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Andor: That Would Be Me

"Face your men, yourself, the rest of your life, knowing you did less than everything you possibly could."

This is very much a continuation of the first episode, a part two of the pilot.

Whether or not that is a good thing is debatable, but at least this one was a bit more engaging than the first. The story moved forward some more, and the plot is beginning to ramp up. However, like an extended game of chess, it feels like the show has been moving pieces for two hours now and I just keep waiting for something major to happen.

The biggest new thing in this episode was the introduction of the buyer, a gruff looking man played by Stellan Skarsgård. He came in under the radar (literally), parking way out of town and taking public transportation into the city. He feels like an important player, but I was amused by the fact he had to suffer small talk from a fellow rider. It felt so real life that I was taken aback by it. Star Wars doesn’t tend to do small scale. Maybe the plot of this show is like a small rock rolled down a snowy hill. At first it is tiny, almost insignificant, and in time it grows until it is a giant cartoon-sized boulder that destroys everything in its path.

We also ventured into mildly adult territory, with Bix having casual sex with her boyfriend. There was even a tiny hint at nudity, which may be a first for Star Wars. I also loved the complexity of Timm’s actions. He felt jealous of Bix’s interactions with Cassian, to the point of turning Cassian into the Corpo wanted signal. Then when she showed up, you could see on his face that he screwed up. That kind of writing and acting is all about nuance and character, which is a very positive sign.

Then there is Syril and his squad of over-eager security guards heading for Ferrix to capture Cassian. That is another quite well acted and written character; his awkward speech was perfect. He thinks he is important, he thinks he is doing the right thing. Maybe he is right from a legal standpoint, but making this a crusade to avenge a couple of very corrupt cops is just a way of drawing the wrong kind of attention to a bad situation. I imagine this will go poorly, but we’ll see. Maybe Cassian will be captured.

The final player to talk about is Cassian’s mother Maarva. I get the feeling that maybe he is adopted, because they were talking about the Corpo alert and whether they had told anyone about Cassian being from Kenari when they had buried that fact and put on his records he was from Best. Regardless, she seems like an interesting, mildly difficult person that Cassian clearly loves. Her health is also a bit of a question mark, since she needs a cane to get around. She also picked up Cassian’s dart thrower from Kenari as though it held memories.


Speaking of Kenari, something interesting happened. First we got to see the remains of some kind of massive mining accident, with giant land movers collapsed. Secondly, the kids found the wreckage of the ship that crashed. Two people made it out, and one was hanging out of the ship, clearly dead. The other was on the ground and looked dead, his skin yellow and a mask still on his face. The leader moved up to check on him and scout the area but she was killed when he woke up and shot her. The kids immediately panicked and ran, but little Kassa stayed behind to investigate. I wonder if this flashback will be ongoing, the adventures of little Cassian, or if there will be an end to them.

Bits:

Maarva is played by the marvelous Fiona Shaw, best known as the horrible aunt from Harry Potter.

You might remember Stellan Skarsgård from his work in the MCU, specifically the first couple Thor movies and The Avengers.

The mining equipment seen in the flashback has been established before, although for the life of me I can't remember where. Probably one of the numerous video games.

The stair droid may be the most elegant and understated statement of the class difference between human and machine I've seen in Star Wars. It is literally designed to be stepped on all day, every day. Poor thing.

In Rogue One it was established that Cassian was from Best, so the line from Maarva is a lovely way to retcon that piece of information to suit the narrative of the character.

While an improvement over the premire, this was another slow offering that felt like more set up with little payoff.

2 1/2 out of 4 Massive Mining Movers

Image Source: Star Wars.com

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.

1 comment:

  1. It’s rather fun watching someone else go through the same stages as I did with this show. The writing, pacing, and character development here are superb and so far removed from what one expects from a Star Wars thing that one don’t know what to do with them at first. By around episode 5 you’re going to start wondering how you could ever have thought this was moving too slowly or confusingly. It’s brilliant.

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