Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Devil’s Deal

I was a little surprised at the latest episode of The Bad Batch, but not in a strictly bad sense. The episode concerned mostly the political doings on Ryloth and what a young Hera Syndulla was up to, which was great, but I really did miss the Batch. For some reason, I wasn’t expecting this series to deviate from the main characters, like Clone Wars occasionally did. I don’t think Rebels strayed too far from the Ghost crew, from what I remember (I could be forgetting an episode or two, I don’t know). So I’m not sure how I feel about it, exactly, lol.

I suppose it was interesting to see Hera as a child, growing up in the aftermath of the Clone Wars, and seeing her relationship with her parents. We know that her mother is killed at some point early on, and this seems to drive a wedge between father and daughter, which isn’t resolved until well into Rebels. We know that her father, Cham Syndulla, was the leader of the Ryloth resistance against the Empire, so it was interesting to see him giving the Empire a chance here at first. He’s so tired of war, and wants what’s best for his young daughter, he’s willing to give peace a chance, so to speak. But clearly that will change, perhaps after his wife’s demise.

I’m just not sure we really needed to see all this. It really adds nothing to what we already know. Hera yearns to be a pilot, she gets involved in the Rebel movement early on, yadda yadda. Don’t get me wrong; I love Hera, and am a huge fan of Rebels. But this isn’t Rebels, this is The Bad Batch, lol, and I wanted more of them. And I’m sure they’ll come roaring back next week to help save Hera from the Imperials.

I do have to say I loved Captain Howzer, a Clone who is different from his comrades. He’s the only one who still wears colors, takes his helmet off, and clearly is fond of the Syndulla family after helping them during the Clone Wars. He’s hesitant to arrest Hera or her parents, and I’m thinking that he’s a Clone who didn’t follow Order 66, but somehow got away with it. I’m guessing he’ll help the Batch save Hera, and possibly find Rex to join the fledgling Rebellion. If he survives, that is.

I did like how Hera was speaking in the French-like accent she grew up with, and only occasionally slipped back into in Rebels (mostly when speaking with her father); and also seeing her mischievous droid “Choppair”, lol. I liked her meeting Omega and talking about being a pilot.

It was a good episode and I enjoyed it, I just don’t know how important it is in the scheme of things. I don’t usually complain about this kind of stuff, because I enjoy all Star Wars for what it is. Guess I’m just missing the boys and Omega, and have probably seen enough cameos for the moment.

What did you think of the latest episode? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Common Ground

Episode 10 of The Bad Batch, “Common Ground,” probably wasn’t as exciting as most fans would have liked, and didn’t have the same kind of stakes that the last couple of episodes had, but I still enjoyed it and thought it had some interesting themes going on.

The Bad Batch travel with a droid a droid in Star Wars: The Bad Batch.
The Batch with Senator Singh’s droid, GS-8.

The Batch are assigned a mission from Cid to save a former Separatist Senator from Raxus–the capital of the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars–and it doesn’t quite sit right with them. Especially Hunter and Echo, and particularly in the latter case, we can understand why. Echo suffered at the hands of the Separatists and isn’t willing to so easily overlook that. But let’s face it, if anyone is going to writhe under the yoke of the Empire, it’s former Separatist systems. If they didn’t like the policies of the Republic, then they’re certainly not going to accept the Empire. I think the Batch are going to find that their former enemies will likely become potential allies, as I believe they’ll eventually fight the Empire rather than continue with mercenary work.

In fact, they may not have to, since Omega paid off their debt to Cid. The other storyline of the episode was Hunter once again leaving Omega behind, his reason being that Raxus would be crawling with Imperials. True, but I believe his fears are more based on his ability to protect her rather than on Omega’s ability to handle herself. She certainly proved that she can take care of herself in former episodes, but it was Hunter who was with her when Cad Bane took her. He blames himself. So guilt goads him to insist she stay with Cid this time.

Cid speaks with Omega at a dejarik table in Star Wars: The Bad Batch.
Omega’s got her game face on.

While there, Cid claims she’s useless, but during a holo chess match between Cid and a patron of the bar, Omega proves she has a talent for strategy. Cid uses it to her advantage, pitting Omega against a string of competitors, with Omega winning every time. When the Batch return, successful in their mission in extracting the Senator, Hunter is upset that Omega put herself in the limelight like that, and scolds her. Cid tells him to back off, since she just paid off their debt to her. Even Wrecker lets Hunter know he’s being unfair, with a deliberate shoulder bump. So Hunter tells Omega that if she wins a game against him, he’ll never leave her behind again.

