HomeReviews'I Have Spoken', The Mandalorian: Chapter 1 Breakdown

‘I Have Spoken’, The Mandalorian: Chapter 1 Breakdown

[Spoilers Ahead]

Chapter One of The Mandalorian was visually stunning and story-wise, as compelling as any Star Wars fan could ask for. Not only did it leave me wanting more, but it sold me on the idea that Star Wars wasn’t only made to premiere on the big screen. Instead, I can lounge on my comfy couch and consume all the Star Wars content I want with the push of a button. To me, this is one factor of the Star Wars experience that has been missing for all of these years. You could argue that this was possible through Netflix and Hulu but having ALL of your favorite Star Wars content in one place is extremely convenient, not to mention MUCH cheaper!

The Mandalorian is the start of something truly special. With that said, let’s take a dive into the underworld of The Mandalorian!

Breakdown

Cast:

  • Pedro Pascal as the Mandalorian
  • Horatio Sanz as Mythrol
  • Carl Weathers as Greef Carga
  • Werner Herzog as The Client
  • Emily Swallow as The Armorer
  • Nick Nolte as Kuill
  • Taika Waititi as IG-11

To begin with, let’s give a nod to Disney for that unique Star Wars fanfare. If I could give one suggestion, I think they should use FUNKO Pops! next time. That would be epic! On a side note, did you know that the 20th Century Fox fanfare is back for some of the Skywalker saga films? Yeah, now that’s cool. Moving on.

Hey, Mando! You spilled my blue milk! That stuff doesn’t come cheap at Disney World! Seriously, that stuff doesn’t come cheap. In all honesty, I don’t know what kind of drink it was, but it sure as heck wasn’t the Mando’s fault. If this guy cared so much about his drink, he wouldn’t have been trying to rip this blue alien’s glands out all over his table. In any case, I don’t think that would have been a nice scene to behold.

The whole point of intimidating your opponent, is well, to intimidate him. If anyone did that, this Mandalorian did. His entrance reminds me of the many Western’s I’ve seen throughout the years. This scene in particular reminds me of Matt Dillon from the classic TV show Gunsmoke. When he enters the saloon, you can feel his presence. Whether that’s a good thing or not, only the ones complaining about their spilt milk would know.

And clearly, it wasn’t a good thing. One thing led to another and in the end, it led to one getting his arm nearly torn apart and the other…well, let’s just say we might need to call in a custodian. There’s a mess on aisle 4! Two messes to be exact. During this whole time, our fellow blue alien, Mythrol just watches in disbelief.

A suggestion for the second victim…don’t try to run away from a fight. It’s never going to end well. Finish what you started. However, in this case, the Mandalorian clearly finished it. Pretty violent for a PG outing.

After a mere morning exercise for the Mandalorian, he walks over to Mythrol to claim his prize. His prize is Mythrol. He’s his bounty, and he’s come to collect. After Mythrol thanks the Mandalorian, our fellow bounty hunter places a bounty puck on the table in front of him. The bounty puck reveals a holographic image of Mythrol. The Mandalorian has officially claimed his prize.

Our fellow bounty hunter likes to transport his cargo by speeders. In doing so, he decides to go with an old broken down one instead of a newer class model, simply because it was controlled by a droid. After closer inspection, it also looks like it could be Luke’s speeder from A New Hope. Anyways, from the sounds of it, the Mandalorian doesn’t trust droids. I wonder why? The reason for this is probably because droids capture all of the sights, sounds, and movements of its environment and stores it to its memory banks. My guess is that this feature didn’t bode well with him at one point or another on one of his past bounty hunting expeditions. This leads me to believe that a skilled bounty hunter like himself wants to leave no tracks to follow. Smart move.

After finding a suitable speeder to his liking, the Mandalorian transports his bounty to his ship the Razor Crest. Once dropped off by their Star Wars-esque Uber driver, the driver warns them to stay off the ice- and for a very good reason. Because shortly after, both the speeder and driver get swallowed up by some underwater beast. As the beast directs its attacks at the Razor Crest, the Mandalorian shocks it with some sort of weapon. Once again, the Mandalorian lives to fight another day.

