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The Mandalorian - The Believer - Review: A Surprise Mustache Cameo!

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Warning: The following review contains major spoilers for The Mandalorian, “The Believer”.

This Mandalorian episode jumps straight into the plot with the release of Migs Mayfeld. There wasn’t any intense breakout scene like many expected, but the rest of the episode sure didn’t let me mourn it.

Cara Dune uses her new Marshal status to release Inmate 34667 into her custody. A confused Mayfeld is reluctant to follow when she informs him that she has a job, but does so when the droid threatens him. He follows Cara to where Boba Fett’s starship is waiting. (Parked? Landed?)

Seeing Boba Fett freaks Mayfeld out for a brief moment before he realizes it’s not the Mandalorian he’s worked with in the past — and then Din Djarin walks out! Mayfeld asks Mando if he’s there to kill him, but he denies it. Cara explains that she put a lot of effort into springing him and Din clarifies that it’s because he’s ex-Imperial. They need him to get Grogu back. Mayfeld is not to be released for his help, but will supposedly get a better prison deal.

As someone who really disliked Migs Mayfeld in the first season, this episode was very refreshing for me. Bill Burr did a phenomenal job with the character and his nuances. I really didn’t expect to like him. Instead, I came out of the episode wondering if we’ll see him again. He was brilliant from his first scene in the episode!

The group form a plan to hit the refinery (that specializes in refining rhydonium, which is incredibly volatile) in Morak in order to reach an internal Imperial terminal, which Mayfeld can use to attain the coordinates of Grogu’s whereabouts. Once Slave I reaches Morak, their plan is solid: Find a way inside, get the coordinates, then Boba Fett will extract them from the roof. There’s just one problem. Who will accompany Mayfeld inside?

Due to potential scanning, their options are limited. Cara Dune is New Republic. Fennec Shand is wanted. Boba Fett simply says, “they might recognize my face.” (A clone reference??)

In the end, Din is the only one who can go, though it does mean side-stepping the Mandalorian code to strip of his beskar and switch to stormtrooper armor.

To get the stormtrooper armor, the group hijack an Imperial juggernaut transporter. Mando and Mayfeld are quick to change, though the latter keeps the helmet off. Mando passes his beskar armor over to Cara, who promises to keep it safe.

The ride in the juggernaut starts off smooth, but the conversations between Mando and Mayfeld are stilted. Mando does not respond to anything Mayfeld says, until they pass some destroyed juggernauts. Mando assures him that as long as they keep steady, everything will be fine.

While driving through a small town, Mayfeld begins to prod at Din again. He talks about war in an introspective dialogue, saying that the town doesn’t really care about the good guys and bad guys. Everyone is simply an invader. The people victims in wars don’t necessarily have a choice. Mayfeld then says that Mando is just like him — a realist and a survivor. Mando breaks his silence to deny the accusation, but Mayfeld is quick to silence him again by asking him about the rules of the helmet. Did he already break them by getting into the stormtrooper armor?

Din Djarin’s silence is extremely telling. Over the season, we have seen Din struggling with what he truly believed was the Mandalorian creed. Ever since he met Bo-Katen and found that he was following a small religious cult-like sect, we’ve seen him slipping ever so slightly when it came to the creed. Just after meeting Bo-Katen, he revealed a bit of his face to Grogu when he lifted a part of his helmet to eat in his presence.

Mando doesn’t have a long time to reflect on Mayfeld’s words because pirates soon come after the juggernauts. One juggernaut ahead of them is destroyed. Soon after, another juggernaut is destroyed. The pirates come after them next. One tries to place the explosive on top of the rhydonium, but Mando stops him. What ensues is a classic epic top-of-the-train battle (except with a juggernaut) as the pirates conveniently board the rooftop one ship at a time, even though there are three nearby. Like any gentlemanly pirate horde. Mando displays some great fighting skills, even without the presence of his typical beskar armor to help him.