We don’t see the end of the game, but we don’t have to. We know Omega will win, and thank goodness for it. I’ll always believe Omega will be better off with the Batch rather than left behind. And come on, the girl’s proven herself! But Hunter, as a new space dad, is just going through what every parent does: the instinctual need to protect. I don’t even like to let my 12 year old walk around the block by herself, so I get it, lol. But sometimes you just have to let go so they can grow.

And we learn more about Omega’s specialness: she’s a pure Jango Fett DNA carrier, yes, but she also has a talent for strategy. Kind of comes out of nowhere, but okay. And not much to do with the Force, really; I was hoping for a little Force sensitivity, but I can live without it, too.

Anyway, some may have thought this one was boring, but I thought it was a solid entry. Not great, but not terrible, either. Curious to see where the Batch will go from here!

What did you think of the episode? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Battle Scars

So it finally happened–we got Rex in The Bad Batch, and it made me so very happy!

It turns out it was Rex that Raffa Martez had been communicating with in the last episode (nice poncho, Rex), and so he knew where to find them. Wrecker and Omega come back to Cid’s place after having their post-mission snack, and Wrecker gives him a big hug–but then complains of his headache. Rex is instantly on guard, getting ready to draw his blaster. He can’t believe the Batch haven’t removed their inhibitor chips yet, and presses upon them how urgent and important it is to get them out.

He says he’ll help them, and they meet on Bracca–a junkyard planet, where some Jedi ships are being destroyed or repurposed. He brings them to the same kind of ship he and Ahsoka had been on, with a medical facility that she used to take out his chip.

Before they can get started, Wrecker’s chip finally wins out, and he attacks everyone. Not wanting him to wreck the med facility, they draw him out of the room and try to stop him, but he’s just too strong and incapacitates them all. Then he goes after Omega. At the last minute, Rex stuns Wrecker, and they bring him back to the med facility and take out his chip.

Wrecker is unconscious for awhile after the procedure, and Omega insists on sitting by his side until he wakes up, despite his attack on her. Again, she knows it wasn’t Wrecker’s fault, and wants to make sure her big brother is all right.

The rest of the crew get their chips out as well, and then Hunter and Rex have a conversation outside the ship. Rex is working with others who oppose the Empire (we’re not sure who he’s talking to on his comlink–Ahsoka? I’d love her to make an appearance here, too, but I’d be surprised if she did. I suppose she doesn’t have to be in everything, lol.) Rex suggests to Hunter that he and his crew join him–that there’s still something to fight for in the galaxy; but Hunter tells him he has to do what’s right for his squad, especially Omega. But I believe, eventually, Hunter will decide to ditch the meaningless jobs from Cid or anyone else, and fight the good fight. Rex understands, and then walks away into the mist. I really hope we see him again!

I love how Wrecker apologizes to Omega for his attack, even though it wasn’t his fault. He feels so terrible, my heart breaks, lol. I’m really starting to love this guy (and to think he was my least favorite of the bunch in Clone Wars). If someone asked me who my favorite Bad Batcher was right now, I couldn’t tell you. I love them all so much! I’ve always been a fan of the clones since watching Clone Wars, but these guys are special. I guess I’ve got a soft spot for those who are born differently (my daughter was born with spina bifida, so I’m always cheerleading the differently-abled).

Anyway, at the end of the episode, they’re spotted by the “Scrapper Guild,” who alert the Empire. I’m guessing next week they’ll have to confront Crosshair again. I’ve read in different places that the BB’s might be able to remove Crosshair’s chip at that same facility, but I feel like it’s too soon to save Crosshair, that they need to have a few encounters with him as the enemy before anything can be resolved. But I could be wrong; we’ll see what happens.

So this was a great episode, and we finally got Wrecker’s chip crisis solved. Once it was addressed, it seemed to be over quickly, with minimal emotional turmoil, and I’m kind of glad, to be honest. I couldn’t bear it if they lost Wrecker, especially for Omega’s sake, and for once, it was a happy ending here.

What did you think of “Battle Scars”? Let me know in the comments, and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Decommissioned

Bad Batch First Look: “Decommissioned”

I’m continuing to enjoy The Bad Batch episodes, even though some people are starting to cry “filler!” I don’t understand that, I think each and every episode is adding to the story and creating more anticipation. Geez, what do these people want?

