The Mandalorian Season 2 Review – Episode 2: The Passenger

This is a story of things going from bad, to worse, to bone, to hell with it. Losing his only lead on a fellow Mandalorian contact, our Mando returns to his ship, having some very mixed bouts of luck along the way. I was wondering if the Temuera Morrison reveal at the end of the previous episode would and an impact on this one. But we’d not be so lucky, as that seems to be getting held off for later.

Making his way back from killing the Krayt Dragon, our Mando; Din Djarin finds himself on the wrong end of a bandit ambush. One that goes hilariously wrong for the bandits and leaves Din having to march back to town with all of his spoils on his own back.

It’s back in town that he finds Peli Motto in the cantina and she’s playing Sabacc with a giant ant. Which I like to think is a cute call-back to the fact that a lot of the aliens present in that very first cantina scene from A New Hope were costumes bought at a Halloween store.

The Mandalorian Season 2 Review - Episode 2: The Passenger

Luckily, Peli knows a guy, who knows a lady whose husband might know where some Mandalorians are. It the best lead Din has, so he’s forced to play taxi to a frog lady, taking her eggs to a nearby world in order to spawn. The one wrinkle being that they can’t travel using Hyperspace. Which leaving them both wide open to ambush from the many people who’re out looking for Din Djarin following everything he did in the first season of the show.

So, with the possibility of something going wrong, inevitably something does go wrong. Namely, a couple of New Republic X-Wings on patrol encounter Din’s ship and ask him for identification. Something Din is less than eager to share considering he’s wanted for his part in the season 1 episode: The Prisoner. So he leads them on a merry chase into the atmosphere of a barren ice planet, one he finds himself crashed on in pretty short order. I’m not sure if he meant it or not, because it seems like a perfectly accidental escape manoeuvre. That is until the ship crashes through a sheet of ice and tears a hole in their ship’s hull in the process.

I feel like it’s going to get kind of redundant pointing this out because I’m going to keep pointing it out: This show looks so good. The starship chase in the clouds of the ice world looks stunning, it’s obvious that this series is the crown jewel of the Star Wars franchise for Disney at this moment in time. And they’re sparing no expense in making it look like something you’d be very comfortable seeing in a movie theatre.

The Mandalorian Season 2 Review - Episode 2: The Passenger

All crashes and exposed to the elements, Din surprisingly seems less than rushed to get his ship patched up. Between the frog lady croaking at him in a language he doesn’t understand and a running gag where the Child keeps opening the jar and eating her eggs, he has his hands full and would seemingly rather take a nap. That thing with Baby Yoda though, I know it’s supposed to cute and funny, and it is, but I also think it’s kind of fucked up.

If I’m remembering right, they’re unfertilized eggs, but still, the passenger makes a point over and over that these eggs are super important to her and could be the end of her family line. So the fact that the child is eating them for laughs feels like a messed up to me, I don’t know. It is cute, but it still made me go “urgh” every time I saw it happen.

While Din is eventually guilted into getting out and fixing the ship, he quickly realises the Frogette has gone and wandered off. Following her tracks into an ice cavern, he finds her in a hot spring. Ever the pragmatist, he tells her she needs to get back to the ship because he can’t protect her in an open cave like this. As if to answer this call to trouble, the child approaches what looks like a big homage to the alien franchise, as small eggs litter the ground and ceiling of the cave.

The Mandalorian Season 2 Review - Episode 2: The Passenger

And just to make sure they are eggs, he plunges his hand into and pulls a baby spider alien out of it. Eating that too. Baby Yoda is kind of gross.

This seems to spark a wave of the eggs hatching, and before they know it the three of them are dashing through the caves as a wave of ice spiders chase them. Culminating in a massive mother emerging from the darkness and crashing after them too. They manage to seal themselves in the cockpit of Din’s ship, but before they can take off and get out of the cave the giant mama crashes down on top of them, punching some holes in the cockpit’s windows.

Just when it seems like everything is lost, blaster cannon fire erupts from outside, killing the spider queen and driving away the rest of the little beasties. Upon emerging from his, now cobweb-infested, ship Din sees that he’s been rediscovered by the patrolling X-Wing pilots. Before we can get that twisting of the knife though, the pair end up deciding to let Din off the hook.

The Mandalorian Season 2 Review - Episode 2: The Passenger

Despite his role in the prison break, it seems like security footage showed him trying to save the innocent Republic lives on the station, as well as him screwing over his former compatriots and leaving them sealed in a cell for the New Republic forces to find after the fact. So they simply shrug and say “times are tough”, deciding to not arrest him, but also not helping him repair his messed-up ship either.

It seems like kind of a weak reason to let him go. But I’ll give this show something in that it’s painting the New Republic as the good guys. This is not long after the events of Return of the Jedi, so I feel like it’d be a bit of a spit in the eye of that original trilogy if they already started painting the New Republic as some corrupt, self-serving force.

Sealing the cockpit, the trio set back off in their battered ship. Where I assume we’ll pick up next week and get the next lead to wherever this Frog lady’s partner saw some Mandalorians.

The Mandalorian Season 2 Review - Episode 2: The Passenger

I’ll be real. After what was an incredibly strong first episode to the second series, this followup seemed a little weak by comparison. While the effects on the sky chase and the spider-monsters were impressive, the content of the episode itself felt a little shallow. Almost going back to the “monster of the week” formula the first season had.

I appreciate that the episodes of this second season already seem more connected than in season 1, where Din’s wanderings seemed a little aimless. But overall this was a fun, but mostly inconsequential feeling episode. I might be wrong and some character or event from “the passenger” might come back to play a pivotal role in a future plot point, but right now this second episode was entertaining, but ultimately a little deflating after the very strong season premier.

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