Every reveal in this episode felt flat and disconnected from the plot around it. After stalking Ahsoka for two episodes, the Mandalorians simply walk up and speak to her. Maul’s reappearance is the classic reveal of a character looking up from under a hood, an unexpectedly tensionless scene barely aided by some assertive music. Why don’t the Mandalorians participate in the starship fight? Meanwhile, the sisters learn Ahsoka is a Jedi because the Pyke says as much in front of them, not because Ahsoka actually uses her powers in their presence. In a show renowned for action, these scenes feel mundane.
Do these reveals work for someone who isn’t closely familiar with the Siege of Mandalore arc that’s coming up next? I don’t know. To me, they feel more like anticipatory teases than actions that grow organically out of the plot. At least Maul’s reveal in Solo: A Star Wars Story reminding the audience he’s an intimidating Force-user.
The problem seems to be the pacing. Trace and Rafa get in a brawl with the workers at a spaceport spice smuggling operation, which takes up time that could have been used for a flashier action sequence. (Is this back on Kessel? I wasn’t sure about the space geography.) Even though the bad guys in this fight are spice smugglers, it wasn’t particularly entertaining to see the girls outwit characters who acted like stuffy managers.
I did enjoy the way this episode showcased the characters’ strengths. Trace has leveled up her flying skills and pulls some fancy maneuvers worthy of a Skywalker. Rafa’s more Han Solo-ish skills, namely bluffing her way into and out of trouble, are on display, too. She’s clearly the better liar and it was fun to see her wink her way through the spice-smuggling world, even if the plans don’t always work.
One of these plans almost derailed the episode from the start. When Ahsoka first reveals her plan, she hides it from the girls to make her “betrayal” look real. The script didn’t make it entirely clear how much each sister was following what was going on and how much of the mistrust was real. In the end, the clarification that Rafa understood and Trace didn’t was satisfying and true to their characters. But it came a little too late for the scene to be easily readable.