With an assassination attempt having failed, Boba Fett and Fennec Shand interrogate their prisoner to find out who was behind the foiled hit. Though the answer they find seems straightforward enough, they’re soon sent down a different and more surprising path – with others laying claim to Fett’s newly acquired territory. Fett’s also still having flashbacks to his post-Sarlacc life amongst the Tusken Raiders – and his Stockholm Syndrome, or the Star Wars universe’s equivalent – is truly kicking in.

If The Mandalorian had the feel of a classic Western at times, that’s nothing compared to this second episode of The Book of Boba Fett. It oozes the atmosphere of the Wild West movies it’s clearly influenced by; Fett is great in the role of the fearless gunslinger taking on dastardly forces on behalf of an oppressed, technologically primitive people. The flashback to Fett assisting the Tusken Raiders – complete with training montage and even a battle on a train across the sands of Tatooine – takes up most of the running time of the episode, which leaves us barely any further forward in the ‘present day’ plot, which is actually the more interesting of the strands so far introduced, story-wise. Though it’s interesting to see how Fett ended up wandering the Dune Sea, dressed in dark robes and armed with a gaffi stick, it all feels a bit unnecessary – do we really need the origin of every piece of Fett’s attire and equipment to explain his appearance in The Mandalorian?

Part of Boba Fett’s appeal – in the same way that characters such as the X-Men’s Wolverine are so intriguing – is the mystery, but much of that was stripped away by George Lucas and others in prior movies and TV series. It’s a bit odd that his escape from the Sarlacc was so quickly done and dusted, whereas the events following that are covered so much more thoroughly; though it gives us an opportunity to see Fett in a more heroic light – certainly a lot more so than we’re used to – it perhaps undermines one of the fight scenes in The Mandalorian which really saw him let loose; it ties in his melee combat skill with the time spent with the Tusken Raiders, rather than him just being a badass with no further explanation needed.

Despite the feeling of treading water a bit with far too much reliance on sketching in unnecessary detail, there’s some seriously impressive action scenes here, along with genuinely amusing and thrilling moments among them. It all feels very genuinely Star Wars, which – as has been proven on the big screen even by George Lucas at times – it isn’t all that easy to do. It’s also just a real blast to have fan favourite bounty hunter Boba Fett back, but I’d really like to be spending my time seeing him taking his rightful place as the ruler of the Tatooine underworld, rather than the events leading up to it. By the end of this episode, it does seem as if we’re done with the flashbacks and origins somewhat – let’s hope it’s full steam ahead from now on.

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