Star Wars: The Bad Batch Episode 16 Review
Well, everyone, we’re finally here. Season one of Star Wars: The Bad Batch has officially come to an end. Fittingly, the finale takes place entirely on Kamino, where the show, and the Clone Troopers, first began. Rather than go out with a massive bang, though, The Bad Batch chooses to end on a somber, bittersweet note as everyone, both in-universe and in the real world, realizes that things can’t go back to the way they once were. No matter how hard we may want them to.
A Surprise Disaster Survival Scenario
At the end of the last episode, the Empire made the decision to tie up loose ends on Kamino by destroying their major cities and cloning facilities, condemning them to life back under the sea. In more immediate concerns, though, the Bad Batch find themselves trapped on the sea floor in the ruins of Tipoca City with very little chance for survival. As a result, the team and their former squad mate Crosshair have to work together to escape to the surface.
This episode has all the hallmarks for a disaster film. A group of people trapped in a desperate situation. Rising tensions between group members. And most of all, things continually go from bad to worse as the team tries to beat the odds. The Bad Batch has been in tough scrapes before, but this pushed their survival skills to their limit. It’s a really good premise, and the show does a fairly good job of showing it.
However, it’s not the impending death that’s the big draw. It’s the characters themselves.
Crosshair’s Uncertain Future
Crosshair has been the black sheep of the Bad Batch since the series first began. Following Order 66, we saw him ultimately remain loyal to the Empire while his brothers and Omega deserted. At the time, many of us thought that his decision was not of his own free will; that it was the inhibitor chip forcing him to act like that. However, last episode dropped a bombshell by revealing that Crosshair got his chip removed some time ago. This called into question just how much of Crosshair’s choices were of his own accord and which were because of the Empire’s manipulation. Unfortunately, the season finale offers few in the way of answers.
In a particularly somber moment, Omega tries to talk to Crosshair about his decisions. She admits that she wanted to believe that it was the chips that turned him into what he is, but now thinks that it may have just been him the whole time. In other words, it’s the nature vs. nurture debate in full force, and Crosshair may be on the nature side.
Then, just when we think that Crosshair’s not going to change, he ends up saving Omega’s life. But when the time comes for the others to leave, he chooses to remain loyal to the Empire, despite seeing how they’ll just use him. It’s a very mixed message about Crosshair’s future, much like it was for Ben Solo, and while it leaves the door open for him, I’m not sure how many fans will appreciate it.
Tie-In to The Mandalorian and Sidious’ Ressurection
The final moments of the episode, though, are when things start to get interesting again. Having been taken off-world by the Empire, Nala Se’s relocated to a new world to continue her working in cloning technology. If the Empire’s phasing out Clone Troopers, though, why do they still need to work with the technology. Those who have seen The Mandalorian and The Rise of Skywalker may have figured it out.
In The Rise of Skywalker, we learn that Darth Sidious continued using cloning technology decades after the Clone Wars. Firstly, it’s stated that he created Snoke using that tech. More importantly, though, he used it to create a new body to possess after Anakin killed him. While it’s not said on-screen, it’s all but implied that he was using the Kaminoan’s technology to do all of this. Now, we may see the beginning to that project. If it is, then The Bad Batch may have just started to fix the flaws of The Rise of Skywalker.
No Idea On Season 2
While it was nice to get a continuation of The Clone Wars, I have to admit that, in hindsight, the first season of The Bad Batch has been a mixed bag. It’s had some pretty great moments and gave us some franchise-altering information. On the other hand, the plot of the season had little cohesion between episodes. Worse, the season finale does little to hint at what Season 2 might be about.
Despite these misgivings, though, I still think that The Bad Batch has potential when it comes to bridging the gap between the prequels and original trilogy. If we’re lucky, then maybe season two will give us the prototypes to the TIE Fighters, something I’ve always wanted to see in Star Wars. Here’s hoping!
I Give “Kamino Lost” a 3/5
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