The first live-action Star Wars series, The Mandalorian, premiered on Disney+ last November. As the arrival of the highly anticipated second season is rapidly approaching, we’re reflecting back on the eight epic episodes that started it all and captivated audiences from all over the world.
The Mandalorian follows a mysterious lone bounty hunter named Din Djarin, who traverses the outer reaches of a post-Empire galaxy. Throughout the course of season 1, Din acquires a bounty that turns into more of a sidekick, properly known as the Child but cheekily referred to by fans as Baby Yoda. Beyond the compelling characters and the adventurous plots, the show also boasts beautiful cinematography throughout.
With Jon Favreau and a team full of dedicated Star Wars alumni at the helm, The Mandalorian has been praised for its ability to capture and immerse audiences into a brand new story that — at its core — both looks and feels so authentically Star Wars. As discussed at length in the behind-the-scenes docuseries Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian, there’s also an impressive array of technology that helps bring the magic of the show to life.
We’ve compiled some of our favorite shots from season 1, which range from quite aesthetically pleasing to downright epic.
“Chapter 1: The Mandalorian” — The Creation of the Child
After the audience collectively gasped as we all laid eyes upon the unthinkably adorable Child for the very first time, and once Din neutralized IG-11, the camera panned out to show this simple yet beautiful shot of the bounty hunter and his bounty reaching out toward one another. The dim lighting and dust floating in the doorway, along with the framing of Din and the Child’s pram, create a truly memorable image.
“Chapter 2: The Child” — Mudhorn vs the Force
We were finally given some insight into what secrets and powers the Child may hold when it displayed an impressive use of the Force while helping to save Din from the vicious mudhorn. The tight framing on the Child’s hand as it reached out served as a reminder of how much power can be found in small, unassuming places, as composer Ludwig Göransson’s score played on in the background.
“Chapter 3: The Sin” — An Epically Mandalorian Battle Entrance
Just when it seemed as if Din’s luck may have finally run out when he found himself cornered while trying to escape with the Child, warriors from the secret Mandalorian enclave came to his rescue with a grand entrance via jetpacks. Outside of the visual appeal of the scene, it also held a heavy emotional weight, because the Mandalorians had left their hiding place and revealed themselves for the sake of saving one of their own.
“Chapter 4: Sanctuary” — The Nighttime Attack
The village that Din took temporary refuge in was set in the middle of a clearing, which the film crew took full advantage of when shooting and framing the battle. The AT-ST’s nighttime approach on the village was ominous, as the front hatches glowed like threatening red eyes in the darkness. As it stood at the threshold, waiting to attack, fog seeped out from the trees as the village’s torches burned on.
“Chapter 6: The Prisoner” — The Predator Stalks His Prey
Din’s surprise attack on Mayfeld on the prison ship is arguably one of the most visually appealing and downright coolest scenes from the entire first season. His stealthy approach is punctuated by the flickering lights in the hallway of the ship, getting closer and closer with each flash while a nervous Mayfeld is bathed in red.
“Chapter 8: Redemption” — Tiny Hands, Big Flames
In the final episode of the season, the Child taps into its powers once more to help protect Din, Cara Dune, and Greef Karga from the explosion of flames threatening to engulf them all. Tiny hands raised in the air and a face deep in thought, it sends the barrage of heat flying back out the doorway. The reflection of the fire in Din’s helmet was also an excellent touch.
What are your favorite shots from season 1? Let us know in the comments!
Season 2 of The Mandalorian will begin streaming on Disney+ on October 30.