‘Andor’ Season 1, Episode 8 Review
by Frank Martin
As expected, this week’s episode of Andor was lacking in action. But it didn’t lack engaging and interesting things. A lot of the various plot threads and characters that had been separate since the start of the series are starting to interact and come together. As the show gets deeper into its season, the slow burn and occasional action format will most likely continue; however the intricacies of the various character relationships will become more complex. As this happens, the slow going nature of the series won’t be nearly as noticeable.
This week’s episode shows what happens to Cassian (Diego Luna) after he was sentenced during the closing moments last week — shipped off to a bizarre prison facility where workers are forced to build machinery at extraneous paces. Meanwhile, ISB officer Meero (Denise Gough) continues to close in on the Rebel conspiracy and Rael (Stellan Skarsgård). She brings in Karn (Kyle Soller) to provide some answers, but stops short of allowing him to assist. Mon Mothma (Genevieve O’Reilly) also gets deeper into the Rebellion, and it’s only a matter of time before Cassian breaks out of the prison, probably with Saw’s (Forest Whitaker) help, which will probably happen next episode.
These episodes definitely don’t exist in a vacuum. A lot of times, long format storytelling will have episodes bleed into one another, meaning that they can’t be isolated as a single standalone story. Those episodes are still structured with a beginning, middle, and end, however. Andor doesn’t appear to be doing that. Even though the pacing of the episodes flow in arcs, it seems as if these building episodes end on a note that doesn’t appear to be a natural conclusion. Instead, the action episodes are the ones that feel like they tie up loose ends while episodes like this one merely leave the viewer wanting more. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. It just means that the show is much better when watched in batches of three rather than a single episode at a time.
Andor streams Wednesdays on Disney+.