“These were just a first wave. They’re going to war.” “Then we will be ready.”
Since its beginnings in 2019, Star Wars live-action television can best be described in waves. Week-to-week, it is often unclear what fans and critics will be watching, especially when there is such a large shroud of secrecy surrounding each episode. Last week was one of the best episodes of Star Wars television we’ve gotten yet, but this week The Book of Boba Fett fails to reach the same level of success in my eyes, and hopefully avoids setting the tone of the series moving forward.
Following a lengthy flashback sequence last week, Chapter 3 brings the story back to the present day. We see Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison) beginning to get a better grasp on the territory he now holds power over. “The Streets of Mos Espa” could not be a more fitting name for this episode, as we are introduced to a new set of characters, including Sophie Thatcher’s Drash, as well as begin to learn about who exactly controls the city. Chapter 3 also includes a few action sequences, continues to expand upon the established flashbacks, and gives one very fitting cameo to top it all off.
As I discussed at the top of the review, this episode unfortunately did not continue to hook me in the same way that Chapter 2 did. While I’ve enjoyed the story so far, it suffers from the same problems that The Mandalorian did in its early stages. Each week the audience is introduced to new characters through a small and overall insignificant side-plot, and while I know that the purpose of these stories is to introduce characters that will play a significant role in the future, it does not mean that these stories have to be boring. Without going too deeply into spoilers, while I enjoyed this cyborg biker gang, and I found that being introduced to them over a water dispute was an uninspired way to bring them into the fold.
Looking at the flashback sequences, many, including myself, were hoping that after last week’s very successful storytelling, the flashback sequences would begin to subside in place of the present-day storyline. While this was the case with Chapter 3, it is certainly not the end of these flashbacks, as it is clear that writer Jon Favreau has much more to tell with Boba in that time frame. There is no doubt in my mind that the flashbacks will tie in heavily to the present-day as the series progresses, but it goes back to the execution of really solid story decisions. The roots of an incredible piece of Star Wars content are there, but each week I continue to see a lot of the execution fall flat on its face.
This carries over to many visual and creative decisions as well. From stunt choreography to direction to cinematography and even visual effects, everything feels cheapened in The Book of Boba Fett. It does not reach the same level as other large IP Disney+ series or even The Mandalorian. This could be due to COVID-19 restrictions and likely a smaller budget, but I cannot help but recognize that some of these issues simply come from the choices made by the creative team. This becomes especially clear in comparison to last week, in which I felt that the direction was considerably stronger. I have the utmost respect for Robert Rodriguez, but I found myself frustrated with not only this episode but the series as a whole so far.
Looking ahead, I can only hope the series returns to form from last week and continues strong. There is so much potential with what has been set up already, and despite my qualms, I actively look forward to seeing what comes next.
What did you think of this episode of The Book of Boba Fett? Where do you think the show goes from here? Let us know in the comments below and on our social media pages!