Another new Star Wars series, another episodic follow-up post. The Andor series premiere consists of three episodes and I, briefly, considered doing separate posts for each of them. However, since all three came out the same day I feel like I can keep them consolidated into one post.
I am going to quickly remind you where in the timeline Andor takes place. Season one will start 5 years before the events of Rogue One (aka BBY 5) and about 5 years after the end of Kenobi (“season one”). I don’t know if that second part is going to mean much to the story, but it at least establishes what events have (or have not) happened. Let’s get started.
The following contains spoilers for Andor Episodes 1, 2 & 3
All episodes are directed by Toby Haynes who has directed episodes of Sherlock and Doctor Who. I’m also going to write an overall recap as opposed to individual episode recap.
Cassian Andor is trying to find out more about his past, including the whereabouts of his sister. After an altercation with some Pre-Mor guards, Cassian now must find a way off of Ferrix before the authorities find him. He has some Empire technology to hawk which should earn him enough credits to leave the planet. His friend, Bix, knows a buyer but can Cassian complete the deal before they find him?
A Few Observations
There isn’t a single Stormtrooper, Imperial officer, Jedi or reference to the Force in all three episodes. So when Tony Gilroy says there will be no “fan service”, he absolutely means it. I tried to watch all the background and foreground characters, vessels and objects as close as I could. I did not see a single thing that really stood out as an Easter egg. I do not expect this to change.
In the junkyard/spaceport I saw, what appears to be, a T-47 airspeeder which becomes the snowspeeder in Empire Strikes Back. In the same junkyard I saw, possibly, a cockpit for a Y-Wing.
In one of the flashback sequences, when Kassa and the other Kenari kids are inspecting the crashed ship, the symbol on the uniforms is that of the Separatists Alliance. Tony Gilroy said there would be no “fan service” so my guess, this was added to establish a timeline of events. Which means Cassian is six during the Clone Wars.
Yes, the hounds that we see do look a bit like the Corellian hounds we see in the Solo movie but that’s not really an Easter egg. The closest thing that I came up with is the cane Luthen Rael (Stellan Skarsgård) uses. It looks a little bit like he’s using a lightsaber hilt attached to a long pole.
I’m pretty sure it’s not actually a lightsaber hilt but it does make me think of the late Peter Mayhew (RIP). He required a cane to walk around (I witnessed this myself at the 2003 Star Wars Celebration). He had a cane made in the fashion of a lightsaber. This could be an homage to him though I have not found anything to substantiates that.
After watching each episode multiple times I’ve come to the conclusion that this looks like Star Wars but doesn’t necessarily feel like Star Wars. This is not a bad thing. Actually it’s refreshing to have something that is completely different. Again, this is something Tony Gilroy mentions during interviews leading up to the series premiere.
The music supervisor on this series is Nicholas Britell and, so far, he’s doing an amazing job. There is this intensity that is building, especially in the second episode and the music facilitates that so well. I’ve already hit Spotify to look for the music (FYI, there isn’t much there yet).
Bix and Basso are two of my favorite side characters from these episodes. They are Cassian’s friends and their loyalty and trust are their most endearing qualities. It’s amazing how willing they are to help Cassian despite knowing nothing about what he’s mixed up in. I hope we get to see both of them become Rebels.
What I Don’t Expect To See
As I mentioned earlier, we don’t see any Stormtroopers or Imperial Officers, but that will change (as we saw in the trailers). There is no visual evidence or mention of Jedi or the Force and I do not expect to see that. The Jedi are not involved with the creation of the Rebellion. It’s all activists and senators who have had enough of the Empire’s threats.
Also, still no Clone Wars flashbacks … and THERE WON’T BE!!
New episodes of Andor are on Disney+ every Wednesday.