The Book of Boba Fett season 1 finale review: A decent ending to a middling series

(L-R): Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) and Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison) in Lucasfilm's THE BOOK OF BOBA FETT, exclusively on Disney+. © 2022 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.
(L-R): Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) and Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison) in Lucasfilm's THE BOOK OF BOBA FETT, exclusively on Disney+. © 2022 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved. /

Major spoilers for The Book of Boba Fett episode 7

We finally made it to the finale of The Book of Boba Fett, and my was it an okay ending. Action wise, episode 7 “In the Name of Honor,” has everything viewers could want. There’s more than one stand-off in the dusty streets, shoot outs, team ups, chaos, massive droids, and a Rancor for an extra bit of destruction.

But, if we’re talking actual pay off with emotional stakes and overall storytelling that felt like it came full circle, this finale doesn’t have that outside of Mando and Grogu.

It’s a shame, and it’s largely due to how The Mandalorian‘s plot took over Boba’s. With only seven episodes to its name, this series really couldn’t afford to give up two full episodes to its parent show especially when it had already spent nearly half of its time in a more interesting past than building its present.

Though that’s not to say that The Book of Boba Fett didn’t have time to reclaim the emotional hooks of its series. It did. That’s just not where the focus was placed. There was an opportunity for the Tusken plot to come back into play for Boba and it was squandered. Instead we were treated to Boba wanting to protect Mos Espa because they are “his people” even though he didn’t really spend any of the series getting to know those people.

It was frustrating to say the least. Still, as I said, the finale did have its moments. So let’s dive into the good, the bad, and the middling of this episode.

The Book of Boba Fett promised much and delivered little

“In the name of Honor” opens in the ruins of The Sanctuary, a cantina we visited a handful of times in the series but have no attachment to outside of Garsa Fwip, a woman we barely knew or spent time with. Even her death last episode held little significance beyond being a declaration of war by the Pykes.

It’s clear that news of Cad Bane’s interference has yet to reach Boba, Fennec, and Mando as they’re anticipating the arrival of Cobb Vanth and the people of Freetown to round out their attacking force against the Pykes.

There’s a minor dispute between Fennec and Boba over Freetown’s terms. The assassin doesn’t think it wise to completely cut off the spice trade because it’s lucrative and made up a good portion of Jabba the Hutt’s income. Boba, however, sees no use for the orange powder this series wants us to care about but spends little time explaining.

Obviously, as a drug in the Star Wars universe, the powder is a stand-in for the likes of cocaine or any other drug being run in a crime drama centered around crime lords and syndicates. But The Book of Boba Fett didn’t show how spice was affecting Tatooine’s population past the Pykes ruling over that market and the lengths they’d go to ensure they can continue running spice through the planet’s cities.

In any case, Boba intends on protecting the people of Mos Espa despite not spending any time with them outside of those he employees. Speaking of those under his fold, when he suggests that they go wait for reinforcements at the palace which is better fortified, the Mods–Drash and Skad–take issue with that plan.

They believe the Sanctuary should be where they lay low so that they’re closer to the people and aren’t leaving them vulnerable. Their sincere desire to keep their city safe rang truer than any of the words Boba states throughout the episode regarding the same sentiment. Mainly because the people of Mos Espa don’t feel like his. How could they when the series itself didn’t really care about them?

Elsewhere, Cad Bane informs the head of the Pyke syndicate and Mayor Mok Shaiz that he took care of Cobb Vanth, so Freetown shouldn’t be a problem. It’s here that it’s revealed that the Pykes were responsible for the Tusken massacre not the bikers. That wasn’t surprising but the moment does introduce the possibility of Boba having a real stake in this fight outside of remaining daimyo.

But first, a The Mandalorian plot interlude!

Does Grogu choose Mando or Luke in The Book of Boba Fett?

In “From the Desert Comes a Stranger,” Grogu was left with a choice. Either he could choose the Mandalorian chain mail and be returned to Mando or he could choose the lightsaber and become Luke’s first student at the school he’s building.

Thankfully, Grogu chose the chain mail which is why he arrives at Peli’s garage in an X-wing piloted by R2-D2. With that plot point done and dusted the only thing left to do was to reunite the child with his father, but The Book of Boba Fett finale makes viewers wait a little longer for that though it’s well worth it.

The Book of Boba Fett’s overly long battle sequence takes from the plot

While Boba and crew are waiting for the Freetown fighters, Cad Bane shows up at the Sanctuary. His ploy to lure Boba into a clash is to tell him that the Pykes were the ones to kill the Tuskens. The daimyo nearly loses his cool over the reveal, but it’s Fennec who reminds him that he must keep his head.

Cad wants him to attack because he’d be attacking on the Pykes terms and launching heart first into a conflict that he and his outfit aren’t prepared for. Boba listens to her reasoning and backs down from the fight Cad wants, sending the bounty hunter on his way.

