The Mandalorian continued this week with a wild penultimate episode that should make even the most angry of Star Wars fans a tiny bit happy. It was loaded with lore dumps and finally got the bad guys into the mix, so head on down below to check out our full review.
You can also check out our Project Necromancer explainer if you need some lore explained.
Woo buddy, how was that for an episode of The Mandalorian, are we happy yet, or does this show still suck for some of you? Hopefully it’s the former, because it’s time to review one of the best Mando episodes to date. Spoilers inbound.
One would have to assume that Star Wars nation is pleased once again with The Mandalorian thanks to The Spies, which finally thrust the seasons overarching plot of Mandalorians returning to Mandalore and what that may mean for the galaxy into the pole position.
As a reminder though, episodes like this that do provide insights into the bigger plot points of a series don’t hit as hard without the nuanced setup of the previous ones. Episodes like this are why Mando’s serialized delivery can be so damn rewarding if you have a bit of patience and enjoy speculating on what may happen next.
Things started getting deep right from the get go with the amazing return of Gideon and the debut of the Empire’s Shadow Council, which offered up so many insights into how the Remnant is operating, which war lords are jockeying for more power, and of course the Thrawn drop to fully cement him as the mysterious big bad in waiting for this particular timeline.
The episode didn’t slow it’s kick ass moments roll either as we were treated to multiple glorious scenes featuring more live-action Mandos than a Clone Wars and Rebels fan could ever dream of. Seeing the Nite Owls with the Children and taking in their awkward but respectful dynamic together was a treat, not to mention seeing them go on a quest as a mixed unit and finding another tribe of Mandos that never left Mandalore.
These moments just offered up great insights into Mandalorian’s, their belief system, and their penchant for honor, while also solidifying Bo Katan as the leader of the unified clans.
Then, as a cherry on top, this episode closes with a powerful cliffhanger that has left Din captured and Paz a true Mando hero, sacrificing himself for people he once considered foes and still fought with even moments before his honorable death.
Everything about this episode just worked so well to setup what could be a Luke Skywalker arrival type of fan moment next week for the finale. Not him actually coming, but fans feeling the same giddiness and excitement as they did when he made an appearance at the end of season 2. And let’s not forget about the Armorer, who is now once again seeming a bit shady and is possibly the second spy from this episode’s title. It is a bit convenient that she left the group before the ambush, and how would Gideon know about the fleet if comms on the surface are blocked?
Unless he had scout ships that then sent down someone to deliver the report, he may have been tipped off. The horns too, it’s tough to call, but something felt fishy this week about The Armorer, even though I almost convinced myself that she wouldn’t pull a heel turn as this season has progressed.
How about some top moments!
We gotta lead with Gideon’s return and the entire Shadow Council scene. What a treat. This season has been needing a deep dive into the Remnants designs, and this scene delivered just that. It was loaded with lore nuggets from both Star Wars legends tales and of course the Sequels. It featured insights into their in fighting and Gideon’s clear desire to be the dude over anyone else, including Thrawn. And it also shed more light on Palpatine’s return in TROS via the Project Necromancer talk. It is one of the best meetings of Imperial scum to be featured in any Star Wars property.
Up next is the arrival of the Mando fleet on Navarro, and it is mostly for its visuals. It just looked so rad to see the cruiser plodding its way over town flanked by transports, gauntlets, and fang fighters. Not to mention the Mythosaur decal on the underside of the cruiser. The whole scene felt visually powerful, and then it culminated in a tense little moment between the Children and the Nite Owls, so it was a cool way to see them reunite in some capacity.
For pure Grogu gold and comedy sake, I gotta go with Grogu getting his new toy as the next top moment. Solely for him going bonkers with his yes button, and driving his dad Din nuts in the market. Say what you will about the little guy, but moments like this are why I love him and could care less if he ever becomes something more than Din’s ward.
For the next top moment let’s go with Bo’s dark saber reveal. While the story wasn’t as exciting as many of us probably speculated, getting closure on that thread was appreciated none the less. We finally know the full extent of her failure as leader, as well as how big of a scumbag Gideon truly is. This scene really helped to reinforce how impactful Gideon was on the fall of Mandalore and the scattering of its clans, and how Bo keeps killing it on her redemption tour of truth and reconciliation.
And to close things out the ambush takes the last spot. Again, seeing a gaggle of Mandos doing battle never gets old and always looks radical, plus its the first time seeing all the factions working together against the empire. Speaking of, it was cool to see more of Gideon’s designs for power and how he’s had a base on Mandalore and is planning to build a force of Jedi Mando Clones, essentially signaling his quest for power over the other warlords and the galaxy. Even the new super commandos seemed to be competent, at least better at fighting than a standard bucket head.
Of course, this moment is only bolstered by the fact that Din gets captured, allowing for an even more exciting finale, and Paz’s heroics. The big guy has always been a bit of a dick, even in this episode he still wasn’t a fan of non-creed-mandos, but he showcased his honor, and why Din’s clan, even if a bit zealot like with the way, are worthy Mandalorians regardless of their bloodlines.
Nick and I will talk more about The Spies on next week’s episode of the SWTS, so don’t forget to tune into the Star Wars Time Show on a weekly basis via our podcast platforms or via YouTube if you prefer the livestream angle.