Earlier this week, The Mandalorian provided us with one heck of a premiere episode that ended on one heck of a cliffhanger. Thankfully, the second chapter dropped on Disney+ a mere three days later for our viewing enjoyment.
Before we dive into this episode and see if the show experienced a sophomore slump, a few notes:
- This review will have spoilers (because there’s no way you haven’t seen it yet by this point).
- Speaking of spoilers, the child that this episode is named after will be referred to as Yoda Baby until we learn differently. Yes, I know that Yoda is the name of one of Star Wars‘ most recognizable/best characters and not his race; but since we don’t know the name of Yoda’s race yet…and ‘Yoda-Baby’ is infinitely more recognizable than ‘Yaddle Infant’ or Unnamed Race/Species…that’s what we’re going with.
Bandits and Thieves
The episode opens with the Mandalorian walking over the unnamed planet’s terrain through a valley, Yoda Baby floating behind him in a hovering sphere. Their peaceful stroll is interrupted by a trio of trandoshan bounty hunters (confirmed by the bounty fob they’re carrying), who attempt to ambush/kill him before going after the child.
Thankfully, the Mandalorian is able to fight them off. Unfortunately, he also sustains some injuries, which is bound to happen in a 3-1 fight against a race known for being some of the best hunters in the galaxy. During a round of medical self-care, Yoda Baby repeatedly escapes from his pod, makes his way next to the Mandalorian, and lifts one tiny hand up towards his captor’s wounds while closing his eyes and looking all types of adorable. Is the little guy trying to Force heal him?
Before answering that question, we’ll need to figure out how the Mandalorian is going to get back home. When he finally makes his way back to his ship, he sees that it is being scavenged for parts by jawas.
This understandably pisses the Mandalorian off, which leads to a few jawas getting sniped and disintegrated before they all flee to their Sandcrawler. The Mandalorian gives chase and attempts to board the Sandcrawler, which provides us with yet another awesome action sequence.
Surprisingly, our badass hero is eventually thwarted and thrown to the ground. Left without a way off the planet and his adorable quarry still floating nearby, the Mandalorian heads back to the home of Kruiil, his ugnaught friend from last episode.
Making an Omelette
Kuiil agrees to help the Mandalorian, but explains that he won’t be able to get the parts to his ship back via a jawa murder spree. Instead, he brokers a negotiation. After some hilarious mediation missteps, the jawas agree to give back the parts to the Mandalorian’s ship in return for The Egg.
The Egg, as it turns out, is guarded by a giant creature that looks an awful lot like an ancient version of the reek from the arena battle in Episode II.
After the Mandalorian enters the creature’s cave, it quickly ejects him back outside before running outside and thoroughly kicking his ass. Just when it looks like our title character is about to be skewered, Yoda Baby does that adorable Force-looking thing and LIFTS THE CREATURE OFF THE FREAKING GROUND!
The Mandalorian uses the creature’s confused/incapacitated state to stab it in the neck, killing the beast and giving him access to The Egg.
After bringing The Egg back to the jawas (who promptly break it open and began eating the yolk), Kuiil leads the Mandalorian and his reacquired property back to his home. While the pair works to repair the ship, Yoda Baby sleeps soundly, completely drained by use of the Force.
After the Mandalorian’s ship is fixed, he once again thanks Kruiil for his help and all but begs for a way to repay him–even offering a well paid position as his crewmate. Kruiil refuses, instead thanking the Mandalorian for bringing peace to his home by finding the Yoda Baby.
After saying their goodbyes, the Mandalorian blasts off to take the his quarry back to The Client…at least I think that’s what he’s going to do.
First off, how great was it to see all those old school Star Wars references? Trandoshans and jawas were cool enough on their own, but also got to see the Sandcrawler in action! Once again, The Mandalorian managed to play a large amount of fan service while still being accessible to Star Wars fans who are unfamiliar or out of practice with the franchise’s rich mythology.
On the story/script side of things, ‘The Child’ goes for almost ten minutes before any dialogue is spoken. Thankfully, not much was needed. The trandoshan ambush and the Sandcrawler battle were both brilliantly choreographed and all types of fun to watch.
When the dialogue does finally start, however, it’s both great and genuinely funny. It’s extremely rare that a television show makes me laugh out loud, but the negotiation between the Mandalorian and the jawas had me cracking up.
From there, we’re treated to another wonderfully shot action sequence featuring some top notch special effects on the reek (which I’ve also seen being referred to as a “mud horn” online, but I’m sticking with reek until it’s official).
The revelation that Yoda Baby has Force powers is something most of us probably expected, but was revealed in a truly exceptional manner. Unfortunately, the story doesn’t really move forward much from there. A lot certainly happened in this episode, but aside from the predictable Force revelation, we’re not much further along in the narrative than we were at the end of ‘Chapter 1.’
That being said, ‘The Child’ is still one heck of a good time. Between the incredible action sequences, superb special effects, excellent script, and a bounty of Star Wars easter eggs, there’s plenty for old and new fans alike to love.
I also hope that despite the Mandalorian leaving the planet, we get to see him interact with Kruiil again at some point. After only two episodes the completely mismatched pair ended up making a great team.
Oh, and a quick note to Hasbro: If you don’t start pumping out Baby Yoda dolls before Christmas, then you might as well give up the license to someone else. I normally hate cute stuff like that, but I also can’t stop myself from making baby noises every time that adorable green creature is on screen.
I’m not saying I’d go so far to buy a Baby Yoda doll myself (maybe), but I can guarantee that a ton of folks will gladly snap one up off the shelves…although if you make Baby Yoda pack-in figure for a Black Series and/or Vintage Collection Mandalorian, then you can go ahead and take my money now.