TV Review | The Mandalorian Chapter 20 "The Foundling"

“After an explosive last episode, The Mandalorian slows down once again in terms of storytelling and plot importance but still delivers eye-watering visuals,” says Max Nocerino

One of the strengths of The Mandalorian was Jon Favreau‘s seemingly endless font of imagination. The man constantly knew how to generate creative plotlines and story arcs. However, Season 3 is much more of a let-down compared to the previous seasons. And I wonder if it’s because our expectations are so high OR if perhaps like all good things, the spark has come to an end. We are officially halfway through the new season, and I implore the Force that Jon has something up his sleeve waiting in the wings.

(L-R): Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), the Armorer (Emily Swallow), Paz Vizsla (Tait Fletcher) and Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff) in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


The story is very simple. It focuses on the day-to-day activities of the Mandalorians in their makeshift base of operations. Like true Spartans, the Mandalore warriors are constantly refining their skills in combat and marksmanship. Mando expects Grogu to be just like the other Foundlings. Even though he is too small to speak the creed (so he cannot yet wear a helmet). At first, I thought it was absurd that Din expected his “son” to fight with human children 3 times his size. But then I remembered that Grogu is over 50 years old and has trained to be a Jedi.

When Din was pushing Grogu to fight, it very much reminded me of the days when my father coached me in sports. I was never good but my father didn’t give up on me and always pushed me to be better. I see a lot of that in this instance. The only difference is that Grogu succeeds. Ha Ha. Then after his successful match with another Foundling, a giant pterosaur monster thingie swoops out of nowhere and scoops up the Foundling like a hawk would a rabbit. Seriously!? This planet has tons of creatures roaming around and the Mandalorians are so anesthetized to this level of terror. It is implied that this happens now and then and it makes me glad I’m not a Mandalorian.

(L-R): Grogu and Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) with stone crabs in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


The remainder of the episode is trying to get to this animal’s nest and retrieve the Foundling. Simple, right? Perhaps too simple. This objective is very mundane and boring and serves almost no purpose to move Din and Grogu’s story along. It very much presents itself as filler, and I found my concentration wavering as the plan to get to the kid is something I could write. And overall, I was disappointed by Jon’s storytelling because he is a far greater storyteller than I can ever hope to be.

Din Djarin and Grogu in The Mandalorian
(L-R): Grogu and Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


However, like most Star Wars media this episode has a silver lining. Grogu stays behind when they go after the other kid and hangs out with the Armorer. She plays a big role in this coven. And she is regarded somewhat as a leader of the Mandalorians. Especially after she accepted Bo-Katan into the group and re-accepted Din Djarin. She works in her blacksmith room, and much like his adopted father in Season one, the sounds of the weapons crafting trigger PTSD in Grogu.

He is transported back over twenty years to the final moments of the Jedi Order. A group of Jedi desperately try to defend him from Clone Troopers. But sadly, all are killed except Grogu. He is then whisked away by a speeder bike by well….perhaps, the least likely character you would ever expect EVER to appear. I had to do a double-take to verify his identity and yes, it is who I think it is. He even speaks his name at the end of the sequence. I will leave this stunning revelation unspoiled for now.

Jedi in a scene from Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


As I said, this episode was disappointingly mundane. And I feel that so much money was wasted because we only get eight episodes per season, and the bill is something that we know is astronomical. The numbers for season one were dropped even before the series debut, and they ain’t pretty. I hope Jon has more coming and fans don’t get too turned off by the slowing of the plot.

On a strong note, I must say the visuals are marvelous. The raptor, the mountains, the lake. Everything looks beautiful and realistic. And the flight battle sequences are on par with the first season’s Din vs Gideon-in-TIE-fighter battle. I am also brimming with questions about Order 66’s behind-the-scenes revelation. How was THAT character so easily able to book it from the temple on a speeder bike? Did other Jedi do so as well? When they flew away, the Republic gunships chased him through the cityscape and made regular citizens bantha fodder. Who would give the order to do something so recklessly dangerous to capture an infant and an adult individual? Perhaps a certain Sith Lord who was instructed not to hesitate or show no mercy…..

(L-R): Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff), Paz Vizsla (Tait Fletcher) and the Armorer (Emily Swallow) in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


I am excited about the particulars of Grogu’s escape. But I feel this episode simply did not deliver the quality I expect from The Mandalorian. This episode rates 5.5 out of 10 Death Stars. Sorry, Jon.

The Mandalorian Season 3 is now streaming on Disney Plus.

Be sure to check back every Wednesday for our weekly episode reviews. You’ll never miss a thing with Future of the Force.





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