It has been an interesting time watching ‘The Book of Boba Fett’, which for me had a very strong start as it answered fan questions that had lasted for nearly forty years until Boba reappeared armor less in Season 2 of ‘The Mandalorian’ which had a finale that set the scene for this show to spin off from. This show has had great moments and also some very questionable choices in terms of where the show got from Episode 3 and 4, not to mention the fact that Episodes 5 and 6 simply went full ‘The Mandalorian Season 2.5’ as both episodes focused primarily on Din Dijarin and Grogu, which had fans going crazy but also meant that for those episodes, Boba Fett either did not feature at all or merely appeared to just nod to Din, and it left me questioning what the direction of this show even was, especially leading into the finale and whether or not Boba would even get to have the starring role in it.
Simply put, this is a finale that much like the direction of the show, confused me more than anything else. The big showdown between the Pyke Syndicate, who wants to continue running their Spice trade via Tatooine versus Boba Fett, Daimyo of Mos Espa with Fennec Shand and his crew. This is a fight that felt important by the end of Episode 4 but sadly at this point for me, completely overshadowed by the reintroduction of The Mandalorian story arc which has been incredible for fans and myself to see but the cost was in killing the momentum of Boba Fett’s story. Now here we are, Episode 7 and the finale and having now watched it through twice, it has left me rather puzzled.
The main reason for that is that this is a showdown that was pretty much by the book, and all expected even though Boba only featured in four of the previous six episodes worthy of note. We begin with the fall out of Episode 6, the Sanctuary having been bombed and now a burned-out ruined building, a location that Boba gathers his forces though Din Djarin is convinced that the people of Freetown are coming to help, unaware that Cad Bane shot Cobb Vanth and threatened the people not to get involved for their own safety. We are made fully aware that Boba and crew are completely outnumbered should the Pyke Syndicate arrive to finish what they began with Sanctuary. This is going to be a fight but not one that has a satisfying ending.
Before we do reach the final battle there are still some threads to tidy up such as the decision Luke forced Grogu to make, choose the life of a Jedi and forsake any possible relationship with Din and earn Yoda’s Lightsaber as a result or accept the gift of Beskar chain mail armour, the gift from Din and in doing so would be returned to him and no longer able to be trained as a Jedi by Luke. Well, every single fan knew what the answer would be and the moment an X-Wing comes into land at the docking station of Mos Eisley it was confirmed. To my surprise, it was a pilotless X-Wing with R2-D2 himself flying it to Tatooine to drop off Grogu for The Mandalorian, no Luke this time. This was indeed a very lovely moment, just one as much has been in the last two episodes, one that took away the focus of what this finale was supposed to be, but I was too busy grinning like an idiot to see the little guy back.
We do get to see some screen time between Boba and Cad Bane, who clearly have a history which I would love to have seen given more time to explain their story, another flashback episode would have been welcome for sure but here we see Cad Bane taunting Boba, trying to get him to make a mistake and ‘shoot first’. One of the things that does bug me about this finale, is how the crew of Boba, the mods and Black Krrsantan are divided up to simply watch out for Pykes though this immediately, and very obvious to the audience watching, was the moment the crime families of Tatooine betrayed the truce that Boba believed he had as each of them target the crew, with The Mod kids being cut off requiring Fennec to save them, Black Krrsantan seemingly being taken down and the two Gamorreans personal guards of Boba pushed off a high point, falling to their deaths. The disappointment that this was so telegraphed as a story device, making us feel Boba is facing odds he cannot overcome fell a little flat for me. However, what I did enjoy was the time spent between Boba and Din, with Boba giving approval if Din wanted to leave to which he responded he would stay, prepared to die alongside Boba in this fight as his word is his creed, though he has been expelled from his Sect, Din still believes in his Creed. For me this is just another example of how this show more than anything else, is the final passing of the “Mando” baton from him to Din.
A quick distraction allows for the real action to start, with the Pyke forces now approaching the shell of Sanctuary, a truly fanboy moment with both Din and Boba flying with the Jetpacks taking the Pykes out but it is a gun fight that leaves them both down under the barrage of fire from the Pykes. There really is just something amazing seeing Mandalorians, though Boba is not one the imagery alone gives so much hope of what we might expect from a third season of Mandalorian. A heroic moment sees the remainder of Boba’s crew return to join this fight but not before the people of Freetown arrive. With the Pykes on the back foot seemingly, there is a real moment of “is that it?” with this fight but then two massive gun droids with shields, take over the fight with one chasing the retreating Mods and Freetown folk and the other focusing on Boba and Din. Unable to break through the shields, Boba flies off to get “reinforcements” leaving Din to continue to have the Gun Droid give chase to him.
