Wednesday, February 16, 2022

The Book of Boba Fett - Setup and Payoff

Well that was fun. 

Spoiler warning, because duh. 

Rebirth of Boba Fett

I imagine myself as an expert on characters in literature, why they're popular, what makes them interesting, but I am completely baffled by the appeal of the character Boba Fett. He only had a handful of lines and the biggest action scene he had in the OG movies he was eaten by a tentacle monster. Don't get me wrong, I love him too, I just don't understand why. 

Boba Fett's solo adventure gives us the bounty hunter as a fully realized character, helmet off and not an angsty pre-teen like what we got in the prequel series or Clone Wars. So how do we start up with the new fleshed out Boba Fett? We start with a visceral birthing scene out of the Sarlaac, complete with goo. 

Good way to pick up from when we last saw the Fett. 

Slow Burn

It's interesting to watch a series as it comes out episodically in this age. We see fan and critic reaction sometimes minutes after the show drops. Book of Boba Fett is a slow burn, establishing what happened to Boba after his visceral birth and following him taking Jabba's place as head crime boss on Tattooine. The show slips somewhere between The Supranos and Deadwood with more thinking and calculated strategies than outright jetpack action. 

A lion's share of the show comes from Boba Fett building his crew, including the orc looking guys that hung around Jabba's palace back in Jedi, his assassin lady friend, the galaxy's coolest Wookie who gives us our first onscreen instance of Wookie-rip-arms-out-of-sockets action, a group of kids who look like they escaped the set of Disney's Descendents, and a brand new rancor brought by Danny Trejo (Quick side note: Is Danny Trejo a Muppet? The only times I've seen him lately are with Muppets, including Muppets Most Wanted, Muppets Now! and Muppets Haunted Mansion. Is this a new thing or has he been a Muppet this whole time? Did we just never notice?)

Mandalorian Season 2 1/2

The Boba Fett crime lord plot comes to a screeching halt for two episodes as we take some time to catch up with everyone's other favorite masked Star Wars guy Mando and Disney's biggest cash cow Grogu. Mando's trying to get his honor back after he flashed his face in the season 2 finale, and Grogu has to choose which class he wants to be between being a Jedi knight or a Mandalorian bounty hunter. As an audience we are treated to a cameo from Rosario Dawson's Asoka Tano (Yay!) , a weird Grease montage of Mando building a new spaceship (Boo) and another CGI cameo from young Mark Hamil (ehhh?) before palling up with Boba for the finale. 

It All Comes Together

So Boba's biggest obstacle are a bunch of fish people wanting to use Tattooine to move the often talked about spice, which is either a drug, a seasoning or something they're stealing from the Dune set down the street. While Boba is crewing up the fish people team up with local crime lords, elected officials and Clone Wars flashback Cade Bane. 

The principal of Chekhov's gun states that if you show the audience a gun in the first act you better fire it by the third. In Book of Boba Fett every gun that's shown throughout the season is fired in the last episode, including a big one with a rancor shaped barrel. The finale is everything the show promised to be, an epic space cowboy battle that gave us all the Boba Fett action we could handle, and Grogu was right in the middle of it for Disney to hedge their bets on the marketing success. 

I've said it before and I'll say it again: This is the Star Wars I want, fun space adventures and not the family drama the movies have weirdly become. More space cowboys less space Dynasty and we'll be golden. 

Also I want answers to the Danny Trejo Muppet question. 


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