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The Mandalorian

The Sin (The Mandalorian - S01E03) - Live Action Series

Series: The Mandalorian

Title: Chapter 3: The Sin

Season: One

Episode: 3

Original Air Date: November 22, 2019

Runtime: 35 minutes

Credits: Review & Text: Thomas; Page layout & Design: Chuck Paskovics

"This is the way!" SPOILERS.

Maximum cuteness

The third Mandalorian episode is yet another absolute delight. Now some may call the show "fan service" perhaps, but it's fan service at its best. "The Sin" was somewhat, but not much, lighter on the action, we "only" get two major action scenes this time, but the episode developed the Mandalorian in significant ways and sends him on his journey for the rest of the season.

It's very apparent now that The Mandalorian will tell one continuous story, as Chapter 3 begins where Chapter 2 ended. The Mandalorian is on his way back to his home base with Baby Yoda safe and secure in his crib. That is, until Baby Yoda decides to climb out of it because he has taken an interest in a shiny metal knob. So while the Mandalorian is busy talking to Greef Karga, who tells him to deliver the quarry directly to the client, Baby Yoda unscrews the shiny metal knob from the lever to play with it. But the Mandalorian won't have it, takes away the knob and puts the cutest little Star Wars character ever into his crib.

This is no ice cream

What follows next is inevitable: the Mandalorian delivers Baby Yoda to the Imperial Remnants. Werner Herzog, cool and collected as ever, offers the Mandalorian his reward: an ice cream maker full of Beskar steel. Once more Jon Favreau throws in something longtime fans will appreciate. Maybe now we know what Willrow Hood was trying to get to safety all those years ago.

That look when you realize you were just sold for drinking money, I mean, Beskar steel!

And while the Mandalorian fulfills his contract it's already obvious that he is not all too happy about entrusting Baby Yoda to some shady ex Imperials, he violates the guild code by inquiring after his fate. But the client will not discuss it. So the Mandalorian takes his prize and leaves.

Back in the Mandalorian guild his reward doesn't go unnoticed. The Armorer agrees to make the Mandalorian a new set of armor, but the Heavy Mandalorian is not too happy that the Mandalorian worked for the Empire and was paid in Beskar that belonged to the Mandalorians to begin with, until the purge, that is. After a short altercation with vibro knives (a subtle but very well done effect you may not even notice at first), the Armorer manages to settle things for now. She begins to forge a new set of armor, which the Mandalorian needs, because ever since the encounter with the Mudhorn his breast plate is pretty much wrecked. The Armorer once more asks about the signet and offers to make him a Mudhorn signet, but the Mandalorian rejects it, because he didn't defeat it on his own, he was helped by "the enemy". Which is a very interesting choice of words to describe Baby Yoda. We also learn in this scene that removing your helmet is a big thing for Mandalorians, when asked if he has ever removed his helmet the Mandalorian says "no". And when asked if someone else removed the helmet for him the answer is once more "no". Which begs the question if the Mandalorian even eats and drinks with his helmet on...

Flashback to the Clone Wars

The Mandalorian once more experiences a flashback when the Armorer forges new armor, we get short glimpses of Separatists attacking a village, the Mandalorian's parents try to hide him, but he is ultimately discovered by a Super Battle Droid. The flashback stops and I suppose we'll learn who saved the Mandalorian next week or so. Finally the new armor is finished and the Armorer equips it with a new gadget, the armor now also has a set of micro rockets, I call them "Chekhov's rockets", you will soon learn why.

Now equipped with an almost completely new set of shiny Beskar steel armor, the Mandalorian goes to see Greef Karga, who seems to be very happy. When he advises the Mandalorian to take some time off and enjoy himself the Mandalorian merely asks for a new job, it seems "fun" is not in the Mandalorian's vocabulary. But we also see that the Mandalorian feels uneasy, as was obvious before when he delivered Baby Yoda to the former Imperials, because once more he inquires about the Imperials' intentions with Baby Yoda, to which Greef simply quotes the guild code, that it should be of no concern.

The metal knob of fate

The Mandalorian goes to his ship, ready to go after his next quarry, some Mon Calamari on a faraway planet. When he tries to push the throttle lever he finds the knob is still missing, because Baby Yoda unscrewed it in the beginning of the episode. And even though we never get to see the Mandalorian's face in the series, the show always manages to convey emotion, some inner monologue the Mandalorian is having. Deborah Chow, who directed "The Sin", did a great job here. Who would have thought that holding a steel knob could be so significant. The Mandalorian screws the knob back on, about to push the lever, but ultimately stops, and heads out. His conscience has finally won.

What have they done to poor Baby Yoda?

When the Mandalorian arrives at the hideout of the Imperials he finds Baby Yoda's crib in a dumpster. A bad omen most certainly.

