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When The Mandalorian premiered with Disney+, fans of Star Wars got a new, unique take on the galaxy far away.
While the show was very much in the spirit of the original trilogy, it was a smaller story not of intergalactic warfare but of the smaller people who are forced to live inside the universe dictated by the films in the series.
What is ‘The Mandalorian’?
The Mandalorian takes the Star Wars universe back to the style that fans were introduced to. While the series is, inarguably, a similar look at the war for the safety of the universe, it didn’t ever show the story from the eyes of those who were not Jedis and soldiers but people trying to make a living in a universe that didn’t always have their back.
Harkening back to old westerns, the series’ titular Mandalorian spends a lot of the series going across planets and villages and fixing an episodic problem that also helps him realize the importance of what he’s doing.
In the first episode, he ran across the infamous child, who fans dubbed Baby Yoda, and while the show has taken several detours, this relationship remains the heart and soul of the show.
Although some want to see it dig its heels into a little bit more Star Wars lore, the show is a hit among fans. While the original series had its roots in the western genre, many think that it’s time for the show to pump the brakes and explore its origins in the source material a little bit more.
The ‘Mandalorian’ formula
Westerns are known for being formulaic. When western television shows dominated the airwaves in the 50s and 60s, they all had a similar structure. Each week, a gunslinger would come across a village, ended up getting in with the wrong crowd, and having to fight his way out of it, sometimes using violent means.
The heroes often served a morally gray code, but they always did what’s right in the end.
Replace villages with planets and gunslingers with Pedro Pascal’s titular The Mandalorian, and you have the basis of the show. Its story serves a larger purpose. At its core, it’s still space western. This shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone, however.
Even George Lucas took heavy inspiration from the western genre and its predecessor, the films of Akira Kurosawa. It’s written into the DNA of characters like Han Solo and, to a lesser degree, Luke Skywalker. Still, some fans want to see the franchise spread its roots a little further.
Is it time to change things up?
Fans on Reddit took to commenting on what they’d do let the series gain its own identity. User u/Tarzan_OIC sees the series getting too in love with its inspirations to the final product’s detriment.
“I know this show emulates old Westerns, but I do need some consistent progression. Mando show up to weekly planet to kill weekly monster and/or liberate weekly townsfolk can only carry things so far before I feel like I’m rewatching the same episode rather than seeing new ones.”
They went on to discuss their desire to flesh out the character and let him thrive.
“In also hoping that this revelation of other cultures of Mandalorians starts to amp up the character development. Would be cool to see Mando have to shed the identity thrust on him and have to reckon with who he is.”
All of these are valid points, although there are ways to do this while also keeping true to the western roots. However, fans can make up their minds. Season 2 is currently airing every week on Disney+, and after some exciting new twists in recent weeks, these fans may soon get their wish.
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