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The Mandalorian - a general discussion thread - * SPOILERS * — Page 41

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I like the idea of using different directors while keeping the writing primarily with Favreau. Doing this will cause some to like certain episodes more than others, but I think there will be a little something for everyone. I like how fresh everything still feels every week. Each director has different strengths.

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Solid episode, but I don’t remember Boba Fett being that great of a fighter. I think if he fought half as hard as he did in this episode during Return of the Jedi, Luke, Lando, Han and Chewie wouldn’t have made it off that sail barge alive.

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Kinda surprised to see so many complaints about the directing and effects. I thought everything looked fine. I even found myself wishing the action in the prequels had been directed this well.

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Just some nice pictures of the Razor Crest and Grogu.

“Remember, the Force will be with you. Always.”

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idir_hh said:

It looked like an ambitious student film shot on a hill somewhere in California. Sorry for the harshness but this was nowhere near what we’ve come to expect from this series.

The story was extremely rushed. One second you’re with Ashoka, the next you’ve already reached the top of the temple and you’re negotiating with Boba Fett, who then suddenly cares about the child? It felt like 3 episodes squeezed into half an episode. Don’t even get me started on the dialogue.

Lol, totally agree. The quick shots of stormtroopers running through the tall grass felt super fan-filmy.

Yeah, the dialogue was really rough in this episode. So, so wooden. I don’t see why these episodes can’t have longer dialogue scenes so these characters can be more developed, and have more fleshed out relationships.

As a Star Wars fan, I love the show. But if you try and judge the show without any of that fan bias, I think it struggles in some places. I agree with others that I think Favraeu needs to bring on another professional writer that could really elevate the narrative storytelling of future seasons. I would like to see more depth with these characters, but I guess we have to accept this show is more a simple Saturday morning serial. That’s how it has feeling for me, at least. Not a bad thing, of course.

Also, why did we get such a null reaction from Din when Grogu was kidnapped? I would have expected a more dramatic, upset response. Him desperate to chase after them, “no, this can’t be happening”, him falling to his knees in the ashes of his ship. Instead, he’s making small talk to Cara in the following scene. They’re trying to build up this father/son relationship between them, but a dad wouldn’t have acted so calmly after their child is literally kidnapped.

It is starting to feel like Filoni and Favreau are just playing with Star Wars action figures, rather than writing interesting characters. That is great if you accept that’s all the show is, but I would just like to see stronger storytelling from this show. I want it to not just be a good Star Wars show, but a good show in its own right.

On another note, since Grogu was connected to that seeing stone for awhile, I wonder if that means he did get in contact with a Jedi…

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RogueLeader said:

Also, why did we get such a null reaction from Din when Grogu was kidnapped? I would have expected a more dramatic, upset response. Him desperate to chase after them, “no, this can’t be happening”, him falling to his knees in the ashes of his ship. Instead, he’s making small talk to Cara in the following scene. They’re trying to build up this father/son relationship between them, but a dad wouldn’t have acted so calmly after their child is literally kidnapped.

That seems rather melodramatic for a stoic Mandalorian doesn’t it? I think the main reason Din doesn’t seem to have much emotions is simply due to him not showing his face. It’s a pretty unusual choice for a main character, and I think it’s throwing people off. I’m actually quite impressed by how much nuance Pascal has managed to convey through simply his voice so far in the show, though, as far as the latest episode is concerned, I think the director replacements might have rushed the performance, so you get a double underwhelming effect.

RogueLeader said:

It is starting to feel like Filoni and Favreau are just playing with Star Wars action figures, rather than writing interesting characters. That is great if you accept that’s all the show is, but I would just like to see stronger storytelling from this show. I want it to not just be a good Star Wars show, but a good show in its own right.

I think that’s a bit harsh. If anything I think the growing relations ship between Din and Grogu has been handled really well, as has Din’s change in personality. Though, again, we can’t see his face so its really dependent on what he does and says as there’s no facial expressions to read. I also think Favreau has done an excellent job at choosing subject matter and supporting characters that all mirror or contrast with Din in some way to make it all tie in to his growth as a character. Now SW is obviously meant to have that serial feel to it, so much of it is intentional, but “playing with action figures” implies that everything is random, and I would argue that hardly anything has been truly random so far. Weather its Cobb Vanth, Bo-Katan or even Boba Fett, even though these character all have a fan-service appeal, they’ve all tied into the story in some important way, regarding either Din’s quest or Din’s fanaticism to the creed.