Eavesdropping on Imperials

In a rare display of high tech in an otherwise usually very low tech Star Wars universe, the Mandalorian activates his eavesdropping device that allows him to see through walls and to receive audio. And what he learns is alarming. The client wants Dr Pershing to "extract the necessary material and be done with it". In other words, Baby Yoda is as good as dead.

Unconscious, but alive

What follows is the first action scene in the episode, when the Mandalorian infiltrates the compound and is once more to be shown a very dangerous predator, he disposes of the Imperials with blaster and gadgets, including flame thrower and finally finds Baby Yoda and Dr Pershing. Pershing is scared to death and reassures the Mandalorian that he kept Baby Yoda safe, that without him he would already be dead. The Mandalorian seems to believe him and lets him live. Now with Baby Yoda the Mandalorian must escape the compound.

Textbook example of Chekhov's Gun

Ultimately the Mandalorian is surrounded by four Stormtroopers. All seems lost, the Mandalorian kneels down, lays down his blaster, but he has one final trick up his sleeve. We all remember the earlier scene in which the Armorer gave the Mandalorian a new gadget, the micro rockets. And of course the Mandalorian uses them and takes out four Stormtroopers at once. Neat!

Mandalorians flying in with their jet packs to save the day, what else could you ask for?

But it's not over yet. The minute the Mandalorian escapes the compound all the fobs owned by the bounter hunters go off. Which begs the question how this gadget works. How can a bounter hunter track a target? Do all people in the Star Wars universe have a chip inside their body? Can the fob sniff DNA? It's unexplained and the only thing that makes me scratch my head, because it raises some serious questions. Anyway, the second all the fobs go off the Mandalorian is in big trouble. And we are treated to the ultimate Western shootout when basically the entire bounty hunter guild with Greef Karga come after the Mandalorian to get Baby Yoda back.

It's a very intense shootout and even though the Mandalorian is once more proven to be a formidable fighter even he cannot take on the entire guild all by himself. He's about to either get killed or captured when all of a sudden the Mandalorian tribe on the planet arrives, flying in via jet pack. We only got to see something like this in animated shows before, to see it in live action is still something different, and it's beautiful.

The Mandalorians prove to be distraction enough for the Mandalorian to escape with Baby Yoda. But Greef Karga is no fool and waits for him at the ship. The Mandalorian shoots him, but the Western movie tropes are strong in the series, because Greef is not dead, he didn't have a cigarette case, bible or lighter in his jacket, but his cut of the Beskar steel that protected him from the blast. We haven't seen the last of Greef for sure.

Iron Man in the sky (without diamonds)

We get a short, somewhat corny scene with the Heavy Mandalorian saluting the hero as he's making his escape with the Razor Crest. It's a bit silly perhaps, but also funny. And then the episode goes full circle and gives us character development for the Mandalorian via metal knob.

Kids and their toys

In the beginning of the episode the Mandalorian wouldn't have any shenanigans in his cockpit and put Baby Yoda back in his crib when he wanted to play with the metal knob. And now? Now he unscrews it for Baby Yoda when he once more is fascinated by it and hands it to him. The Mandalorian has a heart after all and is not just a ruthless bounty hunter that has no friends. The Mandalorian no longer considers Baby Yoda a quarry, a bounty, a thing, but a living creature that needs protection. And the Razor Crest flies into the unknown. But chances are the Imperials will chase after him now, as well as all the bounty hunters in the sector. And the ultimate question is: what "material" were the Imperials after? Midi-Chlorians?

And that concludes chapter 3. It didn't have the sweeping vistas and landscapes from the previous episodes but gave us character development for the Mandalorian, an intense action scene in the Imperial compound and an epic shootout at the end. That episode alone has probably the potential for two dozen action figures, countless bounty hunters, aliens and droids. This show really is fan service at its very best. Because even things like the ice cream maker are not in your face "wink, wink", it all feels natural, the show doesn't even draw your attention to such things, you either know of the ice cream maker and Willrow Hood and have a silly grin on your face the entire time, or you don't and still find nothing unusual about that scene in which the Mandalorian receives his reward.

Deborah Chow, just like Dave Filoni and Rick Famuyiwa before her, did a great job in this episode. The action was well choreographed and beautifully filmed, you could see everything in detail. The show does not resort to shaky cam and always has the look and feel of Star Wars, including some transitions between scenes. This is seriously the best piece of Star Wars entertainment in a long time. We have to thank Lucasfilm and Jon Favreau for finally making something for "old" fans again without alienating new fans, who can certainly enjoy the show as well. The shoutouts and references may escape them, but the show is never annoying you with them, they are just there. This is very different from Rogue One which was somewhat too on the nose with some of easter eggs perhaps.

What are your thoughts? Did you enjoy the episode as much as I did?

Added: November 22, 2019
Category: The Mandalorian
Reviewer: Thomas
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