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The Mandalorian Season 2 review: Should you stream it?

Pedro Pascal as The Mandalorian talking to Weequay bartender
Pedro Pascal as The Mandalorian talking to Weequay bartender. Pic credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

After the explosive Season 1 finale, the time has finally come for The Mandalorian Season 2.

It’s been a full year since Disney Plus gave us that epic ending, showcasing a black lightsaber, and fans have been chomping at the bit for any news update on plot details.

But now that the premiere has landed, we finally have a firm idea of where the show is headed. And the potential is endless.

Does The Mandalorian Season 2 live up to the hype? Here is our The Mandalorian Season 2 review of the first episode and whether it exceeds expectations.

The Mandalorian Season 2 review

The episode kicks off right away by showing Mando’s objective this season.

In the opener, Mando seeks to find other Mandalorians for the purposes of finding Baby Yoda’s species or planet.

But as always, Mando is faced with enemies who only want his Beskar and grossly underestimate his ability to destroy them.

But after gaining information, his search leads him back to Tatooine where a Mandalorian is said to reside in the area of Mos Pelgo, a small area of the planet rarely discussed by others.

But once he does find Mos Pelgo, the man, Cobb Vanth–Marshal of Mos Pelgro, is not who he appears to be.

Much like most of the episodes from the first season, The Mandalorian Season 2 opener is a self-contained story.

This is quite similar to the episode where he assisted a village with taking down a threat before continuing his mission to help precious Baby Yoda.

And the climax to this episode is absolutely spectacular.

Baby Yoda doing Baby Yoda stuff.
Baby Yoda doing Baby Yoda stuff. Pic credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

A great filmmaker makes it extremely difficult to spot the difference between CGI and practical effects.

And throughout the finale, the show takes the series to an escalated height where it’s jaw-dropping. Without spoiling too much, a creature is involved, and it’s breathtakingly realized.

Most of this is thanks to the show finally having Jon Favreau behind the camera. Last season, he handed the duties off to a lot of other talents due to his overwhelming schedule.

But here, Favreau has crafted one of the best episodes yet.

The only nitpick with the premiere is that the show continues to act hesitant to take full advantage of expanding the universe.

The writing wants to, and it shows with its love of showing aliens/creatures, new and old. It does a great job of building the archive of the alien world of Star Wars.

That said, just when viewers feel the universe expanding, Favreau pumps the breaks and throws us right back into Tatooine.

Not that Tatooine is not a fun location worth exploring.

With all the potential The Mandalorian has to offer, it would be nice to see new unexplored worlds of the Star Wars galaxies.

Why not take us somewhere else far, far away?

This does not hinder the enjoyment of the season opener, it’s just something many fans would love to see.

And opening up the universe would only make the show all the more exciting.

Pedro Pascal as The Mandalorian and Amy Sedaris as Peli Motto
Pedro Pascal as The Mandalorian and Amy Sedaris as Peli Motto. Pic credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

But as stated, the creatures in the series opener are vast and make the episode thrilling.

Everything from Gamorreans, Massiffs, Tusken Raiders, and so many more. And it really shows how much Favreau loves and respects the mythology because none of the appearances feel used as fanservice.

Timothy Olyphant also makes his grand appearance in the episode as Cobb Vanth. It’s hard to dive into the specifics of the role without giving too much away but what can be surmised is that the casting was perfect.

And something about his introduction makes one think he might play a crucial role in future episodes.

But more than anything else, the season premiere follows the golden rule of writing: Keep it simple.

The episode continues the old school Samurai/Western feel where a warrior travels from place to place righting wrongs in different locations. And as simple as the structure may seem, the scope is somehow epic.

It’s clear The Mandalorian shows no signs of losing steam because of this approach. It allows Favreau to play in a sandbox that feels vast and full of never-ending toys to play with.

And Favreau knows exactly how to play with his new toys.

Overall Thoughts

The Mandalorian Season 2 premiere sets the stage with an explosive return to the series.

This first hour gives Mando a path forward in the upcoming season as he seeks to find his own kind.

The practical and visual effects in this first episode are absolutely stunning, with moments that make it difficult to spot the difference.

Besides a few nitpicks of returning to familiar locations, the action scenes and the story-world building remain at its finest with characters and creatures, new and old.

Director Jon Favreau has set the bar extremely high on the first episode and let’s hope the future episodes can maintain this energy.

For readers who love The Mandalorian check out our recaps for Episode 7 and Episode 8 of Disney Gallery: Star Wars: The Mandalorian.

The Mandalorian Season 2 will drop new episodes every Friday on Disney Plus.

John Dotson is a film and television reviewer and commentator from Texas. His favorite part of what he does is getting to discuss film and... read more
John Dotson


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