A fun moment then happens as the fantastic Peli Motto comes flying round the corner with her droids and rickshaw with Din screaming at them to turn around as he jumps on the back. This is the moment fans of The Mandalorian have been dreaming about, teased in Episode 6 but the moment is here as Din is reunited with Grogu finally and the moment Grogu jumps into Dins hand, I could hear the global “awwww” from every Star Wars fan all crying out in unison for this well-crafted moment though, and it was worth the wait and we also get to see a far more confident Grogu in his ability to use his force abilities during the final moments of the episode which I will come back to later but yeah, having Grogu back with Din might be the finest moment of this finale. Which is quite something to feel considering the next time we see Boba is when he returns riding his Rancor Calf, which I did see coming but was quite a moment to see Boba shooting from the top of his Rancor pet as it went full Godzilla on the Gun Droids, effects budget was clearly saved for this battle, and it was fun to see.
This allows the tide of the battle to turn which also leads to two very big moments for the show, one cute as all hell and another, which might prove to be controversial at first unless you are quite observant. That moment is when Cad Bane calmly stands up to Boba and his Rancor, using his own flame thrower gauntlet to scare off the Rancor, causing it to throw off Boba Fett leading to a showdown between these two iconic Bounty Hunters of Star Wars. Die hard fans of the Clone Wars might know that if it had not been cancelled, there was a plan to show Cad Bane mentoring a young Boba Fett, something this episode does not make all that clear other than Boba saying he is no longer a boy and Cad offering him his final lesson once he outdraws Boba. Boba then uses his Tusken Warrior weapon to take Cad down, leaving him seemingly dead on the floor. Already social media is a buzz with this decision but if you listen and look closely, a beacon is beeping on Cad’s chest, to me this could be the off-screen way out and that Cad will be recovered and placed into a Bacta tank to heal meaning this is not the end of the road for this icon and I really hope he does make a return.
The other moment is the Rancor going on a rampage without its rider, but this started off a little strange with Boba’s crew all shooting it even before it had a chance to attack them, only to make it more mad and make it attack. Din tries to take it down but fails which is where Grogu, this tiny little bean of a guy, steps out and using the Force, calms the Rancor and puts him to sleep, all with Din watching, ending with Grogu going tup to the now sleeping Rancor before curling up to sleep against it, more “Awww” could be heard around the world.
I really liked this action sequence with everyone having their moment to shine in what might be the longest shoot out scene in Star Wars yet, the effects were spot on and even the moments with the reunion of Din and Grogu in the middle of a fire fight chase did not feel forced or misplaced. Where this finale did fall flat for me, was in the ending scenes. Starting with the slaughter of all the crime family leaders and the Pyke Commander, now I expected Boba to do this himself, as they betrayed the truce the promised and since he discovered from Cad Bane that the Pykes wiped out the Tusken tribe that took him in and saved his life but now, it was shown to be Fennec, a moment to have one final absolute badass moment for Boba to reclaim his fearsome legacy and it is given to Fennec, who throughout this series has been the one to come up with the strategy, counsel Boba on how to be a leader and the action spots. It felt like a wasted opportunity especially when, as Boba and Fennec are walking the streets of Mos Espa being thanked by the people, even bowing to him, Boba turns to Fennec and says “we are not cut out for this” implying that being Daimyo of Tatooine, the one thing he has wanted to maintain this entire series, might not be the job we see him and Fennec doing in the future, this especially stands out to be as the post credit scene shows Cobb Vanth in Boba’s Bacta tank healing with the Mod surgeon preparing to go to work.
Overall, this has really been a strange show all in all, the start was strong for me and then grew a little weaker and frustrating with Boba seemingly doing very little before the show handed itself over to The Mandalorian and it is very telling to say that my favourite episodes were the ones that did not feature Boba Fett at all. The finale was a fun watch but also has a lot of issues in terms of how Boba is used in it, whilst it was cool to see him riding a Rancor, something set up in Episode 4, it is once again Fennec who stands out as the one to be fearful of more than Boba. I am not left at the end of this finale hoping to see another show featuring Boba Fett in this setting at least, and I am hoping that the little tease of “we are not cut out for this” and Cobb Vanth being healed, could be a sign that Boba is about to return to his Bounty Hunting ways with Fennec, leaving Mos Espa in the capable hands of Cobb Vanth which is just a theory of mine, but one I hope is the plan.
The fact that the final scene before the credits role on this finale and series, is that of Din with Grogu in space, with Grogu tapping the silver ball against his cockpit lid with Din saying “no” before giving in and saying “ok but this is the last time” as he triggers his ships sub light drive, sending it into its boost making Grogu very happy indeed. I really am looking forward to the next season of The Mandalorian, but for me to get excited for any future Boba Fett show, this good guy routine is going to have to go out the window to get my interest.