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The Mandalorian - Chapter 8: Redemption Review

Cornered, outnumbered and outgunned, The Mandalorian faces his greatest struggle yet. Kidzworld reviews the finale of season one: Redemption!

Jan 01, 2020
The Mandalorian - Chapter 8: Redemption Review - Reviewed by Kidzworld on Jan 01, 2020
( Rating: 5 Star Rating)

Mando, Cara, Greef, IG-11 and Baby Yoda are up against almost impossible odds in the final showdown with the Empire. Get all the details in Kidzworlds review of The Mandalorian finale, Chapter 8: Redemption.

The Troopers

This final episode was directed by Thor Ragnorok’s Taika Waititi (who also voices the now babysitter droid IG-11) and it is clear from the outset. Even though the stakes have never been higher going into this finale, there is still time for some comedy as the two Biker Scout Troopers that shot down our dearest Ughnaught Kuiil and captured Baby Yoda engage in playful banter as the pair test their famous Stormtrooper aim (or lack thereof). Series creator Jon Favreau wrote the episode, but you could easily believe it came from Taika’s imagination instead. The comedy quickly stops though, as one of the Troopers does the unthinkable and hits Baby Yoda. Not acceptable, but it is amusing nonetheless. The writer/director pair worked very well together, as this episode is a stellar conclusion to the season that felt satisfying while also making us yearn for season 2 (coming this Fall).

The banter between the two Scout Troopers was a highlight of the stellar episode.The banter between the two Scout Troopers was a highlight of the stellar episode.

Pinned Down

It is not long after that IG-11, now programmed for caretaking rather than bounty hunting, comes to Baby Yoda’s aid. He swiftly deals with the pair of troopers, smashing one Scout into his speeder bike. He zooms away with our favorite little green Force-sensitive in tow. Mando and his allies are still pinned down in the Bounty Hunter’s Guild cantina. Moff Gideon has the team surrounded by a whole battalion of Stormtroopers, and now a blaster turret. Moff Gideon elevates the threat of the turret fairly high, but we’ve seen what Mando can do when he gets a hold of one in Chapter 1. They need to find a way out, and they desperately try to get through a grate in the building that would lead them out, even trying to blast it open with Cara Dune’s large machine gun blaster. Moff Gideon is not amused and toys with his prey before he orders his troops to open fire. He knows exactly who his enemies are, calling out each member of the band by name. This is also where we finally learn the Mandalorian’s real name: Din Djarin.

Mando was worried about the assassin droid for a reason.Mando was worried about the assassin droid for a reason.

Memories

We get another piece of Din’s flashback to his homeworld being destroyed by the Separatists during the Clone Wars. We know he was rescued by Mandalorians, but it was revealed that he was saved by none other than the cunning Death Watch, a group of warriors who sought to revive the warlike traditions of Mandalore after the planet had attempted to pursue peace. This group was responsible for keeping many of the original traditions of the Mandalorian creed safe during and after the Clone Wars. It was awesome seeing a group of Death Watch in full live-action, sporting their blue armor and blasting Battle Droids before flying young Din to safety.

The Mandalorian Death Watch as seen in The Clone Wars.The Mandalorian Death Watch as seen in The Clone Wars.

A Daring Rescue

IG-11 closes in on the group’s position with Baby Yoda in tow, who is loving the speeder bike ride. IG roars in, easily besting the Stormtrooper resistance guarding the town. Moff’s guards hear something, only to see the assassin droid blasting his way through the now empty city streets. It takes down Trooper after Trooper, giving Mando, Cara, and Greef the exact opening they need. Mando bursts through the door, blaster hot and blasts a Stormtrooper point blank with the rest in tow. All I can think during this sequence is how thrilling it is seeing an IG droid hauling a Baby Yoda fight alongside a Mandalorian, a Rebel soldier, and Carl Weathers. As to be expected, the black armor-clad Death Troopers put up the biggest fight, proving to be more of a match. Teamwork prevails, and as more troopers close in, Mando once again looks toward the mounted turret blaster with hope. This time skipping mounting the thing, he just picks it up letting loose on the still huge numbers of Troopers closing in. Can we all agree that Mando is just an awesome character?

The Stormtroopers are no match for IG-11, let alone IG-11 on a speeder bike. The Stormtroopers are no match for IG-11, let alone IG-11 on a speeder bike.

A Warrior’s Death

Mando is caught in an explosion forcing the team to take cover in the Cantina once more. With many of the Troopers dealt with, the Imperials bring in their big guns. An Incinerator Trooper, with a flamethrower in tow. Cara drags Din inside, gravely wounded from the blast. IG is finally able to cut through the grate that leads to their safety, but Mando’s condition looks bad. He is all but ready to give in, giving Cara his Mandalorian pendant for safekeeping. The Incinerator Trooper closes in, but Baby Yoda isn’t about to let his dad give up. As the Flame Trooper’s blast closes in, Baby Yoda lifts his hands in defiance, blocking the flame barrage and blasting it back at the trooper who gets a face full of fire and the force, knocking him outside. It would almost be funny if our hero wasn’t laying down, bleeding. IG approaches Mando, trying to give him aid with the help of bacta but he can’t without removing his helmet. Din resists, no living thing has ever taken off his helmet. But, in a clever move, IG reminds Din that he isn’t a living thing. Mando cannot deny the droid’s logic. We finally see Mando’s face after 8 chapters of mystery, and surprise he looks like Pedro Pascal. Having the character be helmeted all the time meant he really could have looked like anybody, but I suppose we had to see him unmasked eventually. And with his Mandalorian honor intact.

