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SPOILER REVIEW: Season 2, Chapter 15 of The Mandalorian: The Believer

The Mandalorian Season 2 Chapter 15 Review





OK, those are the formalities officially out of the way. Each week, I'll be posting a quick recap/review of each new episode of The Mandalorian. I'll give a basic play-by-play with some thoughts and speculation about how each episode could figure into the larger picture of this season, and Star Wars as a whole.

So let's get after it.

EPISODE PREMIERS ON December 11, 2020
The penultimate episode of season 2 of The Mandalorian dropped Friday morning, just hours after the massive announcement of 10 future Star Wars projects at the Disney Investor Day. Similar to chapter 7, this episode served mostly to set up next week's season finale.

Cara Dune, Din Djarin, Fennec Shand and Boba Fett release Mayfeld, an imprisoned Imperial sharpshooter, from a TIE Fighter junkyard in an attempt to help locate Moff Gideon's cruiser. Mayfeld, happy to be free of the garbage dump labor camp, agrees to join the group aboard Slave I as it travels to the planet Morak.

On Morak, Djarin and Mayfeld capture an old Clone Wars-era Turbo Tank, now being used in an Imperial refinery. They don gray tank driver armor and use the vehicle to get inside the refinery base, where Mayfeld can use his credentials to locate Gideon's cruiser.

En route, the turbo tank is attacked by groups of pirates on skiffs, who had previously been successful at blowing up other tanks. With Mayfeld at the wheel, Djarin fights off most of the pirates until the tank arrives at the refinery. There, squads of stormtroopers and shoretroopers - the sandy-colored troops from Rogue One - blast away the last of the pirates. It's a rare instance of stormtroopers not only shooting accurately, but performing heroic acts in support of our heroes.

Once inside the base, a terminal is located in a corner of the mess hall. Djarin is forced to remove is tank driver helmet to allow his face to be scanned. This sequence is the most extended time we see actor Pedro Pascal without the Mandalorian helmet on. 

The duo is then confronted by Imperial Officer Valin Hess, who questions the two before inviting them to his table for a drink. We get a nice bit of backstory on Mayfeld here, as he recalls a mission that saw thousands of his fellow Imperial troops die in a battle Hess helped direct. Mayfeld still feels bitter about it, and eventually shoots Hess at the table. Djarin and Mayfield escape the building after a brief shootout with the now-unable-to-aim-properly stormtroopers and shoretroopers.
After the group boards Slave I, Mayfeld blasts the two remaining turbo tanks in the facility, final retribution to the group that cost him his fellow troopers.

Two TIE Fighters chase after Slave I, when another nice callback to Attack of the Clones unfolds. Boba Fett unleashes a seismic charge, taking out both TIEs. It's the same bomb Jango Fett used while being pursued by Obi-Wan Kenobi in the asteroid field surrounding Geonosis. The same sound effect is used in this scene as the one that garnered so much positive reaction in AOTC. 
The episode concludes with Djarin, now armed with the coordinates to Gideon's ship, sending a message to Gideon that reverses lines of dialogue used in chapter 7. Back then, it was Gideon telling Djarin "You have something I want." This time, it's Djarin sending that exact same message to Gideon with regards to the captured Grogu. This sets up the confrontation sure to unfold in next week's season finale.

We spend an awful lot of time with Mayfeld, played by Bill Burr, in this episode. He has extended conversations that detail his philosophy and background, adding depth to this character last seen in chapter 6, which was also directed by Famuyiwa. 

Other items of note include newly scrubbed and cleaned armor for Boba Fett. Guess he had a nice stash of armor cleaner stored in Slave I. It was also fun to spend time in the guts of Slave I and see it in action with Fett at the controls. Things Star Wars fans of a certain age have dreamed about for decades, and we get it delivered right to us in this episode.

Brad Monastiere
I live in Michigan and have been an unconditional fan of Star Wars and Indiana Jones for decades. Follow me on twitter @bmonastiere

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