We all live in an increasingly fast-paced society where most things that take time are almost immediately rejected in favor of quicker paths. Sometimes we struggle just by trying to slow down, but it’s often by doing so that we find what’s really worthwhile. In the past few years TV, and more specifically streaming services, has massified the concept of binge-watching TV shows which, combined with the growing use of social media, have somehow forced us to consume these products promptly in fear of having the experience spoiled if we are just a couple of days late. Disney+, and a few others, have tried to go against this way of approaching their streaming media (for financial reasons, obviously), and not only does that work in The Mandalorian‘s favor, the show itself doubles-down on making itself take its time through their storytelling approach.
By focusing on Din Djarain and The Child (notice there are hardly any side-plots that take the focus away from where they are and what they are doing and experiencing) the pace of the show has always been more on the slow side. We often go from point A to point B in such a manner that we allow for character growth just by witnessing the small and apparently innocuous day-to-day interactions between characters that, over time, become meaningful traits. And the same can be said when considering the over-arching storyline: Delivering The Child to his own.
In Season One there were a few episodes that ended up making people feel a bit underwhelmed since they seemed to add little to the story, apparently not getting the characters any closer to where they were meant to be headed. Chapters 4 through 6 weren’t so much about The Child as they were about the world surrounding Mando, the people he met, the places he visited, the events that occurred. The importance behind all of these things wasn’t really apparent at the time, which lead to the complaints, but just two episodes into season two, and we now realize that the payoffs were there to be had. It just took them a bit longer than people might have expected, and dare I say that they were probably all the better for it. In hindsight, the appreciation for those episodes should increase, showing that sometimes people should just step back, and enjoy what they are given instead of complaining about that they didn’t get.
With season two underway, we are probably getting that same approach from Favreau and his team. Chapter 9 brought us Boba Fett, after being teased way back in Chapter 5, and now, even though Chapter 10 might seem like a bit of a filler episode since it did little to advance the overall plot, we got some interesting season one references that probably should grow into something more in the future. Along with a few concepts, locations, and creatures that may very well deliver in spades in upcoming episodes. This way of doing things is sure to make for much more fulfilling moments down the line, making the audience feel like the wait was worth it, and the payoffs were earned. For instance, there is no doubt in my mind that not addressing Boba Fett’s return right after confirming it is the right decision, and it will only make that moment that much sweeter when it does occur. The bottom line is we just need to be patient and, while doing so, pay more attention to what we do get with each episode. The Mandalorian wants us not only to reach the destination but to enjoy the ride. We’ll eventually get to where we’re supposed to be, and the little things along the way are what could make it all the more special.