1. Nick says:

    As a Lutheran, The Mandalorian’s “fundamentalism” was quite the emotional roller coaster.

    I never mistook him for a Christian, but his strong community and call-and-response liturgy resonated with my own tradition. That the moon of Mandalore shared a name with the church’s publishing house and the small Missouri town around which my family’s tradition grew certainly enhanced the connection. It was exhilarating to see him stand firm against scoffers and excel not just in spite of his traditions, but because of them.

    And then, on the back end, he’s gone from Sola Scriptura (Sola Via?) to a historical critical hermeneutic. Again, the character wasn’t supposed to be a Christian, and his progression was interesting and edifying in-universe, but insofar as I identified his tradition with mine, it was somewhat disheartening.

    The Way of the Mandalore not being a clean analog for a church made things more disappointing, in a way. It was one thing to latch on to an explicitly Christian character and then get taken for a ride when they gave up their faith, but here I had tempered my expectations and STILL been disappointed, in a way that made me perhaps rightly feel a bit stupid about caring in the first place.

    • Perhaps one of the challenges is the fact that Din Djarin’s arc is subtle and largely internal. There are probably reasons for that; I don’t know that most viewers would be interested in long debates between Din Djarin and Bo Katan about the nature of true Mandalorianism and how strictly they should follow the rules, even if I’d have been totally game for that! But as a result, we’re left to deduce the reasons for his arc through the few comments he gives, his body language (sans facial expressions), and his actions and to connect the pieces through that.

      I didn’t personally find his arc disappointing since I didn’t identify him with any particular tradition and just saw it as an interesting case study of a deconstructing fundamentalist that was more than I expected from a popcorn show, but I do understand why his arc (especially given its non-explained nature) may be disappointing to someone who did!

  2. In regards to Mando’s integration with Bo Katan, I saw an unspoken message hiding in the subtext. She called out his beliefs as being part of a group of zealots, while she herself acted as the zealous terrorist, who would restore Mandalore at any cost. Who is the Zealot, and who keeps the old faith? Fundamental, yes, but zealous for zeal sake? There is one thing higher than all others, the safety of the Foundlings. Exposure of the sect, self-sacrifice of the Smith, even allowing someone to continue to don armor that by all rights does not belong to them, if TI means protection of the Foundlings. I expect, as you said, these themes will continue to be explored in Season 3, and perhaps in Book of Boba Fett too. And I too look forward to it.

What say you?