As television formats change, so does the need for different types of pacing. A lot of streaming shows have fewer episodes in a season than is typical on network TV. Network shows orbit twenty-plus episodes in a season, on average, where streaming seasons may have twelve, ten, or even six episodes. Disney+ shows tend to run on the shorter side. So Star Wars fans were happy when It was announced Andor would have twelve episodes in its first season, way more than Obi-Wan Kenobi or even The Mandalorian. But it became clear that by the second episode the pacing is moving far slower than it should.
This episode roughly follows the same plot flow as the first episode. Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) must get off planet and evade the authorities that are trying to arrest him for murder. While the show’s world is not expanded all that much from the first episode, the show also features a parallel storyline of Syril Karn (Kyle Soller), the agent in charge of capturing him. In fact, he defies orders to do so. This all plays out as flashback sequences showcase Cassian’s past in a sort of origin story.
It’s not that the second episode is necessarily bad. There’s just not much to differentiate it from the first. It’s a continuation of the same story that really could have been considered a single episode. There’s enough padding in the episode to be cut and the length of the episodes are not necessarily long. There’s no reason why the season couldn’t have been shorter and these two episodes couldn’t have been combined into one. It is quite possible the season was given a twelve episode order and they merely had to fill it. Based on how slow things moved in this installment, that might have been the case.
Andor streams new episodes Wednesdays on Disney+.