“From the Desert Comes a Stranger” really challenges the idea of whether an individual should follow the path they are destined for or choose what makes them happy. Grogu was the individual forced to make that choice. He had to choose between training to become a master Jedi or working with Din Djarin and potentially Boba Fett to stop the Pykes. The theme of this episode came about because Din was seeking out Grogu to give him his gift. The audience also gets some time with Luke Skywalker, R2D2, and Ahsoka. While it was great to see everyone, it was even better to be on another planet in a different environment watching the Jedi temple being built.
This episode is great because we get to see the exploratory side of Star Wars. A lot of enjoyment from this franchise comes from discovering new environments and new alien races. The audience received that in this episode. It also showed just how clearly the audience has more investment in the Mandalorian than they do Boba Fett. Everywhere Din went, I personally wondered what his next move would be. How is he going to support Boba Fett? Is Grogu going to feel abandoned by Din?
All of these questions are fundamentally important not just for the Boba Fett series but for this particular part of the Star Wars universe as a whole. Director Dave Filoni and co-writer Jon Favreau decided these were questions worth asking and investigating. Audiences love these shows so much because they take the kind of risks that allow us all as fans to look at the broader Star Wars canon. When we investigate all the rich stories that abound inside this universe, watching the series use these characters or locations makes the stories they tell all the more rich. This may be the one thing that George Lucas never quite fully understood. The more lore we tap into, the better the experience.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fantastic work done by Mark Hamill to bring to life the younger version of Luke Skywalker. Furthermore, I love the idea that the syndicate hired the most deadly bounty hunter in the Galaxy, Cad Bane, to warn people not to work with Boba Fett. That, by itself, is insane. The fact that Grogu now has to choose between the father he knows and what he is called to do is a massive story thread hanging over our heads that I hope gets resolved in next week’s finale.
The one piece of the story that didn’t really make sense to me was that Ahsoka wasn’t really involved in anything going on at the Jedi Academy. She didn’t even say whether she would become a teacher or not. She was just kind of there, and that’s a waste of a talented actress, especially when that actress is Rosario Dawson. I can’t wait for the season’s conclusion, and I know fans are clamoring to find out what happens next. May the force be with you.