The Mandalorian Earns Its First Real Criticism – Is It Deserved?

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[WARNING: Article contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Mandalorian, Season 1 and 2. Read on at your own risk.] The Mandalorian has earned accolade after accolade. It’s even reeled in seven Emmy awards, tying it for the most-awarded production of the Star Wars franchise (with the original Star Wars film in 1977). Fans continue to heap praise upon the live-action, Star Wars series as it inches forward into its sophomore season. But…. Three episodes into Season 2, there appears to be a chink in the ol’ beskar armor. There’s now one, chief criticism of The Mandalorian cropping up across the Internet. The question is whether or not such criticism is earned.

Mandalorian; The Child;
Concept Art from Season 1 of The Mandalorian: The Mandalorian retrieves “the egg” in order to restore his ship. (Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.)

So what’s the issue? Well, gamers were perhaps the first to pick up on it. Do you ever get tired of side quests when trying to complete a RPG (role-playing game)? Sure, you can earn this weapons upgrade or magic potion, but first you must [insert challenge here]. For some fans, The Mandalorian relies on that trope a little too heavily in Season 2. However, looking back, the show appears to have already relied on the notion of the “side quest” to propel its narrative.

Mandalorian, or Sidequestalorian?

Mandalorian; The Prisoner
Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.

The first of Din Djarin’s side quests tracks all the back to Season 1, episode 2, “The Child.” Jawas ransacked and looted the Razor Quest. How was he able to get it flying again? Secure the egg from the mud horn for the Jawas. Now, while the Mandalorian did perform a number of other such tasks in Season 1, they weren’t all of the side quest variety. More so they were simply means to earn money and survive. (Still… want to survive? Help these villagers stave of marauders. Need cash? Help us complete this jailbreak. You get the idea.)

Season 2 of The Mandalorian, however, has been three episodes, three side quests. In order to secure possession of Boba Fett’s armor and move on? Help Cobb Vanth and the Sandpeople defeat the Krayt Dragon.

Mandalorian; The Marshall
Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.

To learn where he could find other Mandalorians? Help frog lady get her spawn to her husband. Find a Jedi? Help Bo-Katan and her Night Owls liberate a Gozanti cruiser and its cargo from Imperial control.

Thus far though, all of the action has been top notch and entertaining. Personally, if it remains so, I say side quest away, Mandalorian. What say you?

Bo-Katan; Mandalorian; Mandalorians
Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.

New episodes of The Mandalorian air Fridays on Disney+. For more information, visit starwars.com.

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