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Struggling To Find Focus — The Mandalorian Season 3 (TV Review)

3 min read

has proved one of the biggest successes in the Disney era of delighting fans with the continuing adventures of Din Djarin () and Grogu as they go about their adventures exploring new and old parts of the Star Wars universe. The show's third season continues to bridge the gap between Episodes VI and VII, while focusing more on the splintered Mandalorian factions as they attempt to retake their homeworld of Mandalore led by Bo Katan.

Following the decision to re-unite Din Djarin and Grogu in The Book of Boba Fett, the pair are together once more here, perhaps confusing some viewers who had seen the pair separated at the end of the last season.

While the show retains many of the elements fans have come to love, the reception has been more muted this time around. It feels that Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni haven't quite mapped out where this season sits within the wider universe and at times lack a narrative focus. With the departure of Gina Carrano and the cancellation of The Rangers of The New Republic, elements that may have been featured in that show are brought into play here and while not necessarily poor in themselves, do feel out of place.

The climatic episodes do a fine job of giving the season some stakes and a clearer focus, but the first five or six episodes are so scattershot it does feel a tad too little too late. It is a marked contrast to the laser-tight focus of , which had a clear narrative throughout and real sense of purpose. While Giancarlo Esposito's Moff Gideon does make a belated appearance in the season, his arrival is very last minute meaning we are lacking an overarching villain throughout. This is perplexing, given that Star Wars has often been defined by its villains.

Of course, the show is not without its highlights and Bo Katan's development across the season is one of its strengths as is exploring the wider Mandalorian lore. Katee Sackhoff continues to deliver as Bo, after transitioning from voice acting the role to live action in Season 2. The action — especially in the final couple of episodes — also impresses.

The finale itself while tying up some loose ends did feel rushed in getting things in a position for a potential fourth season with a surprising lack of development to the main characters in The Book of Boba Fett.

The Mandalorian's third season is a frustrating affair, not devoid of merit but often meandering and struggling to find focus. In light of the overwhelmingly positive response to Andor the series does seem to have struggled to live up to expectations developed over the course of the first two seasons. We will of course see more of the era and plotlines laid out here with Ahsoka carrying the baton next in August and it all seemingly culminating in Dave Filoni's recently announced film that will serve as a conclusion to this arm of the Star Wars universe.

The Mandalorian Season 3 is now streaming on .