The Mandalorian Borrowed A Page From John Wick And More Shows Should Follow Suit

This post contains spoilers for the season 3 finale of "The Mandalorian."

"Star Wars" is full of exhilarating action. Ever since "A New Hope" hit theaters in 1977, the franchise's lightsaber fights specifically have captivated audiences everywhere. George Lucas initially drew heavy inspiration from classic samurai movies for the lightsaber duels in the original trilogy before incorporating increasingly more complex and intricately choreographed lightsaber battles in his prequel movies. After that, the Disney-backed sequel trilogy returned to the basics, dropping the acrobatics and high leaps in favor of more grounded combat.

The thing is, there is more to the close-quarter matches in a galaxy far, far away than lightsaber duels. Even in the prequels, Jedi duels were relatively scarce in number compared to other types of action scenes. Curiously, however, the franchise has seldom paid much attention to the visual style of these sequences — with some notable exceptions, the most recent of which is the season 3 finale of "The Mandalorian."

To close things out, season 3 gave us an epic, nearly episode-long showdown between the Mandalorians and Moff Gideon's forces on Mandalore. It featured everything from blasters shoot-outs to clashes involving the Darksaber and vibroblades, a giant crashing starship, and even a moment straight out of "Star Wars Rebels."

That being said, the standout moment of the episode came when Din Djarin fought a bunch of Imperial Super Commandos in a hallway suspended above an endless pit. It's an unreservedly cool sequence that feels lifted right out of "John Wick," and more shows would do well to follow its example.

More of this, please

The reason the scene works so well is that the action is precisely choreographed and shot, with director Rick Famuyiwa capturing some of the clearest action in the franchise. Even though the scene is dark, it is properly lit, and you can clearly see Din Djarin fighting and throwing Super Commandos down the pit. More importantly, the scene follows the "John Wick" formula of making its characters immortal but not invulnerable. Sure, Din Djarin takes one hell of a beating and just walks it off, but the fact that he falls down, gets punched and shot, and then stands back up and continues fighting while panting makes the fight scene more tense and exciting.

The fight also has a gimmick straight out of "John Wick," with Din Djarin looking for a weapon in addition to looking for Moff Gideon. This impacts the flow of the fight, as the titular Mandalorian keeps trying and failing to grab a new weapon, much like how John Wick will run out of bullets (eventually) and change tactics. This keeps the fight fresh and adds new dynamics, sustaining even a nearly three-hour-long movie full of action. Like "John Wick," "The Mandalorian" knows how to balance tension, spectacle, and humor, like in the brief moment where Din Djarin kills a Commando with a knife but fails to steal his blaster before the guy falls down a shaft.

It certainly feels like the "John Wick" movies influenced the sequence, just like how "Oldboy" and its famous one-take brawl seemingly influenced Netflix's Marvel shows (to the point where hallway fights became their bread-and-butter). It's time to change things up; just like how "John Wick" pushed Hollywood action cinema to evolve, more TV shows should follow suit and learn to deliver better action.

"The Mandalorian" is streaming on Disney+.