Warning: Spoilers for ‘The Mandalorian Chapter 16: The Rescue’ ahead
Season 2 of The Mandalorian has been a roller coaster ride of quality. From filler episodes to epic Star Wars crossovers, The Mandalorian typically varies from episode to episode on the quality and relevance of each one. Its a breath of fresh air to report that Chapter 16: The Rescue is the best of what The Mandalorian has to offer.
First off, even though there was a spoiler warning included in the beginning of this review, it’s important to emphasize that for this episode specifically. The spoiler contents of this episode are so incredible that its not worth the risk of reading this review ahead of time. Now back to the review.
Chapter 16: The Rescue follows a massive Mandalorian team up featuring Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison), Bo-Katan (Katee Sackhoff), Koska Reeves (Sasha Banks) and Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen). The team breaks into Moff Gideon’s (Giancarlo Esposito) to rescue the recently captured Grogu (puppet).
The episode is an action spectacle that moves the plot forward (seemingly almost to an end) while fulfilling fans wildest dreams. The action in this episode is top notch with Peyton Reed (Ant-Man) stepping up as director and giving all he had for this one episode.
Of course, the show stopping moment from this episode is the return of Luke Skywalker in all his Jedi glory. His action sequence is what every Star Wars fan has dreamed of since Return of the Jedi and more. Still, his cameo brings some implications for the future of the show that many fans may not expect.
From a fan perspective, this episode gives them everything they want and more, but from an impartial perspective, the fan-service was a little too short-sighted. Firstly, the de-aging technology used on Mark Hamill was serviceable, but clearly not the best that the industry has to offer. Luke was fairly motion and expressionless, and every opportunity was taken to not show his face on screen.
The revelation that Luke will be Grogu’s master and the corner-cutting efforts that the filmmakers had to go through to make this cameo happen points to a future of the show where even if Grogu does return for season 3 (surely he will or fans would riot) most of his training would not be shown on screen.
Fans who were pushing for Ezra Bridger or Sabine Wren to take on Grogu as a Padawan did so because of the prospect that Grogu’s training would be a major focus of the show in the future. Not that the future of the show is doomed, but the filmmakers have kinda complicated what they seemed to be setting up for Season 3.
That being said, to examine this episode by itself: its pretty flawless for The Mandalorian. Christmas 2021 cannot get here fast enough.
Filmnetic Grade: A+
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