TV Review | Star Wars: Andor (Episodes 1×01-1×03)
“Star Wars: Andor shows the grungy, darker, and dirtier aspects of the galaxy. And while it is slow to start, I think there is a lot of potential for this series.”
One of the best things about the Star Wars universe is that the potential for different story themes is essentially endless. While The Mandalorian invoked that of a Western, the Cassian Andor series shows the grungy, darker, and dirtier aspects of the galaxy. And while it is slow to start, I think there is a lot of potential for this series.
The first two episodes bombard you with different characters, and at first, I found myself struggling to follow the plotline. Cassian Andor is looking for his sister and goes to a brothel looking for a girl from Kenari. He gets jumped by two soldiers from an Imperial-affiliated security detail and subsequently kills them. And while the main supervisor doesn’t think the murder of two employees is worth investigating, the tightly wound Deputy Inspector will stop at nothing to apprehend the man responsible. Preox-Morlana reminds me a lot of the Corporate Sector police from Legends. And it is interesting to note that not a single Stormtrooper has appeared so far. It is a fresh change of pace.
Cassian Andor is not the most compelling character, and a Mexican accent doesn’t hit the ear quite right in Star Wars, but as you will see, there are plenty of accents to go around. What makes this show hard to get into is that there are so many moving parts. And we (the audience) are thrown in media res, and it can take some acclimating to follow all the individual character plotlines.
I take it Cassian ekes out a living in this industrial world and has many “friends” that form a kind of pseudo-family. They all look out for each, and they also don’t. It’s complicated. I think complexity can be fun to be almost like a brain teaser as you watch and try to make sense of everything. The character of Bix is a very attractive human woman. And we actually see what is implied to be, the first sex scene in Star Wars history. This is a HUGE departure from the kid-friendly environment that Star Wars was always known for. And I’m happy that Disney is taking a new step into a different world.
People also are shot and killed in this show, and this whole dark and grungy feel is really doing it for me. There are also flashbacks to Cassian’s youth on Kenari. And he basically lived like Mowgli in the jungle with tons of child warriors like something out of Lord of the Flies. While sometimes I feel that these interludes are distracting; I think it is a good build-up to where Cassian will return to later in the series.
Things pick up when Cassian meets a mysterious man named Luthen Rael, who inexplicably knows Cassian’s past. He was a potential buyer who pays Cassian 40,000 credits. And soon the two men find themselves being chased by the Preox-Morlana. The laserfight between these characters I have to say was pretty wizard. And once the action kicked in, I was sure that this series was going to be good. I’d also like to add that I love how while computers are ubiquitous in the show. The computers are also big and clunky like analog computers from the 1980s. That retro-feel is great and shows that they are keeping to what was available to the human mind from the 1970s when Star Wars was first released.
I have many many questions about Cassian and his surrogate mother Maarva. And I also NEED to know who Luthen is, and what happened to Cassian’s sister. The fact that I am so confused is quite titillating. Some fans may NOT like this but to each his own. 4 1/2 out of 5 Death Stars. Fantastic!
The series premiere of Star Wars: Andor is streaming exclusively on Disney Plus now.
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Max Nocerino is a regular Staff Writer for The Future of the Force. He is a passionate Star Wars fan and loves the literature of the galaxy far, far away. Follow him on Twitter where he shares his love of the Force frequently!