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After the critical success of the last live-action Star Wars show Andor, along with the previous seasons of The Mandalorian, it’s needless to say that people have been waiting very patiently for new adventures with Din Djarin (played by Pedro Pascal) and everyone’s favorite puppet, Grogu.
First off, if you haven't seen The Book of Boba Fett, now is the time to do so: this story picks up right where it left off. For the first episode of the new season, it feels as if the audience is just thrown right into the deep end. At first, this season’s overarching story seems to have started in The Book of Boba Fett and is just a continuation, rather than being something of its own. This is made ironic because Boba Fett isn’t even seen in this episode, but the events of his show seem to be spilling over in more ways than expected. It is almost like Disney is now trying to make their Star Wars shows more like their Marvel shows and have everything all interconnected with each other.
Back to the bounty board
Coming back from that tangent, the episode itself is perfectly fine. It opens up immediately to some awesome Mandalorian battle with a giant sea lizard that brings the tone back to fun action instead of the drama that we’ve been shown through Andor and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Right after that, we get a conversation with the Armorer (Emily Swallow) that recaps the events of what we last saw in The Book of Boba Fett: Din took off his helmet, and he is therefore (ironically enough) no longer considered a Mandalorian by his original tribe.
The only way to once again be accepted into his clan is to go to the waters beneath the mines of Mandalore itself, which may seem to be an easy task, but the mines themselves were destroyed long ago. Mando still seems up to the challenge, of course, so that seems to be the main story that this season must tackle.
Pedro Pascal truly is the father of the century. After portraying Joel in the highly successful The Last of Us series and now coming back to play Mando, complete with a scene where he and Grogu do nothing but cuddle in the cockpit of their new, upgraded ship based on the Naboo Starfighter that was seen in The Phantom Menace. After that cute scene, the two return to the season one planet, Nevarro, to meet an “old friend”, a man named Greef Karga (Carl Weathers). After a short scene of Mando and Greef catching up with one another, there is an awesome shootout scene that happens in front of a school, which is something that made me super excited for more western style action scenes that we’ll see in the rest of the season.
Mando realizes that he is unable to make it to the mines of Mandalore with just him and Grogu, no matter how powerful the young lad is in the Force. After Greef shows him a commemorative statue of IG-11, Mando has the wonderful idea to try and rebuild him after the droid sacrificed himself at the end of season one. However, when taking him to the group of Anzellans in hopes to fix him, they seem to be unable to help.
As an avid believer that Babu Frik (an Anzellan) was the most entertaining part of The Rise of Skywalker, it warmed my heart to see that there are tons more just like him in the galaxy. Greef promises to try and have IG-11 rebuilt, but shortly after that scene, Mando and Grogu make their way towards their target, but not before stopping by the planet Kalevala to see another old friend, Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff).
When we last saw these two characters in the same room, they weren’t necessarily on the best terms, and that still stands here. Bo-Katan is still bitter at Mando after “stealing” the Darksaber from her after their battle with Moff Giddeon. This bitterness is still clearly inside of Bo-Katan as she tries to shrug off Mando after he asks to join her. She warns him that there is nothing magic about the mines of Mandalore, but that he can go to them if he wishes. Although it seems that Mando will not have much assistance on this mission, it is clear to see that there is action and adventure around the corner waiting to be uncovered in future episodes.
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