(SPOILERS will obviously be found below.)
It’s been a long, tense couple of days and everyone, myself included, is on edge about the presidential election and surging COVID-19 cases and The Bachelorette drama, the biggest stressor of all. So I want to thank “Chapter 10: The Passenger” for being the best episode of The Mandalorian yet. It had everything I needed at the end of a four-month-long week. It didn’t move the overall story along much, but it was thrilling, funny, and felt like a Monster of the Week episode of The X-Files, which were always my favorites. Also, and this is crucial, there was a talking ant (in an episode directed by Ant-Man‘s Peyton Reed) playing sabacc against Amy Sedaris, snow-spiders, Galaxy’s Edge homages, a frog lady, X-wings, Baby Yoda going to town on some admittedly delicious-looking eggs, and the return of Mos Eisley Cantina. Speaking of scum and villainy…
“Chapter 10” also introduced the most-evil (and my most-hated) character to Star Wars.
That might sound hyperbolic, considering Darth Vader blew up a planet, Sheev Palpatine was the mastermind behind Order 66, and Jabba the Hutt licked Leia’s face, which is just gross. But at least they never PUT A KNIFE TO BABY YODA’S THROAT. At the beginning of the episode, a trio of no-goodniks stretch a rope across Mando’s path, so that when he comes flying by on his speeder, he’ll be decapitated or at least immobilized. It works, briefly, until Mando takes out two of the goons. As for the third:
Reader, I gasped.
I would love to know how many boardroom meetings Jon Favreau, who wrote the episode, had with Disney brass about how close the knife could be to Baby Yoda’s throat. He might be the only person on the planet who could threaten to Red Wedding the Child, and all it took was making a billion-dollar-grossing movie for the company and kicking off the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As for the alien holding the blade, there’s no information about him yet. But that’s fine, because a) he’s a monster (even if Baby Yoda is the one who eats multiple babies this episode, making him an actual murderer, but he’s sooo cute), and b) he’s killed due to some jetpack shenanigans from Mando. Another reason I liked this episode: jetpack shenanigans. Mad Men never had those.