Even if you have yet to see the show, I’m sure you have clocked the memes on your social media. The Mandalorian brought us “baby Yoda” aka the meme that keeps giving. But awesome puppet aside is the show any cop?
For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, it centres around a Mandalorian bounty hunter. They wear the same armour donned by Boba and Jango Fett, so it’s fair to say the main character looks cool. It is based in between the original trilogy and the brand new trilogy. So around the end of the Empire and the formation of the First Order.
Mandalorian Plot (relatively spoiler-free)
So basically the Mandolorian (or Mando as he is often called) is a bounty hunter, so perhaps unsurprisingly it follows him collecting bounties. He does this with atypically cool weaponry and generally looking like an absolute bad-ass, as things develop there is an intriguing main plot which the story wraps around. This is not “creature of the week” fair.
This is Star Wars, but not quite as you know it. Remember back when Firefly was on? it got masses of plaudits and a lot of comparisons to Star Wars. Here we can’t help but compare the Mandolorian to Firefly. The Western vibe it’s trying to put across is evident right from the opening scene of the first episode. So much so that it feels a bit like somebody took a bunch of Star Wars characters and accidentally dumped them on the wrong set and started filming.
I have to give the show its due. In terms of the costumes, the backdrops, it is exactly what you would expect from the Star Wars franchise. If you were worried that the move to the small screen would result in a smaller budget, fear not. The big battle scene in the first episode could have been taken from any of the Star Wars movies save for one small difference…the music.
Not quite sound
I get why they have done this, but the music is supposed to set the tone. Instead of the rousing orchestral numbers, the movies enjoy they are replaced with a score that suits that of a Western, and it is because of this choice that I came to realise just how important the music is to the Star Wars movies. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t that the score is bad, it just isn’t Star Wars and it IS noticeable.
Acting and characters
The first episode doesn’t spend too long dwelling on any of the characters bar the show’s namesake. Unfortunately, he isn’t exactly Captain Charisma. If this is a Western then he is the archetypal lone gunslinger, the strong, silent time – which is fine alongside a little light relief, but there isn’t much of that and consequently, it hits a bit of a bum note all round.
That is a big issue for the show, or at least was in the first episode. Here is the thing he is supposed to be an anti-hero, but in order to accomplish that you have to have the character be either sympathetic or ridiculously charismatic and from what I have seen thus far he isn’t either.
Perhaps not the droids we are looking for?
While it tough to argue that it doesn’t look like Star Wars. It certainly doesn’t sound like it and that really hurts it in my opinion. I understand that the team were trying to distance the show from the films but in doing that they may have alienated its core audience. That being said it seems to be doing rather well, so what do I know?