Back when Star Wars was new and exciting (ahem!), a mysterious, helmeted baddy by the name of Boba Fett went up against the original heroes of the series and met a sticky end. ‘True’ fans, however (ie not me!), read all the comics and canon/non-canon tales from the saga and already knew that a sarlacc’s stomach was not the end. Which does explain how he turned up at the end of The Mandalorian.
The Book of Boba Fett picks up from that cameo-esque appearance and tells of Fett’s attempts to take over the territories formerly ruled by Jabba the Hutt. At the same time, it also goes on loooong flashbacks to tell us how Fett escaped certain death in the original movies, and what happened to him in between.
Oh, and while we’re mixing and matching, let’s also throw in whole episodes that belong to other series, be those recent televised ones or trying to thread together movies made 40ish years apart. All of which was interesting – arguably far more so that the main story – but just added to the sense of muddle and mishmash that I felt the series to be.
A lot of the problem is that poor old Boba was never meant to be a main character, not really. He was a fairly one-dimensional bad guy, who got to be cool because he was mysterious and low-key. Since the prequels, though, the character expansion has chipped that away, leading to this rather messy attempt to make him into a good guy. Oh but near death experiences and growing old, and blah blah – these things will change your priorities. But… but, nothing about the change really rings true. Boba Fett teaming up with his kidnappers? Why??
I did read an interesting article suggesting that Boba is still a baddy, and if you view the series through that lens it makes more sense. He’s still selfish, totally ill-suited to the new role he suddenly decides to pursue, and he stomps through trying to make it happen in rather a blunt way. He thinks he’s the hero, for sure, but wouldn’t it be more interesting with the opposite perspective? Alas, you’ll have to set that up mostly in your own head.
All of which is a lot of complaining, and to be fair the whole thing was watchable enough – just, disappointing overall. It suffers majorly from following after the rather excellent Mandalorian, and perhaps thought bringing him – and other fan favourite characters (many of whom will go over a more casual viewer’s head) – into the show would make fans like it more. Alas, they just make the rest seem duller.
Overall: such a shame it just wasn’t particularly good.
First broadcast: December 2021
Episodes: 7 @ ~38 mins each
My rating: 5/10