grow more attached to them as a unit. If the show wants there to be any good drama between Baby Yoda and Mando, it's essential to do these little things first, and so far the show is succeeding.
The return of the Jawas is very welcome. Jawas are a staple of "Star Wars", and I'm beyond pleased to see them return in a way that isn't simply dumb fanservice. They had a reason to be in this episode, and they presented Mando with a good dilemma. Plus, the action sequence of the Sandcrawler was a ton of fun. There wasn't any tension or suspense, but the scene was directed superbly to overcome this flaw through creativity and levity.
The Bad: The episode felt too short. When Disney promised an hour long live-action series, I wasn't expecting 30 minute episodes. When you realize how little happens in this episode, it's a bit underwhelming and the slower pace becomes more frustrating when we get less time to enjoy the episode.
Was that tiny knife really enough to kill the mud horn? It looks like it barely even got through the skin layer.
The Unknown: Does the universe still not know much about the force? Mando and Kuiil both seemed shocked by Baby Yoda's abilities. I guess news of Luke Skywalker wouldn't have spread everywhere across 5 years which would make sense.
How do Baby Yoda's force powers work? Why does he need to sleep after using them? How many abilities does he have? We saw him attempt to heal Mando earlier in the episode. Why does he have the force anyways? Is he somehow related to Yoda in a direct way?
Best Moment: Baby Yoda using the force was a great moment that is very important for the series.
Character of the Episode: Mando.
Conclusion: This was short, but it featured some really good stuff. This show feels like it's taking after "Stranger Things" a little bit. The show is a ton of fun, but it doesn't offer too much emotionally. That's completely fine as long as the quality of the show doesn't dip like "Stranger Things". I'm hoping that the large scope of the "Star Wars" universe will be enough to keep this series fresh for the seasons to come.
Summary: The Mandalorian collects a target and leaves with him, freezing him in carbonite. He returns to Greef Carga who pays him and gives him a new, much more secretive target. The Mandalorian meets with The Client who reveals that the target is a 50 year old and gives him the target's last known location. The Mandalorian receives some Beskar which he turns into armour. The Mandalorian flies to the planet and meets Kuiil who teaches him to ride Blurrgs. Kuiil leads The Mandalorian to where the target is located before he leaves. A bounty hunter droid also arrives and the two fight together and defeat the opponents. They discover the target is a baby of the same species as Yoda. The bounty hunter droid wants to kill it so The Mandalorian kills the bounty hunter droid.
The Good: There was plenty to like about this. It's extremely refreshing to see "Star Wars" as a live action TV shows. The animated shows like "The Clone Wars" never successfully sucked me in because the world felt too alien from the realistic and lively world that was developed in the original trilogy. There was a notable disconnect and that hurt my ability to get immersed into that show. Thankfully, immersion isn't a problem here. The sets are magnificent, the effects look good, and the world feels lived in, which is important for a franchise like "Star Wars" that relies so heavily on the fantastical elements of its world. It really is a joy to see this series depicted successfully as a TV show, and there is quite a bit of potential for us to get something great out of this show.
This entire show feels like a gift to the "Star Wars" fanbase. The world-building is top-notch, there are countless references, and the fast-paced action feels like it's straight out of a "Star Wars" movie. If you're not a fan of "Star Wars", this likely won't mean much to you, but it means everything to the faithful fans of the franchise. The people behind the scenes showed a terrific understanding of their target audience and they crafted something for them to truly enjoy.
I liked the western elements of the show. Several moments felt like they were taken straight out of a spaghetti western and I think that added a lot of style to the show. It's a unique take on "Star Wars" and I think it did a pretty good job of making the show stand out. I just hope that the western theme will remain in the series now that it's introduced.
The ending of the episode was really well done. The action scene was a lot of fun, and the twist of there being a baby Yoda (I'm just calling Yoda's species "Yodas" until we get an official name) was quite clever, and it serves as an interesting hook. The Yoda will likely have a big impact on the plot of the show, while simultaneously serving as a way for us to get to know The Mandalorian a little better, which I'm all for.
The Bad: This show's greatest strengths are also its greatest weaknesses. "Star Wars" is a fun license, but I don't think it's capable of making truly special television. The franchise has already been explored quite thoroughly and I'm not sure that there are very many interesting places for the series to go. Outside of the cliffhanger, this episode does not inspire confidence in that regard, as a lot of the content feels quite familiar. Furthermore, I do worry about the appeal of this show. I highly doubt that non-Star Wars fans will enjoy this, and that is a problem. TV shows should be enjoyed by everyone, not just a set audience. I hope this show works on having a more widespread appeal in the long run.
Characterization seems like it's going to be an issue. We spent the entire episode with the main character, yet I feel like I hardly know him. That's not good because characters are what keep us returning to a TV show. Without a strong lead, it becomes much harder to be invested in a TV show. There is nothing interesting about The Mandalorian, and so far he comes across as a generic silent hero without very much depth at all. The design of the character also doesn't help. He's always wearing a mask which alienates him from the audience. Pedro Pascal is a good actor, but he isn't able to act in the role because we never get to see his face. The disconnect between the audience and the main character is a worrying sign for the show. The side characters don't seem very interesting either. Hopefully I'm wrong about this, but the characters seem pretty unremarkable so far.
Being a Disney TV show, there are plenty of silly jokes that attempt to lighten the mood. And just like in the Marvel movies, the jokes are very hit or miss.
The Unknown: What is The Mandalorian's backstory? The brief flashbacks suggest there is more to him than what meets the eye. Why is he a bounty hunter? What are his goals? Why does he hate droids? Could it be that the battle droids killed his family or something like that back in the Clone Wars?
What's the deal with the side characters introduced in this episode? What are their stories? What will they contribute to the series?
Why was there a target on the baby Yoda? Is it dangerous? Why?
Best Moment: I'll go with the cliffhanger. That was a brilliant hook.
Character of the Episode: The Mandalorian.
Conclusion: This was a solid pilot episode. There were certainly a lot of flaws, but I still got a lot of joy out of seeing "Star Wars" adapted into a live-action TV show.
Just a university student who loves to watch TV. And criticize it like hell.