The Mandalorian S2: "The Marshal" spoiler review
It's been a day Star Wars fans have long awaited, the debut of The Mandalorian Season 2 and goodness, Jon Favreau and company did not disappoint.
How do you top the last shot of Season 1, Episode 1? Well, you don’t. However, you can still save a major stunner for the last shot and leave fans talking and begging for more. The following is a collaboration between Pete Fletzer and Arezou Amin. HRRE WE GO!
*There are MAJOR SPOILERS below the image, proceed at your own risk*
The show opened – not surprisingly – with the scene we had been shown in the trailer and MNF preview: Our (anti-) hero strides into a fight club of some sort to meet with a one-eyed creature to gain information on where he can find more Mandalorians to use the network of warriors in hiding and return The Child (aka Baby Yoda) to “his kind.” It is still unclear what “his kind” refers to. Is it his species or “sorcerers” known as the Jedi. That answer wasn’t made any clearer in this 52-minute episode.
Not surprisingly, the Mando is double-crossed, but, like the audience, he knew it was coming. He learns of a Mandalorian that can be found on Tatooine. So, Din Djarin returns to the planet that seems to be where all the action is, even though Luke Skywalker once famously called it the farthest from the bright center of the universe,.
He returns to Docking Bay 35 to the woman he befriended in episode 5, Peli Motto (played by Amy Sedaris) and asks about finding the mysterious Mandalorian. There are two things that are demonstrated by this relationship. First, never count anyone out from the Mandalorian’s story. Like a great serial, everyone he meets, he treats well and they could return to be called upon for help in the future. We saw that at the culmination of Season 1 with Kuill, IG-11, Greef and Cara. The second insight is that his experience with IG-11 has returned his trust in droids as he allows them to work on the Razor Crest this time around. R5-D4 is called out by name (gratuitously) and shows him how to find Mos Pego.
Upon his arrival into the sparsely populated mining town, The Mandalorian is introduced to a man in familiar looking armor. The man is the town Marshal, Cobb Vanth, who first originated Aftermath series, marking the first time a Star Wars character has jumped from the page to live action. While the story he tells of how he acquired Boba Fett’s armor is slightly different than the book, one can chalk it up to telling a story on a journey and leaving out unnecessary details. We learn enough to know that when we last saw Boba Fett go into the sarlacc pit in Return of the Jedi, his armor made it out and into the hands of Jawas.
Din Djarin wants the armor and Cobb wants to protect his town from the deadly Krayt Dragon. People who have only watched the movies are familiar with this massive creature: it’s the skeleton C-3PO sees when walking in the opposite direction of R2-D2 in A New Hope and it is also the sound Obi-Wan makes to scare away the Tusken Raiders after Luke is attacked.
Speaking of Tusken Raiders, a theme alluded to in season 1 is revisited in this episode. While evoking the classic “Cowboys and Indians” motif from old westerns, they take the relationship head on and show a more fleshed out picture of indigenous people (in this case, the Tuskens). The Mandalorian acts as a mediator in the relationship between the miners and the local natives and negotiates a way for them to work to mutual benefit. Never once do they paint the Sand People as savages, but they do address their culture.
A deal is made and they work together. Timothy Olyphant’s Boba Fett armored Cobb Vanth is a phenomenal scrawny cowboy character – complete with bandana and low slung holster. When his townspeople and the Tusken Raiders are overrun by the dragon, he and Din Djarin share a dual rocketpack flight to face the creature together. Eventually, the beast is defeated in a Jonah and the Whale-esque way with the Mando bursting from the beast’s belly.
With the deal completed, Vanth keeps his word and gives the Mandalorian armor to Din and the hero (and Child) ride off into the twin sunset. A perfectly acceptable ending for a fantastic, action packed first episode. But, this is The Mandalorian…
As the camera pans back on the scene, we see a human in Tusken Raider clothing and no mask watching the Mando ride away. Just as the credits are ready to roll, the mysterious figure turns around revealing that it was actor Temura Morrison watching from afar. Temura, of course, famously played Jango Fett in Attack of the Clones and is the live-action voice for all the clonetroopers. Jango’s only “natural” child/clone was Boba Fett. After 37 years we now have confirmation that Boba Fett did, in fact, survive the Sarlacc pit.
While this may not be as much of an “OMG moment” as The Child in the first Mandalorian episode, it is a tremendous easter egg for Star Wars scholars. It also sets up the possibility that we will see Boba Fett pursue the Mandalorian in an almost meta plot device as many people unfamiliar with Star Wars lore initially assumed the titular character in the series was Boba Fett.
Episode 1 of Season 2 of the Lucasfilm / Disney+ series, The Mandalorian, had a big hill to climb. The first season, which debuted a year ago, skyrocketed to the top of the streaming download ratings, dethroning Stranger Things within its first few weeks. The Mouse is banking on the Pedro Pascal-starring show to keep you hooked with its winning ways. But how do you keep adding to the lure of a TV program that has won over the entire planet with a little green baby? You bring back arguably one of the most famous side characters in the entire Star Wars saga.
What easter eggs did you find? How did you like this episode and where do you think the story is headed? You can continue this Star Wars conversation with us now by watching this week's Streaming Star Wars entry. 35 minutes where we gush about our favorite moments.