Unfortunately, it seems like he never gets a break. Mythrol is the Mandalorian’s polar opposite. He never shuts up. He ends up wandering around the ship when to his surprise, he finds a multitude of bounty marks encased in carbonite. Little does he know that the Mandalorian is standing next to him and gets pushed into a carbon freezing chamber. Game over.

In all honesty, this segment between the Mandalorian and Mythrol on the ship was probably the weakest link of the episode. With Mythrol trying to provide some comic relief to help sanitize the violent beginning, the relief came too soon. Usually comic relief occurs later on when more serious segments have occurred. Although the comedic aspect wasn’t awkward, it sure wasn’t needed at this moment in the episode.

Not to worry though, the Mandalorian finally makes his way to drop off his cargo to none other than Greef Carga. Greef Carga is in the business of giving out bounties to bounty hunters. Although he likes stiffing them for their work, he at least sets up the Mandalorian with a profitable yet mysterious bounty.

The Mandalorian moves on up the ladder to Carga’s boss. Entering a room with four stormtroopers, he meets The Client, who then sets the Mandalorian off on another adventure. Some may say, more cryptic than usual. During their exchange, The Client doesn’t really give him much to go on. Little information is given as to the whereabouts of this bounty, only this: a tracker, 50 years old, and while it’s preferred for the bounty to be alive and kicking, proof of death would suffice as well. Fair enough.

A down payment of Beskar steel is made and the Mandalorian leaves to visit a ritualistic Mandalorian armory where he has it melted down to forge a new shiny piece of armor. He waits while The Armorer forges his new shoulder plate. For those who don’t know, Beskar steel is a versatile iron only found on the planet of Mandalore.

During the forging of the Mandalorian’s armor, a flashback of his childhood is shown. There’s not much to dissect, but what we find out is that he’s a foundling. During this flashback, we see him hidden or captured by what I think to be the Empire. This sets up a huge dynamic for his character. If it was the Empire who captured him, what would they want with a young boy unless he was maybe Force sensitive? Capturing Force sensitive children isn’t something new for the Empire. This was shown even in the animated TV show Rebels. If this is true about the Mandalorian, he may have more skills in his arsenal than originally thought.

So far, I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but a lot of these characters are only referred to by their role or profession: The Client, The Bounty, The Armorer, etc. This sets up a contrasting dynamic in The Mandalorian’s storytelling capabilities.

Once again, the Mandalorian embarks on another dangerous and possibly suicidal mission as he makes his way to the desert planet of where his bounty tracker led him to.

Almost immediately, he is attacked by these creatures called blurggs. After one nearly ripping his arm off, he is saved by the unlikeliest of fellows- Kuill. Kuill is shown riding one of these beasts and later, shows the Mandalorian how to ride one as well. It’s a shame that Kuill’s screen time is so short because unfortunately, I fear that this might be the end of his character. All in all, I really enjoyed his character and hope that we’ll be able to see him cross paths with the Mandalorian sometime soon.

But before Kuill leaves us for the rest of this episode at least, we see him and the Mandalorian galloping on their trusty blurggs to where the bounty is located. This whole scene screams Western. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see the Mandalorian end the series riding off into the sunset on his now exhausted blurgg. Stylistically, this is a Western space opera.

Far off in the middle of the desert, a heavily guarded facility appears through the Mandalorian’s scopes. While he’s scanning his surroundings, a bounty hunter droid appears into view. IG-11 as a matter of fact. The Mandalorian watches as the droid begins to take out several of the guards and an array of other fighters. This is where things start to get interesting.

The Mandalorian makes his way to IG-11. First impressions aren’t so good. IG-11 takes a shot at the Mandalorian. Knocking him down from the shot and after speaking some sense into the droid, they both join forces for the moment and continue the onslaught of everyone in sight.

Blaster shots are everywhere. The Mandalorian and IG-11 get themselves into a pickle and the only solution for the droid is to self-destruct. Do not self-destruct! After thinking things through, the droid uses himself as a decoy to give the Mandalorian a chance to take out the guy at the blaster canon. With the Mandalorian taking control of the canon himself, he lays waste to the rest of the troopers. This by far was the most exciting scene of the episode, but the not the most shocking. It’s a great action scene. This time, the bits of comic relief are well-placed.

