We’ve returned once more to The Book of Boba Fett with the episode “The Gathering Storm,” which kicks off with another flashback sequence. As somewhat expected, the series explored the time when Boba met up with Fennec Shand, how he ended up saving her, and even his journey to retrieve his armor. There are great moments in this episode, but it once again suffers from feeling aimless throughout its 40+ minute runtime. Can those moments outshine the retelling of a story already told?
Up until this point, the flashbacks during Boba’s ongoing Baccta tank resting plan offered some great moments to humanize the once style-over-substance character. While we get moments like that this time around – especially with his Bantha – it feels even more aimless in this episode. We catch up with The Mandalorian’s introduction of Shand but from his perspective. The use of his iconic audio cues – which highlights just how iconic Din Djarin’s character has become – was a great touch, but most of the story explored here was already explained.
Yes, the medium should abide by the “show don’t tell” rule, but we’re showing what we’ve already been told. Even if it’s a great tie-in to why Boba recruited the Mods in the modern-day, we didn’t need to see Fennec get her implants. The highlight of the episode was the heist action sequence to steal his ship and the subsequent return to the Sarlacc Pit. He also got his revenge on the bikers in a rather short sequence that felt like a handwave rather than a poignant moment for his character, even if there are implications they weren’t working alone.
We’ve now understood the Pykes are the main antagonists – as far as we know – for the upcoming battle for Mos Espa, but then we jump back into the past for most of the episode. Outside of learning why Fennec trusts Boba and what makes him different from the Hutts, which we already know since the first episode, there wasn’t much new here. The best moments of the episode – once again – are all the parts of his time trying to maintain his new empire.
Krrsantan makes a surprisingly early reappearance, as he’s just kind of drinking his life away at the casino we visited in the first episode. He’s a great addition to the story, and the fact Boba recruits him was a great way to keep him in the story while also not relegating the character to a slave, as the Hutts sold him off, but it feels anti-climactic. Instead of coming in later on to help, he’s just a gun-for-hire now but my feelings on its quality are also conflicted with the fact that it works in Fett’s overarching narrative’s favor. So, it’s well handled but could’ve been better.
I will say that this episode ended on a better note than previous entries. Din Djarin is making his return and the use of his soundtrack was a great touch without having to name the character outright. Supposedly, Boba is fully healed and it seems that these injuries that kept him going back to the Bacta tank have come to an end. Hopefully, he also gets a true moment to shine like his return in the second season of The Mandalorian. His short stint in the bar against the bikers was a good appetizer, but the character has never been truly unleashed up to this point.
We are four episodes in and I can’t help but feel like the series is playing catch-up most of the time. The narratives from the past and present don’t feel interweaved as effective as they could’ve been to ensure we’re building up to something. Its predecessor Disney+ series had the luck of having individual storylines per episode that made it feel exciting each time. Yet, this season seems to be struggling with wanting to tell not one but two cohesive linear storylines, while keeping each episode self-contained. There’s a lot to love here, but I sometimes feel like this series may have benefitted from a Netflix-style binge watch rather than a weekly release.