Mando and a turret means its a bad day to be a StormtrooperMando and a turret means its a bad day to be a Stormtrooper

The Enclave

Mando and IG rejoin the others, to Cara’s delight. They all help the wounded Mandalorian through the tunnels that used to make up the Mandalorian enclave. He leads them the best he can, but his directions are fuzzy since he only ever entered from the surface. They eventually make their way in, only to find a pile of abandoned Mandalorian armor. The others had all left their armor behind, to better their chances of escaping unharmed. They didn’t just move the Enclave after Mando’s shootout with Greef’s bounty hunters in Chapter 3. Mando naturally gets defensive, accusing Greef of this before the Armorer enters and interrupts them. She explains that abandoning the armor was the best chance the warriors had. But she, being the Armorer, couldn’t abandon the sacred pieces. She smelts them down into liquid Beskar while questioning whether or not Baby Yoda’s life was worth it or not. But, she admits that now, Baby Yoda is the closest thing to an heir that their creed has. She forges Mando a signet, his final honor given to him by the Armorer and names Baby Yoda his Foundling. She educates the group on the Jedi, whom the Mandalorians had been enemies with thousands of years prior. She commits Mando to raise Baby Yoda and finding his people. She also gives Din his very own jetpack or “Rising Phoenix”. Hard to make a jet pack sound cooler, but she did it. The last meeting is interrupted by Stormtroopers, except the first wave is easily held off by IG-11. They can’t stay, and as Din and the Armorer departs, she looks on to the only hope of their way of life to survive. The Stormtroopers eventually make their way in, but the Armorer defends her home valiantly.

The Rising Phoenix.The Rising Phoenix.

The Armorer defends her home no matter what. The Armorer defends her home no matter what.

Escape

There was only one obstacle left between the group and their freedom. A river of molten lava, and a small boat in which to cross it, is their path to freedom. They pile in and are greeted by the gondola’s driver. A repurposed Astromech droid, like R2-D2, outfitted with arms so he can steer the craft. They come to an obvious but chilling conclusion. There is no doubt to be resistance waiting for them at the end of the river. IG-11 bravely volunteers to fulfill his final order, and finally self destructs like he oh so wanted to in the first Chapter. The group argues, even Mando with his famous hatred of droids. But they agree, there is no better course of action. IG climbs out of the craft into the lava, barely able to wade through the heated rock. He makes it outside to find a dozen Stormtroopers waiting. He discharges, taking them all down with him.

Rest in peace, IG...Rest in peace, IG...

Moff Gideon

As the group comes out into the daylight, Moff Gideon’s customized TIE Fighter looms toward them. Mando has one more job, he’ll use the jet pack to get up to the TIE and end this. Gideon closes in, nearly sure of his victory before the Mandalorian takes off and intercepts the Fighter with his wrist cable. He zips onto the TIE’s cockpit and tries to blast his way in. Moff begins to spin the Fighter wildly, trying to knock Mando off. But of course, he perseveres, just long enough to plant a thermal detonator. The TIE Fighter crashes down to the ground below, and Mando saves himself from the fall thanks to his jet pack. Congratulations are in order, Greef offers to reinstate his status into the Hunter’s Guild but Din has other plans. He has a mission now, more than that of money or fame. He needs to find where his little guy belongs. I will say this last scene does feel fairly sudden after the thrilling action sequence right before it. Mando flies away with The Child, mirroring his very own rescue and makes time to bury his friend Kuill before setting off toward the stars in the Razor Crest. Wait though, as some Jawas are picking through the wreckage of Gideon’s TIE Fighter, a Dark Saber slices through the outer hull, and arises Moff Gideon once more, alive and well. Dun dun dun!

Mando bravely flies up to Gideon's TIE Fighter.Mando bravely flies up to Gideon's TIE Fighter.

Final Thoughts

What a finale, what a show. There were a few missteps along the way, but overall I couldn’t be happier with the first-ever Star Wars series. This finale wrapped up the story well, while also being a great episode in its own right. The action was on a huge scale, and the character moments were ever-present as well. We learned a lot about our protagonist, and each supporting character got a chance to shine. There were several moments, like much of the rest of the series, where I couldn’t believe what I was watching as a longtime fan of the Expanded Universe content of Star Wars. It had all those nods and references that longtime fans would appreciate, while also having stories and characters that anyone could enjoy and that a good Star Wars story makes. The only real issue I had with this episode in particular, is how underused Giancarlo Esposito was (Moff Gideon). With him surviving, though, we will no doubt get more of him in the next season. We’ll have to wait until later this year to see the next adventures of Din Djarin, Baby Yoda and the rest but it is a wait I will gladly endure if we get more adventures starring these characters and created with so much care. Jon Favreau and everyone else who worked on this series should be commended, as it is easily my favorite thing Disney has done with Star Wars since it became under their wing.                          

Moff Gideon lives to fight another day.Moff Gideon lives to fight another day.

"The Mandalorian" - Chapter 8: Redemption Rating: 5

Share Your Thoughts

What do you think of "The Mandalorian"? Are you excited for more adventures with these characters? Who was your favorite? Let us know below!

By Noah Friscopp