HomeEntertainmentAndor review: “Star Wars’ most adult show”

Andor review: “Star Wars’ most adult show”

With the emergence of Disney’s own streaming service in Disney +, the once distant possibility of having a live-action Star Wars TV show has become a reality. First came The Mandalorian, a solid entry into the ever expanding Star Wars universe that while being slightly overrated by die-hard fans, is a welcome addition to the small screen, still possessing the fun, large-scale storytelling and world-building that we’ve come to expect from this franchise. 

Next came The Book of Boba Fett, a disappointment in the eyes of many with a plodding narrative that seemed to care more for the other helmeted hero even side-lining the titular character for a couple episodes to effectively become The Mandalorian Season 2.5. 

Then fans were treated to the eagerly anticipated Obi –Wan Kenobi, the return of fan favourite Ewan Mcgregor as the famous dishevelled Jedi as we learn of his time hidden from the Empire between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. While Kenobi was definitely closer in quality to The Mandalorian than The Book of Boba Fett, it still had its shortcomings. Mainly in the form of an annoying young princess Leia character that threatened to bring the show’s quality down a notch, and a few episodes that only served as filler (a recurring negative of most of these spin-offs).

We now arrive at the latest, and possibly the best, Star Wars live-action spin-off show to come out of the Disney acquisition, Andor. Serving as a prequel to the other prequel that is Rogue One (arguably the best of the recent Star Wars films!), Andor Is a boots-on-the-ground, low-level espionage thriller set to the huge backdrop of Star Wars with a surprisingly gritty/adult sensibility to it. In some ways, Andor could be compared to shows such as Game of Thrones. While GOT is far more adult in tone than Andor, both similarly deal with more dark, gritty and realistic themes/scenarios in a heightened fantasy/sci-fi setting. 

Andor tv show

Series creator Tony Gilroy (known for his work on films such as The Bourne Trilogy, Nightcrawler and of course Rogue One) has managed to tell a grounded story in the Star Wars galaxy that feels like a far cry from anything we’ve seen in this franchise before. You won’t find pointless call-backs and ‘remember this!’ Easter eggs here, instead Andor deals with the seeds of rebellion and how small acts of heroism and activism can slowly but surely help to bring an end to the oppressive rule of the Empire.

Never has the Empire been so threatening than in Andor! Gone are the ‘couldn’t hit a barn door’ storm troopers, making way for smart, authoritative and ruthless Imperial officers who will stop at nothing to eliminate any resistance – which is refreshing to see, offering real stakes. Gilroy brings his gritty filmmaking style to this spin-off brilliantly, showing the day-to-day lives of every day Star Wars citizens and how they deal with the tyrannical fascism of the Empire.

Andor separates most of its main story arcs into three episodes. The stand out being a fantastic series of episodes based in an Imperial prison where inmates must tirelessly work to create unknown parts for the Empire and begin to unravel a conspiracy within the system that’s keeping them there. It’s the high point of the series and showcases everything that’s great about this show, including a nice cameo part for Andy Serkis (in the flesh!). On that note, I loved that the show cast so many British actors in key roles that I was able to recognize from smaller parts on other productions, a nice touch! 

Overall, while many Star Wars fans may like the constant obvious nods and more whimsical approach to a galaxy far far away, Andor offers something new and exciting to the Star Wars canon that personally, satisfied all my needs for a show like this. You won’t find Jedi, the Force or plot contrivances here, instead strap yourself in for a gritty, dark, slow burn of a series that really explores the beginning of the rebellion and acts as a perfect prequel to the franchise we all know and love.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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