Title: The Mandalorian: “The Reckoning” Review
Release Date: December 18th, 2019
Network: Disney Plus
Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Western
(This review contains full spoilers for episode 7 of The Mandalorian)
The Mandalorian, “The Reckoning,” brought much-needed change. This episode felt like a breath of fresh air from the usual pattern that most of the series has fallen into as of late. Find a dangerous job, most likely a sketchy one where Mandi will be betrayed. Kill or lock up the betrayer, get paid, move on. Don’t get me wrong there were some solid episodes, but it was becoming formulaic.
The Reckoning Gives us Variety
The Reckoning bucked the trend immediately. With this episode being the build-up to the season finale, it steered clear of all the standard tropes. It was a welcome sight to see the return of Kuiil, Cara, and a reformed IG-11. I loved Cara’s reluctance to take the job until he mentioned the Empire, she’ll never stop being a Rebel Shock Trooper on the at heart. Cara does a solid job and brings some welcomed humor while also playing off of the other characters well.
Oh, did I mention Kuiil brought all three of his Blurrgs? Yeah, why not bring the ugly Pokemon? I’ve been saying for a while that Mando needs friends, a crew. This episode decided to take a few of the best characters and put them together. This big team-up, however, had to be a trap. Come on, Greef inviting him back like that, had to be a trap. It had trap written all over it.
There was a scene with Mando and Cara arm wrestling, that is telling of the timeframe of the show. During the arm wrestle Baby Yoda mistakes this for hostility, and we know Baby Yoda protects his Mando. He starts to force choking Cara?! This bothered me just because the three of them spent plenty of time together on Sorgan. The two almost shot each other, and Baby Yoda didn’t do anything but stand there and drink his tea. It feels odd that he would find Cara a threat rather than a friend at this point.
Our Heroes Don’t Know Baby Yoda Well
I’m starting to realize we know as little about Baby Yoda as the characters, minus one fact. We know what he’s using. Still, I’m surprised with Cara being a Rebel, and she at least didn’t hear stories about Luke. Either way, a force choke feels hugely advanced for the little guy.
The way things played out on Navarro was excellent. It’s been a while since I could say at the end of an episode that “I never saw that coming.” I also didn’t imagine to see Baby Yoda’s powers on display twice in this episode. He also has force healing, and seriously if he lives through all this, he could become the most influential force sensitive that ever lived at this rate. Also, RIP for the Blurrgs, all three of the ugly Pokemon. The threat felt random, but I suppose it mostly made sense. Every planet in Star Wars is dangerous, it seems.
A Moff is Here & He’s Not Messing Around
The end of The Reckoning leaves season one in a much different place. Greef ends up not betraying after all, simply because Baby Yoda saves him? Eh…. I feel like that would make him want Baby Yoda even more for himself. He never seemed like the type of guy that wouldn’t seize an opportunity. Either way, story-wise, I believe this was the better choice. Though I’ll admit this double? Triple betrayal? It has me a bit confused. The original Imperial client was blown to kingdom come, along with his soldiers by what looks like his commanding officer Moff Gideon (played by Giancarlo Esposito).
It’s been quite some time since we’ve seen a Moff. This was a big surprise, though I’d like to know who and why was this development. Also seriously, what are those three going to do? That’s a lot of Stormtroopers combined with big bad Shocktroopers, and things are looking way less than pleasant.
Kuiil’s Time on The Mandalorian Comes to an End
The Reckoning wrapped up considerably. IG-11 is doing nothing on the ship. Baby Yoda has been caught, and Kuiil sadly has been killed. I honestly never saw any of this coming, and I’m happy to say that. This has been the biggest cliffhanger of the series, and it’s not even the season finale! It’s also clear that Moff Gideon knows exactly what Baby Yoda is, but I still can’t imagine what they want to use him for. I guess that IG-11 will have to play rescue droid in some capacity, I don’t see any other way out of this, even with that backup it’s a dire situation. It sucks we have to wait a week and a half for the last episode, but I have a feeling it will be worth it.
Verdict: This episode killed it. Seriously it’s such a relief to have the episode truly mix things up finally. We’re all scared for Baby Yoda and sad by Kuiil’s death. Our heroes are in an impossible situation, and I have a feeling no other Mandalorians will be coming to the rescue this time. Where this episode loses me is Greef changing his mind so quickly, the force choke from Baby Yoda and the switch out of top baddies. Despite those faults, this episode was a great leadup to the season finale. I hope it can deliver a similar quality.
- Much needed change of pace and story
- A cliffhanger that we'll all be thinking about until next week
- The team up and return of key characters, giving Mando a team and friends
- No fluff, always interesting and a solid amount of action
- We saw what Baby Yoda can really do
- A weird decision by Greef to help them
- The switcheroo from one baddie to another
- Baby Yoda choking Cara after spending a lot of time with her back in the day