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Newest Mandalorian episode features a huge mistake

Hey, Mando — we know you're a man of few words, but can you say whoops?

After the fourth installment of The Mandalorian hit Disney+, fans took to the internet in droves to point out that the episode had fallen prey to one of the oldest, most common boneheaded errors in filmmaking history: the old boom-mic-in-the-shot gaffe.

The mistake occurred roughly 16 minutes into the episode, as the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) was having a chat with Omera (Julia Jones), the farmer who had given him refuge during a stop on the planet Sorgan. Their conversation took place in a rather dimly lit area, and unless you had your screen's brightness turned up pretty high, it was fairly easy to miss — but once you know it's there, it's impossible not to see it. The mic comes creeping in from the top of the frame, then bobs around a little bit; it's even visible from multiple angles. Unless we missed an extremely brief scene explaining that Omera's people record all of their conversations for posterity, that's a pretty freakin' big blunder.

On Twitter, Mando fans were split pretty evenly between "Well, this is just inexcusable," and "Geez, cut the crew some slack." While it might seem like a series with The Mandalorian's high profile (and enormous budget) should be able to avoid making one of the most well-worn production errors in the book, the fact is that the series is actually produced by human beings, and darned if human beings don't go out of their way to make mistakes.

Besides, it could have been a lot worse; the gaffe basically amounted to an out-of-place dark blob intruding on the frame in an area where viewers' eyes aren't trained to look. It's not as if an item which clearly had no place in the show's fictional world was left prominently in the frame, as astutely noted by one Twitter user who wrote, "It's still better than the GoT coffee cup."

Have any other mistakes made it into Star Wars?

You may be curious as to whether any other such ridiculous mistakes have made it into the Star Wars franchise, one of the most beloved in the world, the films of which have been dissected and analyzed frame-by-frame by legions of dedicated fans for decades. The answer: oh, yes. Just so many.

In fact, you may not have realized that one of the most famous errors in the the entire series actually was an error, because home video releases (starting with the DVD release) have made it appear intentional. In Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, when a trio of Stormtroopers burst into the Death Star control room in pursuit of our heroes, the one on the right just rocks his head on the door frame; since the sound effects for the sequence were added in post, there was no accompanying klunk when this happened. After fans caught the mistake, just such a sound effect was added for the home video version — but don't let them fool you. The actor portraying the clumsiest Stormtrooper in the galaxy absolutely did not mean to give himself a concussion while making his big entrance.

There are plenty more examples to be found in A New Hope alone, many of them having to do with C-3PO; it turns out that the shiny, reflective quality of the droid's dome wasn't exactly accounted for in a number of shots in which camera operators and/or cameras are visible in it. There are also several instances of crew members briefly wandering into the frame, and, yes, one shot (corrected for home video releases) in which the boom mic is visible, as Luke Skywalker arrives at the Mos Eisley cantina in his landspeeder. MovieMistakes.com lists a whopping 279 errors in the film — par for the course for the movies of both the original and prequel trilogies, which all contain a similar number of mistakes.

Of course, most of these fall within the realm of simple continuity errors — objects jumping from one hand to another, or things on a table rearranging themselves between cuts, for example — which are common to just about all movies. But although the sequel flicks have cleaned up their acts just a bit (the gaffe-chronicling website lists "only" 54 errors in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, and a mere 16 for Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi), it's safe to say that the Star Wars franchise has a long history of bloopers and blunders which somehow survived the editing process to make it all the way to the screen.

So, yes, we're inclined to come down on the side of giving the hardworking guys and gals who bring us The Mandalorian, the best new series on television by virtually any measure, a break. Unless and until, that is, a future episode ends up with a shot of a discarded Big Mac carton chilling on the control panel of Mando's ship.