Fennec Shand is living the Disney+ dream. Played by Ming-Na Wen, the character went from a one-off Mandalorian role to a spinoff series regular — plus a cameo appearance in the animated Star Wars series The Bad Batch. But when the time finally came for The Book of Boba Fett to give Shand her big moment in Episode 4, the show failed miserably.
What happened? Here’s why Boba Fett was foiled by its own format.
The Book of Boba Fett Episode 4 was supposed to be Fennec Shand’s episode, but it didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know. Boba discovers Fennec left for dead, gets her patched up, and then she joins his cause. We already knew all that, so seeing it in action didn’t add much.
Even beyond Fennec’s dicey recovery, the episode lacked suspense of any kind. When Fennec and Boba dive headfirst into the Sarlacc, you know they’re going to survive because we see them in the future.
However, there was one way the show could have fixed this mistake: through a different perspective. Yes, the series is called The Book of Boba Fett, but that doesn’t mean the entire book needs to be told from one character’s point of view.
With Fett’s flashbacks presumably wrapped up, why not switch the perspective to someone else? Like, say, an assassin who learns to rely on and care for an ex-bounty hunter who saved her life.
The Book of Boba Fett has relied heavily on flashbacks, but those flashbacks typically answer questions. How did Boba survive the Sarlacc? How did he live for years on Tatooine? Where did he get that Gaffi Stick?
In Episode 4, a large portion of the action was dedicated to Fennec’s character — but not her perspective. Instead of just recapping the events of her rescue, we could have seen her waking up on the modding table and realizing she owes her life to this stranger.
This problem extends beyond Boba Fett. All of the Star Wars shows already on Disney+ or coming soon are focused on single characters, whether that’s Din Djarin, Boba Fett, Ahsoka Tano, Obi-Wan Kenobi, or Cassian Andor.
While The Mandalorian has been able to mix things up by jumping between genres and settings, the story is still primarily told from Mando’s perspective. And it seems safe to assume that tradition will continue beyond Boba Fett and into these other new series.
If the only way to tell your own story is with an entire Star Wars spin-off, fans are going to miss out on a lot of unique and interesting perspectives. Hopefully, Boba Fett Episode 4 is a low-point both for the show and the entire Mando-verse, but if Star Wars can’t figure out a way to tell the story of a badass assassin like Fennec Shand, it might be time to rethink the franchise’s entire Disney+ strategy.
The Book of Boba Fett is now streaming on Disney+.