Anyway, I thought “Decommissioned” was a fine episode, with a surprise cameo of the Martez sisters from Clone Wars Season 7. I thought their story arc went on a little too long in CW, but I didn’t hate them or anything. So it turns out the BB and the sisters are both after a tactical droid in a Corellian factory where Separatist droids are being destroyed, or “decommissioned.” Both groups are after it for different reasons: the BB have been given an assignment from Cid, and have no idea who actually wants it; while it turns out the sisters are after it to help those who want to fight against this new Empire (seeing how the Clones are being used by the Empire, the tactical droid would know about their strategies and how to fight them).

I won’t go into details on what happened in the factory, but naturally the two groups have to work together to get out of the factory alive, with the tactical droid. The droid head ends up being destroyed, but Hunter gives the sisters the copy of the information inside its brain that Tech and Trace created. He knows they will put the information in it to good use, for something that matters. Raffa tells him that, in the end, everyone has to choose sides, which makes Hunter thoughtful. Yes, surviving is important, but at what cost? I have a feeling the Batch will eventually decide to fight this Empire that turned their world upside down, used their brothers for evil, and took their crew member, Crosshair, for their evil ends. It makes sense that they would do this, eventually, and I’m guessing once they meet up with Rex, they’ll be inspired to do so by him.

So who’s the contact Raffa talks to at the end of the episode? Could be Bail Organa. Could be Rex. Those are my top two contenders, and probably obvious. I don’t care which one it is; I’d love to see both of them (and we know we’ll eventually see Rex). And the fact that they have R7, Ahsoka’s droid, means she’ll probably be involved at some point, which is exciting. According to the novel Ahsoka, by E.K. Johnston, Ahsoka doesn’t meet up with Bail and become Fulcrum until a year after Order 66, and clearly it hasn’t been that long in this show. But events in books and comics can be tweaked, as we saw with the whole Depa Billaba and Caleb Dume thing in the first episode, Aftermath, which contradicts the Kanan comic (but only in the details). So it’s not out of the question that Ahsoka may make an appearance.

And Wrecker hits his head again, and then he says the dreaded words: “Good soldiers…” and I thought, oh crap, it’s happening! But he snaps out of it and he’s fine again. But it’s coming. Oh lord, it’s coming.

Other things I loved about this episode: Omega learning to use her laser bow. She’s not very good at it at first, which seems natural for most people, and Cid claims she needs to beef up her “noodle arms.” But Echo claims she just needs to tune out distractions. And that seems to be the case when she suddenly and effortlessly knocks off several droids later in the show. She says she just needed to tune out distractions, which sounds very Jedi-like. Or maybe I’m reaching, I don’t know, lol. I so want this girl to have the Force!

Also, this joke:

Dumb, but funny anyway! I bet Echo was waiting for someone to say that his whole life, lol.

I’m hoping to see more of Crosshair’s story soon, too.

What did you think of “Decommissioned”? Let me know in the comments, and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Rampage

In episode four, “Rampage,” the Bad Batch travel to Ord Mantell, where Echo knows of a Jedi informant that may be able to help them find out who is after Omega and why.

Once they get there, Echo admits he’s never met “Cid” and Tech, without a hint of irony, replies that it would have been nice to know that beforehand. Turns out Omega is the only one who figures out who Cid is (a female Trandoshan); is it the Force? Or just heightened instincts? The guessing game with Omega continues.

Cid says she can get them info on the bounty hunter they ran into, but only if they do a job for her (more Mandalorian echoes, but I don’t mind). She wants them to find a “kid” named Muchi who’s been kidnapped and is being held on the other side of the planet. If they bring the kid back to her, she’ll give them part of the bounty, and the info they’re looking for.

The Batch find a group of people being held by the slaver Zygerrians, and believe they found the kid. But they get captured; Omega, who had been sent back to the ship, flees some Zygerrians nosing around, and tries to help them escape. She frees a creature that turns out to be a baby rancor as a distraction. It also turns out that the beast is Muchi.

The rancor is an effective distraction, and Tech, Echo and Omega try to lead the captured people back to the ship, while Hunter and Wrecker fight off the Zygerrians and try to capture Muchi. Since the creature will submit to a strength hierarchy, Wrecker battles her until they’re both exhausted.

