The Mandalorian: Chapter 14: The Tragedy
What is it ? : The Mandalorian is playing with Grogu aboard the Razor Crest, practicing as the child pulls the control knob from his hand using the Force as they approach the planet Tython.
They land the Razor Crest a short distance from the "seeing stone", leaving the ship a short distance from the flattened top of the hill where the domed stone sits in a clearing surrounded by other standing stones. He sits Grogu on the domed stone, and looks for some way to activate it, when he hears a ship arriving in the atmosphere above them, using his helmet to zoom into it revealing that it is Slave One.
He turns back to Grogu who is now meditating on the stone and surrounded by a column of energy, and the Mandalorian cannot take Grogu, so heads to meet whoever is disembarking the now landed vessel.
He confronts the pilot of the vessel, ending up in a standoff pointing his gun at the Jango Fett clone we saw on Tatooine, who reveals he is Boba Fett, and is accompanied by Fennec Shand, who the Mandalorian though had been killed on Tatooine (back in season one). She targets the Child, until all three of them agree to lower their weapons, and Fett asks the Mandalorian to remove his Jet Pack as well.
They speak, and Fett reveals that there is a tracking bug aboard the Razor Crest and the Empire will arrive imminently, and that all he wants is the Mandalorian Armour that the Mandalorian took from Cobb Vanth. Refusing to return it because it belongs to the Mandalorian people and Fett hasn't sworn to the code, Fett swears that no harm will come to the Child in exchange for his armour.
Another ship arrives overhead, and the three scatter, with the Mandalorian heading back to Grogu, and the other 2 intercepting the Stormtroopers disembarking the transport.
The Mandalorian finds Grogu still encased in the energy field, and is knocked unconscious as he tries to penetrate the field, while Fennec Shand fires her sniper rifle at the Stormtroopers and Boba Fett spots the open hatch on the Razor Crest and heads towards it.
Fennec takes out multiple Stormtroopers, but they set up a Mortar and a E-Web Heavy Repeating Blaster and she becomes pinned down, although manages to take out the E-Web with a falling rock loosened by the blasts on her position. The Mandalorian awakens and joins the fight against the Stormtroopers, who are joined by more as a second transport lands, but the battle turns as Boba Fett arrives in his reclaimed armour, and he skilfully takes out numerous Stormtroopers with his Tusken Raider Gaderffii stick, until the Stormtroopers begin to retreat. And we see Grogu come out of his trance and collapse unconscious on the stone.
The ground is shaken however with a massive explosion, as Turbolaser fire from above destroys the Razor Crest, reducing it to smouldering wreckage, as the group spots an Arquitens Cruiser overhead. The Transports begin to lift off, but Boba Fett fires his backpack rocket, and takes one of the two ships out, but it crashes into the other as it explodes, and the Mandalorian tells Fett, good shot, but Fett claims to have been aiming at the other one.
Aboard the Cruiser, a gunnery officer reports the destruction of the Razor Crest to Moff Gideon, who orders his Dark Troopers to retrieve the Child, and four Robotic figures rocket down the planets surface, where the collect the defenceless Grogu, before igniting their rockets again and returning to the ship carrying the Child.
Fett tries to intercept the Dark Troopers in Slave One, but the Mandalorian is worried about harming the Child, as asks Fennec to call off the attack, which she does, remarking that the New Republic controls this sector, but Fett comments that the Empire appears to be back, as the Cruiser jumps to Hyperspace.
Fett demonstrates a recording in his armour showing that his father was the legitimate owner of it, and that he claims it through his family connection, which the Mandalorian agrees to, collecting two things from the wreckage of the Razor Crest, the Beskar Staff, and the control stick knob which Grogu liked playing with. He tells Fett their deal is complete, but Fett tells him that he swore that no harm would come to the Child, so the pair will help him recover Grogu.
They arrive on Nevarro, where the Mandalorian meets Cara Dune, and congratulates her on her appointment as a New Republic Marshall, asking for her help as he needs to break out Migs Mayfeld, who he left on the New Republic prison ship back in season one, as he is an ex-imperial officer, and she agrees, telling him that Mayfeld is being held in the Karthon Chop Fields for 50 years for killing a New Republic officer.
Aboard the Imperial Cruiser, Moff Gideon enters a holding cell where the Child is tossing two Stormtroopers around the cell, but he waits until the Child tires himself out, before commenting on how good he has become at doing that, and showing Grogu the Dark Saber. He then orders a Stormtrooper to stun the child and put him in restraints, as he turns and orders them to contact Doctor Pershing and tell him that they have retrieved his donor.
High Points : We get Boba Fett being the absolute badass that we've always been told that he was, and Temuera Morrison smoothly steps into the role and is easy to like. And the action is fantastic, and Fett fighting with his Gaderffii stick is far more impressive that the Ahsoka fighting in the previous episode, with his hits having a weight and impact which makes them feel absolutely brutal as they smash through the Stormtrooper armour.
The episode is the shortest we've seen for a Mandalorian episode, running at only 32 minutes, and directed by Robert Rodriguez, looking beautiful, sounding great, and without a minute of wasted time, it's the best episode this season, and this season has been pretty great.
Low Points : While Temuera Morrison is great, and I think a bunch of his portrayal of Ulpius in the Spartacus series comes across here, as he is fantastic in hand to hand combat. But his build is obviously very different to that of Jeremy Bulloch in Return of the Jedi. Which would be completely forgivable if this was in the Sequel Era, some 30 years later, but we're not, we're only a few years after that movie, and far too soon for middle aged spread to have set in in the 30'ish year old Fett.
Also, I never got the feeling that Fett was a super honourable man from his appearances in the original trilogy, but here we get him being more like the main character of the series, holding to a promise. Not a massive problem, and one which makes the character more interesting, but a change never-the-less.
I also still getting a bit of overload with the amount of call backs in the series, however now it's to previous episodes. We get Fennec Shand showing up again, even though we thought her dead in her previous appearance. It doesn't bother me about Cara Dune or Moff Gideon, but Migs Mayfeld I definitely wasn't interested in seeing again (although that might just be my personal bias against Bill Barr who portrays him, who I really don't find that entertaining), and a mention of Doctor Pershing. My wife who enjoys the show, but doesn't pay that much attention to it, was constantly asking who these people were, and that really made me aware of how wrapped up in it's own continuity the series has become, with viewers having to remember every character from every episode just in case they appear once again.
So what do you really think ? : I really, really enjoyed this episode, action packed, with real movement forwards in the series plotline, all packed into just over half an hour of television, the Mandalorian remains one of the best series ever made, fantastic.
I also have to comment, that as the episode revealed it's title, me and my youngest son turned to each other and repeated the popular meme, "Have you heard to the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise?"
Final Words : So, with Grogu captured by Moff Gideon, and potentially being used as a Midichlorian donor for a Snoke clone, who will build the remnants of the Empire into the First Order, the Mandalorian seems to be building the back story of the sequel movies far better than they ever bothered to do. With two episodes to go, I'm guessing next episode we'll have the Mandalorian building his gang for rescuing Grogu, probably getting Bo-Katan, Cobb Vanth, Cara Dune, Greef Karga, perhaps Ahsoka, the gang from the jail break episode of season one. And then rescuing the child in the season finale.
But as always, we shall see, as this series has managed to throw in a few unexpected twists already. . .
Score : 9.5/10
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