Dani Di Placido’s Forbes article titled “Andor puts the rest of Disney+’s Star Wars to shame” is one of the best headlines we’ve read since the premiere of the new Disney series Andor. The journalist writes in her review that the series “really feels like it takes place in another world, in an interesting place filled with clunky retro-futuristic technology and clueless rebels; At times, it almost feels like Blade Runner, a dark, focused look at the lives of ordinary people living under the boot of the (Galactic) Empire.”
A fresh hope
This snippet doesn’t sound like it’s from a Star Wars series, but from a lot more sophisticated work of science fiction than what we’ve seen so far. Without clear comparisons to other works (as The Mandalorian and Obi-Wan Kenobi did), the series has a more independent vibe, and the tone is immediately distinct. In a separate science fiction planet, just humanity survives after removing the fantasy variable. His adorable moments humiliate The Mandalorian and Kenobi’s lifeless universe, which serves solely to house a character without coming to life on his account.
Currently, the series is one of the highest-rated, according to critics. It has a 91% acceptance rating, placing it below Star Wars Rebels (which is still everyone’s favorite), The Empire Strikes Back, The Mandalorian, The Clone Wars, and the first film in the franchise. On Metacritic, which provides a more “genuine” representation of critics’ scores, it has a score of 74.
Curious is the fact that, despite high reviews from reviewers, it does not appear to have had a significant impact on the audience. However, this may be owing to the same grounds for which it has been praised, namely its independence from any other work in the franchise, making it a production that may not satisfy Star Wars fans who adored The Mandalorian, for instance (and its lighter tone).
Richard Lawson of Vanity Fair describes Tony Gilroy’s work as an edgy espionage thriller set on other planets as opposed to the corridors of Washington, D.C. or 1940s Germany. “The clarity of Gilroy’s language gives everything disarming credibility. What a ridiculous thing to say about a space fantasy, but Gilroy imbues Andor with the same subtly sinister texture of knowing that he employed in Michael Clayton (which starred George Clooney).
Obviously, there is still more work to be done. This character’s tale will be concluded in a second season, since it eventually leads to Rogue One, another unanticipated Star Wars success that is also regarded as one of the franchise’s finest works. This may be Disney’s curse, as his most successful works cannot be exploited excessively… at least for the time being.