Once back at Cid’s, Bib Fortuna arrives and collects Muchi for Jabba the Hutt. Cid tells them that the bounty hunter that attacked them is Fennec Shand, but couldn’t find out who she’s working for. She gives them their portion of the bounty, and then offers Hunter (who she called “dark and broody”) some future jobs. Hunter replies that he’ll think about it, but Cid subtly threatens him, saying that they must be important if they’re being pursued by bounty hunters. The subtext being that she could haul them in herself if Hunter doesn’t do what she asks.

I thought this was a fun episode. Some people think that Muchi is the rancor that Luke fought and killed in Return of the Jedi, and while that’s understandable, she’s actually not–in the Aftermath book, we find out that Luke’s rancor opponent was a male named Pateesa. But if people who haven’t read the book want to think Muchi is the one from ROTS, it’s not a big deal, either. It’s just us book nerds who know the difference, lol.

I like how Omega came to the rescue and showed her strengths. I also love the big brother/little sister relationship between her and Wrecker–he high-fived her when Cid said that she was smarter than any of them. Of course, Wrecker had another headache in this episode, and it doesn’t bode well–I’m steeling myself for tragedy. I’m really hoping that it all works out in the end. (Please let it all work out in the end!)

The Batch are beginning to understand that not only do they have to sell their services to survive in this new world, but that they may be asked to do some–questionable–things. This time it wasn’t so bad, just retrieving a baby rancor, but it was for Jabba the Hutt, a known criminal. And if they work for Cid again (and they probably will, considering her threat), who knows what she might ask them to do in the future. They’ll have to decide how far they’re willing to go, for credits and survival.

It’s also interesting to consider that the Jedi used the disreputable Cid as an informant, showing how desperate they’d become during the Clone Wars, and how they had resorted to going against their principles. Definite cracks in the armor.

I just want to point out that I loved the laser bow that Omega picked up during the battle, and can’t wait to see her use it.

And as I watched and listened to Cid speak, I thought, I know that voice. Who is it? I couldn’t figure it out and had to wait for the end credits to find out it was Rhea Perlman. Oh yeah, of course! What do you know?

Anyway, a fun episode with some interesting implications.

What did you think of “Rampage”? Let me know in the comments, and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars Resistance: An Overview

So I finally finished both seasons of Resistance the other day, and I have to say it was worth the time. Really.

I know Resistance doesn’t get that much respect, or attention for that matter. And I understand why–it doesn’t have the same gravitas or stakes as The Clone Wars or Rebels. It was made for a younger audience, after all, and isn’t quite as dark or tragic. But does that mean it’s bad? Heck no!

Resistance is Disney/Lucasfilm’s animated answer to the sequel trilogy, just as Clone Wars was to the prequels, and Rebels was to the OT. So here’s the basic rundown:

Kazuda Xiono is a young New Republic pilot recruited by Poe Dameron to be a Resistance spy on the refueling depot called the Colossus. The Colossus is a huge station in the middle of the waterworld Castellon. Poe introduces Kaz to Jarek Yeager, a former Rebellion soldier who fought at Jakku. Yeager is now a mechanic on the Colossus, but is privy to Poe’s activities and helps him when he can. He reluctantly agrees to take on Kaz as a mechanic on his payroll, as a cover. Apparently there has been some First Order activity on the Colossus, and Poe (as well as Leia Organa) would like to know what might be going on there.

Poe Dameron and Kazuda Xiono star wars poster prints
Poe with Kaz

Kaz is enthusiastic in his new duty as Resistance spy, perhaps a bit too eager. He’s young and naïve, prone to boasting (he happens to be a very good pilot), but also friendly and sweet, and just a tad clumsy. Okay, a lot clumsy. Turns out he’s the son of a wealthy New Republic Senator on Hosnian Prime, and apparently his father has micromanaged his life thus far; Kaz is eager to do something to prove to his father that he can do his own thing. He also believes in the purpose of the Resistance. But nobody is supposed to know any of that, so he’s just a mechanic for Yeager. Kaz, though an exceptional pilot, is a terrible mechanic, which leads to some problems, as you can imagine.

Also under Yeager’s employ is Tamara Ryvora, a young woman who left home to be an ace pilot in racing, but lost everything and is now trying to save enough to get another ship. Another member of Yeager’s team is Neeku Vozo, a Nikto who is a very skilled mechanic and my absolute favorite character in Resistance. He’s just so sweet and kind-hearted, and takes everything quite literally, which leads to some very funny moments. He takes to Kaz immediately, but Tam, not so much. She comes around after a while, but mostly just criticizes Kaz constantly.

