Definitely, the Star Wars series follow one another at high speed on Disney +. After the much appreciated Obi-Wan Kenobiit’s the turn ofAndor to land on the streaming platform this Wednesday, September 21. We were able to watch the first four episodes and the least we can say is that this start is extremely promising.
Let us remember first of all that the development of this production has not been a long calm river and that it has fallen behind. In April 2020, we learned of the replacement of screenwriter Stephen Schiff by Tony Gilroy. The latter participated in the takeover of the film RogueOne and he is therefore an expert of this universe.
Andor explores a very dark era of Star Wars
And precisely, the story of the series takes place five years before the events of this feature film and the battle of Yavin. We follow the adventures of Cassian Andor, which allows us to witness the emergence of the Rebel Alliance.
But for our hero, initially there is no question of joining the rebellion against the Empire. Much like Han Solo, he mostly tries to make ends meet through smuggling and a few small illegal arrangements.
From the outset we find ourselves in the lower depths of the galaxy and the neighborhoods visited are not very famous. A dramatic founding event marks our hero, and it goes without saying that we will keep it silent here. Either way, just know that you won’t quite see Cassian Andor like you used to.
We won’t say more about the story so as not to spoil the fun. On the other hand, we can note that the series surprises in comparison with the last Star Wars productions. Andor does not pay into the fan service, and you should not expect to see a famous figure of the saga land in the middle of a scene.
During a conference, Diego Luna summed up the state of mind: ” It’s a show about real people. It’s a very dark era in the galaxy, there are no jedi. These people have to decide how to react in the face of oppression. It’s the most down-to-earth Star Wars you’ll ever see. »
He didn’t believe so well. Apart from the presence of droids, and a few ships, these first episodes do not fall into the traditional specifications of the franchise. The Empire is indeed present, but it is a distant and disembodied entity, which one respects, which one fears, or which one hates.
Andor: ingenious time management
Andor starts on the planet Ferrix where an important industrial activity is in progress. If the overall atmosphere is rather dark, showrunner Tony Gilroy has been able to add a few lighter passages and a little humor. Some scenes actually work very well in this regard.
Among the other positive points, we can also retain an excellent time management, and a good editing of the episodes. The flashbacks give depth to Cassian Andor, and we understand better where he comes from.
Tony Gilroy recently explained: The scale of the series is so huge. The directors work in blocks of three episodes, so we did four blocks (in the first season) of three episodes each. We looked and said, ‘Wow, that would be really interesting if we came back, and used each block to represent a year. We will get closer to a year with each block. »
This new production therefore takes the time to establish its plot and its characters. Some will consider the story a bit long, but on our side, we rather appreciated this choice of realization. We can also welcome the fact that the characters are not as caricatural and Manichean as in other major current productions. Everyone has their moments of bravery, but they also have real gray areas and cracks.
Verdict: Andor, a series that pleasantly surprises us
The series will not necessarily appeal to everyone. Some viewers are indeed hardly thrilled with the idea of watching a Star Wars series without the presence of Jedis or Siths. However, they will miss a very well orchestrated spectacle. There is indeed a real fascination to see this rebellion forming and trying to finance itself through means that are not always ethical.
We also appreciate this dive into the daily functioning of the Empire with a bureaucracy that makes it run to ruin. Andor therefore succeeds where many other prequels have failed. It explores the gray areas of the extended universe while remaining faithful to this extremely stimulating saga. It remains to be seen whether the series will retain all its interest over time, but the mission is largely accomplished for these first four episodes.