THE MANDALORIAN Season 2 Review - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

Home Top Ad

Post Top Ad


Alexander Wallace takes a spoiler free look at season two of The Mandalorian.

As a Star Wars fan since about fourth grade or so, it felt like the first season of The Mandalorian was what I had always wanted from the franchise. I was admittedly late to actually watching the first season, having done so on the first full day of lockdown in mid-March, and so was similar here; I prefer to binge the whole thing in a night rather than to watch it bit by bit, week by week.

Season Two is first and foremost concerned with the relationship between the titular Mandalorian and his little friend that had bloomed as they try to escape the perfidy of Moff Gideon. Here, the plot becomes something overall more cohesive than the first season, with a much more defined arc framed around that particular relationship. It’s a plot that brings you to many different planets and many characters, old and new, with several surprises for the attentive fan.

The episode-to-episode plots run the gamut from heists to rescues to an obvious pastiche of a stock Western trope. This series encapsulates so well why we all fell in love with Star Wars in the first place (and I envy those who were able to see it in theaters in 1977); The Mandalorian spares no expense in surrounding you with the wonder of the galaxy far, far away. I particularly liked the ever-frontier Tatooine (although I do wish they’d branch out a bit from the old planets), and a certain port city where our titular character has to deliver some precious cargo.

More than the first season, the show makes some extended references to the expanded universe here. Those who loved The Clone Wars and Rebels will be quite delighted with what they see, as there are multiple important characters from both. It seems to me that with The Mandalorian, and especially this season, Disney are trying to fix what they did so poorly in the sequel trilogy; they are both paying homage to the wide mythos that the franchise has built up (it can feel almost like a religion at times; after all, we get the term ‘canon’ from Biblical studies), and plunging boldly ahead in the way that the sequel trilogy never quite did. It feels like the Star Wars I fell in love with all those years ago, and I’m certain many fans agree with me. That being said, there are moments that do feel like they are setting up the new trilogy; it’s never explicitly stated, but I couldn’t help but think that some scenes were showing a nascent First Order, come to terrorize the galaxy in a manner befitting the evil men they idolize.

I came away from this season being all the more convinced of Pedro Pascal’s acting prowess (having been shown such possibilities with the first season and with Prospect). Even more so than season one, he get many opportunities to show off what he can do, and the increased focus on his relationship with the little alien creature lets him show emotional range. There’s one particular sequence involving the infiltration of an Imperial facility where he is confronted with the comforting myths of his people, and he reckons with that in a way that is truly incredible to watch.

Overall, season two of The Mandalorian is nothing less than a triumph. If Disney have any business sense whatsoever, they’ll treat Star Wars like this from here on out, and not like they did with the sequel trilogy (which I overall enjoyed, but they very much felt like corporate products rather than the flawed passion projects that were the prequels). Disney finally seem to have learned that the richness of the Star Wars mythos is something to be embraced, not discarded like flotsam. I hope that the newly announced slate of shows set within the Star Wars universe will follow through with what this season promises.

Alexander Wallace is an alternate historian, reader, and writer who moderates the Alternate History Online group on Facebook and the Alternate Timelines Forum on Proboards. He writes regularly for the Sea Lion Press blog and for NeverWas magazine, and also appears regularly on the Alternate History Show with Ben Kearns. He is a member of several alternate history fora under the name 'SpanishSpy.'

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post Top Ad