Yeager, Tam and Neeku

No Star Wars show is complete without droids, and Poe left BB-8 behind on the Colossus to help Kaz (until he comes back to reclaim him for a “mission to Jakku”, at which point he leaves behind another roll-y, CB-23, who is just as adorable). Yeager’s team has their own droid in Bucket, who literally looks like a bucket of bolts with a helmet on.

The Colossus is a refueling depot, but it also has racing–and it’s own team of “Flying Aces” that put on a race every week to entertain the crew and people who live there. They’re also supposed to protect the station, from pirates and other undesirables. They’re made up of a group that includes a Rodian named Hype (who’s pretty annoying, most of the time), an former Imperial, a woman with (strangely) a Russian accent, a guy in a yellow suit whose face we never see, and a young woman named Torra Doza, who happens to be the daughter of the mysterious Captain of the Colossus. Torra eventually becomes friends with Kaz, and over the course of the show, Captain Doza becomes less mysterious. Turns out he used to be an Imperial, but defected when he met Torra’s mother, a Rebel back in the day. We don’t meet Torra’s mother until the second season, however, as she’s a Resistance fighter now.

CB-23 and Bucket

Anyway, Kaz tries to fit in and do his “spying” thing, and it turns out he does give Poe and Leia important information about the First Order, who’s been nosing around a lot. We see Phasma early on in Season One, but the main antagonist becomes a golden-armored stormtrooper named Pyre. The First Order wants the Colossus for its own fueling needs, and comes up with a plan to take it over: they hire some pirates to attack the station and make the Captain feel he needs to let the First Order onto the station to help defend it. Captain Doza increasingly feels uneasy with the agreements he makes with the First Order, until he decides enough is enough. The First Order aren’t willing to give it up so easily, and when they find out a Resistance spy is on board, they make it their business to occupy the station.

That’s the basics of it, and most of Season One; I won’t go into detail about everything, or much of Season Two (which is actually even better than S1) except to say that the Colossus is actually a space ship and takes off from Castellon, and the First Order pursues them relentlessly.

There are a few cameos besides Poe (who’s always fun) and Phasma; later we get General Hux, and even Kylo Ren. Once Poe comes back for BB-8 for that mission to Jakku, we know that the events of The Force Awakens is beginning; we even see Hux’s mad speech on Starkiller Base through a hologram. Things get pretty personal for Kaz just then–his parents live on Hosnian Prime, and when the planet is destroyed, he’s distraught, naturally.

The big crisis of the end of Season One and all of Season Two is that Kaz’s friend, Tam, joins the First Order. Naively, she feels the First Order are simply bringing order and safety to the station; when she finds out that Kaz and Yeager have been lying to her about being with the Resistance, she’s extremely angry (unreasonably so, in my opinion). She feels betrayed by the people she had come to see as family, and lets herself be recruited by a new character, Agent Tierney. (Another character named Rucklan, who’s kind of a jerk on the station, also joins. I had no idea that Elijah Wood voiced him until I saw it pointed out elsewhere, and then I couldn’t unhear Elijah Wood, lol). Season Two was about getting rid of the First Order pursuing their station, and getting Tam back into the fold.

Agent Tierney

I just found it a joy to watch Resistance, simply because it was entertaining and quite funny sometimes, and I knew my heart wouldn’t get ripped to shreds over tragic events. I even wish there was a Season Three that coincides with The Rise of Skywalker. I’d love to see the crew of the Colossus join the Battle of Exegol (maybe they do–there were a lot of ships that Lando brought with him, and maybe the Colossus is there; I haven’t taken the time to study all those ships–I’m convinced someone else did take the time and made a list of all the recognizable ships, so maybe it’s research time!)

If you’ve got some time on your hands and never watched Resistance, you might want to give it a go. Like all the other animated series, it takes a while to get going, and is geared toward the younger audience, but grows as it goes along.

And I haven’t even mentioned Flix and Orka:

And pirates!

And a B-1 battle droid:

And Buggles!

And…oh, nevermind. Trust me, it’s fun.

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Cornered

In “Cornered,” the Bad Batch have to make a stop at Pantora for two things: for Tech to scramble their transponder so their ship won’t be recognized, and to sell some parts for credits so they can get some food. Sounds simple enough, right? Right.

