The Mandalorian appears to be the cornerstone of the original programming available at launch on Disney+. Its enticing mix of spaghetti western, epic samurai, and space wizard movies has an undeniable appeal.
The series is the epitome of visual storytelling and almost eschews dialogue. The tight word economy seems to reflect the tough times we find in the galaxy since the fall of the Empire. It feels like the effort to speak more than the bare minimum exacts a real and untenable cost. The amount of screen time devoted to an image of the blank expression on the Mandalorian’s helmet leaves the viewer to divine what he’s thinking from the slightest head tilt rather than a line of dialogue. This quiet feels both brave and patient.
With that said, there still might be a need every now and then – even in a laconic production like The Mandalorian – to offer an explanation of some terms and phrases, so here’s the second in a series of looks at what you should know (you can check out the first two editions here and here):
● Imperial credits: Standard currency used in the Galactic Empire and likely the replacement for the Republic credit after the rise of the Emperor, this currency is made of small bars of embossed metal. Since The Mandalorian takes place after the fall of the Empire, these credits no longer have any government to back them and are likely worth significantly less than other currencies. Given the events of The Great Purge were perpetrated by the Empire or one of its splinter groups, it’s no surprise that The Mandalorian has an aversion to taking them as payment for his services.
● Calamari Flan: Small, white, rubbery discs used as currency the Mon Calamari people, aquatic species native to the planet Mon Cala.
● Ravinak: Large aquatic creatures with tusks known to swallow small speeders whole. The concept art for the Ravinak in the final credits of the first episode of The Mandalorian appears to have a walrus as the inspiration for the head and giant tusks.
● Parsec: A measure of distance. The usage in Star Wars has a long history, the Han Solo using the term to describe the speed of his ship by saying it made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs. As used in The Mandalorian thus far, though, the term has meant a more general indication of “this area,” such as when he’s described by Greef Karga to The Client as being the best in the parsec.
● Mythosaur: Enormous creatures native to the planet Mandalore that were driven by extinction by the first of the Mandalorian clans. A depiction of the skull of a mythosaur is used as the symbol of the Mandalorian people; a metal version hangs over the room used by The Armorer to create armor. Kuiil, the Ughnaught male who helps The Mandalorian in the first two episodes, mentions that the Mandalorians rode the mythosaur as a way to encourage him to continue working on being able to ride a blurrg.