I do agree that some of it has felt a little rushed though, so I do maintain that Favreau probably write less per season and rather stick to outlines and have someone else take the load off of him. I appreciate him keeping control of the overall story, but I don’t think it’d be a problem for him to outline a few more episodes and instead focus on writing just a few episodes entirely on his own.

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Cthulhunicron said:

Kinda surprised to see so many complaints about the directing and effects. I thought everything looked fine. I even found myself wishing the action in the prequels had been directed this well.

Well, just a few examples of some of the wonky CG in this episode;

  • https://youtu.be/QOzbm6jvhWw The way the stormtrooper falls against the two rocks looks really weird. First off, it’s obviously a full CG body. Secondly there’s proper stop in his momentum as he hits the rock and then he practically bounces off it as if it was soft and then falls cartoonishly fast onto the ground. What I think they’ve done is simply rotate the CG figure on its axis to save time. It almost like his center of gravity is in his head.
  • https://youtu.be/QOzbm6jvhWw?t=19 A bit nitpicky compared to the previous bit perhaps, but the impact is so strong that his armor practically explodes. Not really a bad thing overall, with alongside the rest of the scene, and how action has been treated previously on the show, this seemed really over the top to me.
  • I couldn’t find a video of it, but when the stormtrooper retreat into the two shuttles it’s painfully obvious that they all become CG the moment they jump up on the ramp. The animation is odd and feels like something from TV shows ten years ago or more.

Now there have been previous moments in this show where characters were replaced with CG, one of the more obvious examples was when Bo-Katan open the cargo aby hatch on the Gozanti cruiser in Chapter 11 and everyone got sucked out. But they clearly knew that it would all happen so fast that you wouldn’t really notice it unless you were looking for it. But shots like the one in the first example just feel so egregious to me because its so right in your face and there’s been no attempt to hide it. And it’s a real shame to because the action in the show has generally been quite excellent, and I like the overall feel of the Boba Fett gaffi stick fight, but I don’t see why these unrealistic CG effects had to be added. It would have looked more brutal if the stormtooper simply smacked into the rock and slid off, there really was no reason for him to awkwardly bounce off it in such a sped up manner.

Maybe I’m just the kind of person that pays more attention to this kind of stuff, but to me at least, and clearly many others, these CG moments really stuck out like a sore thumb. The idea was good, but the execution felt off. I don’t know if the change in director was the main culprit here, but since its all so Rodriguez-esque anyway, it probably was. I think it simply was a case of the stuntmen not being given enough time to prepare and in the end they had to quickly solve much of it with CG. Fight choreography takes a lot of time, and if Rodriguez decided to improvise a lot of it then there’s only so much the stunt team can accomplish on a short notice. F.ex. the fight scene in Chapter 8 with the Armorer and the stormtroopers wasn’t even shot by Taika Waititi, but by Filoni who did second unit duty to make sure everything was done on time. And since Waititi could focus on the rest of the episode Filoni and the stunt team could focus on getting just the fight scene right. Stuntwoman Lauren Mary Kim even said that they shot the whole thing hundreds of times to get it right, which Waititi never would have had time to do shooting the whole episode during what I’d assume was only a few weeks (at least that’s what used to be normal for TV series).

Anyway, those are my observations and “theories” about the stunts/choreography in the latest episode and I’m curious to read what other people think.

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Star Wars is Surrealism, not Science Fiction (essay)
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Those were very good examples. The helmet-debris, while a cool idea actually, really stood out to me as bad CGI, and I believe the rock when it first got dislodged was pretty bad too.

On the flip side, really loved Grogu & the Seeing Stone.

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Yeah, I agree that I like how Din and Grogu’s relationship has been developed. Their fun interaction in the ship at the beginning of the episode was really nice. But that is why is reaction didn’t work for me. I don’t think the fact he is always wearing a mask can be written off with his stoicism. I think Grogu is making Din come out of his shell more, so I wish Din would’ve just shown a little more emotion. I like the moment with him finding the ball in the wreckage, but I felt like it would’ve been nice for Din to beat himself up a little bit. Like, “I shouldn’t have left him by himself…” Basically, act the way a parent would in that situation.

