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The Mandalorian: The Believer

"Never thought you'd be happy to see stormtroopers."

Chapter Fifteen

With one goal, Din Djarin, Boba Fett, Cara Dune and Fennec Shand are gathered together to find Moff Gideon and retrieve Grogu. The mission takes them to a hidden imperial base on Morak which is cultivating the volatile mineral rhydonium. To aid them in their mission they have to recruit one final member of their team, Migs Mayfeld...

This is an odd episode starting with your standard Star Wars hijinks with a chase scene and cool combat. Mando getting to show off without his trademark armor was fun, and I really loved the banter between all the characters. Especially Migs ribbing on Mando and the whole helmet thing. Does it matter what helmet he wears? Is it just not showing his face?

The first moment where things start to shift is when Din has to take off his helmet. He’s exposed to the world for only the second time in the entire series and it is powerful because it is such a rare thing. But he does it for love, and you can finally see what Grogu truly means to him. That speech to Gideon at the end was so effective because we believe it. We know what he is capable of and honestly, Gideon should be afraid.


What really surprised me was Migs. He plays fast and loose with morality and doesn’t seem to care about anyone. Yet when he is cornered and given the option, he is surprisingly decent to Mando and even has a real moment of genuine emotion. His actions, and inability to just play it cool in front of his former superior officer, speaks to the damage the Empire inflicted on the galaxy. This kind of stuff makes this world richer and darker.

Star Wars is kind of fluffy in a lot of ways, but if you think about the world, it is a brutal society that shifts constantly. One day you are living in freedom, the next you are literally a slave working for a slug. Space wizards and blasters and starships are exciting and fun to see in action, but the human element is often forgotten in favor of spectacle. Sure, this episode had its requisite amount of explosions and blaster fire, but it also showed us that there is a lot more going on in this galaxy far, far away.

Except we had to have all that blaster fire. So I have to wonder if the writers (or the Mouse) are worried they will lose their audience if they start to delve deeper into the darker elements of Star Wars. Maybe an entire episode that deals with situations where a blaster isn't necessary? I don't think this particular story is designed to work with stakes like that, but I wonder if it would be stronger without a requisite villain or action scene of the week.

Bits:

Migs getting to go free was a nice cap to his story arc, and with several shows in this timeline I bet this isn’t the last we see of him.

The sonic bombs that almost killed Obi Wan in Attack of the Clones were used in the climax of this episode. It is just an amazing visual and auditory effect that I’m glad was used again.

Fennec and Boba Fett were mostly background players in this episode, but once again showed they are good allies to have your back.

Quotes:

Mando: "Moff Gideon, you have something I want. You may think you have some idea of what you're in possession of, but you do not. Soon, he will be back with me. He means more to me than you will ever know."

Mayfeld: "Empire, New Republic. It's all the same to these people. Invaders on their land is all we are. I'm just sayin', somewhere someone in this galaxy is ruling and others are being ruled. I mean, look at your race. Do you think all those people that died in wars fought by Mandalorians actually had a choice? So how are they any different than the Empire. If you were born on Mandalore, you believe one thing, if you're born on Alderaan, you believe something' else. But guess what? Neither one of them exist anymore."

Mayfeld: "Seems to me like your rule start to change when you get desperate. I mean, look at ya. You said you couldn't take your helmet off, and now you got a stormtrooper one on, so what's the rule? Is it you can't take off your Mando helmet, or you can't show your face? 'Cause there is a difference. Look, I'm just sayin', we're all the same. Everybody's got their line they don't cross until things get messy. As far as I'm concerned, if you can make it through your day and still sleep at night, you're doin' better than most."

Not bad, but close to actually being really good.

3 out of 4 Exploding Trucks of Rhydonium

Samantha M. Quinn spends most of her time in front of a computer typing away at one thing or another; when she has free time, she enjoys pretty much anything science fiction or fantasy-related.

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