***Warning: Spoilers for the first three episodes of Andor ahead.***
The first three episodes of Andor are now available to stream on Disney+ and we highly recommend putting the time aside to watch them back-to-back. They play like a movie – a fantastic, intense, and intriguing movie. It makes sense that these three were released together because they really do tell a cohesive story and set up for what is sure to be an action-packed and captivating series.
Andor tells the backstory of Rogue One fan favorite, Cassian Andor (Diego Luna). Who was this man before he was a hero of the Rebellion, and how did he come to be that hero? This series is going to be just two seasons, with a total of twenty-four episodes. Going into it knowing there will be a finite end has helped the series in multiple ways, while also adding in some challenges.
This show needs to plan things out in a way that keeps audiences interested, even though they know how things will eventually end. But having the exact number of episodes in advance helps greatly with the pacing, as the team knows how much time they have to tell the full story.
In the Past
During flashbacks throughout the first three episodes, viewers learn a lot about Cassian’s past. We see him as a young boy living in a tribe of children who were left alone on that mining planet. When they witness an Imperial ship crash, they run after it to see if they can discover any supplies that would be useful. Unfortunately for them not all the crew onboard the ship died in the crash, and there is a bit of a scuffle. One of their own is injured and eventually, Cassian finds his way onto the ship.
He left his younger sister, letting her know that he would be back, but he never returned. This is because he is found by a woman named Marva (Fiona Shaw) and her sassy droid, B2EMO. The two couldn’t understand each other at the time, but it is clear that they bonded because she is a mother figure to him in the present. Cassian has likely been searching for his sister for a long time and is feeling guilty for leaving her behind.
The first episode of Andor starts out with him looking for his sister in a brothel. It is here we learn that he is not from Fest, which we were led to believe in Rogue One, but rather somewhere else. Not many know his true origin planet, but the fact that he trusted his friend Bix Caleen (Adria Arjona) with this knowledge comes back to bite him when her lover (who is quite jealous of her relationship with Cassian) turns him in for a couple of murders.
He is guilty; however, the Inspectors are the ones who harassed him for credits. The first death was an accident. The second was completely intentional, though. After this Cassian knows his time is limited. He tries to cover his tracks, but Deputy Inspector Syril Karn (Kyle Soller) refuses to let the murders go, even though his boss orders him to. The Inspectors were out at a brothel, where they shouldn’t be and that they shouldn’t be able to afford, drinking while on the clock. It is best to leave it alone. Karn presses forward, which is when Bix’s lover sees a bulletin and promptly sells Cassian out.
Bix is not a fan of this at all, and while she tries to defend Cassian Andor as best as she can, she ends up handcuffed by Inspectors. Her lover, the one who ratted out her friend, is shot and killed in front of her. This comes as somewhat of a shock as this was expected to be an ongoing back and forth between the men, but his death was deserved so we aren’t mad at it.
Time to Move
In order to get off the planet, knowing that the Imperial Guard will eventually catch up to him, Cassian decides it is time to sell something valuable he has been holding on to until the right time had come. Bix puts him in touch with Luthen Rael (Stellan Skarsgård), who Andor thinks is a buyer for the item, but it turns out he is so much more than that. Rael is part of the Rebellion, and he wants Cassian to join him.
The two end up cornered by Deputy Inspector Karn and his men while they are in a warehouse, and this is where the biggest action sequence yet takes place. The townspeople want to warn Cassian and distract the guards, so they start to bang on metal with metal. This makes loud and powerful sounds, and it eventually lets Andor and Rael get the upper hand. After an epic explosion, the two make it off the planet, and just like that Cassian Andor is introduced to the Rebellion.
Andor kicks off with three fantastic episodes that play out like a movie. There is action, heart, and a great setup for what is to come later in the series. The writing is brilliant, and the set and costume design are perfect. This is peak Star Wars and fans will be very thrilled with how it all turned out. Whenever you are dealing with a prequel, there is a chance it will not be interesting enough to make people care about how their favorite characters got to where we all know they will end up – but Andor pulls this off, seemingly with ease.
Rating: 9/10 SPECS
This post was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
Tessa Smith owns MamasGeeky.com and is a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer-approved Film and TV Critic and a huge geek. Tessa has been in the Entertainment writing business for almost ten years and is a member of several Critics associations including the Critics Choice Association and the Greater Western New York Film Critics Association. She grew up watching movies, playing video games, and reading comic books -- and still loves all of those things. She proudly lets her geek flag fly and spreads the word that there is nothing wrong with being a geek.