And I actually just talked to my dad about that same point regarding the side characters. I feel like Cobb Vanth, Bo-Katan and Boba Fett could act as great foils to Din, that makes him become more open-minded about his beliefs on what it means to be Mandalorian.

I think my problem is that it all has felt rushed, and I think these characters could have more interesting interactions if the writing was a little bit stronger.

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ZkinandBonez said:

  • https://youtu.be/QOzbm6jvhWw?t=19 A bit nitpicky compared to the previous bit perhaps, but the impact is so strong that his armor practically explodes. Not really a bad thing overall, with alongside the rest of the scene, and how action has been treated previously on the show, this seemed really over the top to me.

Stormtrooper armor shattering from blunt impact was established back in Rogue One. Though admittedly it was done a bit subtler there.

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Stepping softly in a danger zone…

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Tobar said:

ZkinandBonez said:

  • https://youtu.be/QOzbm6jvhWw?t=19 A bit nitpicky compared to the previous bit perhaps, but the impact is so strong that his armor practically explodes. Not really a bad thing overall, with alongside the rest of the scene, and how action has been treated previously on the show, this seemed really over the top to me.

Stormtrooper armor shattering from blunt impact was established back in Rogue One. Though admittedly it was done a bit subtler there.

Oh, sure, and the same also happens during the Armorer fight scene in season 1, but Boba Fett’s gaffi stick seems to hit them with the power of a shotgun.

Original Trilogy Documentaries/Making-Ofs (YouTube, Vimeo, etc. finds)
Beyond the OT Documentaries/Making-Ofs (YouTube, Vimeo, etc. finds)
Star Wars is Surrealism, not Science Fiction (essay)
Amazon link to my first novel; Dawn of the Karabu.

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Could it be just the natural lighting that make everything look less appealing to some?

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It’s also kinda weird to me after seeing troopers looking so dirty that Moff Gideon has a nice fresh legion at his command.

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Rodney-2187 said:

Could it be just the natural lighting that make everything look less appealing to some?

Yes I think the overall brightness of the episode has caused two reactions in people. First of all SW doesn’t tend to look like that. Yes there’s been sunny settings like Cloud City, Endor & Naboo, but there’s clearly something about Rodriguez’s style, the colour grading or maybe simply the look of digital photography that made it stand out in this episode. Secondly, sunny exteriors are always to be avoided when relying on CG effects, especially when dealing with TV budgets. If you look closely, all of the things I mentioned above have been done in this series before, but it’s been done sparingly and quite often hidden in dark or grey lighting. The more hard directional lighting a scene have the better CG usually looks. The moment people try to add add even lighting it usually fails unless the budget is big enough to pull of a highly detailed CG character. It also has a lot to do with genre. Something like the Avengers movies have so much CG that people have been numbed to it, while SW still carries that old-school style to it. This show especially has deliberately used CG fairly sparingly opting to do things practically when possible, so all CG stands out so much more. And from even just the few Rodriguez films I’ve seen he clearly doesn’t shy away from CG.


Mocata said:

It’s also kinda weird to me after seeing troopers looking so dirty that Moff Gideon has a nice fresh legion at his command.

Maybe the dirty ones where just Herzog’s Navarro stormtroopers and Gideon has much better resources? Either that, or Gideon and Thrawn’s other allies (I’m assuming they work together) has been regaining a lot of power over the course of the last two seasons.

Original Trilogy Documentaries/Making-Ofs (YouTube, Vimeo, etc. finds)
Beyond the OT Documentaries/Making-Ofs (YouTube, Vimeo, etc. finds)
Star Wars is Surrealism, not Science Fiction (essay)
Amazon link to my first novel; Dawn of the Karabu.

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I’ve seen a similar one…

On a side note, when it comes to film-making I’m a realist and I quite like having no or little colour grading. I know that sounds weird because I’m a Star Wars fan - obviously when I see something like Chapter 13 which is graded as hell I don’t call it sacrilege - but I just don’t mind at all when it isn’t used. I will say that seeing as this is a fantasy galaxy, Tython could have looked more majestic than a Californian hillside, but that didn’t bug me either until Eckhartsladder picked up on it.

Maybe I just love this show way too much…

“Remember, the Force will be with you. Always.”

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I’m trying to hold back and make sure I’m not getting caught up in the hype, but The Mandalorian could be my favorite Star Wars content of all time. I starting thinking this last season, but held off to see if the second season was on par. Well, this second season in my opinion has surpassed the first.

