'The Book of Boba Fett' Is a Spaceship on Autopilot Created by Jon Favreau
Starring Temuera Morrison, Ming-Na Wen
Published Dec 29, 2021Star Wars has settled into a nice groove on Disney+, with The Mandalorian offering low-stakes charm that is less ambitious than recent movies but far more satisfying. The Book of Boba Fett continues the trend — although it's still looking for the hook that can set it apart from other Star Wars instalments.
Much of the show's first episode, "A Stranger in a Strange Land," is pure fan service. (No further episodes were offered to critics.) In flashbacks, the episode solves the mystery of how bounty hunter Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison) escaped the sarlacc pit, before showing how he was then taken captive by Tusken Raiders. In flashes forward, Fett has taken over Jabba the Hutt's criminal empire on Tatooine, and he and Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) attempt to rule with less cruelty than their predecessor.
With so many references to OG Star Wars — there's even a cantina-style band — it leans heavily on nostalgia. The best moments, however, hint at something new: there's a decently cool sand monster and an excellent rooftop chase scene, meaning that the episode ends much more excitingly than it starts out.
With dusty landscapes akin to a classic Western, a score that combines orchestral bombast with folk elements, and a credits sequence showing painted concept art, The Book of Boba Fett's opening episode strongly resembles The Mandalorian. And like The Mandalorian, it was created and written by Jon Favreau, with returning contributor Robert Rodriguez back in the director's chair.
Unlike The Mandalorian, however, The Book of Boba Fett doesn't have a great hook like Baby Yoda — or anything else to take his place. (There aren't even any notable cameos, like when Amy Sedaris and Werner Herzog made surprising appearances in The Mandalorian.) That leaves a perfectly watchable, decently entertaining show without a whole lot to distinguish it from the rest of the Star Wars universe. This spaceship feels a bit like it's on autopilot.
There are still six more episodes for The Book of Boba Fett to find that special something to set it apart from other Star Wars instalments. So far, it looks like a fun and forgettable romp through the sands of Tatooine. (Disney)