Suu Lawquane warned them that children will find trouble without trying, and of course she was right. Omega finds it pretty quickly, running after a voorpack (a cute dog/cat-like creature that we first saw in Resistance–oh, didn’t watch it? What are you waiting for? Because Buggles is waiting for you!) who took her doll. She runs into Fennec Shand, who has been hired to find Omega. Omega is understandably naïve, and trusts Fennec at first, who promises to help her find her friends. But though she may be naïve, she’s not stupid, and once she sees Fennec’s blaster, she becomes wary. And once Fennec starts blasting at Hunter, she definitely goes on the offensive, trying to stop her.

I like how during the whole chase scene, both Hunter and Wrecker try to save her, but Omega is pretty good at saving herself, for the most part. She’s scared, but gets right to it, doing what she has to to get away. She’s a clone made from Jango’s DNA, after all, (we think; don’t quote me on that) and certainly not helpless. But she’s still a child, and Hunter finally sweeps her up on his speederbike.

I love the whole scene with Echo and the Gran shopkeeper. Like it or not, Echo does look a bit like a droid, especially in that outfit he had on; I thought it was great he argued for a higher price with Hunter. This whole bit has me hoping that they do more with Echo and his perceived place within the Batch; I’m guessing he still doesn’t feel like the others, whether “Regs” or the BB, and that he struggles with his new identity.

We didn’t hear anymore of Wrecker’s “headache” in this episode, but he did hit his head again when Fennec attacked him. I don’t think it’s just going to go away, that’s for sure. Instead, we have to wait in agonized suspense to see how it will play out, lol.

It’s funny, as Wrecker was easily my least favorite member of the BB when we first meet them in Clone Wars; I thought he was way too much of a stereotype and not very interesting. But he’s quickly become a fan favorite, as we’re getting to know him a little better in this series, and I have to admit, I love him, too. He’s a big lug with a big heart, a protective big brother to Omega, child-like and endearing, and I’m very nervous something bad is going to happen to him, lol.

So we knew we’d see Fennec Shand in this series, and it seems she’ll be a recurring character as she continues to pursue Omega. The most obvious guess as to who hired her is the Kaminoans, who want her back for their own purposes, but that answer seems too easy. So like everything else, we just have to be patient and wait for answers.

I’m continuing to love this show, and eagerly await next week’s episode. (Maybe we’ll see Rex next week?)

What did you think of “Cornered”?

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch–Replacements

The Bad Batch Spoilers Ahead!

The title of the third episode of The Bad Batch–“Replacements”–refers to several different things: the ship the crew are travelling on, the Havoc Marauder, crash land on a planet and need a replacement part; Omega is proving to be one of the crew and, in essence, she is replacing Crosshair as the fifth member; and finally, the Clones are slowly being replaced by enlisted soldiers in the Empire’s armed forces, in a project called War Mantle.

There’s a lot going on in this episode. Hunter and Omega go after the moon dragon that took their capacitator; Hunter gets knocked unconscious, and Omega decides to go after the part alone, down into the dragon’s lair. She finds it, but the beast gets vicious. I don’t know about you, but to me she seems to calm the dragon down (perhaps with the Force?) before throwing the flashlight so it will go after that instead (it feeds off the electrical power). She tells Hunter that she “tricked” it, and indeed she did. But how? Did she use the Force, perhaps even unknowingly? Maybe. Omega is still an enigma, and probably will be for some time.

Meanwhile, Echo is working on repairs to the ship, and Tech is working on something that will give them more information on the chip inside their heads. Which is a good thing, because Wrecker suddenly has a bad headache, right where the chip would be. He hit his head in the crash, and maybe it’s done something to the chip–I don’t know, but I have a bad feeling about this. Like Wrecker is gonna go Crosshair real soon, which is even more heartbreaking than it was with Crosshair. Crosshair was naturally stand-offish, but Wrecker is just a big kid, with a big heart–while confined to the ship, he makes Omega a little room of her own, and gives her his tooka doll (the fact that a big, tough man like that had a tooka doll in the first place speaks volumes about him).

Crosshair, meanwhile, has been put in command of some non-clone soldiers and given the same mission the Bad Batch had failed: take out Saw Gerrera’s insurgent group on Onderan. One man gave Crosshair some lip on the way to the planet, mocking his clone status; but he was the first to refuse the orders to kill the people in the group. Crosshair kills the soldier, and when the other soldiers hesitate, he turns and kills Saw’s group himself (Saw wasn’t even there). “Good soldiers follow orders,” he says. Chilling. And a taste of the Empire’s war crimes to come. Back on Kamino, however, Crosshair sits on his bunk after the mission, as if regretting what he did. Or at least questioning his own actions. As Omega told Hunter, it’s not his fault, it’s the chip. And she tells Hunter that maybe because of that, they can get him back. I really hope so, because it’s heartbreaking to witness Crosshair’s manipulation. I’m hoping Tech’s contraption will have a role in bringing him back.