I love movie theaters, nothing else like them, especially for a Star Wars movie. But there is also something special about a TV series coming into your home on a weekly basis. TV has it’s own nostalgia from when I was a kid, and The Mandalorian has tapped into that.

Things feel bigger and more intense in movies, but TV has the time to go deeper into characters and their world. I love all of Star Wars, and I’m not suggesting one part is more essential or definitive than another, just that The Mandalorian is the exact content I’ve been waiting decades for, and it hasn’t disappointed.

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Saw this posited on Reddit, and thought I might ask you all here: What do you think of the idea that Grogu’s eventual future is a turn to the dark side? He’s got attachment & fear, and has definitely used the Force for harming people (and enjoyed it).

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timdiggerm said:

Saw this posited on Reddit, and thought I might ask you all here: What do you think of the idea that Grogu’s eventual future is a turn to the dark side? He’s got attachment & fear, and has definitely used the Force for harming people (and enjoyed it).

I think we all have attachment and fear. We all have a dark side too. These things can never be entirely eliminated from our consciousness. We just need mental discipline and balance so those traits don’t overtake our decision making.

I guess it all depends on who Grogu’s mentor ends up being. Din Djarin may not be able to teach him about the Force, but he has a decent set of values, even though he has a lot to learn himself.

I have no idea what’s going to happen. The solution of what to do with Grogu isn’t obvious. I think that’s one of the things making the series so great.

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Just rewatched the episode. That one trooper flying off the Boulder looks a bit odd, but the rest of the lighting, effects, and direction still look fine to me. shrugs

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Cthulhunicron said:

Just rewatched the episode. That one trooper flying off the Boulder looks a bit odd, but the rest of the lighting, effects, and direction still look fine to me. shrugs

Same. I don’t even see the problem with the trooper being thrown against the rock, seems like a nitpick to me.

On the other hand, when Fennec rolls the boulder downhill and the trooper at the heavy blaster just stands there for a couple of seconds waiting to be crushed, that did look really silly to me.

EDIT: Also the latest episode seems to have been appreciated much better pretty much everywhere else than on this site (according to IMDB second highest rating after the Ahsoka episode). The point about Filoni and Favreau just moving action figures around does seem to be somewhat valid, though. However, that’s not an issue with the last episode specifically. Ever since the beginning I felt that this show does provide some excellent little Star Wars moments but right now I can’t really see them amounting to a satisfying and coherent story. I could still be proven wrong, though.

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I think this episode was Favreau and Rodriguez playing with Star Wars action figures a bit - and I mean that in a good way - but I don’t see that as a recurring feature of the show. I don’t think any characters from The Mandalorian have been any less interesting than characters from the original trilogy.

I’ve seen some people say Chapter 14 is their favourite season 2 episode so far, and they’re not “Star Wars is when lightsaber swoosh laser gun battle pew pew big explosions” types either. I understand them. I thought it was a great episode.

I think Grogu will continue to have dark side moments like his latest scary tirade, and the amount of violence he’s close to will surely have a negative impact on him, but I can’t see him turning to the dark side. It’s important to note that while the amount of intelligence he has in debatable, he IS a child, and decisions are made purely based on feeling or instinct anyway, so ‘dark side’ might not be the right term. Though I really appreciate that Grogu has been made a proper character with struggles and moral decisions, instead of the object of the plot who’s there to sell toys and get captured so everyone can feel sorry for him.

“Remember, the Force will be with you. Always.”

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jedi_bendu said:

I think this episode was Favreau and Rodriguez playing with Star Wars action figures a bit - and I mean that in a good way - but I don’t see that as a recurring feature of the show. I don’t think any characters from The Mandalorian have been any less interesting than characters from the original trilogy.

Oh I have no issue with the characters, I think they’re great. It’s the plot that seems to meander at times, but maybe everything will fall into place in the end.

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timdiggerm said:

Saw this posited on Reddit, and thought I might ask you all here: What do you think of the idea that Grogu’s eventual future is a turn to the dark side? He’s got attachment & fear, and has definitely used the Force for harming people (and enjoyed it).

This was my first thought during that scene in the cell. Would be interesting if that’s the path he ends up on, and how Din will react. He’s not familiar with the force and I’m curious how both he and and whatever jedi (if any) who answers Grogu’s call react.

I just want to see beskar spear vs darksaber before the season ends