Star Wars: The Problem With ‘The Book of Boba Fett’

Screenshot of Ming-Na Wen as Fennec Shand and Temuera Morrison as Boba Fett in ‘The Book of Boba Fett’. Copyright goes to Lucasfilm and Walt Disney Studios.

Hey! Hallie here!

‘The Book of Boba Fett’ has officially ended its first season. Unlike ‘The Mandalorian’, it hasn’t received wide praise. Actually, most people have mixed feelings about this series. I’ve seen more bad reviews than good, but overall I’ve seen mostly confused reviews from fans who appreciated parts of this series but not all of it. And let’s be honest, the parts of this series most of us appreciated were the callbacks to ‘The Mandalorian’. I personally felt like this series gave us a whole lot of nothing and the last few episodes didn’t really prove to me that the story was overall worthwhile. I don’t think ‘The Book of Boba Fett’ was awful, but it certainly wasn’t good and there are definitely a few aspects of the series that dragged it down. But before I go any further I’m going to put a major SPOILER warning here. To talk about my thoughts on this series I need to dive into details, so if you haven’t watched all the way through it, come back later.

Boba Fett:

Let’s talk about the main character himself. He wasn’t much of a main character, was he? The hero of the last few episodes seemed to be Din Djarin, or Mando. It genuinely felt like the writers decided to downgrade Boba to a secondary character halfway through the series. He didn’t even show up in one episode in favor of giving Mando the episode to shine. And even in the last episode that wasn’t really rectified. Boba took control of the forces fighting back against the Pykes, but he left partway through the battle to get his pet Rancor. Meaning we spent a bunch of time with Boba offscreen yet again while we focused on Mando reuniting with Grogu. And did any of us really care that he was gone? Well, for my part, no. The first few episodes of ‘The Book of Boba Fett’ didn’t sell me on the character in the least bit. The narrative switched between flashbacks and the current timeline with no connection between them. In one story the Tusken Raiders took up all of the personality and intrigue. In the other, Boba proved himself to be an incompetent Daimyo with conflicting ideas. Seriously, all he did was get injured so Fennec Shand and the kids he later hired could prove their skill, fall into political traps because he never took Fennec Shand’s advice to prove himself to the city, and float in a bacta tank. I appreciated his desire to rule with honesty and kindness, but those traits conflict with the idea of, you know, being a crime lord. And when he finally does something that gains the respect of the townspeople, namely saving them from the Pykes, he voices irritation at his new job. So why did we have an entire series leading up to this point in that case?

Mistreated Side Characters:

We had so many side characters in this series and almost none of them were good. Fennec Shand was the sole non-‘Mandalorian’ side character that was good. But the treatment of her character was contradictory. Shand was portrayed as both the voice of reason and the reckless sidekick Boba had to reign in. On the one hand, Fennec was appreciated by Boba for pointing out when he was being made a fool of as well as for giving him advice. On the other, Boba would brush her ideas off as too violent and uncaring. I was so confused by this contradiction that I had no idea what the show was trying to say when it revealed that she single-handedly wiped out the leaders of the Spice Runners at the end of the finale. Was her murder spree harsh and coldblooded, or a sign that she was changing her ways because she hadn’t cared about the spice trade before? I still have no idea. All I know is that Fennec Shand was right about the lack of progress Boba was making the majority of the time. She likely would have made more progress as Daimyo with Boba at her side rather than vice versa. As for the other side characters, who really cares? The kids Boba hired were given no personality. The Wookie that sided with Boba didn’t have any either. Even Cad Bane, a beloved villain from the animated series, felt bland. He was clearly brought in because the show had no formidable villain for fans to care about without him, but he only showed up for a few scenes before Boba killed him off. The rivalry between them wasn’t even built up. The show relied on the fact that Bane killed the Raiders Boba had grown attached to in order to build tension, but the Raiders were killed offscreen. Tell me why I should care about that event if the writers didn’t care enough about it to show anything aside from one scene of Boba looking vaguely sad?

Mandalorian Season 2.5:

I’m pretty sure this is what we all just watched instead of ‘The Book of Boba Fett’. Boba Fett showed up once in the span of two episodes in favor of focusing on catching up with Mando and Grogu. To be honest, it was kind of nice. I liked seeing the repercussions of Mando taking his helmet off as well as the start of his journey with the Darksaber. I liked catching up with Grogu and Luke (Although I still dislike both Ahsoka and Luke’s strange insistence to keep to the Jedi Order rules when both actively rebelled against these rules beforehand). I liked seeing Grogu and Mando reunite. I even liked seeing the return of Peli and all her droids. But what does any of that have to do with Boba Fett? I have no clue. I felt like halfway through the series they decided to drop the Boba Fett storyline in order to wrap up some loose ends from ‘The Mandalorian’ so they wouldn’t have to spend time doing so at the beginning of season three. But really, all of the things they included would have taken up maybe one episode at most. So it still didn’t feel necessary here.

‘The Book of Boba Fett’ could have used more Boba Fett. It could also have used a more cohesive story and a more developed supporting cast. But what we got instead was disjointed, sometimes boring, and apparently incapable of standing on its own if Mando’s involvement is any indication. I liked certain aspects of this show. It hyped me up for season three of ‘The Mandalorian’ and I could definitely do with more Fennec Shand. But I don’t think those were goals a series about Boba Fett set out to accomplish. Somehow I feel like Boba Fett is just as bland of a character as he was before this series started. Back when he hardly had any lines at all throughout the ‘Star Wars’ franchise. I’m definitely disappointed. Here’s to ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ being better!

Don’t do anything fun until I get back!

Hallie

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