We’ve been introduced to General Rampart, who is in charge of transitioning from clone soldiers to a volunteer military force (Project War Mantle, first heard about in Rogue One, when Jyn was naming off various projects while looking for what turned out to be Stardust). This force will be trained by clones, and then they’ll be transitioned out completely. The Kaminoans, of course, are alarmed by this development, as their entire business is dependent on the government needing–and paying for–their clones. Lama Su and Nala Se talk about creating an even more enhanced clone, with abilities that would make the Empire want them. I’m guessing they mean the enhancements that the Bad Batch have, and they say that they already have one to use–Crosshair–but I’m also suspicious that they may want Omega, too, for her mysterious powers. So they’ll be hunted for even more reasons, is my guess.

So there’s a lot to chew on in this 25-minute episode, and I can’t wait to see where it all leads!

What did you think of “Replacements”? Let me know in the comments, and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Star Wars The Bad Batch: Episode One-Aftermath

Clone Force 99

When Disney+ announced that a new Star Wars animated series would be based on the Bad Batch, or Clone Force 99, from Clone Wars, I wasn’t sure how I felt about that. Like a lot of other people, I wasn’t particularly crazy about them, though I didn’t hate them, either. I was more like, meh. I could take them or leave them.

But I also knew that, given the chance to expand on the characters in their own show, Dave Filoni and crew would do a great job and I’d probably love it.

Well, my intuition was correct, and I just loved the first episode, “Aftermath.” I’m not going to do a plot synopsis, but just make a few remarks about what I thought.

One big question that was answered was: will their inhibitor chips work? Will they feel compelled to execute Order 66 or question it? Turns out, none of them were aware of the Order at all, proving that they’re chips did not work. All except Crosshair. Though his teammates didn’t know it, it was clear to us viewers that his chip was working at least a little with his “Good soldiers follow orders,” bit. Crosshair is my least favorite of the group, so I’m okay with him being the bad guy here and going over to the Empire (though in his defense, it was the chip, after all, and one that got ramped up by Tarkin’s orders). But the fact that one of them had a chip that worked and the rest didn’t makes for a more interesting story.

As far as the characters go, Wrecker, Tech, and Echo remain pretty much the same as we saw them in Clone Wars. But Hunter–who seemed the least interesting character in CW–turns out to be the one who gets more depth. Makes sense, since he has to make some tough moral decisions in the show, and I approve of every one of them.

Omega

Concerning Omega: again, I wasn’t sure how I was going to react to her. When I saw the trailers, I thought, oh, okay, a kid to appeal to the younger audience; but what surprised me is that I absolutely fell in love with her, lol. She’s just so darn adorable and sweet, following the BB around like an adoring puppy. What’s really interesting about her–aside from the fact that she’s a female clone–is that she seems Force-sensitive. A lot of fans have been floating that theory around, and I have to agree, that’s what it looks like. If so, that would be fascinating. Is it chance? Or something more–we know that Palpatine likes to tinker with the Force and cloning, but how early did he start? Hmmm….and that stone on her headpiece–is it just decorative, or does it mean something? Questions…

Anyway, I love that Hunter goes back to Kamino for her. He couldn’t save one child, Caleb Dume (more on him in a minute), but he can save Omega. I was a little surprised that the BB didn’t know at once that she was a clone; except Tech, and as he said, “I thought it was obvious.” Obvious to us, I guess; but they weren’t expecting anything like her. By the way, I thought it was interesting the way the clones on Kamino all looked the same again after Order 66. There’s no individuality, something the Jedi encouraged in them; but now they have no use for it. It saddens me. They seem to be meaner, too, the bullies, lol. But I really am curious to know what becomes of them in this new order, how they adapt, both the BB and the “Regs.”

Caleb Dume, aka Kanan Jarrus

So let’s talk about the appearance of Depa Billaba and Caleb Dume at the start of the episode. They’re on the planet Kaller, fighting against the Separatists when Order 66 comes through. From what I understand, this scene was already done in Canon in a comic; here, some details were changed but the main idea is basically the same.

