The Return of The Mandalorian: Is It Worth the Watch? (A spoiler free review)


Malcolm McNulty, Managing Editor

The newest season of The Mandalorian is underway on Disney+, and after becoming a huge success and viral sensation last winter, the return of the show has been long awaited. With this comes the pressing question: should you watch The Mandalorian?

As the newest adventure in a galaxy far far away, the sequel season follows the journey of the mandalorian, a skilled bounty hunter, and his adorable companion and internet sensation “baby Yoda”. The mandalorian is tasked with finding a Jedi mentor and a home for baby Yoda, and each episode brings a new danger for him to overcome.

However, The Mandalorian is more than the latest Star Wars spin-off. The digestible and exciting episodes led by unique and well-crafted characters make it the perfect show to add to your watchlist, even if you aren’t invested in Star Wars. In fact, part of the beauty of The Madolrian is in its stand-alone nature. By abstaining from the large-scale conflicts, the show is a return to the core of its source material and excellent cinema. It’s able to flourish in its own intimate story, supported by fantastic writing.

As a result of avoiding an emulation of the original trilogy—something the sequel trilogy was greatly criticized for—The Mandalorian uses the Star Wars universe to its fullest potential. Each episode offers the audience new creatures, planets, and technology to enjoy as the backdrop of each scene, recapturing the magic of Star Wars and transporting the audience to the various worlds in this galaxy. With the wealth of content within the Star Wars license, much of the background aspects, and even characters are actually from previous Star Wars productions, forming the basis of delicate and expertly delivered fan service. Almost every episode contains a satisfying yet unobtrusive, subtle nod to a previous event, character, or place which makes each episode that much more exciting for returning fans while remaining an equally enjoyable experience for viewers just being introduced to the franchise.

In addition to maximizing its use of the Star Wars universe, The Mandalorian demonstrates the future of film creation. It only takes a few episodes to see the stand out cinematography throughout the show. Especially with a protagonist permanently hidden behind his helmet and an adorable sidekick who can’t talk, the way each scene is shot breathes extra life into these characters and causes the viewer to fall in love with them. Additionally, each transition to a new setting as The Mandalorian hops around the galaxy is seamless. This is in large part due to filming the show with a revolutionary 360° LED screen surrounding the set as opposed to a traditional green screen. This technique allows the director to control the lighting, which is crucial for the mandalorian as he wears a shiny suit of armor, as well as help produce a more cinematic experience. The main benefits of this new technology include allowing the director to make on set adjustments as supposed to fixing issues in post-production and helping the actors perform better as they are able to see the setting around them as opposed to a blank green screen. The effects of these benefits are evident in The Mandalorian and offer enthusiastic film watchers a glimpse into the future of excellent film making.

With a combination of exceptional writing and inventive cinematography, The Mandalorian is much more than just “the baby Yoda show”. Instead, it manages to both fulfill and complement the Star Wars experience

So is it worth the watch? Absolutely. And if you already have Disney+, what are you waiting for?