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Star Wars: The Mandalorian - The Good, the Bad, and the Baby Yoda

By Jennifer Allen

“I can bring you in warm, or I can bring you in cold." ~ The Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal)

When Disney initially announced that they were planning a live action TV series based on Star Wars, I was both skeptical and hopeful. When they then said that it would have a Mandalorian as its main character, I was excited. When they cast Pedro Pascal as said main character, I was ready to dive in.

For those who are not up on some of their Star Wars lore, a Mandalorian initially were a type of elite soldiers for the Empire with a strict code of honor (akin to Sikh Warriors or Samurai). After a long war with two Sith (dark side force users) nearly wiped them out, the remaining Mandalorians became guns for hire, but with the community still holding onto their code. Not all bounty hunters in the Star Wars universe are Mandalorians, and it's not easy to become one either.

The show introduces Pedro Pascal's Mandalorian as a sort of Clint Eastwood-esqe “Man with no name" type, often simply referred to as “Mando" by his constituents and clients. He is taking bounties to make a living and comes across a special job which no one else is willing to take. He's an orphan who was taken in by the Mandalorians when he was a child.

“They hate you because you're a legend." ~ Greef Karga (Carl Weathers)

Our protagonist takes the job despite seeing that his client has some former Imperial ties. The show takes place five years after Return of the Jedi so most Imperial characters who appear are either in hiding or are prisoners of war.

The Mando goes to get the bounty, only to discover that it's a child of the same race as Jedi Master Yoda. The target is said to be 50 years old, but the kid looks to be no more than a toddler. Our Mando takes quite a liking to The Child (named “Baby Yoda" by fans) and ultimately decides to adopt the kiddo and rescues him from the former Imperials.

The show then delves into various scenarios with the Mando taking on various bounties and other tasks with Baby Yoda tagging along. It's interesting to see all the other characters that the Mando runs into. Sometimes it's old associates from his past, and other times it's simply serendipitously finding a like-minded individual who's willing to help.

The show has an impressive cast with notable appearances by Carl Weathers, Asif Ali, Nick Nolte, Natalia Tena, Clancy Brown, Omid Abtahi, Richard Ayoade, Giancarlo Esposito, Ming-Na Wen, Taika Watiti, Gina Carano, and even legendary German director Werner Herzog. Part of the fun of each episode is to see which guest stars will appear and who they will play, and the credits only reveal who each guest is after the episode has run.

The core of the show is Pedro Pascal and how he reacts to each situation the Mando gets himself into, and the Baby Yoda character who is shown to be highly intelligent and yet still very curious and playful like any toddler. Since Pascal is shown wearing his helmet throughout the show (which is explained), it's quite impressive that he can be relatable character simply through voice work and physical stunts. The Child is rendered through various puppeteers similar to how Yoda was performed in the films and they do a good job of making him as adorable as possible. In fact, both characters have already become so popular that internet Memes and catch phrases have already sprang up amongst Geek culture.

“This is the way." ~ Mandalorian proverb

The first season, created by Jon Favreau, consists of eight episodes with a 2nd season already ordered for some time later in 2020. The series is available on the Disney+ streaming service.