'Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian' Season 1 Episode 2 glosses over 'Star Wars' history it would like to forget
While the episode does a great job in illustrating why 'Star Wars' is so important to generations of fans, it misses out on how much the franchise has learned from its mistakes
'Star Wars' has left an incalculable mark on generations of movie-watchers and broke ground that deserves all the recognition it can get. 'Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian' has so far been more of an exploration of the 'Star Wars' legacy than it has been of 'The Mandalorian' itself.
By the second episode, the unceasing worship of all that came before doesn't feel disingenuous, but it does feel like an important chunk of the story is being left out.
'Star Wars' has, possibly, one of the most vocal fandoms in cinematic history — and a lot of those voices have not been happy with the choices that 'Star Wars' has made.
That's not to take away from all the brilliant work that has been done on this movie, but going as far back as the original trilogy and its inclusion of the Ewoks, for example, to ignore those voices is to ignore a large part of the fandom that's made 'Star Wars' what it is today.
The episode talks about the many breakthroughs that 'Star Wars' made when it first came out, with a roundtable that includes the people involved with the more technical aspects of 'The Mandalorian.'
The current president of Lucasfilm, Kathleen Kennedy, points out that she learned that George Lucas filed a whopping 126 patents for the 'Star Wars' films, just for the new technology that was created to make the film work.
The focus of the episode brings out the groundbreaking work that was done on 'Star Wars', with members of the cast and crew sharing their own personal stories of what the films meant to them — a continuation of last week's episode, where the directors did much of the same.
It all culminates in a long explanation from Dave Filoni about how the lightsaber duel in 'The Phantom Menace' had themes that resonated all the way up to 'Return of the Jedi' — themes of fatherhood, family, and above all else, hope.
He retold one of his favorite scenes from 'The Empire Strikes Back' and it is undeniable how powerful the effect that scene has had on him. There's something about all of the constant praise, devoid of the slightest criticism or even the acknowledgment of the series' failings that rings untrue.
It makes 'Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian' feel more like a 'Star Wars' puff piece than a documentary. We're not asking for the show to take a deep dive into everything the franchise has ever gotten wrong, but the success of shows like 'The Mandalorian' and 'The Clone Wars' — both 'Star Wars' properties that have some of the highest praise amongst fans since the original trilogy — came from learning from the mistakes the franchise has made.
Ignoring those mistakes cuts out a very important chunk of the 'Star Wars' legacy, and to not see it included feels a little hollow.
The episode does a great job of showing why 'Star Wars' is so important not just as a film, but as a mythology that has impacted several generations of fans. It's very much focused on only the good, however, and when there has been so much that's gone wrong, you can't help but watch and feel like something important is missing.
The next episode of 'Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian' airs on May 15 on Disney+.