The Book Of Boba Fett
Boba Fett and Fennec Shand face an escalating conflict.
Spoiler Level: Moderate
I’ve never made it secret that I’ve been a casual Star Wars fan. I’ve watched the 9 Skywalker movies multiple times, Ewoks: The Battle For Endor, Rogue One, Solo, and so on. And of course, I watched The Mandalorian, which I think is the gold standard for future Star Wars stories. I was a bit older when the animated shows came out, so I never watched them growing up. I read some of the books and comics, but that’s about it. My background in Star Wars is that I loved it growing up, but never considered myself at the geek or nerd level as many of you all may identify with (and honestly, I’m envious of that!).
So when I started to watch The Book of Boba Fett, I came in with the knowledge of what I knew from Episodes V and VI, as well as Episode II and his appearance in The Mandalorian. So going into the series, I understood who the person was generally and was really impressed with how they made a minor character in the franchise so compelling to watch. But by the time we got to the end of the season (maybe series), I find that this ended in a weird way that some of it worked out well and some of it felt like they couldn’t make a decision on the story, along with some major production issues as well.
One of the elements that this show lacked is telling the story about the titular character, Boba Fett. They did a relatively good job of this, but when we got into episode 5, he was completely missing in this episode and only showed up for roughly a minute in episode 6. I don’t think this would have been a huge issue if this show was called something a little more broad, like Mos Espa or something along those lines. And don’t get me wrong – I loved seeing The Mandalorian, Grogu, and all of those familiar faces again on the screen. I just think it is an odd puzzle piece to the story that made it feel like the show is a launching pad for the next season of The Mandalorian than anything else.
This show brought in new characters that we haven’t seen on the live screen before, which I absolutely love. This show was the first time I was introduced to Krrsantan (who, if I recall correctly, was created in the comics) as well as Cad Bane, a character most known from the animated series, The Clone Wars. I never heard of them before this show and I absolutely loved them and loved that we have new characters that we can dive into as fans. As I’ve said before, exploring more stories outside the Skywalker-centered Jedi stories will be successful for Disney and LucasFilms, and this is a prime example of it, given that social media went wild when these characters appeared. That said, I was also disappointed that we didn’t get to know their story, either. We don’t need a whole biography of the characters, but we didn’t know much about Krrsantan except that he is a Wookie that used to work for the Hutts before joining Fett’s crew. And Cad Bane is someone that obviously has a history with Boba Fett that we didn’t really discover until the final episode. For many who follow the animated series, this wasn’t a surprise, but for casual fan like myself, we were left a bit confused and wanting. I understand that they probably used Cad Bane as a way to create a buzz throughout the series and didn’t want to reveal too much, but I would have to argue that if they had introduced him earlier in the series, they could have explored more of that past between Bane and Fett and could have told a more compelling story. Instead, it requires the casual fan to have to do their own research on what this backstory is about. This was a missed opportunity for them. I hope they continue to bring in existing characters of Star Wars into live-action series and movies like this, but they need to write them so that casual fans can enjoy and understand the story as well, and not leave it up to them to have to find out all of the details in the massive Star Wars universe.
In terms of production value, the Star Wars universe is usually on the cutting edge of this. And for the most part, this show does a fantastic job of creating the realism within the show. The Rancor looked amazingly realistic, they used practical, special effects for many of their characters instead of opting into all of CGI, and they continue to keep pushing those limits and possibilities. With that said, there were still some scenes that surprised me in terms of what Star Wars is known for and how some of the production quality seemed to be subpar. For instance, as I mentioned before, the scene with the droid piloting the train in episodes 2 and 3 looked like it was very poor stop-animation that you would see from the 80’s. In this episode, the leader of the Pyke Syndicate was noticeably off when he spoke; that is, what he was saying wasn’t matching with the movements of his lips at all. Again, a lot of these are little things and they are probably not a fair comparison or criticism if this was any other production team or storied universe. But if they are that noticeable, it can be a distraction.
Lastly, some of the storytelling techniques in this episode was interesting as well. I think overall they did a good job with the final battle scene but again, there are some little things that stood out that was clearly theatrics that didn’t really make sense if this wasn’t a movie. For example, when Fennec Shand shows up to save the Mods, she somehow rode her hoverbike right next to the building where the shootout was taking place, unnoticed, and moved up to the top of the building to take out the street gang. Practically speaking, it wouldn’t have gone unnoticed. The scene where Skad does a spin shot when he was helping Kkrsantan stand up also doesn’t make any sense other than to look cool and dramatic on screen. He had a gun in his hand already before the spin move; the spin move just would have taken more time for him to get a shot off than if he just stretched out his arm to take the show. Again, these are small details, but Star Wars are known for the small details as well.
Let me end this on a positive note though. I think the story and what they are trying to do is a fantastic idea. I love that they are bringing new stories to the Star Wars universe and that they are exploring areas that have not been told before or haven’t been explored before, along with new and familiar characters. This was definitely the success of the show. That said, I think there were enough pieces that weren’t large enough to be detrimental by themselves, but when they’re strung together, it looks like an experiment that wasn’t quite successful. In fact, this may have been an experiment to see what the audience’s reactions would be with the new characters and directions that will help them plan for future stories in the Star Wars universe. In that case, the experiment would be considered successful because I think they were able to find that out really well given how people have reacted to the show (both positive and negative).
Overall, I think this kind of storytelling is the future of Star Wars. As long as they can execute the storytelling well on screen for both die-hard and casual Star Wars fans, they will be able to continue this success for years to come. But, they have to nail the latter down first; otherwise, they risk losing both of these general audiences.
The Book Of Boba Fett 107: A Great Story Told Poorly (Sorry, Favreau!)
- Writing - 6/106/10
- Storyline - 8/108/10
- Acting - 9/109/10
- Music - 9/109/10
- Production - 6/106/10
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