Ep 8. The Mandalorian Review: ‘The Rescue’ + Season Review

It’s safe to say that nobody will be forgetting The Mandalorian’s second season any time soon. Whether it be the superb visuals, the excellent score or the jaw-dropping moments, it’s been as perfect a second season you could have. 

The season finale arrived to present the final jewel in the crown of the Star Wars universe’s first live-action show, bringing together all that this season sought to accomplish. Our titular character pulled together a team of various protagonists that he had met over the course of the season for an ambitious raid on Moff Gideon’s cruiser to rescue little Grogu. All the characters in the team; Din, Boba, Fennec, Cara, Bo-Katan and Koska had their time to shine and played a big role in the finale. The group dynamics were very enjoyable; Bo-Katan and Koska’s hostility towards Boba was an unexpected highlight. The role that the Darksaber played was also interesting, with the saber’s new owner setting up a potentially big storyline for coming seasons. The shows villain, Moff Gideon, was on top form. His duel with Din was short, but still thrilling, however it was his manipulative nature that was his standout. Giancarlo Esposito is excellent in the role and a joy to watch. The Dark Troopers also presented a haunting and menacing antagonistic force, making the episode’s final scenes even more jaw-dropping. Whether it be for the Dark Trooper theme or for the final scenes, the music is also a high point; Ludwig Göransson’s score is wonderful and probably his best work on the show (and that’s saying something). 

Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito) stands with Darksaber wavering above the imprisoned Grogu (Image Credit: Disney+/Lucasfilm)

This is where major spoilers come in. This finale would not have tied this series up properly without addressing who Grogu called to on Tython, and which Jedi might show up (if one even would). There was a great deal of speculation, but ultimately it was only ever going to be one person. When the heroes face certain doom, a single X-Wing shows up and you know who it is. It’s pretty clever to play on the gang’s obliviousness by having Cara Dune comment on how one X-Wing isn’t going to save them, meanwhile every Star Wars fan watching knows it is Luke Skywalker. Everything about this finale is magical, and seeing Luke carve his way through all those Dark Troopers with ease is the cherry on top of the icing – on top of a very large cake. The music is perfect, and seeing Grogu go over and touch the monitor only added to the scene. 

The X-Wing brings back an old friend… (Image Credit: Disney+/Lucasfilm)

Much like all other inclusions of iconic Star Wars elements in this show, Luke’s arrival is executed perfectly. It is seamlessly embedded into the story… it was always leading to this. Having Luke save them from certain doom is a perfect moment to cap off Din and Grogu’s journey this season. It perfectly shows why Din must deliver Grogu to the Jedi, and adds a level of painful tragedy to the final scenes. As Din removes his helmet to say goodbye to Grogu properly, he knows that he could never protect his surrogate son like this Jedi can. Luke’s effortless dispatching of the Dark Troopers sums this up perfectly. 

Without Luke, Din AND Grogu would have been lost. It’s a truly sad goodbye, but one that is ultimately what we were always heading towards.

Simply put, this season has been phenomenal. It is a brilliant new story within the galaxy that we’re so familiar with and have so much affection for; everything is blended so beautifully. On top of that you have this wonderfully touching and emotional story with likeable characters. It is everything you could ever want from any story, let alone a Star Wars one. This is definitely the way… to end this fantastic series.

(Not to mention THAT post-credits scene!)

Image Credit: Disney+/Lucasfilm