As usual, here is my written Mando S3E8 review. I found this finale of The Mandalorian Season 3 to be one of the most satisfying finale’s so far. However, I’ll also say this is not very surprising, so don’t expect crazy cameos and reveals. Overall, it has to be said, that satisfying does not always mean entertaining.
As always, I will be attempting to keep this as SPOILER Free as possible. Because we are in the Season 3 finale that will be tricky, so I will keep my explanations more brief and vague to avoid spoilers. If you want the full spoiler filled chat, Kyle Malone and I recorded this week’s The Cantina Reviews yesterday. You can catch us getting into the Season 3 finale Here.
I’ll start with the big ticket statements. This is the weakest finale we’ve had for a Mandalorian Season so far, and it’s also the weakest Season so far. You may disagree and that’s fine, however that’s what it feels like to me. Season 3 has so far been devoid of any deep characters moments, outside of maybe Episode 3? That patterns continues in the finale. The only conflict characters are facing are external conflicts here. Din hasn’t has much character development all season and whilst the focus is back on our hero, he’s essentially the same at the end as he was when it began. Arguably that’s a statement true for all of Season 3.
Grogu gets a few good moments and one could argue that’s more development for his character. However, when development of Grogu is a slow as it is (rightly by the way), you cannot really bank on that. Bo-Katan is the character who’s had the biggest character arc this season. However, that’s kinda already completed before we get into this finale.
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Therefore, what we are left with is some very good action set pieces that are well shot and punctuated by a few cool moments for several characters, most specifically Grogu.
That’s not bad as finale’s of TV shows go. However, that depends on the TV show. If this was the finale to Better Call Saul, or Stranger Things, then you’d find it quite flat. However realistically Season 3 has been more like a lesser show coming to a very obvious and natural conclusion. There is a lot to like here in Episode 8. However there is also nothing that you’d be dying to discuss with your friends after watching. No swings of drama or internal conflicts, just good guys vs the baddies
Last Week’s Speculation….Ahem
Last week, if you watched our Cantina Reviews, you’ll know we began to speculate about this week’s finale. We were not alone as I had to same discussions with several other fans online in this past week. The poorly chosen episode title last week had everyone theorizing there were more twists and turns to come. Last week’s Ep was called The Spies and yet arguably we kinda had 1 spy on screen for 30 seconds. This had the fanbase speculating about who else were the spies. I’ve heard theories about the Armorer really working for Gideon, but my favorite was the idea that the native Mandalorians were really working for Gideon and pretending to be sick to infiltrate the ship.
All of that was due to the title and how the titles had been used in this capacity previously in the Season, check out The Apostate for an example. Yet, in the end, whilst I won’t say what does happen, I think you can tell by now there were no massive surprises or twists or cliffhangers even.
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Some fans will be disappointed in this, but remember it was never promised. We fans reacted understandably as fans paying close attention should. Yet, it seems the signs we read were never really supposed to be there in the first place. I think what we have learned is that the writing on Mando really isn’t that deep and we should stop looking to the depths and stick to what we see on the surface. That’s perfect for some fans, but I can’t call Mando one of the best shows of any year since it launched, its mid, and Season 3 has been the most mid Season with the most mid finale. That’s just how I see it.
Weirdly I actually appreciated that this season was not about cameos, or surprises. That’s not my issues, instead it’s a desire to see more drama like we got between Din and Mayfield in Season 2 and that’s just not present in Season 3.
Gripes and Grade?
There’s a few gripes, there always is. Some of the set ups within the action sequences left much to be desired. For example when characters need to ab alone to complete a task they get it, but when they need to fight there’s enemies everywhere. However I have to say I didn’t think much of Gideon this week. Whether Gideon remains the main threat for The Mandalorian going forward remains to be seen. However I kinda hope it’s not. We’ve done Gideon to death now, lets move ont o some other bad guys.
My biggest gripe is simply how easy and straightforward everything has been in Season 3. I feel like we needed a spanner in the works somewhere to out characters outside their comfort zone. Sadly that just isn’t even attempted in this finale.
Overall Mando S3E8 was okay, and I can’t say I disliked it in any way. However, it’s also the lowest scored finale for Mando I’ve reviewed and in my humble opinion Season 4 needs to get a bit more mature and bit more complicated in terms of its character development. If not, this is in danger of turning into a live-action cartoon, at that level of writing. Bring back Mayfield and give Mando some internal conflict to resolve please. So that’s my Mando S3E8 review and frankly it could be much better. However, we’d have needed a better season overall to make that work.
GRADE: B+ (generously)
As always, let me know what you thought of my Mando S3E8 review. Also feel free to leave your own Mando S3E8 review in the usual spot below.