The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3 review: The Heiress

Pedro Pascal as the Mandalorian in THE MANDALORIAN. Image Courtesy Disney+
Pedro Pascal as the Mandalorian in THE MANDALORIAN. Image Courtesy Disney+ /

“You’re changing the terms of the deal.” “This is the way.” Spoilers for The Mandalorian season 2, episode 3 follow.

After escaping from an ice-ridden planet and limping through space, the Mandalorian arrives at his destination and delivers his cargo (mostly) intact in the latest episode of Disney Plus‘ The Mandalorian season 2.

Once on this new aquatic planet, he receives his part of the bargain and is pointed toward someone who might know where more Mandalorians are.

The search continues

Well, after escaping from what seemed like thousands of horrific monster spiders and arrest by the New Republic, the Mandalorian and company finally limp to their destination. But even their arrival on this new planet populated by Mon Calamari and Quarrens is marred by near catastrophe as the Razor Crest can’t even enter the atmosphere of the planet correctly because it is so damaged.

After that incredibly tense opening sequence though, we get back on track as to what the first half of this season has entirely been about, finding more Mandalorians. And well, can it be that easy? Just get pointed toward an inn and the Mandalorian finds someone who can help him? Of course it can’t be that easy. What is this fantasy land? Well, technically Star Wars is fantasy, so yes, but not that kind of fantasy. It only makes sense that the Mandalorian’s journey, no matter how simple it may seem, be mired with obstacles. That’s what makes this series so enjoyable.

So, with a shine in his eye, or well, his helmet, the Mandalorian takes these Quarren fishermen at their word and goes with them out into the ocean. In the least shocking turn of events though, the Mandalorian is betrayed, Baby Yoda is almost killed by a sea monster, and the true stars of the episode show up in a fantastic introduction sequence.

Child of the Watch

Lo and behold, who are these Mandalorians that have saved our titular Mandalorian and Baby Yoda from a watery grave. Well, any Clone Wars fan would recognize her immediately just by her helmet as it is Bo-Katan, with Katee Sackhoff reprising her role, flying in to save the day. Just seeing her helmet was incredibly exciting as a fan of The Clone Wars, but this episode does a really great job of catching newcomers up to speed on who she is as well. The episode doesn’t rely on a lot of exposition, but we understand entirely what Bo-Katan’s current motivations are and what her relationship to Mandalore is. And her appearance here also adds to a new understanding of our own Mandalorian.

Since the series began, there have been a lot of questions by many Star Wars fans about why the Mandalorian and those featured in the first season never take off their helmets. This stands in stark contrast to the Mandalorians seen in The Clone Wars and Rebels, both of which include Bo-Katan. Well, it’s a pretty simple explanation. Din Djarin was rescued by a zealous cult that wanted to return Mandalore to the ways of old. This is why more modern Mandalorians take their helmets off and Din doesn’t. It’s a nice, quick explanation that gives a lot of answers and adds a lot of new wrinkles into the mess that is Mandalorian culture.

More from Disney Plus

Where this episode really shines with this information though is forcing Din to interact with Bo-Katan and her troupe of Mandalorians. It’s a subtle shift, but it there’s a genuine growth to how Din views his culture in this episode. At first, he reacts the same way he did when Cobb Vanth took off his helmet, but as soon as his notion that those standing before him aren’t real Mandalorians is refuted, his attitude toward them shifts noticeably. He’s no longer quite as hostile unless provoked, such as when Bo-Katan changes the deal on him in the middle of the mission. Other than that though, it’s clear that while he might not view them as sisters and a brother, he views these Mandalorians as comrades by the end of the episode, possibly hinting at a subtle renunciation of the “This is the way,” doctrine.

Mandos v. Stormtroopers: Dawn of a Massacre

And now we get to the climax of the episode, which is fantastic and really showcases Bryce Dallas Howard’s directorial talent. The entire third act of the episode is an action-packed, exciting, and tense taking of a flying fortress by these four Mandalorians and, even though the stormtroopers never felt overtly menacing, there did feel like real stakes throughout the third act.

Seriously, the entire portion of this episode that takes place on the Imperial ship feels like it could have been lifted from The Clone Wars. It contains some incredible action that is paced very well, has some nice character moments, and a couple moments of humor that break-up the intense firefights nicely.

Once the blaster fire dies down though, we quickly get to the end of the episode where Bo-Katan fulfills her end of the bargain and tells Din where to go to find a Jedi. Not just any Jedi though, but Ahsoka Tano who, presumably, will make her live-action debut next week or possibly the week after.

The Mandalorian season 2 has its best episode so far with the reintroduction of a beloved animated character into a new medium.

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