Last Season of ‘The Mandalorian’: Breaking the Rules
Last week marked the end of season 3 of ‘The Mandalorian‘ on Disney+. The finale still echoes in my head, for better and for worse, due to some issues seen in those final minutes. By the way, from here spoilers.
The fate of the ancient Mandalorian lightsaber, the “Darksaber” or “Dark Saber,” has more meaning than meets the eye. In the final confrontation with Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito), the mythical sword has been destroyed (or as destroyed as something made with béskar can be). The power of history, but not of the rules.
With everything that happens in the episode, it seems hardly significant, but in fact, the destruction of such a precious weapon that has been around for entire seasons speaks of a significant loss of significance in Star Wars. This is dangerous in a universe based precisely on ancient rules and traditions.
The Mandalorian’s Iconoclastic Approach
‘The Mandalorian’ is, in this sense, curiously iconoclastic and determined to break its own rules (whether they be from the series itself or from Star Wars in general) for the sake of the story. Although the final stretch of this season was quite likable, as soon as you scratch beneath the surface, you can see how many motivations and issues change practically overnight.
The example of the dark saber and the “This is the way, but tomorrow is something else” mentality highlights a changing approach to the Mandalorian creed to serve the interest of the story that Filoni and Favreau wanted to tell. There is a need for union and a common objective, but it is surprising that, beyond a loose brawl, differences of decades seem to have magically evaporated.
From the beginning, part of ‘The Mandalorian’ turns precisely to confront the creed with the situation. Characters are learning to know when to renounce ancestral rules and ways of life in favor of survival. The problem with these two aspects is that by fiddling with them so much, they no longer take away transcendence, but emotional weight from the key moments they want to show. This is detrimental both for the story and for the viewer.