It was nice to see that Din Djarin can still kick ***. Sometimes, his character gets a little overshadowed when he's in a group. Don't know how Grogu was able to separate himself from the rest of the main group unnoticed and find him, though. That was one of those weird "ex machina" moments. The cute nod to Iron Man was pretty funny, with Grogu spraying him the same way Dum-E sprays Tony Stark after he crashes his suit during initial testing.
Another weird element was Axe Woves being able to use his "personal" jetpack to actually blast out of the atmosphere and into space. I mean, seriously, what the absolute heck? First off, that thing should've ran out of fuel way before he hit the stratosphere. Second, that's one of those beefs I've always had with the Clone Wars, Rebels, and this series; they make it seem like these Mandalorian jet packs can go on forever. In old school canon, they had a way, way, way more limited range than Filoni thinks they do. I also didn't understand them sending troops down to reinforce the ground, but then getting rid of all the cruisers and frigates in orbit. Last episode, when they showed the fleet, it looked like they had over five or six wings of Fang Fighters. You can't tell me an Imperial light cruiser, several Imperial Gozanti Corvettes, over a dozen Kom'rk fighter/ transports, and about 30 Fang Fighters couldn't take out that meager wing of TIE Interceptor's and bombers. I was really waiting to see an epic space battle, while the ground group did their thing. Especially, after the accidentally leaked Lego pack from the Mandalorian series that comes out next month, of a Fang Fighter vs. a TIE Interceptor. I figured that was supposed to be straight from this episode. So much for that.
For a more in-depth look at what the Mandalorians had in their fleet, check out this video. Apparently, someone actually went through and counted what was shown on screen. It came out to 1 Light Cruiser, 5 Gozanti corvette's, 36 Fang Fighters, and 8 Kom'rk Fighter/ Transports.
It's always nice to see "Skippy the Jedi Droid" getting some love. He's come a long way from having a "bad motivator" all those years ago. I was honestly surprised the clones in the vats were Gideon's own clones. That's not narcissistic at all. Glad they shut those things down. The battle between Bo Katan's forces and the Imperial Supercommandos was really nicely done. Nice to see those small "anti-personnel" missiles on top of the jet packs getting used. A few of us were just talking about those the other day and how they compared to the larger "anti-vehicle" rockets like Fett uses in his jetpack. Once again, always cool to see those knee darts getting used, this time by Koska Reeves. During the final battle with Moff Gideon, I was so glad to see the Dark Saber get destroyed. To me, that was honestly the single worst story element they added to the Mandalorians mythology and lore during the Clone Wars, Rebels, and Mandalorian series. If there was to be some "trinket," as Moff Gideon calls them, that Mandalorians would rally behind, it should have been the mask/ helmet of Mandalore the Indomitable.
Glad Axe Woves didn't have to "go down with the ship." However, even with Grogu protecting Djarin, Bo Katan, and himself from the flames, that entire structure should have given way beneath them after the cruiser crashed into the base. It was one of those neat feel-good "hey, the good guys made it" moments, but definitely another "pull another 'ex machina' out of your shebs" moment. The ending with them finally finishing Ragnar's oath ceremony was a nice touch. I was surprised that Bo Katan didn't formally adopt him or take him as an apprentice as a way of honoring Paz Vizsla's sacrifice. Din Djarin formally adopting Grogu, however, was a surprise and a very welcome one, at that. Although, his name as Din Grogu makes absolutely no sense, yet again. This ain't Star Trek, and Mandalorians aren't Bajoran's, with their surnames first. He should be properly called Grogu Djarin. Once again, the writers taking a perfectly awesome moment and throwing a WTF in there to completely ruin the impact of the moment. The ceremony where they re-ignite the Forge definitely made the hairs stand up on my arms. Very nicely done and so much fun seeing so many Mando's on screen in live action. It was a nice symmetrical way to end that part of their story; first with a baptism of water, then a baptism of flame.
Mandalorians, side by side, igniting the spark that will light the fire, that will shine across the galaxy for all to see. Mandalorians are stronger together.
I did like how they brought it all back full circle for Din Djarin. Setting him up to go back to his roots as a bounty hunter, where we first found him when his series began. Only, this time, working for the opposite faction for a change; again, the symmetry. It was also nice seeing him now having a "home away from home" back on Nevarro. It had a very western feel to it. You could almost picture "The Duke" himself living there (or maybe even his grandson ). Even IG-11 got properly fixed and a new paint job to top it all off. Not too shabby, but it felt kind of rushed and just thrown in there.
Overall, kind of a half-and-half of a season. This one did feel like it had a lot more "filler" episodes than the previous two seasons. I think the Mythosaur was my biggest disappointment of the entire season. When the Imperial Cruiser crashed into the base, I was kind of waiting for that to wake the Mythosaur and cause it to rise to the surface for the rest of the Mandalorians to see. When that didn't happen, and you could see Grogu sense its presence, I was once again waiting for it to finally make an appearance, to no avail. We got a quick glimpse and teased that it's back, but they never have it show up as a sign of reaffirmation for the Mandalorians re-taking and re-building their planet. To me, that's a completely missed and wasted opportunity. Because of that and what seemed like an over-reliance of "ex machina," I'm going to have to give this episode a 4/5 stars.
--Sadriel Fett (BFFC Moderator)
"I'm just a simple Fan, trying to make my way in the universe."