After its exciting return last week, The Mandalorian continues to impress, surprise, and in some ways disappoint after chapter ten. Unlike our last recap and review, this article will not contain any major spoilers from the episode, although to be fair there are no real shockers to ruin for audiences this week. While there are certainly some highlights, this second filler episode falls flat on its face.
Picking up where the last episode left off, Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) returns to Mos Eisley with Boba Fett’s (Temuera Morrison) armor, but never does encounter the beloved bounty hunter. Still on the hunt for fellow mandalorians, our hero makes a connection through Amy Sedaris’ Peli Motto. This contact, a female reptilian creature, will provide information about the mandalorians in exchange for safe, non-hyperspace travel to a nearby planet for her and her eggs. Din reluctantly agrees, fearing for their safety traveling in such a fashion. Turns out he would be right, as the Razorcrest finds itself in battle with two New Republic X-Wings before crashing on an ice planet below. Our heroes must survive the night, repair the ship, and escape before mysterious creatures lurking in the cave consume them all.
Starting with the highlights of the episode, it is beautifully directed. Peyton Reed (Ant-Man) does an incredible job building tension, shooting action, and creating a unique look from other episodes in the series. I also found that the stakes have never been higher in the show, or possibly in all of Star Wars. I had honestly never been so invested in the stakes, fearing and wondering how our hero was going to get out of this situation. A really impressive combination of writing and directing from Favreau and Reed, respectively.
Like season one, these filler episodes certainly come with their own charms and character moments. Once again we see our hero, a stoic, faced character, confronted with a situation that requires sympathy, patience and compassion. There is even a moment when his morals are called into question that I quite appreciated. Moments like these are what make the show so great, because it allows audiences of all ages to connect with the character and form a bond and a love because he always does the right thing from the very beginning. On top of this, there is a wonderful little plot line with the Child that reminds us why we love him and the show so much.
Unfortunately, all of this cannot make up for the lack of plot development in this episode. We end exactly where we began at the beginning of the season, looking for mandalorians. A new trend I’ve now noticed this season opposed to last is Favreau appears to be writing his endings short, picking back up on them in the next episode. While I see the intention behind it, it leaves me frustrated and unsatisfied with the endings of episodes unlike season one where it was a complete destination story per episode. At forty-two minutes, this episode was considerably shorter than last week, but still relatively long compared to last season, so I hope the trend of longer episodes continue. This episode really handled its runtime well and anything longer would have dragged out.
On a final note, I have to give credit to the marketing department at Lucasfilm and Disney. Without going too deeply into spoilers, these episodes continue to subvert the expectations of their audience. No one expected the first episode to feature Tatooine, Cobb Vanth, or Boba Fett and everyone expected the planet featured in this episode to be Ilum, which it was not. The marketing has set us up for expecting something completely different than what we’ve seen so far and truthfully it is refreshing. Just when we think we have everything figured out, the show flips it all on its head. I look forward to seeing where the storyline goes from here, hopefully with a little more plot development as well.
Overall I thought this episode was fine. A prime example of the heart of the show but as a story junkie I really would like to see things progress at a faster rate, although I highly doubt I will ever get that wish. Looking ahead to next week, I anticipate the episode taking place on the water planet from the trailer and the introduction of Sasha Bank’s character. With the Razorcrest down, it would make sense our duo needs to travel by boat for awhile.
What did you think of this episode of The Mandalorian? Where do you think the show goes from here? Let us know in the comments below and on our social media pages!