With all that's been written and/or spoken this week across hundreds if not thousands of vlogs and blogs regarding the -- ahem -- state of The Mandalorian, you want to know what I thought?
Well. Aren't I special?
No, I won't do it. I'm not gonna go into a deep dive on the good, the bad, or the ugly of the Season Three. I have spouted off here and there in small ways about the state of the Empire, and I think most of what I said in those spaces still apply. At this point in my creative life, I've no compunction to pen columns on every show I watch -- trust me when I say that I just wouldn't have that kind of time -- but since a few of you have emailed me privately asking for a reflection I'll share just a note or two or three as they come to me off the top of my head. (So there will likely be spelling errors as I'm not checking this.)
Unlike previous seasons, Season Three's side stories just didn't quite seem to add up to the program's whole arc. Put simply, we spent a whole episode getting to know Dr. Pershing and that Imperial spy (name escapes me at the moment, and -- on that count -- I'd question whether or not it's even that important), and -- sigh -- we didn't really even require that information. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't we already know the extent to which Moff Gideon was interested in cloning? Maybe we didn't know the exact particulars, but in a show that seems to have developed its own shorthand I'm kinda surprised that producers invested so much time, effort, and money with Pershing. I'm not saying it wasn't interesting. I'm saying it wasn't necessary.
Second? Yeah. Mando's kinda/sorta lost some of his glory. He's lost a good amount of his sass. His strut and general manliness. He had to be rescued many times this season, and, yes, he even had to be rescued in the finale. Sure, maybe he had some great action before Bo-Katan showed up, but she still had to pull his Beskar-covered ass out of the fire (as did Grogu), so there's that. And as for that action? Meh. The barrier shield scene really felt a little too much like a callback to The Phantom Menace for me, and -- while I can appreciate 'fan service' as much as the next guy -- I would've liked something a bit more original. It wasn't awful. It was just a bit predictable.
Third? Still not liking the starfighter over the Razor's Crest. Sorry. Gotta say it.
Last? Well, I'll have to concur with an awful lot of what's been said out there in cyberspace in that the whole season just kinda/sorta felt a bit lazy, a bit directionless, and maybe even a tad predictable. The only stuff I think I truly appreciated were the bits involving some of the lore and legends about Mandalore -- this kind of thing typically fascinates me anyway -- and I think it was handled reasonably well without feeling like too much exposition (though not perfectly). I have read that the season needed to be reshaped a bit to bring Grogu back in after the events of The Book Of Boba Fett; and -- like so many -- I'm still questioning whether or not that was the right thing to do. Sure, he sells toys ... but where can you go with it after that?
See what I mean? I really had nothing of any major significance to add to the whole Mando debate. If I did, then I'd happily pony it up and take a shot of some clickbait hits, which I'm never opposed to directly. But when a season finale leaves you kinda/sorta cold? Rather than pile on, I'll hope that they find some new direction now that the bounty hunter seems to have gotten back into that business.
As always, thanks for reading ... and may the Force be with you!