Monday, November 30, 2020

The Mandalorian - The Jedi

At last, the episode we've all been waiting for. With her appearance finally here, The Mandalorian wastes no more time in getting Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson) on-screen for the first time as a live-action character. Dawson makes a good choice for the older Ahsoka, burdened not only by departure from the Jedi but also by their fall and the dark truths uncovered about her former Master. Introduced battling Imperial remnant soldiers on a small outpost on Corvus, "The Jedi" reveals little detail about what she's been up to since the Star Wars Rebels finale, as she is still on the hunt for Grand Admiral Thrawn (but no mention is made of Sabine Wren or Ezra Bridger). The show's action scenes, particularly the first featuring Ahsoka taking out the troops and later the short battle between the former Jedi and the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) are some of the best of the season.

Ahsoka's time with the Child not only reveal his name to be Grogu but also offers a limited amount of information about his past in the Jedi Temple before going into hiding from the Empire where his memory goes dark. Although his appearance brings joy to Ahsoka, reminding her of Yoda, the creature's fear reminds her all to well of what happened to Anakin and why she refuses to train him even after the Mandalorian helps her take down the Imperials (making her wiser than Obi-Wan). Diana Lee Inosanto offers an intimidating figure in Morgan Elsbeth, but there's really not much to the character as she's purposely shrouded in mystery, as is Ahsoka's interest in her, allowing for the climactic namedrop of yet another fan favorite character.

Despite her reservations, Ahsoka does offer a new course for the pair to the Jedi Temple on Tython where she suspects a Jedi may appear if indeed Grogu truly wants to be trained. Will this lead to another familiar face, or perhaps someone new? Thrawn's name being dropped here may have more to do with the possibility of an Ahsoka, Sabine, and/or Ezra spin-off in the future that his appearance on The Mandalorian, but time will tell. It's also interesting to note that "The Jedi" lays the seeds here for a Darth Gorgu somewhere down the line, as Ahsoka's reluctance to train Grogu reminds us of the creature's lack of respect for other living organisms and his Force choke attack on Dune (Gina Carano) last season. Is that to be his destiny?

No comments: