The Book of Boba Fett is part of the Star Wars universe on Disney+ and ostensibly a spin-off from the very popular Mandalorian series.The series has been out since late 2021 so really the review could have been done sooner but I am a major Star Wars fan and I really wanted to love the show: but I do not. So I was giving it time to improve because some great shows start off a bit slow. This may still be the case but as of episode 5, The Book of Boba Fett (Boba Fett) is not a success.
To break down why, the Conservative Critic asks: Is it entertaining? Does it have intellectual/artistic value? And is it liberal propaganda?
The Conservative Critic Meter Check: The Book of Boba Fett
Overall Rating: Not good
Boba Fett is the ultimate baddie of the Star Wars universe. Fans have known him since Episode 4 where he plagued Luke, Leia and especially Han Solo while working for the Hutts and sort of the Empire. Viewers got to see his backstory in the prequels and have ample understanding of the character. So when Boba, the ultimate non-Mandalorian in Mandalorian armor, showed up in The Mandalorian it was to great fanfare.
However, on his own the series somehow does not work. Even with several skirmishes and action packed scenes somehow viewers find themselves thinking: I simply don’t care about this. If I had to find a reason I think it’s because the show wants viewers to sort of be on Boba Fett’s side. In the series he’s morphed into a sort of spiritual anti-hero more than a ruthless bounty hunter turned crime lord. I personally am not very interested in a softer Boba and I think a better tactic could have been to approach him as a villain even if the main character. It feels like we’re supposed to root for him and yet we can’t.
On top of the insurmountable carelessness of the subject matter, the show runners have made some bizarre choices which divert hard from any Star Wars lore I’m familiar with and do not fit into the mold of the show. It appears that half way through the series they realized it was crap and just decided to finish out with a half-season of The Mandalorian. Which was a good choice.
Is it entertaining?
Boba Fett does try. It has a lot of action sequences. It has Mulan herself, Ming Na Wen (Agents of Shield, voice of Mulan) as the assassin, Fennec, kicking butt and taking names. Boba himself engages constantly in both political and physical altercation.
And yet. It really is not compelling. Unusually, I’m at a bit at a loss for words as to why. Ultimately, it’s hard to care about Boba Fett and it’s hard to care about the politics of his defunct crime family. It doesn’t work and it’s not fun, that is until Episode 5 which is when the whole show turns over to become The Mandalorian.
Does it have intellectual/artistic value?
Rating: Relatively speaking, mediocre
Compared to small scale studios and series, of course Boba Fett has a lot more money and therefore the quality. However, compared to other Star Wars films and series including The Mandalorian, Boba Fett really pales in comparison.
The most egregious issue with The Mandalorian in terms of quality is the shoe-horning of 1980s biker gang culture and aesthetic into the franchise. Dining leather vests and riding colorful vespas, the teenage punk rock gang of Boba supporters (for reasons never fully explored) appear in multiple episodes and never make sense. The showrunners make a myriad of creative excuses saying they wanted to try new things and add color, but in the end they just do not make sense period. Terrible choice.
Further, some of the tech and graphics have not been quite up to par. That includes these weird bikers and their weird hover motorcycles but also the animation of the Hutts and some of the costumes of the aliens. While questionable tech is a throwback to the original, very low budget New Hope, film – it does not match the caliber of the new movie or The Mandalorian.
Is it liberal propaganda?
Rating: Justice for Gina
There really isn’t an agenda in the show itself – but the franchise is a spin-off from The Mandalorian which Gina Carano was fired from ostensibly for sharing an internet meme which condemned turning on our neighbors over COVID-19 masking and vaccines, comparing those actions to when neighbors turned on each other during the Holocaust in Nazi Germany. Disney said her words were “aborherent” and that she “denigrated” people which neither thing is at all true. Regardless, she was fired ostensibly for being disrespectful to jewish people. Meanwhile, a fellow Disney employee, Whoopi Goldberg, has been put on two-week leave for denying the nature of the Holocaust and downplaying it as a major race genocide. It is very clear that the reason Disney fired Gina Carano was for her conservative views and not for anything related to the jewish community.
So even though the show is not political in itself, the creation of the show and events surrounding the show remain highly charged.