UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | June 16, 2024

‘The Mandalorian,’ a return to form for Star Wars

Disney Plus’ “The Mandalorian” paves the way into the fresh and new future of Star Wars. Brynlee Wade | Sun News Daily

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“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away,” A fan-base surrounding the most popular sci-fi franchise ever made was divided; however, a man cladded in silver armor accompanied by an adorable, green sidekick unified the fans of Star Wars for the better.

“The Mandalorian” was released during a strange time for the Star Wars universe. Disney bought the creative studio behind Star Wars, Lucasfilm, and various different directors were knee deep in creating a new set of films for Star Wars.

The problem that presented itself was the new trilogy not living up to the celestially high standards the fans had for such an undertaking. Certain story beats felt too similar to previous films, but whenever more original story elements were introduced, fans couldn’t help but pick it apart like a professor grading a test.

This led to “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” receiving one of the most polarizing critic to audience ratio on Rotten Tomatoes with a 91% from critics and a 42% from audiences.

Enter Jon Favreau, a man who had already cemented himself with Disney thanks to his work on “Iron Man”—“The Jungle Book (2016)” and “The Lion King (2019).”

Favreau had quite the task laid before him. To create the first-ever, live-action Star Wars TV show.

Instead of trying to replicate the nostalgia of previous films, Favreau decided to tap into a culture seldom mentioned outside of animated spin-offs of Star Wars, the Mandalorians.

Popular characters such as Boba Fett and his father Jango Fett were Mandalorians, but this show would not focus on these pre-established characters. The protagonist of “The Mandalorian” was known as just that, a Mandalorian. It wasn’t until the end of season one when viewers actually got to put a name to the face, Din Djarin.

While this was quite enticing to many fans from the beginning, it wasn’t until the end of the first episode that made viewers want to keep watching. The pointy-eared gremlin known as The Child was enough to melt the hearts of even the most hardened of Star Wars fans.

Here is where the main motivation of the show comes into view. “The Mandalorian” is a personable story about a battle-ridden man watching over this innocent child as they both travel across the galaxy in search of new bounties while also growing closer in the process.  

Such a simple premise was only a mask hiding the love and care that was put into this series.

“The Mandalorian” became the thing Star Wars fans were waiting for: something new and somewhat risky in nature.

A lot of dreams were fulfilled thanks to “The Mandalorian” such as the return of Boba Fett, the first live-action portrayal of fan-favorite character Ahsoka, and even Luke Skywalker dropped in for the finale of season two thanks to AI technology.

Three years after the premiere of its first season, “The Mandalorian” is still the most popular original series on Disney+ and is now airing its third season with new episodes airing every subsequent Wednesday.

It seems that the future of Star Wars is not in movie theaters but on TV. Since “The Mandalorian” showed such success, Disney+ has become home to several new Star Wars shows built for the platform. Despite all that excitement, fans tend to ask the same question whenever they see Favreau, “When’s the next season of The Mandalorian?”