TV Review | The Mandalorian Chapter 23 "The Spies"

“While it’s always fun to see Mandalorians fight en masse, I was disappointedly underwhelmed with this week’s episode of The Mandalorian and felt the story lacked structure and pacing,” says Max Nocerino

It amazes me that after almost 4 years I have something negative to say about The Mandalorian. Seasons 1 and 2 delivered episodes that were either stellar to very good. This season seems to have lost a lot of spring in its step. And I can’t put my finger on it as to why. It just feels like a different show, written by someone different as the story structure is sloppy and builds up big moments, only to have them fizzle out too quickly and anti-climactically.

(L-R): Nevarro copper droid (Chris Bartlett) and Greef Karga (Carl Weathers) in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


We knew Moff Gideon was going to return. That was a given from at least several episodes ago. However, his return entrance was very vanilla. And yes, while he did set up things for the Ahsoka show, I felt that what he did was nothing too exciting and would have been fine in the Ahsoka show. We see a familiar face from the Sequel Trilogy pop up and while it’s a cool cameo, it isn’t the earth-shattering revelation I was hoping for.

There is an attempt to make us laugh during the beginning of the episode with Grogu operating the hollow chassis of IG-11 as a sort of makeshift power suit. However, it is ungainly and frankly more of a target. And while seeing the baby operate its vocabulator and bump into things was cute, It was also very silly and unnecessary.

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


Finally, what turned me off was how the story kept tripping over itself. And it executed a plot that felt like it was done on the fly. There wasn’t enough build-up for the Mandalorians to re-taking their planet and then be ambushed by Gideon and the Imperials. It just seemed like a plot avalanche of sorts as it transitioned into it so randomly. It’s a far cry from the Mandalorian Season 1 finale where Gideon first appears and turns up the heat. Star Wars may have outgrown The Mandalorian and perhaps it is time to refresh the project.

I appreciated the fun of a full-scale battle. But this is probably the 3rd or 4th time we’ve seen Mandalorians fight as an army. It was cool, to begin with, but now it’s just getting old. Also, finding more Mandalorians (conveniently) living in the ruined world of Mandalore seemed lazy and too ad hoc.

Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal, top right) and Paz Vizsla (Tait Fletcher, foreground right) in Lucasfilm’s THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.


If I want to end on a positive note, I must give the MVP award to Paz Vizsla. The beefy Mandalorian with a sense of honor and devotion to the path that is beyond measure. He is a tank both physically and with his super-cool heavy repeating blaster. He’s a bit of a hothead to be sure, but he would give his life to his fellow Mandalorians in a heartbeat. I enjoyed watching him fight and admire that he isn’t just a “plot-armor” character. All in all, this episode gets a disappointing C from me.

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.





Editor’s Note: The views and opinions expressed in this feature are solely that of the author and do not reflect the overall opinion of, its writers, or affiliates. 

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