The Book of Boba Fett dropped its second episode this week, named the Tribes of Tatooine. It’s an action-packed and metaphorical episode–a wonderous combo! There is so much to love with this episode, that it is difficult to know where to start. However, I think I will point out the comedy first, the action second, the world-building next, and the symbolism last.
The Book of Boba Fett steps up the Humor with “Like a Bantha” and that Clerk
In the present day of Boba Fett and Fennec Shand creating their new little Tatooine empire, they both must take their newly captured assassin to the Mayor, Mok Shaiz. The assassin hails from the Order of the Night Wind, and Fennec is only delighted to torture the hapless killer with the fear of Jabba’s rancors. But lucky for the killer, “It’s empty!”
However, one of the best bits of comedy is the unnamed clerk of the Mos Espa City Hall. The man reminds my mother so much of every fast food manager working the morning shift, that I created this meme image on her behalf.
The clerk doesn’t particularly care who Boba Fett is, and his entire demeanor is delightful and hilarious.
However, the key humor moment in the Book of Boba Fett is the one with the greatest meme factor: “Like a bantha!”
Boba Fett is both joyful and enthusiastic against the curious, yet opaque, Tuskens. It’s delightful seeing Boba simply enjoying himself and that joy is infectious. Yet, just as funny, it’s a moment that has it’s (few) detractors. If you were some one that fan-canoned a joyless, serious Boba Fett that never cracked a smile, this was a nightmarish moment.
However, most fans, this reviewer included, enjoyed seeing the continued lighter side of Boba Fett. And it’s not as if Boba Fett was eternally stoic to start with. The re-issue of Return of the Jedi gave fans a new scene of a Boba Fett playfully chucking a dancer on the chin.
Book of Boba Fett episode 2 had top notch action
Boba Fett episode 2 has one of the best action sequences of any Star Wars film or television series. The train sequence is reminiscent of classic Westerns such as 3:10 to Yuma. By far, my new favorite character is the Tusken Warrior. She is a dynamic and fascinating figure to watch. I hope we learn her name.
Boba Fett stopping a train and a conductor droid wasn’t something I thought we needed, but we definitely did. This episode isn’t just like Westerns. It also is strongly reminiscent of Lawrence of Arabia and Dune, of course.
But did I mention the Tusken Warrior? Yeah, give her a book and a comic of her own.
Oh, and Boba Fett thrashed a bunch of Nikto gangsters and stole their speeders, so that was great. Who says, Boba Fett is no longer a badass?
The World Building Just Gets Better, Especially with the Tuskens
Boba Fett episode 2 gives so much world-building! Fans finally get to see a larger expanded view of Mos Espa, Tatooine’s premiere spaceport city. In The Phantom Menace, fans only see the outskirts of the city. In this episode, we see the interior that is partly underground.
We learn that Garsa, the Twi’lek played by Jennifer Beals of Flashdance, is a go-to source for information, at least to the Mayor. At least, Mok Shaiz seems to defer to her.
Jabba the Hutt also left behind twin cousins. We still don’t know what happened to Rotta the Hutt. Perhaps we will get answers eventually.
But most of all, Boba Fett episode 2 tells us more about the Tusken “Raiders”. For so long, these people have been vilified by the settlers and colonizers of Tatooine as “savages”.
But we learn that these people are many different cultures and tribes. They have been the indigenous people of Tatooine since before it was a desert.
Canon so far hasn’t given a reason for why Tatooine lost its oceans. But I suspect that the Tuskens may not always have been the techless people they are in the present. In Delilah Dawson’s excellent novel, Phasma, the planet Parnassos is destroyed by a nuclear disaster only about 150 years BBY. The survivors lose access to space travel and communications and become Mad Max-style survivors in short time.
At any rate, the Tusken people have every right to feel threatened by its colonizers. Moisture farmers take the very resource that is most precious to them.
Mythic symbolism and imagery continues to intrigue
The Book of Boba Fett episode 2 piles on more mythology and symbolism. And you know I eat that right up.
Boba Fett continues to dream of water. Water, water water. He sees his childhood on Kamino again. It’s one of my favorite images of the series so far–young Boba crying as his father leaves in his ship. It’s also reminiscent of Ben Solo and his relationship to the Millennium Falcon. However, for Boba the ship is a positive reminder of his father. For Ben, the ship takes away who he loves.
Boba Fett dreams in his pod of bacta–more fluid. But also, one can’t help but think of the cloning pods that Boba and his siblings all emerged from. He is returning to a “womb” every night. Again, it is an echo of creation. It is a symbol of Boba Fett being recreated nightly.
When Boba Fett lives among the Tusken people, they give him a gift of dreams via the hallucinogenic lizard.
Boba Fett dreams of the oceans. Of Kamino? Of Tatooine? Of both. Boba Fett dreams of a tree of eyes. It morphs into the Sarlacc’s tentacles that drained his body.
What does it all represent? I think it symbolizes Boba Fett’s death and rebirth. He is a man undergoing metamorphosis, and furthermore, he must pass that change on to others.
His pitfalls would be to continue on his father’s path. His father, Jango, concerned himself with the excitement and money and prestige of being a bounty hunter. That path of violence got him killed.
I think Boba Fett wants to end or reduce the suffering he sees on Tatooine. And he must re-create himself with water, to give that water to others. Why? Water is a symbol of healing in Star Wars, as it is creation.
This is what the Book of Boba Fett will be about. Boba Fett episode 2 continues to expand upon a tale of a man who will change a world.