There was plenty going on in the first episode of The Mandalorian. Here are eight thoughts that were running through my mind.
The Mandalorian premiered on Disney+ on Tuesday, November 12th. It managed to accomplish everything you could want in a pilot.
It answered questions, it left us with new questions, and it started to establish the world we will be living in, as Star Wars fans, leading up to Episode IX in December. I have now watched the episode three times and I have many thoughts and questions on what transpired.
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WARNING: The article below features spoilers from the first episode of the The Mandalorian .
1. This is DARK!
For years, fans have drooled over the prospect of a darker, grittier Star Wars story. Sure, Rogue One is a film where all of the main characters die at the end, but the film is still relatively light-hearted and is not necessarily aimed at adults.
The Mandalorian has taken things to a whole new level of dark in the first episode. The entire first five minutes are very serious in tone.
First, we get the cantina fight scene we have seen in the trailers again and again, where the Mandalorian grapple hooks a tentacle-faced thug (a Quarren, to be exact) and pulls him into the collapsing door. This time we get to see the end result, though, and the alien is cut in half.
Truly a brutal moment and we get to see what it is like having a protagonist that does not abide by the same honor system as the Jedi heroes we have grown so accustomed to.
2. These Creatures!
My biggest worry going into The Mandalorian was that the CGI would be sub par, which would make each episode look like a fan-film. My expectations were exceeded as soon as I saw the giant ice monster attack the Razor Crest.
The CGI looked great, and you have to think that if they are willing to show us that impressive beast in the first episode, we must be in store for some pretty impressive visuals in the future. (P.S Disney, give us the giant walrus, ice monster spin-off series we deserve!)
3. Bounty Hunting is a Grind
When the Mandalorian returns from his journey, we see that he has multiple individuals frozen in Carbonite. He gives the bounties to Carl Weathers’ character, Greef Carga. The Mandalorian makes nothing more than scraps, for all of these bounties, and we see that bounty hunting is not an easy profession.
I was under the impression that there were few bounty hunters in the galaxy, and they were paid handsomely for doing dangerous tasks, but in the current state of the galaxy, the Bounty Hunters Guild doesn’t even have enough work to go around.
This was a new point of view on bounty hunting, as we have only seen in-depth looks into the careers of Jango Fett and Boba Fett, both of which are clear first ballot hall of famers.
4. This is NOT the Empire in its Prime.
When the Mandalorian is receiving his payment from Greef Carga, we see that Imperial credits now hold virtually no value. This really drives home where the galaxy is at, in relation to the Empire. The war has been won, the Emperor and Vader are dead (or so we thought… The Rise of Skywalker opens in theaters December 19!), and the Empire has fallen.
The stormtroopers that accompany Werner Herzog’s character are wearing old, dirty armor. The empire is not at full strength, but they seem to be trying to maintain control.
5. Mandalorian Culture!
One of my favorite scenes in the episode is when the Mandalorian is paid by the empire for his upcoming bounty with Beskar Steel, the rare metal used to produce Mandalorian Armor.
He takes the metal and enters what appears to be an encampment for Mandalorians, before giving the steel to a smith, who fashions a shoulder plate for him.
This scene was so interesting and left me with many questions. How many Mandalorians are there? Do they have a chapter on every planet like a biker gang or a fraternity? Is the protagonist going to get a new piece of armor every episode, like an RPG? I cannot wait to find out more about this as the show goes on.
6. What is a foundling?
The excess metal from the Empire’s payment, will apparently go to support “foundlings” This is the first time this word is used in Star Wars canon, and I am not quite sure what it means. The Mandalorian states that he was a foundling, and we get flashbacks to what appears to be the Clone Wars.
We see the Mandalorian as a child, running from something, before his parents place him in some sort of crate to hide him. Going into this show, I did not want to know a lot about the protagonist. I preferred he remain a man of mystery, like Boba Fett in the original trilogy. However, after these small glimpses into the Mandalorian’s past, I am intrigued. Give me more back story!
7. Kuiil the Ugnaught (Nick Nolte’s character)
“I have spoken”
8. Is that… a baby… yoda?!
All the Mandalorian knows about his target is that they are 51 years old. This is why we are surprised when he tracks down the target and it is a small child in some sort of crib. IG-11 explains that some species just age differently.
When the assassin droid begins to kill the target, we hear blaster fire and see the robot crash to the floor with a whole in his head, shot by the Mandalorian. The real shock comes when the camera pans up and we see the child is green with familiar pointed ears.
Obviously, with this taking place after original trilogy, we know that this is not actually Yoda himself, but another one of his species. This is still a huge deal, as we have only seen two individuals in canon that belong to the species (both of which are force sensitive), and we do not know the name or planet of origin. Could we finally learn more about Yoda’s people? Does Yoda have a lovechild? Why did the empire want to kill the child in the first place?
So what questions did you have while watching Chapter 1? We can learn the answers to these questions and more when The Mandalorian returns Friday, November 15th on Disney+.