‘The Mandalorian’ Goes for Slasher Horror in “The Prisoner”

Low on cash and gas, the Mandalorian and little Baby Yoda take a job with a team of mercenaries to free a prisoner from a New Republic prisoner transport, but this scroungy squad of rough and sleazy scum aren’t the best company to raise a kid with.

We’ve seen the Mandalorian take on the story tropes of old westerns, samurai films, and the like and this week, it unexpectedly goes from a heist movie to a straight up slasher film with Mando as Jason Vorhees, picking off his victims one by one.

I wouldn’t say that this episode is tense or really that inventive because, honestly, it was so obvious that Mando was going to be double crossed that every mercenary should have had that fact monogrammed on jackets. While the first thirty minutes or so had some very nice moments of action, most of it was decidedly average.

The episode really took off when Mando came after the other mercenaries. It was fun and, as I said, the fact that Mando is basically just a guy in armor… a vulnerable guy in armor who, sometimes, gets outmatched, gave the scenes with Clancy Brown’s tough guy character a little extra weight and intensity. How Clancy Brown was alive at the end is a complete and total mystery considering how he was taken out… dude should have been cat food.

Mando taking out the other mercenaries like a horror movie slasher was where the episode became stupid fun. None of it made sense, the physics didn’t make sense… Mando magically teleporting from place to place to take out his victims really didn’t make sense, but they were fun. Big stupid fun.

The resolution was a lot of fun too. To see Mando basically fulfill his code while delivering some well earned comeuppance was a great way to end an episode.

It was mostly filler that didn’t go anywhere and, yes, most of it was ordinary and formulaic, but the ending was a lot of fun and that’s got to count for something.

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