WARNING: This post contains SPOILERS for The Mandalorian #4
When I sat down to read the first three issues of this series, I wasn’t expecting a straight adaptation. I don’t want to call it disappointment, though I believe that’s what my previous review conveys; I really wanted something else at the time. That said, The Mandalorian #4 didn’t have the same baggage when it came to me sitting down to read it. It did, however, come with a different set of baggage.
Just as Chapter 4 from Season 1, The Mandalorian #4 follows Mando after he has rescued The Child, searching for a place to lay low until there aren’t so many people searching for the pair. Choosing the backwater world, with no industry, of Sorgan, Mando lands the Razor Crest to look for lodging. What he doesn’t know is that the local krill farmers are being attacked by raiders. While he’s initially not interested in helping the farmers, when Mando hears they live in the middle of nowhere, his interest is piqued.
Mando enlists the help of another mercenary who was looking to stay hidden from the rest of the galaxy, Cara Dune. Earlier in the issue, they went toe to toe under some misunderstandings, but ultimately realized they were after the same thing—being hidden. That’s enough for her to join Mando and help the krill farmers. And if you’ve watched Chapter 4 already, you know that it isn’t that easy.
The Elephant in the Room
I enjoyed The Mandalorian #4 much more than the first three issues quite a bit. Part of that is definitely because I entered this issue understanding the premise of this limited series. I was also interested in how this creative team was going to handle the new set of baggage I hinted at above—Cara Dune. While the character is one of the best new additions to Star Wars in the Disney era, the actress that portrayed her in the first two seasons of The Mandalorian has the baggage.
There’s no reason to rehash all of that, but for the purposes of The Mandalorian, it seems that Disney/LucasFilm has washed its hands of Gina Carano… and possibly Cara Dune. Despite what the character’s future is, she’s a big part of The Mandalorian’s first two seasons. There is no way to write The Mandalorian #4 without Cara Dune, so I was very curious about how they were going to handle the character.
For starters, Rodney Barnes doesn’t address her by name at all in his adaptation (unless I missed it). And while that makes a lot of sense to not draw too much attention to the character, for those that are reading The Mandalorian #4 and have never watched the show, they don’t know who this integral person is. I can see how this is a tough road to navigate and looking at everything else in this issue, Barnes does a wonderful job with adapting, he did the best job he could with the circumstances given.
Georges Jeanty helps Barnes put more separation between Dune and Carano by giving us a version of the character that is close enough to pass as the same character, but not really looking like the same person from the show. This feels like an intentional choice as characters like Greef Karga looks much closer to Carl Weathers. Outside the Cara Dune of it all, the art team (which includes Jeanty, Karl Story, and Rachelle Rosenberg) creates a version of Chapter 4 that is much brighter. Not in a mood sense; visually it’s much easier to see everything in The Mandalorian #4 than in the show. It gives a new sense of what Sorgan looks like, both during the day and at night.
Now that I know what my expectations should be, I really enjoyed the latest issue of The Mandalorian. Not only did it take what has turned into a controversial character and handle her really well, but it also offered a new, brighter look to this part of the story we’ve seen on the show.
What did you think of the latest issue of Marvel’s Star Wars: The Mandalorian? Let us know in the comments below and stick with Dork Side of the Force for more Star Wars news and reviews!