Now that our shell headed hero (Hero in a Headshell, MANDO POWER!) has picked up his quarry we see him deliver it back to the planet Navarro and take payment for his troubles. Given that the quarry is Baby Yoda though and the person he’s returning it to looks a bit evil and Werner Herzoggy and is known only as ‘the client’ we’ll eat our own shoe if it ends that simple.
Now that the series has established its tone and palette episode three lets it breathe a little more, giving space for some soul searching and emotional heft from Pedro Pascal as Mando. The dilemma you saw coming now comes to fruition, sending the character on a journey of change and challenging his way of life. The decision of whether Mando will give up ‘the child’ as he senses foul play also gives us a chance to learn a bit of welcome backstory. As previously mentioned, it’s a challenge empathising with a protagonist when they have no face and the general mood is ‘Clint Eastwood’s man-with-no-name’ but more stoic, the flashbacks provided here give some chinks of light into what’s beneath the armour.
The real strength of the episode is the world building that happens outside of the central narrative as we get the first real glimpse inside the world of the Mandalorian bounty hunters, their code, their bond and the difficulties of working out of such a close-knit and apparently poorly lit office. It also gives the series a second catchphrase and future heavily-used-gif for that geeky whatsapp group you’re part of. Not bad for only three episodes in. Watch out for showrunner Jon Favreau reprising his Clone Wars role too! A small caveat to all this positivity though, while vastly exciting to some it doesn’t do a great deal to move the story forward, anyone not hugely invested in Mythosaurs and Beskar armour may wish to switch off.
We’re also treated to a new shade from Ludwig Görannson’s score as the action heats up, it’s quietly becoming one of the best things in the series. Like its eclectic cast and classic Star Wars blend of futuristic interlaced with rustic we shift away from flutes and pipes into a fast-paced electro movement that helps establish the finale as the most thrilling moment of the show thus far. It’s a climax that is just that, we get to watch the show level up as the first real smack down is laid out and things look like they’re about to get very interesting.
But listen, if you thought this review was going to leave out the most revelatory moment in the episode then think again. Since 1980 keen-eyed Star Wars fans the world over have spent many a long night aching and pondering the question JUST WHAT IS IN BESPIN ICE CREAM MAKER GUY’S ICE CREAM MAKER? Does it even make ice cream? Well wonder no more, an answer is to be found here. Don’t know what I’m on about? Go look it up, you’ll be pleased that you did. This is the way.