Saturday, January 4, 2020

This is The Way: Why The Mandalorian is A New Hope for Star Wars

The Mandalorian Season Two Announced

"Star Wars live action TV? Ummm....ok" were my thoughts as I signed up for Disney+ and watched the pilot episode of The Mandalorian.

I casually watched the first episode fully expecting it to be some story about a bounty hunter who gets different jobs and does his thing and gets his money.

Then The Child changed everything.

Baby Yoda in “The Mandalorian”

Aside from being the greatest thing to hit the Internet since Baby Shark, The Mandalorian's brilliant incorporation of The Child (aka "Baby Yoda") immediately caught my interest, and memes of the little green goober now take up a solid portion of recent pictures on my iPhone.

Beyond just the cute factor, it was the perfect hook to start a television series. Because even at the end of season one I still am asking myself

Who is this creature
What is he?
How did he come to be there? 

Hush, and Jon Favreau will tell you. It is a tale. A tale of a bounty hunter, and the Internet Sensation of 2019
(#SorryNotSorry I love me some Hunchback)

Now at the end of Season 1, I'm super stoked for what The Mandalorian means for the future of Star Wars. With the nine films in the Skywalker Saga, stand-alone films, animated TV series, and a whole host of Expanded Universe books and comics (whether or not Disney deems them as canon), the Star Wars universe is rich, and there is literally a galaxy of storytelling opportunities. I'm glad Disney chose to go in a direction that isn't just trying to fit everything into the Skywalker Saga. 

What makes The Mandalorian work is what made Rogue One a good movie. Taking a familiar universe, telling a good story, and helping the audience love the ordinary characters - those who aren't a Jedi or Sith or a sidekick to a Skywalker.

Besides a brilliant setting, The Mandalorian incorporates elements that make good television great:

  • Moral Dilemma -- in the transition between the Empire and the New Republic, and living by a warrior's creed, Mandalorian treats us to a not-so-simple world of right and wrong in the travels of Din Djarin.
  • Humor -- between two main characters, one who is an alien child and the other who wears a helmet, there's a perfect dynamic between Din Djarin and The Child. It's not overdone or cheesy; the humor is subtle, original, and doesn't even have to involve words
  • Easter Eggs -- instead of stooping low and engaging in petty fan service, Jon Favreau and his team incorporate a lot of really fun Easter eggs for the casual and hardcore Star Wars enthusiasts
  • Mystery -- I mean.....did Jedi Grand Master Yoda have a kid? I wanna know more about my new favorite green baby!
  • Cliffhanger Ending -- the final episode left me with just as many burning questions as the first one did. There's so many ways this story could unfold and suddenly I find myself counting down the days to Season 2!

The Mandalorian is one of the best recent shows to come to television. I'll fight you if you disagree with me. 😜

I have spoken.

See here for our review of The Mandalorian Season Two.
baby yoda sips tea

Also check out our reviews for Star Wars Episode IX (Dark Side and Light Side)