Warning: This article may contain spoilers from Andor Episode 7
Following the excellent conclusion to the Aldhani arc, Andor returned this week with its seventh episode. Taking a reprieve from its traditional three-episode arcs, Episode 7, titled “Announcement” takes the opportunity to let audiences breathe after an action-packed mid-season finale. Showrunner Tony Gilroy spoke on the Empire Magazine Podcast about how this episode stands on its own, and that Episodes 8, 9, and 10 would be another arc, followed by the two-part finale. Despite its detachment from other episodes, “Announcement” stands firmly on its own, showcasing just how powerful the politics of Star Wars can be on screen.
Episode 7 splits its time between our four central characters: Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), Mon Mothma (Genevieve O’Reilly), Syril Karn (Kyle Soller), and Dedra Meero (Denise Gough). Each of these characters are dealing with the ramifications of the Aldhani heist, which has sent waves across the galaxy. For many in the Imperial Security Bureau (ISB), this was just a ploy to strike the Empire, using the Eye as a cover. But to some, including Dedra and Luthen Rael (Stellan Skarsgård), this was more; an announcement.
But this announcement has ramifications, and ones that greatly affect Mon Mothma. In the wake of the attack, new restrictions have been put in place galaxy-wide, suffocating systems. Mon does not yet believe in the need for violence, and once she learns Luthen was behind the Aldhani heist, does not know what to do with herself. Still needing to do things her way, she enlists the help of a former classmate and dear friend Tay Kolma (Ben Miles), a banker on her homeworld of Chandrilla. With the Senate and the ISB watching her every move, she must ask Tay to help her smuggle her own family money through a shell charity. Something that will put them both at risk, but as Mon and Tay have quickly learned, there is more opposition to the Empire out there than one might think.
Cassian meanwhile must return home to Ferrix in the wake of his desertion. This choice has made him a loose end in the eyes of Luthen, and as such he has sent Vel (Faye Marsay) to find him. Upon his return, Cassian has found Ferrix in a state of Imperial occupancy, with the people of his home blaming him for it. He attempts to get Maarva (Fiona Shaw) to leave it all behind and escape, but she refuses, as her newfound belief in the rebellion in the wake of Aldhani has strengthened her mental fortitude. This puts her and Cassian at odds, and ultimately Cassian has not yet bought into the cause, resulting in him leaving Ferrix once more. Attempting to hide away on the resort planet Niamos, Cassian’s suspicious nature and constant looking over his should has found him in trouble, with the episode ending with him being sentenced to six years of prison.
As for our villains, Dedra has gone against the protocols of the ISB, but has been surprisingly rewarded for her actions. She now has jurisdiction over Ferrix, which will surely lead to a tighter Imperial grip, and even if she doesn’t know it yet, a hunt for Cassian Andor. Syril, on the the other hand, has had his favor called in with his uncle, and is now working a desk job at the Bureau of Standards. But his obsession with finding Cassian has not ceased, and it is inevitable that this compulsion will lead to him working with Dedra.
While some may call this episode of Andor slow or boring for its heavy reliance on dialogue-heavy scenes and exposition, it is quite the opposite. The ramifications of the mid-season finale are felt throughout this entire episode, and “Announcement” takes the time to double down on the characters beliefs, stances, and motivations, setting them up perfectly for the second half of the season. Arcs are clear but remain to be seen, with many surprises still in store. Andor is storytelling at its finest, and continues to excel as some of the best Star Wars material to date.
What did you think of Episode 7 of Andor? What’re you most anticipating? Let us know in the comments below or on our social media pages.