The best of the Star Wars universe Disney+ series, The Mandalorian, is back for its long awaited third season.Though Season 2 was released all the way back in October of 2020, the primary characters were a major feature in the second half of The Book of Boba Fett in 2021 and, in fact, many would argue the Book of Boba Fett essentially gave way to being a Mandalorian installment instead of standing on its own.
The new season has its first episode up on Disney+ and it kicks off in the homeland of character, Cara Dune who was once played by the fan favorite, Gina Carano. The show handles the absence of Dune delicately, but is it enough for loyal fans and viewers to continue watching the series?
The Conservative Critic Abbreviated Review: The Mandalorian Season 3 prospects
Rating: Looks pretty good
Putting the issue of Carano aside –
The new season of The Mandalorian looks like it’s going to be pretty great. Star Wars lovers all around have long craved a deeper dive into the story of the Mandalorians which is more heavily featured in materials outside of the core Star Wars franchise such as the award winning video game series. The Mandalorian has already given some insight into the Mandalorian lore but it appears that Mando and Grogu are going to be focusing a lot of energy in a return to Mandalore and that the history of that fabled world and its people will be revealed along the way.
From a story point of view, the season stands to be something special. But in addition, the production value and spot on direction from Jon Favreau was a perfect kick off. Mando is fighting monsters, pirates and exploring beautiful worlds with familiar faces. Grogu remains adorable with his puppeteer absolutely mastering the art of Star Wars puppet body language (there is an unnecessary stiffness that harkens the memory of the original Yoda, its masterful).
In addition, Bo-Katan played by Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica) is back as the leader of the Mandalorian rebellion trying to restore the power of their former glory. Sackhoff is a strong addition to the cast. Her sci-fi chops give her an almost cameo-like essence on screen and helps add to the overall nostalgic aesthetic which has made The Mandalorian so beloved.
Focusing on the Gina Carano issue –
There is no question that the series is better with Gina Carano as Cara Dune. Dune is a phenomenal character and both her and Carano personally express the values of the franchise which is rugged individuality, bravery and authenticity. When the corporate goons at Disney pretended that a totally innocuous twitter post about how awful it is to turn on our neighbors and how the people of Germany absolutely, factually, colluded with Nazis to turnover the jewish people in their community was somehow anti-semetic, they did wrong to society, to Carano herself and to their own franchise.
Season 3 of The Mandalorian kicks off in Nevarro where a lot has changed, including the absence of Cara Dune. A familiar face informs Mando and Grogu that Dune has been recruited by the New Republic and is off fighting the empire. This is an extremely interesting albeit brief detail because before the awful treatment of Carano by Disney and Lucasfilm executives, she was rumored to star in a spinoff series called Rangers of the New Republic. Where it would have been so easy to kill-off Dune and therefore end all chances of Carano’s return to the franchise, there is instead a door left wide open.
The Mandalorian director and Executive Producer, Jon Favreau has famously fought for Carano and her character. He stood by her when the executives bullied her for her political beliefs and fought to keep her when the studio decided to fire her. He has given several interviews singing her praises and in 2022 even discussed that he fought hard to keep Dune’s scenes in Season 2 of the Mandalorian and to add already filmed scenes to Season 3 but ultimately could not get past Disney executives which he says “broke his heart.”
Literally every single one of Carano’s co-stars defended her in the wake of Disney’s decision including very liberal actors like Giancarlo Esposito and the Mandalorian himself, Pedro Pascal.
While it’s important to stand up for Carano, it’s important to support people like Favreau and her co-workers too. Favreau has a stellar reputation and did his best for Carano and has created a wonderful work of art.
Lovers of Star Wars and casual viewers are likely to be hooked on The Mandalorian season 3 as it seems to be set up to be a fantastic installment to the franchise full of rich lore, strong characters, galactic action and high dollar production value. Those loyal to Carano should be aware that she has allies in her corner still showrunning.
And ultimately, considering no one on planet earth thinks they did the right thing, Disney should admit their error and beg Carano to come back to the Star Wars universe.