Note that this article contains spoilers for Chapter 7 of The Mandalorian, “The Reckoning.”
Hey guys! Welcome back to The Plotaholics’ weekly Mandalorian recap. This week, we are discussing season one’s penultimate episode, “The Reckoning.”
The episode begins with Mando receiving a message from Greef Karga (Carl Weathers) offering Mando a deal. It seems The Client (Werner Herzog) has been causing issues with the Guild after Mando’s escape with Baby Yoda (okay, okay, The Child). Karga wants Mando kill The Client, and in return, The Guild will call off its bounty on Mando and The Child.
Obviously not trusting the Guild leader, Mando stops to pick up Cara Dune (Gina Carano) as back up. As the two warriors come up with a plan, The Child gets into some mischief trying to fly the ship. It’s nothing serious…he just…almost…destroys the ship with Mando, Cara, and himself in it.
Deciding that they need a third crew member to ensure the Child doesn’t kill them all, Mando stops off to pick up Kuiil (Nick Nolte). We find out that Kuiil has reprogrammed and repurposed IG-11 (Taika Waititi) as a service droid that is also capable of protocol and childcare, even though Mando does not trust the former Guild droid.
Kuiil and Cara have further friction due to Kuiil being a former Imperial, and Cara being a former Rebel shock trooper. We find out that Kuiil was, at one point, an indentured servant in the Empire. As we get closer to the rendezvous, Mando calls for IG-11 to stay on board the ship and maintain that area while the three crew members and The Child go to meet Karga. It should be noted that, during a time of leisure during the trip, Mando and Cara are engaged in an arm-wrestling match. The Child, terrified of the conflict, uses the Force to choke Cara.
The trio meet up with Karga and three of his Guild soldiers, and the party begin to travel back to the city. During the night, Karga informs the group that The Client only has four Stormtrooper guards. He begins to tell them a little more, but they are attacked by some creepy fliers that take out one of the Guild soldiers, one of Kuiil’s mounts, and Karga is injured by a talon slash on the arm, which is a death sentence as the creatures have a powerful poison for hunting. Seeing that they’re unable to help them, The Child comes forward and uses the Force to heal Karga.
The next day, as they make it to the outskirts of the city, Karga kills his Guild soldiers, admitting to Mando, Cara, and Kuiil that it was all a set up; Mando was to be killed and The Child given over to The Client and what remains of the Empire. However, because the child saved his life, Kargo can’t go through with the plan. He has now become an ally. The new plan is simple; Cara captured Mando and brought him to Karga. They will take Mando and The Child to The Client for payment. Once inside, Mando will kill The Client. Meanwhile, Kuiil will take The Child back to the ship and wait for them.
When they arrive in the city, it’s crawling with Stormtroopers (much to Cara and Mando’s chagrin). When they’re taken back to see The Client, he receives a call asking if the Child is there. The Client responds to his superior, Moff Gideon (played by the amazing Giancarlo Esposito who I have been waiting to see!), that The Child is asleep. The Moff asks, “Are you sure?”
Suddenly blaster fire erupts from outside the compound as The Client and his men are gunned down through the windows, leaving Mando, Greef Karga, and Cara Dune, pinned down, outmanned, and out gunned.
As Mando attempts to get in touch with Kuill, two troopers on speeder bikes intercept the transmission and are in hot pursuit. As Mando frantically attempts to contact Kuiil, we see him laying motionless–presumably dead–as the child is picked up by the stormtroopers.
This episode…wow. Just…wow. My anxiety is sky-high right now. What the hell, man? Kuiil!? I really liked Kuiil! A lot! I was happy to see him and Cara Dune come back for this mission. Of course, I truly want to ask him why the hell he didn’t just stay home!
In all seriousness, this episode goes to show just how deadly this other side of the Star Wars Universe is. While The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones have done the whole ‘no one is safe’ thing over the years, Star Wars did this LONG before either property (who the hell saw Obi-Wan dying when they first watched Episode IV?), and this episode shows why this series is the grand daddy of them all.
Here are some of my stray thoughts:
What I liked
- Giancarlo Esposito: I have been waiting for six episodes for Moff Gideon to make his first appearance and I have to say he did not disappoint. Not only do I get the ruthlessness of Grand Moff Tarkin from this character, but there’s a lot more to him that makes me nervous. He not only walks with confidence, and swagger, but also danger. He took out The Client, and Stormtroopers just to prove a point to Mando. The Stormtroopers were a perfectly oiled machine under his control.
- Gina Carano: Every time she is on screen in this series, I am more and more happy with her. She is so much better than she was in Deadpool and Fast and the Furious series. Cara Dune is so bad ass, I hope that in the next episode and Season 2 she has a much more prominent role as Mando’s partner in crime.
- The Child: Man, Baby Yoda got some awesome Dark Side points and Light Side points in this episode. The cute points, he’s already a Grand Master, that’s for damn sure. The child showcasing his Force Powers feels so…alien here. That’s the way The Force should be. It shouldn’t be so…common.
What I didn’t like
- Greef Karga: I love Carl Weathers. I do. I’m so glad he was back in this episode. But some of his lines are just… a little difficult. “Ah! He’s going to eat me!” I can understand that he’s nervous about The Child because he thinks that he’s a science experiment, and he saw him mowing down on some meat, but come on man!
Yeah, that was the only thing I didn’t like about this episode. This has, by far, been probably my favorite episode to date. The veil has been lifted, and we now know who our big bad is. Giancarlo Esposito is amazing, Mando is always 100% on point, and oh, Cara Dune!
In closing, this episode ending the way it did felt an awful lot like The Empire Strikes Back; it’s dark, it’s bleak, and it evokes deep and legitimate concern about our core characters. If you have not watched this episode yet, why are you reading a spoiler-filled review? Why?
Well, thanks anyway because even with me spoiling this episode, my words do nothing to give this episode justice. Go to Disney+ now and watch this episode.
The Mandalorian airs weekly on the Disney+ streaming service.