The Mandalorian Season 1 goes out with a bang, and things are only getting started.
Chapters 7 and 8 of The Mandalorian are, in many ways, two parts of the same finale. Therefore, I’ll be reviewing them together.
If you’re like me, your reactions to this show have been mixed. Some episodes have been great, others not so much (*cough* episode 4 *cough*). Overall, though, you’ve enjoyed seeing Star Wars fans unite to swoon over Baby Yoda.
Besides some mediocre acting and subpar writing, my main issue with the show has been its pace. Sure, some of the episodes have been fun, but I’ve been waiting for the story to pick up speed. Thankfully, it did.
Chapters 7 and 8 serialize their plots and bring meaning to filler episodes earlier in the season. This brought with it satisfying payoff. It also makes me hopeful for the future of other characters who haven’t been touched since their introduction.
Chapter 7 not only brought back some characters, but also improved a few. Chapter 4 introduced us to Gina Carano’s Cara Dune. Personally, during that episode, I found her acting to be wooden, and her character rather dull. In this episode, however, I found her much more likable. There was also a major improvement in Gina Carano’s acting. In fact, after Chapters 7 and 8, I’m not afraid to call myself a Cara Dune fan!
These two episodes also deepened Baby Yoda’s character. Chapters 7 and 8 not only managed to make him cuter, but also managed to peak my curiosity further. What are the full lengths of his abilities? Where did he come from?
I found the death of Kuiil at the end of Chapter 7 to be extremely well-executed. Not only did it raise the stakes, but it made me wonder why the empire was so passionate about having The Child in their possession. It also made me question the lengths they would go to to get him, better than any previous episode did.
The death of IG-11 also helped raise the stakes. And it seemed like another well-executed sacrifice.
Chapters 7 and 8 were packed with great reveals.
Our first time seeing the death troopers (pictured above) was emphasized perfectly. The moment was just long enough to let Star Wars fans bask in its glory.
Hearing the Mandalorian’s real name and seeing his face for the first time was exciting, and those moments felt earned. Most of us already knew what Pedro Pascal looked like and Mando’s name had already (possibly by accident) been revealed during press. So it’s impressive that these moments were as exciting as they were.
The reveal that the empire had found and killed off Mando’s tribe, once again, did a great job raising the stakes. Not to mention it was a well-done character moment for Din Djarin.
The last reveal I’ll mention, is in the final moments of Chapter 8. I’m not joking when I say it had me screaming, literally (yes, I’m that overdramatic). To hardcore Star Wars fans, like myself, this moment is something we’ve wanted for a long time. And the closing shot of this episode is one of my favorites in all of Star Wars. It’s stunning.
Speaking of those final moments, they made me very interested in the future of Moff Gideon. At first I assumed he was another one of the show’s expendable, episodic threats. This scene let us know that the show has bigger plans for him. To be frank, I’m very curious to see where season 2 takes his character.
If I had to mention any problems I had with Chapters 7 and 8, it would, ultimately, come down to writing. Bits of dialogue, spewed throughout, seem unnecessary, overdramatic, or weirdly-worded. However, this didn’t pose as much of a problem here as in previous episodes.
In conclusion, Chapters 7 and 8 mark a wonderful end to the first season of the Mandalorian. They correctly execute fan service, raise the stakes, and deepen a few characters. These two episodes managed to take my mixed feelings and make me a fan. I’m ecstatic to see what comes next.
Final Rating Episode 7 – 4/5 Stars
Final Rating Episode 8 – 5/5 Stars
Are you a fan of ‘The Mandalorian?’ What did you think of these final two chapters? Tell us on Instagram (@appkernel) and Twitter (@appkernel)! And be sure to keep up to date with the Kernel blog for future updates on the second season of ‘The Mandalorian!’