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THE MANDALORIAN Review: Chapter 9 “The Marshal”

By on October 30, 2020

 

Photo credit: Disney +

 

THE MANDALORIAN Season 2 Premiere Review

Chapter 9: The Marshal

 

By Michelle Gonzaba

 

When we last left Mando and the Child, they were at the beginning of a new journey. While the first season focused on Mando protecting the Child from nefarious characters, Mando is now dedicated to reuniting the Child with his own kind. Committed to his new quest , he will stop at nothing to complete it.

The season premiere opens with Mando and the Child walking down the deserted streets of a mysterious city. With creatures keeping an eye on them from the shadows, Mando arrives at some kind of underground fighting ring looking for someone important. That someone is Gor Keresh, a creature who knows where other Mandalorians are located around the galaxy. Keresh is willing to help out, but only if Mando hands over his rare beskar armor. Of course, Mando quickly turns down this offer which leads to a brawl with Keresh’s minions. Mando easily wins the fight and goes after a frightened Keresh. Keresh, quickly realizing he won’t win, informs Mando of a Mandalorian living on Tatooine. So Mando and the Child, like so many Star Wars characters before them, must go through Tatooine to complete their destiny.

Mando and the Child return to Tatooine and Peli Motto, the Child’s #1 fan. While Motto coos and cuddles with the Child, she and Mando discuss a mysterious town called Mos Pelgo. Destroyed after the war, it is supposedly the location of the mysterious Mandalorian. With only sketchy directions, Mando and the Child go off on their speeder bike to investigate.

They eventually find the town; it looks normal from the outside but its people don’t look very friendly to outsiders. Mando eventually meets the Marshal of the town, Cobb Vanth )Timothy Olyphant). Once he meets this Marshal, he quickly understands why Keresh thought a Mandalorian would be found here-Vanth is wearing Mandalorian beskar armor! It also looks suspiciously like the armor of one Boba Fett, but we’ll get to that later.

Mando demands that Vanth immediately take off the armor; only Mandalorians can wear it. Vanth refuses, leading to an old western stare-off between the two. However, they are interrupted by alarms blaring and the ground shaking beneath their feet. A giant, worm-like creature (if worms had bone-crushing teeth and bulletproof skin) slithers underground. This creature, which we learn is called a krayt dragon, has been terrorizing Mos Pelgo for years. Vanth wants to kill the dragon once and for all, so he makes a deal with Mando: help kill the dragon, and Vanth will give Mando the armor. Mando agrees, and they race off into the desert.

While travelling the deserts of Tatooine, Vanth explains how he came to find the Mandalorian armor. After the Empire fell and gangs took over his town, Vanth escaped. He was eventually picked up by the Jawas who were very interested in the crystals he stole from the people who took over Mos Pelgo. The Jawas were desperate for the crystals and were able to keep them once they gave Vanth something he wanted-the armor of Boba Fett. The Jawas must have scavenged the armour after Fett was defeated. Nevertheless, Vanth took the armour and used it to free and protect his town. Mando listens to his story but gives him no response.

Photo Credit: Disney +

Mando and Vanth eventually run into some Tuskens. The Tuskens, who are normally attacking and raiding the towns around them, also want to bring down the dragon. Though Vanth isn’t happy with it, Mando makes an agreement with the Tuskens. Vanth and Mando return to Mos Pelgo to discuss the agreement with the townspeople. Unsurprisingly, they aren’t completely on board; the Tuskens have previously attacked their town and killed their friends. Vanth knows this but explains that if they work with them and kill the dragon, the Tuskens will stay away from Mos Pelgo. Reluctantly, the townspeople agree to help and begin to move out to the dragon’s cave.

For such a giant creature, the plan seems simple enough; bury bombs in the ground, lure the dragon out of the cave, and detonate the explosives when its belly (the dragon’s weakest spot) is covering them. But like most of the plans hatched in The Mandalorian, it quickly goes sideways. They are able to get the dragon out of the cave by laying out an all-out assault that includes guns, spears, and arrows. The dragon finally comes out of the cave far enough and Vanth detonates the bombs. The dragon lets out a pained screech, but the bombs haven’t done their job; the dragon is still alive and kicking.

Mando and Vanth attempt to battle with the dragon, but their efforts don’t work because they don’t have a plan. It’s mostly a keep-shooting-maybe-we’ll-get-lucky strategy. Eventually, Mando scraps some thoughts together and creates something that can barely be called a plan. He tells Vanth to look after the Child and grabs a bantha outfitted with numerous explosives. The dragon bursts from the ground and seemingly devours Mando and the bantha. The townspeople and Tuskens wait in silence until the dragon breaks through the desert ground again with Mando flying out of his mouth. Mando detonates the bombs that were attached to the bantha and finally, the krayt dragon is no more.

Vanth hands over the Mandalorian armour to Mando without any ill will and they part on good terms. With the Child and plenty of dragon meat in tow, Mando heads back to his ship to continue his quest. However, they aren’t alone; a mysterious figure watches him and the child cross the Tatooine desert. 

Highlights and Observations:

  • Every single time Mando even hints at starting a fight, the Child says, “Nope, I’m out of here” in its own way and hides. The Child provided some humorous moments throughout a pretty straight-forward action episode.
  • Shoutout to the four Tusken Raiders who only tried to coax the dragon out but were immediately eaten by it. The Tuskens can survive the desert for thousands of years but can’t outrun a krayt dragon.
  • The mysterious figure at the end of the episode is played by Temuera Morrison, the actor who played Jango Fett in the prequels. Since we know Boba Fett is a clone of Jango, this confirms Boba did not die in the original trilogy. What side is he on? Will he help Mando or be another roadblock in his quest?

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