When Mando is just about out of energy, the Imperials come strike down the pirates. I think that’s probably the most happy I’ve ever been to see some stormtroopers, and I have a feeling that Din Djarin is feeling the same way. Mayfeld certainly voiced it.

Mando and Mayfeld are welcomed into the base with cheers and celebrations, as they are the only juggernaut to make it to the refinery that day. It’s almost jarring to remember that the stormtroopers are people too — that they mourn their fallen comrades and rejoice at unlikely victories. Mayfeld and Mando pay little mind to the celebrations as they attempt to locate the Imperial network terminal to hack. It leads them to the mess hall, where Valin Ness is eating his lunch. As Mayfeld sees his ex-superior, he laments that he is not able to get to the terminal. Chances are, he’ll be recognized and their mission would be compromised.

Din Djarin makes the heavy decision to be the one to go in. Mayfeld is quick to counter that he would have to show his face to gain access to the network, but this doesn’t seem to rattle Din. He asks for the data stick anyway.

It’s a true testament to how much Din cares for Grogu and how far he is willing to go to get him back when he reaches the terminal and removes his helmet — breaking a rule of the Mandalorian creed that he swore to never break.

It’s also a true testament to Pedro Pascal’s phenomenal acting. The Mandalorian has never had to worry about his facial expressions before, and you can see the gears turning in Din’s head about how to react and keep his expression neutral as he talks to Valin Ness, and is sequentially saved by Mayfeld. At the exact same time, it’s clear how uncomfortable Din truly is. I honestly felt bad watching. It felt wrong prying into this private moment for him, showing his face. Even when seeing screenshots of the scene, I briefly have a moment of thinking, “We should respect his wishes!” before realizing he’s a fictional character.

This scene and the next make for some of the best scenes I’ve ever had the pleasure to watch on The Mandalorian.

The next involves Din and Mayfeld sharing a drink with Valin Ness. Once again, we truly can feel Din’s vulnerabilities with his mask off. He hesitates with all his eye movements, not wanting to look at anyone. He struggles to speak. He relies on Mayfeld to do the talking, which, of course, doesn’t go well, but not in the way we’d expect.

As Valin Ness praises the Empire and all their deeds, Mayfeld begins to make short quips about Operation Cinder. Mayfeld explains that he was a part of it on Burnin Konn; it is implied that this is what convinced him to turn his back on the Empire and go his own way. Valin Ness shows little sympathy for all the people who died due to Operation Cinder — Rebel and Imperial and civilian alike. Unable to stand it anymore, Mayfeld shoots Valin Ness with his blaster, gaining a small cheer out of me, despite the consequential mess.

Din and Mayfeld quickly eliminate all the witnesses in the mess hall. Mayfeld then hands over a helmet to Din and says, “I never saw your face.”

They exit through the window as they continue to fight their way to the extraction area. Fennec Shand and Cara Dune assist them from the ridge outside of the refinery and let Boba Fett know that it’s time for the extraction. When Mando and Mayfeld are safe aboard Slave I, the latter requests a rifle and aims at the rhydonium, causing a large explosion that rattles the entire base.

Then, I get to gloriously relive my childhood as Boba Fett releases a seismic charge to destroy the pursuing TIE fighters.

On the ground, both Cara Dune and Mando lament about how unfortunate it is that Mayfeld perished in the refinery explosion. Mayfeld — who, of course, is not beside them, because he is dead, since that refinery exploded — gets the hint and skedaddles.

In the final scene of the episode, we switch over to the Moff Gideon’s Imperial ship. A comms officer informs Gideon that there is a new transmission. The transmission is of the Mandalorian using Gideon’s previous words against him, with a few important changes. Grogu is a “he” (not an “it”), and not a possession (“will be back with me” versus “will be mine”).

Oh, yeah. Mando’s coming for his kid. And he will stop at nothing to get him back — even if it means betraying his sacred Mandalorian creed.

Season finale, anyone?

What did you think of the episode? Did you also mourn Mayfeld? Leave a comment below!

The Mandalorian releases new episodes on Disney+ every Friday. Be sure to catch my reviews the following Sunday!

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