After such a strong start to the series, it’s only natural to be let down by the follow-up. While not necessarily a sequel, The Mandalorian Season 1 Episode 2 is definitely a let-down. That’s not to say it’s a bad episode. It’s not. As a random episode of any other show, I’d say this episode bordered on great. But this isn’t any other show, and it’s not a random episode.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is review is a redo of our original review as we never finished our reviews initially. Each episode of Season 1 is being re-reviewed (or reviewed the first time) ahead of the Season 2 premiere on October 30th and written as if we were viewing the episode for the first time.
SPOILER WARNING: The following review contains spoilers for The Mandalorian Season 1 Episode 2, The Child. If you have not seen the episode and want to remain spoiler-free, do not continue reading.
Plenty of Action
The episode features several fantastic, albeit quick action sequences that show The Mandalorian is going to keep you largely on the edge of your seat. The tense opening moments that lead to the first fight scene with Trandoshans is really well paced, and gives a great sense of danger. Showing the Trandoshans jumping across the gap to get into position in the reflection of Mando’s helmet was a great touch.
When you add to it the chase sequence with the sandcrawler that feels ripped out of an Indiana Jones film and a space rhino fight in the mud you get plenty of quality Star Wars action in a small package. But that’s largely all those sequences are – action. They don’t move the story forward (with one large exception). All of the sequences I mentioned are really enjoyable, but the lack of substance or any real stakes made it hard for me to feel invested in any of them.
It was awesome to see Mando’s rifle literally disintegrate enemies, giving context to Darth Vader’s line to Boba Fett in Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, but that doesn’t tell the viewer much else. Episode 1 ended with a massive “WHAT?!” moment. Nothing in The Mandalorian Season 1 Episode 2 answers any of the questions you have after the big reveal. Well, maybe one.
Use the Force, Baby Yoda
Baby Yoda, or The Child as they are being referred to officially, is an enigma wrapped in a blanket of questions. What’s the name of their species? What is their name, in general? Why don’t they say anything? Are they a boy or girl? Are they a clone of Yoda? If they are 50 years old, does Yoda know they exist? Why is a former Imperial and weird doctor looking for them? Are they Force-sensitive? How does that pod thing work?
All of those are valid questions, and none of them are answered except one. Yes, The Child is Force-sensitive. Baby Yoda uses the Force to stop and suspend the rhino-like creature in the air before it strikes a killing blow on Mando. Unfortunately, using their Force abilities knocks The Child out cold. Mando is able to defeat the muddy rhino, but we end up left with more questions than answers, a common theme with this episode.
As I said before, this episode isn’t bad. It just doesn’t answer any major questions. It has some great set pieces, as well as more wonderful character work with both The Mandalorian and Kuiil, but this episode still feels like filler. With only eight episodes in season 1, it is disappointing to get something that doesn’t feel consequential. At least not yet. What we’ve seen may matter later. For now, this episode just feels like one segment in a larger movie, much of which I’d normally forget.
All episodes of The Mandalorian Season 1 are streaming now, exclusively on Disney+.
The Mandalorian Season 1 Episode 27
This episode is solid and provides great action set pieces, but offers little else. All but one of my questions about The Child remain unanswered, and now I have more. Apart from a few moments, “The Child” feels largely forgettable. Really well produced, but forgettable.