Andor (Season 1), Episode 4: Recap & Ending Explained
Andor (Season 1), Episode 4 Recap & Ending Explained: Star Wars on television has never felt so gritty and grounded in a long, long time.
Episode 4 of Andor continues to expand the world of Star Wars in nuanced, essential ways, with Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) reluctantly becoming a member of a Rebel guerilla group. However, today’s episode comes bearing greater gifts. We are afforded a closer look into Imperial backend politics and dodgy career climbing, a first-look at Coruscant in the show, and the return of a beloved Star Wars character who is integral to the Rebel Alliance: Mon Mothma (Genevieve O’Reilly, who reprises her role from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story).
Andor isn’t afraid to spend time setting up the multifaceted aspects of its world, as it is a show genuinely invested in fleshing out its characters, whose immediate environments influence their actions. The Imperials congregate in swanky corporate headquarters with drab interior decor, wherein most officers are becoming complacent in their duties. However, there’s the occasional overreacher, who pushes the limits of their station not because they’re dedicated to the cause, but as a result of corporate greed. On the other end, there are the rebel guerillas, who rough it out in nature with limited supplies, egged on by the passion to make a difference in a cruel, indifferent world.
This is not to imply that the Rebels are completely selfless revolutionaries. Personal motivations have always been a part of revolution, no matter how committed one is to the rebel cause. Cassian joins the group because he does not have a choice—he is a wanted man who does not have enough credits to run and hide undetected. However, his hatred for the Imperials is unflinchingly real, and he is willing to partake in a suicide mission to steal from an Imperial garrison in Aldhani. The clock is ticking and the chances of success appear slimmer by the minute.
ANDOR (SEASON 1), EPISODE 4 RECAP:
The episode opens with Cassian and Luthen (Stellan Skarsgard) on the latter’s ship, discussing their next steps. Cassian is cautiously skeptical about Luthen and his motives and asks him to drop him off so that they can go their separate ways. Luthen contests this, explaining that it is worthwhile to commit to a meaningful cause instead of running around and hiding, as the time is ripe to hit the Imperials where it actually hurts.
Cassian emphasizes the importance of living a peaceful life, saying that he’s had his share of chaos, citing an incident on Mimban. Luthen reveals that he’s aware of every detail of Cassian’s past, and puts the record straight by revealing that the only reason Cassian survived the attack on Mimban was that he chose to run away. “You’ll ultimately die fighting these bastards,” Luthen tells Cassian, which is a heartbreaking foreshadowing of the events of Rogue One. Cassian agrees to the plan after being promised 200K along with a blue Kyber crystal locket as a downpayment for the mission.
IMPERIAL OFFICE POLITICS, MON MOTHMA, AND A MASTER OF DISGUISES
Elsewhere, Imperial intelligence officers are having a meeting discussing their corpo-political affairs, and the incident on Ferrix is brought up by one of the officers. This piques the interest of Dedra Meero (Denise Gough), who wants to climb the corporate ladder fast and dirty, and she demands details about the stolen Starpath unit that was retrieved on the scene. She’s denied, being (rightly) accused of reckless careerism, although her boss disregards her concerns that rebel pockets have been forming, significant enough for her to notice a pattern. Will Dedra follow in Syril’s footsteps and botch her own career, or is she smart enough to take care of the Andor problem in covert ways? We’ll see.
Speaking of Syril, he’s been packed off to Coruscant due to his failed mission on Ferrix, and now he is staying with his mum. It is weird to see someone with such a desperate brand of foolish ambition (without the skills to back it up) sitting idle, and I wonder what the dude is going to do next. Moving on to more important matters on Coruscant, we see Luthen changing his appearance and roleplay as an antique sales dealer, which acts as a cover for communicating with Mothma. Mothma arrives at the shop and tells him that it’s getting difficult to move money around to fund rebel causes, but he appeals to her that this is more important than ever. Mothma also speaks of bringing a new member into the fold, and Luthen reluctantly agrees to this fresh development.
At this juncture, I need to highlight the importance of Mothma being allowed to develop as a complex character. Although the character made a brief appearance in The Return of the Jedi and has been an integral part of the Star Wars expanded universe, we only saw her motivations in some detail in Rogue One. Andor sets Mothma up as a key character (as she deserves to be), situating her as one of the focal points that keep the mere idea of a Rebel Alliance alive. Apart from funding these extremely dangerous missions, she has to juggle her public identity as a politician who is constantly being watched by the Imperials.
ANDOR (SEASON 1), EPISODE 4 ENDING, EXPLAINED:
HOW DO THE GUERILLA REBELS PLAN TO HOODWINK THE IMPERIALS?
Luthen springs Cassian on Vel (Faye Marsay), the leader of the rebel gang, without prior warning. Frustrated by this sudden development, Vel says that it is madness to introduce a new member to the cause three days before the mission. Luthen assures that Cassian will only prove advantageous to the group as his sole purpose is to “reduce critical redundancy.” Moreover, he is also disposable as a hired mercenary. Vel agrees, but the rest of the group isn’t too thrilled when they find out about this new development. Skeen (Ebon Moss-Bachrach), Taramyn (Gershwyn Eustache Jnr), Nemik (Alex Lawther), and Cinta (Varada Sethu) are cordial enough with Cassian, but express their frustrations about putting their lives in the hands of a complete stranger.
There’s also Lieutenant Gorn (Sule Rimi), who is upset that he wasn’t consulted about Cassian, but agrees to explain the heist using a rudimentary stick model of the Imperial garrison. The plan is to steal the quarter payroll of an entire Imperial sector from the garrison and escape during a slim window that happens to overlap with a solstice due in three days. The plan is riddled with risks, too many things can go wrong, and there are only seven rebels against an entire garrison that has TIE fighters. Will Cassian truly be the one capable of shifting the odds in their favor? We will have to wait and see.