Serial Consumer celebrates and interrogates Evan’s relationship to franchised media and his addiction to purchasing its licensed products. Amid a brief absence of new content, Evan is creating throwback recaps for each episode in the first season of The Mandalorian for his latest installments.
Although The Child remains my favorite episode, The Sin is close behind. Most streaming shows have had a tendency to drag out ideas until they’re no longer narratively interesting, particularly the big-budget genre ones. Superheroes don’t get their costumes until the last episode; scheming politicians don’t achieve their aims until the penultimate moment of the season; no first kisses until minute 280. The boom in long-form narrative hasn’t necessarily meant writers and artists have started telling larger narratives. They’ve just stretched out the good shit over an extended period of time. For what it’s worth, this trend has gotten better in the two years since The Mandalorian premiered, but at the time I had basically given up on streaming shows and was convinced Lucasfilm would fall into the same trap. The Sin proved me wrong.
There is so much plot and character development here that it honestly feels like the final part of a three-hour pilot. Din Djarin delivers Grogu to the Client, uses the ill-gotten Beskar to forge a new suit of armor, and then rescues his little charge in a toyetic display of martial prowess. He only escapes because the rest of his Mandalorian covert reveal themselves to the town and save his life. In a lesser show, all of these moments would’ve come later or been protracted. Instead, Jon Favreau, Dave Filoni and director Deborah Chow shift the entire status quo of Djarin’s world just hours after we meet him. It is glorious.
I don’t have many notes on this one, just some recollections. When Mando first got his silver armor, I was actually pretty disappointed. The ragtag initial suit is so iconic to me, and I’m not sure the proportions on the updated appearance initially quite work, particularly the area just above the chest plate or the cummerbund that goes down his midsection. These aspects seem to change in subtle ways across the subsequent seasons (the Hot Toys and Bandai model kits show this clearly), and by the time he appears in The Book of Boba Fett, his silver look is on point. I think the addition of his Darksaber helps a lot, too, giving him a Knight-like aesthetic.
Anyway, that’s it for this week.
I did not purchase anything new in the past week. Most of my pre-orders should start arriving in the next month or two. I was, however, excited to see Near Mint Condition (the best collector’s edition-related comic-book stream) announce Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The New Republic Vol. 6, which will collect the entire Crimson Empire saga. That was a formative comic series for me, one I borrowed from the library constantly when I was in elementary school and junior high. The story follows members of the red Imperial Guard after the fall in Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi. It’s quintessential old Expanded Universe material. I haven’t read it in a decade, but I’m excited to give it another go-around when this collection is released later this year. Sidenote: Hasbro did release a Crimson Empire-related figure in last year’s Comic Book line of characters but gave it the wrong name. So it goes.
I would be happy to see even more “generic” Mandalorians appeaer in the 6” line. I pre-ordered a few of the Death Watch Mandalorians they’re releasing later this year for that purpose.