In the end, the Mandalorian and IG-11 prevail, allowing them to blast open the front door to get to their prized bounty.

Little did they know that the bounty would be an infant. IG-11 wanted to kill the infant but luckily, the Mandalorian put a swift end to his existence. To be honest, I’m quite sad that IG-11 got killed off so quick in the series. Hopefully, we see a repaired or different version of him at some point again in the series.

Theory

And just to clarify, the infant is indeed 50 years old, which means it would have born around 40 BBY. His species ages at a much slower rate. Hence why Yoda lived to be 900 years old! With Yoda’s species being one of the biggest mysteries and rarest of its kind in Star Wars, it’s quite surprising and shocking to see this little guy. The only two adult species of this kind that we know of were Yoda and Yaddle. Yaddle mysteriously vanished from the Jedi Council in between The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. The last time we saw her on the Jedi Council was in 32 BBY, and then is gone by 22 BBY. This leaves room for her to have a child and later drop it off with someone to keep it safe.

This brings up a theory of mine that connects this child with The Rise of Skywalker.

Earlier on in Chapter 1, when the Mandalorian was discussing his mission with The Client, Doctor Pershing made a rather interesting entrance. His arrival sparked a stand-off between the Mandalorian and the four other stormtroopers with blasters in hand. After tensions died down a bit, a deal was struck for the Mandalorian to capture the asset. However, one important piece of information was overlooked.

The symbol found on Doctor Pershing’s right sleeve stands for the “Kaminoan emblem worn by all clones.” What do we associate Kamino with? Clones. My theory is that this doctor is assigned to dissect and study this child. The only reason I can think of this child being so useful is its ability to live for so many centuries. Furthermore, I believe that this doctor was hired by none other than Emperor Palpatine. As we now know with The Rise of Skywalker, Palpatine somehow survived being thrown down that pit by Darth Vader in Return of the Jedi. And at this point, I’m pretty sure Palpatine is getting pretty old. It would be to his benefit to find a way to prolong his life so he can finish what he started. Not only would this connection with The Mandalorian and The Rise of Skywalker be a welcomed one, but it would fit nicely with Palpatine’s story arc and his rise to power.

Verdict

With The Mandalorian sparking a ton of new theories, one thing is certain- it’s a Star Wars fans dream come true. Its simplicity is what makes it great. Not only is it as amazing as critics and leakers said it was, but it blew past my expectations. Sure, it wasn’t perfect by any means, but for any studio that hopes to build a franchise as successful as Star Wars, this is a perfect example of how to do it right.

An important aspect The Mandalorian succeeds at is that it takes Star Wars at a much slower pace. This allows us fans more time to be in the moment. One complaint I have with some Star Wars films is that sometimes we jump from world to world too quickly. Rogue One is the perfect example. There isn’t enough time for us to feast our eyes on the visually stunning world-building that’s going on. This is what I love about The Mandalorian. We finally can take a step back and enjoy the moment.

Although this was the premiere of The Mandalorian, I was saddened by the fact that it was only 39 minutes long. Yes, it’s nitpicky and length doesn’t always determine quality, but I feel like it could have benefited from a few extra action or dialogue scenes. Believe me, fans won’t complain about seeing more of Star Wars. However, one thing I really loved was how they took the time to add fan service like this.

Meet Salacious B. Crumb. At least, here’s an ancestor of that incredibly annoying creature that was Jabba’s pet in Return of the Jedi. At least for me, it was incredibly satisfying to watch this thing suffer as it witnesses a close relative roast over an open fire. I’ll take my fan service, well done.

In conclusion, with The Mandalorian being another Star Wars masterpiece, we can’t look over the fact that the score from Ludwig Göransson was absolutely breathtaking. It felt new yet very familiar. And this is how Star Wars should feel. The Mandalorian achieves what so many other shows can’t do. It raises the stakes.

I love it. I have spoken.

Start the discussion by clicking on the link to our Discourse forum below or select “forum” via the menu bar above. May the Force be with you!

Indiana Jones
“For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is.” — Yoda

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