‘The Book of Boba Fett’ Answers Your Questions About Boba Right Away (RECAP)
Stranger in a Strange Land
Season 1 • Episode 1
[WARNING: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for the Disney+ series The Book of Boba Fett Season 1 episode 1, “Stranger in a Strange Land.”]
If you were waiting for answers about how Boba (Temuera Morrison) survived the sarlacc pit, you don’t have to wait long.
In “Stranger in a Strange Land,” the first of seven episodes in The Book of Boba Fett, that and many other questions you might’ve had pertaining to Boba’s past are answered within the first ten minutes. So, how did he get out of the sarlacc pit? He burned his way out using his armor. How did he lose his armor, then? After he got out of the sarlacc, he fell unconscious and some jawas stole it.
In fact, about half of the show’s first episode is flashbacks to that just-post-sarlacc time, when we discover an armor-less Boba was taken prisoner by a group of Tusken Raiders. He manages to escape, briefly, but he’s re-captured, beaten, and then made to dig for water. One of his fellow prisoners finds more than just water pods in the Tatooine sands: He finds a nasty, many-limbed creature that immediately kills him, stuns Boba’s Tusken guard, and snatches Boba in its claws. Boba, in Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) fashion, kills the creature by strangling it with his broken chains — and when he returns to the Tusken village, having earned their respect, he’s at last offered water.
These flashbacks, though, are framed as dreams Boba is having as he heals in a bacta tank. (He also dreams about his time on Kamino and his father’s beheading at the hands of Mace Windu [Samuel L. Jackson], so clearly, those events made an impression on him. As one could expect, given that Kamino is his homeworld and young Boba [Daniel Logan] loved his father.) He’s pulled from his dreams, and the tank, by the necessity of accepting tribute from Jabba’s former associates.
There are some funny quips between Boba and Fennec (Ming-Na Wen) in the following scene — after finding neither of them understands one of the aliens, Boba remarks that they really need to get a protocol droid; he muses on how “weird” it is to be paid tribute to by someone he used to work for. But the string of gifts ends with a Twi’lek representative for the mayor of the city, who dishonors Boba by not only not arriving to greet the new crime lord in person, but also demanding that he pay tribute to him and implying that there’ll be unpleasant consequences if he doesn’t. It’s clear Fennec sees this as a transgression worthy of death, but Boba lets the guy go.
That’s another running thread through the episode. While they clearly trust each other and are comfortable around each other, and Boba doesn’t hesitate to tell Fennec his dreams have returned (thus implying she knew about them before), they disagree on how to rule. Generally, Fennec advocates for an approach in line with Jabba; she tells her boss to kill the two Gamorrean guards brought to him as tribute; she says he should have been carried through the streets on a litter, rather than walking; when they arrive at Madam Garsa’s (Jennifer Beals) establishment (which features the Max Rebo band!), she recommends holding onto their helmets when an offer is made to clean them. In all of these instances, Boba goes against her wishes — he doesn’t want to be Jabba, instead vowing to (as anyone who’s watched a trailer for the show knows) “rule with respect.”
As part of that “ruling with respect,” he opts to visit all of Jabba’s many vassals himself, rather than having Fennec do it for him. But he only gets to visit Garsa’s Sanctuary and reassure her that her business will continue to thrive before he and Fennec are attacked in the streets by a group of thugs in red jumpsuits. They manage to take down all but two of them, and Fennec pursues the stragglers. “Alive,” Boba orders her before she goes.
She chases them across the rooftops and corners them, but in the end, she only half-fulfills her boss’s order. Fennec does take one alive, but, a true master assassin, she kicks the other off the roof. As for who the guys were working for (the mayor? Crimson Dawn?), we’ll have to wait and see what answers next week brings.
The Book of Boba Fett, Wednesdays, Disney+