The Mandalorian: The Mines of Mandalore
"The Mines of Mandalore" is a fantastic episode that delivers on every level, hinting at an eventual showdown that could reshape the entire series.
"Alright, kid. You ready for an adventure?"
Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), aka Mando, poses this question to Grogu at the beginning of the episode, but in reality, it's directed to every viewer tuning in this week. Adventure is promised and adventure we get.
"The Mines of Mandalore" has some excellent action, a few callbacks and a revelation that will shape the series' future. Picking up where last week's episode left off, Mando is off on his redemptive quest to find and bath in the Living Waters beneath Mandalore.
He first makes a quick pitstop on Tatooine during Boonta Eve, where he tries to find a new memory circuit for IG-11 from Peli Motto (Amy Sedaris). Instead, he comes away with a broken-down, scaredy-cat R5 unit to accompany him on his journey to Mandalore. Along the way, he tells Grogu about the planet, shows him the moon on which he grew up and instructs him on the ins and outs of reading star maps – which will come in handy later on.
Once on Mandalore, he discovers the planet isn't "cursed" as believed, but before he can find his way to the Living Waters, he's captured and it's up to Grogu to seek out Bo-Katan (Katee Sackhoff) to return to her home world and rescue him. Bo-Katan arrives, saves Mando and the trio makes their way deep below the surface to the Living Waters.
But what Mando and Bo-Katan find below the surface of the Living Waters is not only redemption for Din Djarin but also the possible key to Mandalore's resurrection.
"The Mines of Mandalore" is another standout episode in the series and I love the fact that what I thought would be the main quest to guide us through all season three is resolved in the second episode. And with the revelations at the end of this episode, I am excited to see what the rest of the season has in store.
The action in this episode is excellent, especially with Bo-Katan. The character is a flat-out badass and Sackhoff is fantastic. While I enjoyed the character in the second season, this incarnation feels more authentic to what was in "The Clone Wars" and "Rebels," in my opinion. From the moment I saw her sitting alone on her throne on Kalevala, I knew this was the Bo-Katan I'd been waiting for.
Other Tiny touches like Peli Motto still missing her tooth, giving a nod to "The Phantom Menace" with the mention of Boonta Eve and callbacks to "The Clone Wars" and "Rebels" is what make this series memorable for fans. But as a father, seeing Mando raise and nurture Grogu is a highlight. It's sweet and a reminder of the responsibility we all bear as fathers. It's our job to help our little younglings navigate this sometimes chaotic world.
This episode is visually darker than most in the series and I can see some complaining about it. Sometimes it's hard to make things out, but it felt right for the episode. It made you worry about what lurked in the shadows and what evils could befall our heroes at any moment.
"The Mines of Mandalore" is a fantastic episode that delivers on every level and hints at an eventual showdown that could reshape the entire series.