For a series that spent a lot of time building the Tuskens up to be Boba’s chosen family only for them to be slaughtered, the gut punch Cad lands doesn’t really resonate. We’re so removed from the beginning episodes of The Book of Boba Fett that those sequences feel like a world away.

Still, it’s an emotional stake for Boba, but it’s one that’s not really actualized in a satisfying way by the end of the episode. I’m getting ahead of the plot though so let’s quickly recap the prolonged battle that takes up the majority of “In the Name of Honor.”

After Cad goes about his business, the locals of Mos Espa begin attacking the Mods, Krrsantan, and the Gamorrean guards in the strategic places they’ve been placed in order to see an attack from the Pykes coming. Unfortunately, they didn’t account for the crime families turning on them even though they definitely should have considering Boba had a single sit down with them and he’s essentially the new guy on the job.

Blasters are shooting left and right. Fennec has to jet off to Mos Eisley to go find the Pykes so she can cut them off at the head. She stops long enough to save the Mods so Drash can have a “she’s so cool” moment as she stares in awe at Fennec and then goes to complete her mission.

There’s a small exchange with Boba and Mando where they plan to lay their lives down to protect Mos Espa. It’s a very western, last man standing, we die like men moment which works for the two of them as characters but did make me laugh because again Boba’s attachment to Mos Espa makes no sense. Mando choosing to stay with him because he gave the daimyo his word and that is the way, is in character though and fits his story.

In any case, a comedic beat with the majordomo services as a way to relieve some of the tension and allows the two men to catch the Pykes surrounding the Sanctuary by surprise. They’re holding their own for a little bit but just when it seems like they’ve finally been outgunned, the people of Freetown show up. They made it after all and they’re much needed.

Skipping ahead, the Pykes pull their ace card and release huge droids that basically pin Boba’s fighting forces. We get another showing of the darksaber, but it’s useless against the droids’ shields. Boba tells Mando to protect everyone because he, too, has a trump card, but he has to go get it.

I’m not going to lie, it was around this point that I got battle fatigued. I’m sure there a lot of fans who remained pumped all the way through, but I am not in that camp. My sole revitalization was Mando and Grogu’s reunion thanks to Peli not paying attention to the fact that the city was under attack. It was sweet, loving, and exactly what it needed to be.

Honestly, I’m excited more than ever for The Mandalorian season 3. So, if the point of these two pulling so much focus was to get people hype for their show, it worked for me. Too bad the hype around The Book of Boba Fett didn’t live up to expectations.

I mean, sure, Boba’s ace is his rancor that I admittedly forgotten about and that was pretty cool. The creature destroyed a lot of property while working to stop the droids, but it was effective.

I could have done without Cad Bane shooing the rancor away with fire which screamed plot convenience and the King Kong moment that felt like it was wasting our time, but I enjoyed the rancor’s contributions to the fighting nonetheless. Especially when Grogu ends up being the one to calm the beast and takes a nap beside it.

But when it comes to pay off, what exactly did The Book of Boba Fett finale give us for Boba’s story?  His showdown with Cad Bane lets us know the two have a history that’s tumultuous, bitter, and full of a deep seated resentment that has something to do with Boba’s father, Jango Fett but this literally came in the final act!

Not to mention that Cad’s snide comments about what happened to the Tuskens still doesn’t place the blame of the massacre at the bounty hunter’s feet, so the return of the gaderffii stick as a means of killing him is confusing. Yes, it’s an emotional beat performed excellently by Temuera Morrison as Boba gets the upper hand and then stabs Cad but narratively it just doesn’t work.

The Tuskens were Boba’s family, but it’s Fennec who kills the head of the syndicate, the head of the Mos Espa crime families who dared betray them, and Mayor Mok Shaiz. It’s a great scene but there’s no emotional resonance whatsoever. All of this just reinforced that the Tuskens were a plot point, and their deaths didn’t even factor into the finale in the way they deserved.

The series ends with Boba adjusting to having the favor of the people that he didn’t spend any time with (yes, I’m going to continue harping on this) and an edit credit scene that let’s us know that Cobb Vanth lives. He’s in the bacta tank and he’s about to get hooked up with a mod just like Fennec was.

Overall, “In the Name of Honor,” is a decent ending for a series that has so much wasted potential. How the show ends wouldn’t be such a problem if the emotional stakes for Boba vs. the Pykes weren’t predicated on his relationship with the Tuskens. Or if he actually had a tie to Mos Espa and we were shown, not told, that he cares about its people.

The Book of Boba Fett just didn’t hit the narrative beats that it set up and, honestly, it’s not a crime drama. It’s certainly not gangsters in space and there’s an argument to be made that Boba didn’t even need to be daimyo for any of this to happen.

What did you think of the finale? Serve up your thoughts in the comments below!

Next. The Book of Boba Fett episode 6 review: Cameos, death, and a bit of Boba. dark

All seven episodes of The Book of Boba Fett are available to stream now on Disney+.