WARNING: The following contains SPOILERS for The Mandalorian Season 3, Episode 6 – Chapter 22: “Guns For Hire.”
What does it mean to be a Mandalorian?
This is the question the series has been asking since Chapter 1. No matter how many side quests, laugh-out-loud moments, or head-scratching plot developments there may be, the show has yet to stray from where it began. It seeks to show us the answer one episode at a time.
While our individual interpretations of “the answer” may vary, the question is at the heart of every new installment whether it stares you directly in the face or not.
This week, being a Mandalorian means that sometimes a little detective work goes a long way. And Din Djarin, the internet’s favorite himbo, is actually not the worst at this. I may give him a hard time, but honestly, the man’s got some skills.
While I won’t exaggerate and say Bryce Dallas Howard should lead all of Star Wars storytelling, it’s impossible to deny her deep understanding and passion for the franchise (and directing in general). She understands that Star Wars can be heartwarming, dire, and silly simultaneously. She understands that in every new story added to Star Wars, there should be a little something for everyone.
We have battle droids. We have X-Files meets Star Wars (you can’t look at Din and Bo together in this episode and tell me I’m wrong). We have an innocent alien love story! Come on!!
This episode is also the perfect example of “Celebrities in Star Wars” done right. Do you notice Jack Black and Lizzo and Christopher Lloyd? Yes, of course you do, that’s the point. But almost as soon as your brain recognizes these are people you have seen before, you find yourself immersed completely in their characters and you forget that Jack Black and Lizzo and Christopher Lloyd are in Star Wars oh my GOD.
But let’s touch on the most important part of this week’s endeavor: Din Djarin figuring out that Bo-Katan actually HAS earned the darksaber after all. She is the rightful ruler. She is the one who will unite her people.
I should have known sitting down for this episode that Howard would continue Bo-Katan’s story from where it began in “Chapter 11 – The Heiress.” Once bitter, desperate and closed off from all possibilities of hope, Bo-Katan truly has been reborn. She is gentler. More patient. She is selfless, putting the needs of her fellow Mandalorians — and strangers — above her own.
As much as one can when the future of your homeworld is still so uncertain, anyway.
After all this time, after risking her life and tossing aside her anger to save another, she finally earned her place as the leader she always deserved to be.
New episodes of The Mandalorian stream Wednesdays exclusively on Disney+.
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