Mandalorian series: A new take on the crime underworld of Star Wars

Mackenzie Bernas, Staff Writer

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By Mackenzie Bernas

(SPOILERS AHEAD!!!)

Mandalorian’s premiere comes out swinging with Disney’s expensive take on the life of a lone Mandalorian bounty hunter while exploring the criminal underworld of Star Wars. The Mandalorian is played by Pedro Pascal, more popularly known for getting his head split open by the Mountain in Game of Thrones as Oberyn. The story is set five years after The Return of the Jedi, which means that this is after Jabba the Hutt enslaved Leia, Yoda and Darth Vader’s death, the destruction of the Death Star, and the fall of the empire. After everything was said and done, the episode leaves the audience wanting an encore and shows an interesting side of the crime underworld, especially giving more background to the infamous Mandalorian bounty hunters.

Something I wasn’t expecting in this show were the Western movie clichès. The episode opens with a classic bar-bullies beat down by Pascal to save the “damsel,” who happens to be his bounty target. Despite the scene being a common trope, it was an enjoyable and nice way of letting viewers know that the Mandalorian can kick some serious alien butt. The music also fits the commonplace Western theme, and almost made me forget what show I was watching. Another Western clichè I caught was the “man tames steed” scene which transfers over to bounty hunter tames ugly alien rat-like mount. 

The helmet never coming off of Pascal’s head seemed like it would be problematic, but it turned out feeling mysterious and his conversations revealed a lot about his character. I thought I wouldn’t be able to connect to a character without seeing his or her face, but it only made for a cooler character and had me relying on his actions to be a substitute for his expressions. <<SPOILER AHEAD>> Even the scene that made every audience member excited with baby Yoda’s appearance had Pascal in a helmet. <<END OF SPOILER>>

One theory that came from this episode is that the main character is an orphan or “foundling” that was taken in by the Mandalorians because he uses his much needed credits to make a plate of armor for his shoulder out of Mandalorian metal. Another scene that supports this theory is when Pascal is taming his steed and is more than ready to throw in the towel before the old alien convinces him otherwise by telling a real Mandalorian could do it. He might have some insecurities about not being true blood Mandalorian, and tries to prove himself multiple times. And this isn’t a theory, but a lot of questions were raised from the tiny green 50-year-old target Pascal decided to save from the way-too-cool bounty droid. I for one am eager to learn more about the Yoda species. This episode did feel like a mini-episode in an eight-episode season, but expectations are high after the baby Yoda made everyone’s faces do a 180 to sheer excitement.