Was it necessary that it be this particular Jedi and her Padawan in this scene? I don’t think so. They could have put any other Jedi in there, and it could have worked fine. I’ve heard some fans of the comic complaining that they’re changing something that was already Canon, and what was the point? It’s just “fan service.”

On the one hand, I get it. It was unnecessary. It most certainly was fan service. On the other hand, am I upset about it? Not really. Aren’t the creators of the show doing their job with “fan service”? Showing something the fans love to see? I, for one, thought it was kind of cool to see Depa and Caleb (I haven’t read the comics, you see, and I’m betting plenty of other fans haven’t, either), even though we already know what happened to the Padawan who becomes Kanan Jarrus in Rebels. At any rate, I don’t feel strongly about it one way or another. It was neat (if heartbreaking). Let’s move on.

Everything about the episode is great, from the stunning visuals to the score to the fact that we can just jump right into the story without having to learn about who the characters are and where we are in the timeline, etc. It’s a great ride from beginning to end.

I’m really looking forward to seeing where this show is going to go, and from the track record of both Clone Wars and Rebels, I’m guessing it’s going to be spectacular.

What did you think of “Aftermath”? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

The Genndy Tartakovsky Clone Wars

Disney+ has added a few “Vintage” Star Wars content recently, including the Ewok movies “Caravan of Courage” and “The Battle for Endor,” something called “The Story of the Faithful Wookiee” and an Ewok cartoon. I’m not particularly interested in any of that.

What I am interested in is the “Genndy Tartakovsky” Clone Wars animated series that ran on Cartoon Network in 2003. Back then, it was just a cartoon that I didn’t care about, for kids, a spin-off of the prequels that I didn’t like. I wasn’t a kid, didn’t have a kid, and had no use for Cartoon network, lol.

Now, of course, my eyes have been opened to the wonderful, imperfect prequels, and I adore Dave Filoni’s Clone Wars. How could my curiosity not have been aroused? So I watched it (the original 15-minute shows are grouped into two hour-long “volumes.”)

At first, it seemed so alien to me, I didn’t think I was going to like it. There was very little dialogue, a whole LOT of battles, explosions, and shoot-em ups, and I thought, yeah, 8-10 year-old boys (or girls) would eat this stuff up, lol. Even the Clones didn’t speak too much; they communicated through hand signals, which was actually pretty cool.

Anakin battles Ventress.

In the first volume, we see how Dooku and Ventress meet, and how Anakin pursued Ventress, battled her, and defeated her. Mace Windu goes up against some battle droids, and just seems like Superman he’s so amazing. Kit Fisto does some battle underwater, while Obi-Wan leads the Clones in battle in an unnamed city (perhaps Christophsis?). Typically, I felt there wasn’t enough Obi-Wan. There can never be enough Obi-Wan, lol. Towards the end of Volume One we meet General Grievous, who goes up against Ki-Adi-Mundi and other Jedi.

In Volume Two, there are still a lot of battles, but much more dialogue and actual storytelling. Yoda and Padme go to the rescue of Luminara and Bariss Offee, who have done battle with droids in the Illum Temple and become trapped. Eventually, the whole things coalesces into an over-arching story arc that is reminiscent of the plot of the book Labyrinth of Evil (which, published in 2005, probably took its cue from this series). Grievous is sent to attack Coruscant and kidnap Chancellor Palpatine, while Shak-Ti and two other Jedi are tasked with protecting him and getting him to a bunker deep within the city. Anakin and Obi-Wan, meanwhile, are sent to a planet to help the natives get their warriors back from the Separatists, who are transforming them into gruesome monsters (I’m not sure why? But I’m glad this little side-plot didn’t make it into the novel Labyrinth of Evil, lol). It was supposed to be a final test for Anakin, since he didn’t take the Jedi Trials in the usual way. The events of Volume Two lead right up to the beginning of Revenge of the Sith.

Palpatine and General Grievous.

In the end, I did enjoy this version of Clone Wars. I like the Manga-inspired animation, and there’s some humor in there, too. The Genndy Tartakovsky Clone Wars is just a lot of fun.

Did you watch this series back in the day? What did you think of it? If you’re watching it for the first time, what’s your opinion? Let me know in the comments, and we’ll talk about it!

Liked this post? Hit the Like button, comment below, or follow Star Wars: My Point of View.

Check out my sister blog The Star Wars Reader. I regularly review Star Wars books, both Canon and Legends.

Wet, grumpy Obi-Wan, just because.