I just finished watching the finale of The Mandalorian, and to say that I’m peeved is an understatement. The Mandalorian was a show that felt like it took itself seriously for the first two seasons. There was character development and fascinating storytelling, and the finales left you reeling in some capacity.
I knew this season’s finale was going to have troubles when I learned that it was going to be a relatively short runtime for a season finale, clocking in at forty-one minutes. With credits and the recap, that runtime boils closer to something you’d see from a Clone Wars episode. And sure enough, the finale feels as if it’s moving a million miles an hour to conclude a story that ultimately was as lackluster as they come.
MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD!
Despite the theories that this season’s finale would take a dark turn, the finale ultimately turned out to feel like a simple Saturday morning cartoon. As if literally Jon Favreau took us into his mind to see how he plays with toys. There were several critical moments in this finale that felt made up to craft an easier conclusion.
- Grogu’s sudden appearance saves Mando at the beginning of the episode. Because the last time we saw him, he was with Bo-Katan and the Mandalorians, and then suddenly, he was there to save his father. That literally left me with furrowed eyebrows for about five minutes.
- R5 showed up to help Mando even though we were given no clue that he was on Mandalore with him. That felt convenient.
- Grogu was unable to, once again, use his Force abilities until the right moment. *sighs with exasperation*
And Moff Gideon became a joke this season. Waiting to use him for the final two episodes only for him to die in a blaze of glory (?) while revealing that instead of tying to the sequel trilogy with the cloning process, he was cloning himself…the whole…time? It felt like a poor use of the character who was so fascinating those first two seasons.
And we got that Mythosaur reveal in the second episode, only for that storyline to lead nowhere… Are you trying to tell me that Grogu will be riding that thing one day? A season ago, that would’ve made me so happy. Now, I’m feeling kind of annoyed. How did Jon Favreau singlehandedly make Grogu kind of annoying in one fell swoop?
Ultimately, for those who enjoyed this season, the finale landed in a way that satisfied them. Still, as someone who pays attention to writing, this season felt like it could’ve gone in a million different directions, and it chose the most boring route.
When I think back to December 2020 and how I cried and cheered while watching the second season’s finale, I feel a familiar pang of disappointment. That same disappointment when The Rise of Skywalker was far less engaging than I would’ve hoped. The Mandalorian clearly concluded with Season 2. The music, the emotional sendoff between Djarin and Grogu, that was it. That was the proper ending to this (at the time) epic series.
Then The Book of Boba Fett happened, Mando and Grogu were reunited just like that (because Disney couldn’t separate great storytelling from potential loss of subscribers if The Mandalorian had officially ended,) and their story hasn’t recovered since.
I wish I could say I had a blast watching this finale. In fact, I wish I could say this season was fantastic. Unfortunately, I cannot, and that saddens me deeply. I can only hope that Ahsoka sticks the landing and delivers us a story worthy of the quality of Star Wars: Rebels, Clone Wars, and, yes, even The Bad Batch.
How did you feel about the finale? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.
I thank you for reading, and I hope you have a lovely day. May the Force be with you.
2 thoughts on “‘The Mandalorian’ Should’ve Ended With Season 2”
The one interesting takeaway I got from this season was the beginnings of the examination of why the New Republic is so feckless: it’s overly bureaucratic and being actively sabotaged from inside by a fifth column of Imperial sympathizers. That the Republic captain had to turn to the Mandalorians to take matters into their own hands foreshadowed Leia feeling a need to organize the Resistance outside of Republic authority in the sequels, because the Republic won’t do these things for itself. I thought it was kind of a nice cue.
LikeLiked by 1 person