After decades of being one of the biggest and best-loved franchises in the world, Star Wars still managed to bring us something new with The Mandalorian.


It was a series that was equally loved by casual viewers and die-hard fans alike, a show that was whatever you wanted it to be – either an easy watch as Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) and Grogu headed off on their escapades, or an opportunity to delve into the rich lore that the writers hinted at with every episode.

From epic battles and twists and turns to quiet moments that made us fall in love with the characters (culminating in that glorious reveal at the end of season 2), it secured its rightful place as an obsession for every kind of Star Wars fan. Honestly, it seemed pretty difficult for showrunner Jon Favreau to mess it up.

But almost immediately after season 2, the problems began. And we don't just mean Grogu messing with the Razor Crest's controls.

Inexplicably, Favreau and co decided to chop what could have been a deeply gripping and emotional arc for The Mandalorian season 3 – Grogu ultimately deciding to leave his Jedi training with Luke Skywalker to reunite with Mando – and pasting it in the middle of a completely different show, The Book of Boba Fett.

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It was widely received as a bizarre decision. Of course, from LucasFilm's perspective, the ideal audience will be up to date with every single Star Wars offering and many are – but a huge portion aren't. Even as someone who watched and somewhat enjoyed Boba Fett, it seemed like a huge cop-out to suddenly turn it into The Mandalorian season 2.5.

Favreau has said that the decision allowed him to move the story forward when it came to The Mandalorian season 3. In practice though, it just seemed like a huge part of Djarin and Grogu's relationship – the main crux of why people love the show – was missing. In one truly baffling move, Favreau even urged those understandably confused viewers to seek out YouTube recaps in order to help them to catch up. Instead of, you know, just making the show make more sense.

However, for the many audience members still on board, hopes were still high. The trailer caused a major stir when it confirmed that, finally, we were going to Mandalore, with Djarin on a worthy quest for his redemption.

Din Djarin holds Grogu in his cockpit in The Mandalorian season 3.
Din Djarin holds Grogu in his cockpit in The Mandalorian season 3. Disney Plus

After seasons of building up the homeworld of the Mandalorians, the history of the Great Purge, and the question of whether the planet could be truly cursed, surely that was set to be the huge journey we were to go on this season, and the big reason why Djarin and Grogu had to be reunited before it began? Nope. That was done and dusted by the end of episode 2.

Shortly before the season 3 premiere, Favreau opened up about not knowing how The Mandalorian will eventually end. It was at this point, when the series began to massively dawdle, that those comments hit home. Seasons 1 and 2 worked well without Favreau having an endpoint in mind – you don't really need it when you have beautifully contained stories with an overarching journey.

But season 3 has suffered. Favreau needs to figure out where this story is going to end up and quickly, because where are we going in the meantime? And how are we going to get to that endpoint? He says season 4 is already written to tie in with other shows, like Ahsoka and Skeleton Crew. Four seasons without an ending in mind seems very risky to me.

To pause the rant for a moment, there have still been moments of magic within the chaos. The mythosaur at the end of episode 2 was a genuine jaw-dropper, while episode 3 was a refreshing new take on the show, revisiting minor characters in a well thought out way and expanding the world in a way that Andor did so incredibly well. Katee Sackhoff (Bo-Katan Kryze) has had her time to shine, rightfully taking her place as co-star alongside Pedro Pascal.

But, ultimately, the season has been meandering along, with some critics claiming that it doesn't even have a plot. I wouldn't go that far, but I would argue that the story should have begun before episode 5. It begs the question: have we all just got a bit bored of The Mandalorian?

I still have hope that the series can, in the spirit of Din Djarin, redeem itself. But whether that happens quickly enough to keep everyone on board is another matter.

The Mandalorian is available to stream on Disney Plus. Sign up to Disney Plus now for £7.99 per month or £79.90 for a full year.

Check out our list of the best movies on Disney Plus and best shows on Disney Plus, or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to see what's on tonight.


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