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Review: THE MANDALORIAN S1E1 "Chapter One" Makes You Forget About Boba Fett

The Mandalorian (2019) - The Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal)
Read this review to find out if the season premiere of The Mandalorian episode "Chapter One" is worth watching. The action-packed Mandalorian show will make you forget all about fan-favorite Boba Fett.

About The Mandalorian, Season One, Episode One "Chapter One"

4.5 out of 5 stars
  • Season 1, Episode 1: "Chapter One"
  • Directed by Dave Filoni
  • Written by Jon Favreau
  • Synopsis: A Mandalorian bounty hunter tracks a target for a well-paying client
  • Airdate: November 12, 2019
  • Starring: Pedro Pascal, Brian Posehn, Omid Abtahi, Mark Boone Junior, Bernard Bullen, Bill Burr, Gina Carano, Giancarlo Esposito, Werner Herzog, Julia Jones, Alexandra Manea, Nick Nolte, Dominic Pace, Kyle Pacek, Gary Sievers, Emily Swallow, Horatio Sanz, Carl Weathers, Taika Waititi
Disney+ launched today and the big show everyone is excited for is the first live-action Star Wars television show since Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure back in 1985. 35 years is a long time to wait, but it's worth it. The Mandalorian is an epic tale and greatly expands on the Star Wars universe in new ways.

One of the big questions for the show is will Boba Fett be in The Mandalorian? Frankly, after watching this show, I don't know and I don't care. Pedro Pascal plays the unnamed Mandalorian so perfectly Fett's not missed. The new bounty hunter has a rich background and feels like a major upgrade to the soft-spoken and underused Boba Fett. The show establishes early on that Mandalorians are known for keeping their helmets on and, in another show, this would be a liability. But Pascal's acting is strong enough that he's able to convey emotions with just his voice and a tilt of his head.

He also has a great sense of humor. When he's outnumbered four-to-one he quips "I like those odds" before easily defeating them. Most of the action in the show comes from shoot-outs but there are a few fight-fights. He moves awkwardly in the heavy armor. Thankfully there's only one.

There are many elements teased in the show that will undoubtedly play out later. It's set after the fall of the Empire in Return of the Jedi and constantly reminds us of the lawlessness of the Outer Rim. It's so constant that when some stormtroopers show up working for Werner Herzog, known only as "The Client", it's a genuine surprise. Herzog, by the way, is both compelling and terrifying. He's amazing.

While this show is heavy on exposition it's not heavy-handed and assumes you've seen enough of the movies that they don't have to explain what Imperial credits are and why they'd be worthless now.

A real feeling of despair covers the show. When Pascal meets guild leader Greef Carga (Carl Weathers) he seems genuinely desperate for new bounties to hunt in an ever-shrinking pool of targets. So when he goes in search of a target he clearly needs this bounty for survival. It's not a game son. When the droid bounty hunter IG-11, voiced by Taika Waititi, shows up it's genuinely frustrating although the results are hilarious.

Unlike Boba Fett, this Mandalorian feels full-developed. Plus, scenes like his childhood flashback of being a "foundling" and struggling to ride a Blurg make him relatable.

The show has a feel of an old western with stark landscapes and seedy bars. But it also has moments of humor thanks to hiring comedians for key roles. SNL alum Horatio Sanz plays the first bounty  Mythrol who complains about having to evacuate his thorax during molting season. Other guest roles shine like Nick Nolte as the wise guide Kuiil and Brian Posehn as an Ice Ferry Driver.

Even a scene where the Mandalorian goes to an armorer is filled with pathos and unspoken meaning about the "Great Purge". Jon Favreau, who wrote the first episode, has done an incredible job balancing the needs of the viewer with the need for mystery and drama. The direction by Dave Filoni is stellar and his experience working on animated shows like Star Wars: Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels shows.

The Mandalorian's next episode is coming this Friday, November 15, 2019, and the episodes are going to come out weekly on Fridays on Disney+. Count me in. I've always been a fan of Boba Fett, but I just found a new Mandalorian to love.

The Mandalorian is scheduled to be released every Friday only on Disney+ in the U.S.

Click the link for more television reviews.

SPOILER WARNING: 
The reveal that Pascal's target is a baby of Yoda's species is mind-blowing and promises to expand on the unnamed race. But I'm sorry IG-11 was dispatched so easily. I could have watched him throughout the series.


About the Author
Maurice Mitchell has been a passionate science-fiction fan of movies, television, books, and comics since age five. He and his twin brother Nigel created the site "The Geek Twins" to share that passion. Maurice has written and created infographics for sites like The Geek Twins and About.com. His work has been featured on sites like Business Insider, io9 Slashfilm and more.
Read more of his posts | Follow him on Twitter @Mauricem1972 

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