Sep 20, 2022 • 1HR 31M

Revisiting 'Rogue One' and kicking off our 'Andor' coverage (with Patrick H. Willems)

This will be a day long remembered.

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Decoding TV
In Decoding TV, David Chen (@davechensky) is joined by critics and friends to discuss and analyze the most exciting shows on television. This Premium Feed will deliver you early episodes, ad-free episodes, and bonus episodes.
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I’ve been disenchanted with Star Wars for years.

Ever since 2019’s The Rise of Skywalker, the Star Wars franchise has felt like it’s happy to just play its greatest hits forever. Desert planets! Tattoine! Lightsaber fights! None of those elements are necessarily bad but they often seemed like the destination itself as opposed to a means to get there.

It seems to be working out for everyone just fine. Most of the Star Wars fans I know are totally thrilled with shows like The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba-Fett, and Obi-Wan. On the other hand, I had personally given up on watching any more live action Star Wars stuff. This was enormously disappointing to me as someone who grew up watching my “Star Wars: Special Edition” VHS tapes until they were worn out. But it’s all part of the normal order of things: people change, franchises change, life changes.

Then the guy who wrote/directed Michael Clayton decided he was going to make a Star Wars series.

Tony Gilroy, widely regarded as a “ghost director” on Rogue One, is making a prequel series focusing on Diego Luna’s character of Cassian Andor. Did I remember any characteristics about Cassian Andor before I heard this news? Not really. But am I incredibly interested in anything Tony Gilroy does? Absolutely.

I’ve seen the first three episodes of Andor and I say this with confidence: this is going to be the show that gets me back into Star Wars. There’s a lot to dive into and I can’t wait to do it on the Decoding TV podcast.

And I have the perfect co-host to do it with. Patrick H. Willems is a filmmaker, cultural commentator, and one of my favorite video essayists on the internet (see his work above, which captures a lot of how I feel about the current state of Star Wars movies). I’ve enjoyed conversing with Patrick for years on YouTube and on podcasts but I’m so thrilled to be able to cover a TV show with him on Decoding TV.

In this inaugural episode of our Andor coverage, we discuss the troubled history of Rogue One, where the movie shows clear signs of behind-the-scenes turmoil, and what we still really like about the movie. You can listen to the episode above, subscribe to the free version of the podcast (paid members get private, ad-free feeds), or watch it below as a YouTube video:

Andor premieres Wednesday, September 21. Our plan is for our Andor coverage to release by Thursday nights. As always, paid members will get episodes earlier and get any bonus episodes we record during the show’s run. Thanks so much for your support!