Rant: “Andor” S1 (2022)

Faye Marsay as ‘Vel Sartha’ in “Andor” S1 (2022)

The first season of the Star Wars: Rogue One (2016) prequel series Andor came to a chaotic/violent end this week, with various characters and factions converging/clashing at a riotous funeral. I wasn’t expecting much from this show initially, but it proved to be a very enjoyable and engaging spy-fi thriller, with a vaguely Kubrick-ian sense of humour, and plenty call-backs/forwards to other entries in the franchise. Diego Luna absolutely rocked the title role of selfish-rogue-turned-Rebel-spy, but he was ably supported (and occasionally overshadowed) by a stellar cast, including: Genevieve O’Reilly as sympathetic Imperial Senator ‘Mon Mothma’ (reprising/expanding her role from Revenge of the Sith (2005)), Fiona Shaw as the hero’s daring adoptive mother, Faye Marsay as the ostensive leader of a felonious Rebel cell, Andy Serkis as a gruff prison “floor manager”, and Forest Whitaker as the increasingly unstable (scene-stealing) ‘Saw Gerrera’.

Apparently viewing-figures were pretty low compared to swashbuckling space-western The Mandalorian, but that isn’t really surprising, considering how much “darker” and “slower” this series was by design. I don’t think that’s a bad thing… a wider variety of styles, tones, and sub-genres should strengthen the franchise overall, and I for one appreciated this gritty “ground-level” view of the Empire’s rise, and look forward to the second season.

Meanwhile, my appreciation for the themes/imagery that recurred throughout the series has been greatly enhanced by the weekly reviews/breakdowns posted by Star Wars Explained (link) and New Rockstars (link).

P.S. You also have to give them credit for introducing an upfront LGBTQ couple who can’t be edited out of the show… even if their relationship had to be sacrificed (paused?) for the cause…

About Dee CrowSeer

A comic-book writer with an interest in philosophy, equality, and diversity. He/him.
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