Three episodes in and The Book of Boba Fett is starting to read more like The Book of Costanza. It’s all about this stocky bald man who sits around in a chair all day doing a “job” he doesn’t know how to do and may not even really have; otherwise, he just hangs around with this harsh lady and two other guys—seemingly his only friends. It’s surprising he’s still wearing armor instead of draping himself in velvet.
Boba has been on his throne staring into an empty room for a few days now, and finally it occurs to him that maybe he should finally ask his robot, Toast of Tatooine, what’s even going on with Mos Espa. It seems that the only organized crime lord to not have a criminal enterprise nor an organization also doesn’t even know what exactly he’s supposed to be lording over. Toast explains something about the city now being split into three boroughs with different power dynamics or whatever going on, so that will probably come up later.
For now, Stephen Root is here with a complaint, and it’s honestly a little bit of a letdown that he isn’t some kind of alien freak. It’s always great to see Root in anything, but it also would have been fun to barely see him at all behind a bunch of prosthetics. It’s a shame his O Brother, Where Are Thou part was weirder looking and went bigger than his role in a Star War.
The one-man Nestlé of Tatooine, Root is a greedy, uncaring watermonger who sells life-giving water at jacked-up prices. Some punk kids have stolen a tank of it, and he wants the big boss man here to take care of it.
Boba agrees, and since he doesn’t have a very deep bench, that means he and the gang will have to take care of it themselves.
So Boba and pals head down to Mos Espa that night and confront the thieves. These kids (Yellowjackets’ Sophie Thatcher among them) all have this muddled, retro-futurist-mod-cyberpunk thing going. Their biker gang comes equipped with black leather vests and cybernetic enhancements, but they also drive candy-colored hover-scooters decked out with extra mirrors and headlights. Whatever!
They explain how they had to steal the water because they spent all their money on space-Vespa ornamentation and can’t find work. Boba gets an idea: he’ll pay them to be his muscle! There’s seven of them, so this is a huge improvement from one woman and a couple shirtless men with pig heads. Still kinda more of a “gang leader” situation than “crime lord,” but for Boba, it’s at least a step in the right direction.
They all head back to the palace (these hot 20-somethings are apparently just going to live there in a Real World situation now), and it’s time for Boba’s nightly soak. As usual, he recalls prequel footage and his time with the nice Tuskens who put a gecko in his brain. Those guys are actually dead, though.
In his dreams, he returns from a little meeting with the fish-faced fucks to find the Tusken camp destroyed and its residents dead. He notices a graffiti tag—a familiar symbol used by the local space-biker gang, and an encounter with those guys is surely where his serialized, chronological dream is headed. But not tonight.
Something has roused Boba from his bathtime slumber: that big black-and-white Chewbacca from last episode.
This guy is ostensibly some sort of bounty hunter on an assassination mission, but instead of shooting Boba, or ripping his arms off, he starts just throwing him around. His big finishing move is a bear hug. This is just a somewhat hairier Zangief.
Anyway, while Boba is incapacitated by his free hug, his gang manages to take the Wokiee out—how else?—but with the trap door to the (empty, for now) rancor pit. If you missed that the little trap door was still operational and shockingly effective last week, here it is again.
The battle over, Boba casually strolls up in a house robe like it’s Christmas morning. Time for a hearty breakfast!
Interrupting a feast of octopus omelets and grilled burritos, the Hutt twins show up unannounced. They’re like, “Alright, so this is awkward, but yes, obviously we’re the one who sent Stinkor to kill you. That’s on us. But that was several hours ago, and we’ve had a real 180 on the whole thing since. We’re actually just going to leave Tatooine. Seizing power here is becoming too much of a thing. You should probably drop it too.
“Anyway, to make good on trying to murder you, here’s a rancor. We’ve heard how you keep dropping dudes in the rancor pit, and it’s twice been really anticlimactic when that just places them in your basement.”
It’s an especially generous (and inexplicable) gesture because the Hutts also include the César Millán of rancors, Danny Trejo. This is a Robert Rodriguez production, after all.
In return, Boba offers to give back their hirsute would-be assassin, but the twins don’t even want him. The guy can’t even kill a man asleep in a tank, and it’s not like he’s good company.
Boba doesn’t want him either, so he frees his prisoner, and the Wokiee takes off in a full jog. It’s like, what’s the rush, guy?
Boba goes down to the pit to check out his new rancor, and it’s time to rehabilitate another Original Trilogy character that no one at all wanted to see rehabilitated. It’s not enough to flesh out Boba Fett and give a rich tribal tradition to the hooting idiot raiders. Now we have to learn how the big dumb monster that eats people is not unlike a pitbull: capable of tearing someone apart, but also able to form a loving bond with its owner. Boba Fett is totally the sort of guy who would have a pitbull, so he is loving this. He is going to ride this fucking thing before the end of the season if not by next episode. At last, these two practically nonverbal killers who almost immediately met moronic deaths in Return of the Jedi will get their boy-and-his-dog tale.
All this time, Boba has been waiting to hear back about getting a meeting with the mayor, and when Berry-Bot tells him it will be a few weeks, Boba unsurprisingly decides to just force his way into the mayor’s office. Unsurprising because the same thing happened last episode. Here it is again, folks—now with a different outcome!
This time, when the gang barges in, the mayor is indeed unavailable. He’s not even there, and David Pasquesi’s Twi’lek crony of his has apparently snuck out a back exit. The crew catch him driving off, and after Fennec offers a “get ‘im,” the Mos Vespas are in pursuit. Now it’s their turn to go full Costanza.
This scooter chase is so slow and lazy, it’s not even worth getting into. The best thing that happens is when a punk reveals that one of his cybernetic enhancements is that he can make a spike come out of his heel and have his robo-calf do a tiny stomp with it. He’s like the crummiest BattleBot of a man.
All of this builds to Pasquesi finally getting in a mild car accident and, after spilling much street produce, finally spilling the beans. The mayor is meeting with those fish-faced Pykes!
Soon after, in one of his many moped mirrors, Spike-Stomp Punk catches a good dozen Pykes entering the city. It looks like now these guys are the ones Team Fett will be fighting for control of Mos Espa. Boba is going to war.
Again, not entirely clear what exactly he’s fighting over, but he’s going to war for it.