Star Wars

Mandalorian Season 3 Finale Fixes the Biggest Disappointment of Season 2

Finally, a fight worth watching.


The Mandalorian has completed three seasons, which means it’s saddled with the responsibility to not only help other Star Wars media get off the ground, but to also innovate and keep itself fresh. That’s especially true of the series’ combat scenes, which can be difficult to continually reinvent given that most of our heroes wear borderline invincible magic space armor. But in the Season 3 finale, one of the most popular fighting tropes in recent memory was reworked in a fun and logical way.

One of the most famous fight scenes in movie history is the hallway fight in Park Chan-Wook’s action film Oldboy. Using precise choreography and a single long shot, our hero faces off against a whole crowd of enemies in a brutal, exhausting battle.

This fight works because of its claustrophobia. The thin corridor setting means only one enemy can really approach at once; an element many of its modern homages and ripoffs forget about, forcing enemy characters to unrealistically mill about while they wait for their turn to take a swing at the hero.

The Mandalorian Season 3 finale takes this trope and forces it into believability. Its hallway fight takes place in a corridor with multiple laser gates, similar to the setting for Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon’s duel with Darth Maul. To prevent the Dark Troopers from standing around in the background waiting to be fought by Din Djarin, the scene forces them apart by delineating the sequence into stages. As Din defeats his enemies, he asks R5 to open the next gate, allowing him to take on the entire squadron of Dark Troopers in convenient bite-size chunks.

Moff Gideon walks down the hallway Mando will have to fight through later in the episode.


Not only does this make the fight seem more manageable and realistic, it also makes it look more challenging. The Season 2 finale actually had a hallway fight too, in which Luke made his big entrance by cruising down the corridor as he slaughtered Dark Troopers left and right. It was exciting to see Luke, but as a battle, it wasn’t fair or interesting.

But Mando struggles to take on even two Dark Troopers at a time. He grasps for blasters that are just out of reach, he panics and tries any tactic he can think of... he’s fighting, not gunning down mooks like he’s playing laser tag. That’s what made the Oldboy scene great: it never feels choreographed, which is proof of good choreography. And it never feels rigged in favor of our hero, which makes it compelling to watch. The Mandalorian learned these lessons and applied them to the Star Wars universe, giving Mando a much-needed challenge.

The Mandalorian Season 3 is now streaming on Disney+.

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