by @holocronGeorge and @holocronJosh
WARNING: This review contains spoilers for The Book of Boba Fett – Chapter 7
After a few episodes stepping away from the spotlight, Boba Fett returns centerstage (mostly) for an action-packed finale of The Book of Boba Fett. Chapter 7 follows Boba and his assembled syndicate as they have a final showdown with the Pykes in Mos Espa.
The bold decision to relegate Boba Fett to a side character, at best, in the last two episodes in favor of a continuation of The Mandalorian’s central plot meant that, heading into Chapter 7, it felt like a while since we’d caught up with Boba. Indeed, amidst the myriad of flashbacks that dominated the first half of the show and the focus on Din and Grogu in Chapters 5 and 6, Boba’s return to the spotlight was refreshing and also slightly jarring. Just when the series was gaining momentum in its narrative following Boba’s fight with the Pykes, the series pivoted away toward two absolutely brilliant, but ultimately rather unrelated installments. Thankfully, Chapter 7 shifts the focus back to Boba in order to provide closure to the series’ core plot.
Chapter 7 plays out like a sprawling action set-piece one would come to expect from a classic Western film. The underdogs are fewer in numbers and resources, but most hold their ground against the powerful and villainous invaders. Director Robert Rodriguez harkens back to his work on The Mandalorian by crafting a series of captivating action sequences in this episode. Rodriguez knows how to make his characters look and feel badass, and we definitely see this realized with Boba, Cad Bane, Din, Fennec, and various others in Chapter 7. The episode maintains a level of tension throughout, which is a compliment considering the finale plays out in a largely predictable manner. We know Din will escape and live another day. The same can be said for Boba and probably Fennec. But, Rodriguez manages to capture some incredible suspense and intensity in the narrow streets of Mos Espa. This isn’t a sprawling final battle like one would see in The Rise of Skywalker with the Battle of Exegol. The battlefield here is much tighter and intimate, and further lends itself to the Western film comparisons.
Amidst the action, the finale delivers plenty of truly satisfying moments. The interactions between Boba and Cad Bane were long-awaited, especially after their deadly duel was cut from The Clone Wars following its cancellation. It’s clear that these two characters have a rich history, and those who know this history will enjoy Boba and Bane’s scenes even more. Cad Bane is a menacing figure in live-action, as he is in animation, which is why it was a shame to see him die after only two brief appearances. That being said, seeing Boba use his Tusken weapon to deal the fatal blow brought the plot of the show full circle.
Speaking of satisfying moments, Grogu plays an unexpectedly major role in Chapter 7. Grogu’s reunion with Din was sweet and touching, and his use of the Force to subdue the Rancor was so cute. It seems somewhat unusual that season 2 of The Mandalorian ends with the dramatic departure of these two characters, only to see them be reunited fairly shortly after before we even get to The Mandalorian season 3. Does it undermine some of the emotional weight of The Mandalorian’s second season finale? Possibly. But, we all want to see Grogu and his dad together again and knew it would happen eventually.
Before Cad Bane’s death, the bounty hunter and Boba briefly discuss Boba’s reputation as a cold-blooded killer and his motivation for cleaning up his act to rule and protect Mos Espa. Ultimately, The Book of Boba Fett didn’t do a great job conveying the audience why Boba was so motivated to change his ways like this. The Boba we know is ruthless, seen in various comics and the original trilogy, as a formidable threat. The flashbacks offer some insight into Boba’s emotional side and the trauma he experienced in losing his Tusken family. But it’s quite a leap to go from losing his Tusken family to wanting to take Jabba’s position as daimyo of Mos Espa. Chapter 7 could have explored Boba’s motivations a little more explicitly, but, ultimately, it was probably too late in the run of the series to do so.
Unlike The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett doesn’t conclude on a big twist or reveal. There’s no moment like Gideon wielding the dark saber or Luke showing up to save the day that brings the series to an epic conclusion. Usually, this would be a harsh criticism to throw at the show, but The Book of Boba Fett definitely felt like it was missing some incredible twist or spin on its main plot. The Pykes are very disposable as the bad guys, which made us think that a reveal of someone pulling the strings would come in Chapter 7. Without a reveal like that, The Book of Boba Fett’s finale ultimately felt a tad underwhelming.
The Book of Boba Fett caps off its season with a finale full of exciting action and satisfying moments. Boba’s return to the spotlight is welcomed, and director Robert Rodriguez excels in crafting a finale high in intensity and suspense. The finale falls somewhat flat with the resolution of the Pyke narrative and the absence of some twist or unexpected reveal. Nonetheless, Chapter 7 remains thoroughly enjoyable and has us eagerly awaiting the next appearances of these characters.
Images courtesy of Disney+ and Lucasfilm