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Now That’s a Cliffhanger

The Cliffhanger of Episode 7

Star Wars, The Mandalorian, Episode 7 Review

I would have gotten this out sooner, but I’ve busy preparing for the holidays and getting ready to see The Rise of Skywalker. The reviews may not be good right now, but I don’t care. Even if the movie stinks, we have the future of Star Wars like The Mandalorian. Speaking of which, their penultimate episode got the show back on track. In addition, the show writers demonstrated their mastery of the delicate art of the cliffhanger.

To End the Hunt

Having been hunted at every turn by bounty hunters, Mando’s surprised when Greef Karga reaches out to him. The Client’s Stormtrooper friends have overrun Nevarro and brought business to a standstill. So, Karga makes a deal with the Mandalorian: help get rid of the Imperials, and they’ll leave him alone.

Mando knows it’s likely a trap, though. Thus, he recruits some of the allies he’s made throughout the season.

I thought this was a nice way for the show to demonstrate the Mandalorian’s character development. When the show started, he was a lone wolf not trusting anyone. However, since Baby Yoda came into his life, he’s started to warm up to others, and gotten a few trustworthy allies. Now those allies come back into play with the return of Cara, Kuiil the Ugnaught, and surprisingly, IG-11.

I thought we saw the last of IG-11, but I should have known better. The IG droids are as tough as they come. Heck, in the Expanded Universe, one of them tried to start a Galaxy -wide droid revolution. In other words, Mando’s smart to be distrustful of it, even if Kuiil says he reprogrammed it to do work. That said, I think it’s possible for a droid designed to kill to change for the better.

Baby Yoda’s Powers

The Force is strong with this one?

With his team of four (five counting Baby Yoda) joining him, Mando returns to Nevarro to meet with Greef Karga and settle things. No surprise to anyone anyone when it does turn out to be a trap. Karga planned to hand the baby over and kill Mando to get the Imps to leave. The plan changes, though, when the group gets attacked by Mynocks. Karga gets wounded and poisoned, but Baby Yoda saves him by using the Force to heal his wounds.

This power may seem to come out of left field, but its not a new thing. Several Star Wars games where you play as Force-sensitive characters use it as a game mechanic. The technique involves using the Force to accelerate the body’s healing process; at its most powerful, it can sustain damaged organs. However, to the best of my knowledge, it drains the user significantly.

This was the first time we saw Baby Yoda use the Force since the second episode, and I thought it was a good way of reminding us of how powerful that cute baby can be. Worse, since he’s a child, he’s young and impressionable; we saw him Force-choke Cara when he thought she was hurting Mando! This is why we need to bring the Jedi back, Disney.

Moff Gustavo

Gustavo Fring's now an Imperial Moff
So I guess Gustavo faked his death on Earth, went to the Star Wars Galaxy, and became an Imperial Moff. Lit.

Bringing the Jedi back will have to wait some thirty years, though. As Qui-Gon Jinn would say, we should focus on the here and now. Right now, the audience learns that the Client’s working for a former Imperial Moff! Not much is known about this Gideon, played by Giancarlo Esposito of Breaking Bad fame, but the fact that he’s a Moff means he’s dangerous.

In the old Expanded Universe, a lot of high-ranking Imperials became warlords after Sidious kicked the bucket. While Disney has yet to fully flesh out the post-Endor era, I see no reason why this won’t be the norm. Regardless, Gideon seems to have a large force serving him, and Mando’s group gets overwhelmed. Worse, they catch up to Kuiil, who went back to the ship with Baby Yoda, and gun him down. Thus, we end on our cliffhanger.

Great Cliffhanger

The episode seemed a little slow at times, I won’t lie. However, once we got into the third act, it starts to pick up, as we see who the Mandalorian made an enemy out of. An Imperial Moff’s not someone to be taken lightly, and given how this episode ends on a cliffhanger, we don’t know how Mando will get out of this situation. We don’t even know if Kuiil’s alive or why they want Baby Yoda so badly in the first place.

Knowing the Empire, though, I’m betting Gideon wants the kid for some grand, convoluted scheme to create an army of Force-clones to conquer the Galaxy. A lot of the Empire’s plans tend to be grandiose and a little crazy like that. However, we don’t know given how the episode ends on a giant cliffhanger. Which I think is brilliant.

The fact that I feel frustrated and eager to learn what happens next means that the writers knew what they were doing. Cliffhanger’s are designed to entice people to come back to find out what happens. That’s the feeling I got after watching this episode, and I can’t wait until next week to see how the season ends. It will be a great way to end 2019!

I Give “Chapter 7: The Reckoning” a 4.5/5. Second Best Episode of the Season

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