The Bad Batch season two has come to an end, and it ends on a rather upsetting note for Cloneforce 99. In many ways, it’s like The Empire Strikes Back, with its ending being downbeat but hopeful, a familial reveal and the betrayal from a scoundrel.
In episode 15, the Bad Batch learns that Hemlock will be appearing at an Imperial summit on Eriadu. This visit to the planet is much appreciated, it’s extremely important as Tarkin’s homeworld in both canon and Legends, but this is the first time it’s been on screen. While not a snowy planet, the high mountains, rail car and long drop give the episode a James Bond feel, with a dash of Captain America: The First Avenger.
They want to attach a homing beacon to his ship to track it, which is a simple mission for them, but things seem to go wrong from the off. They have to take a perilous rail car to Tarkin’s base, while avoiding sensors, not easy at the height. Thankfully, everyone makes it.
The summit itself is filled with surprising but fitting cameos, featuring everyone the audience would expect in a meeting of top Imperials. Hemlock’s suggestion of experimenting on the clones could have done with more fleshing out here, it wasn’t deep enough. Episode 14 already made it clear what he was doing. He does get some surprising pushback, but nothing comes of it.
Inside the base, the Bad Batch are able to skulk around quite easily for such a secure location, and place the beacon. They’re not the only ones to realise security is lax, Saw Gerrera has planned a mission to blow up the facility to remove the top Imperial leadership. Hunter’s and Tech’s following conversation is the best part here, as they urge Saw not to go through with his plan.
After all, they need Hemlock to return to Tantiss to show them its location, else Crosshair and all the clones will perish. They’re telling Saw to not fight what he hates, but to help them save what they love. But Saw is too far gone to listen to reason, in keeping with his character of an anarchist. He doesn’t care about any system.
This alerts security, forcing the Bad Batch to flee back on the rail car. Saw makes his choice to detonate the charges, and there is an excellent close up of a furious Tarkin. The animation in this scene is phenomenal. Of course, this destroys Hemlock’s ship, and the Batch’s chance of finding Crosshair for now.
The more immediate consequence though is that it shorts out the power to the rail car. Tech is forced to make a trip to restart the power, but a V-Wing strike knocks him off, and shoots the car he’s hanging onto below. This is a shocking moment, not least because Tech got some amazing character development this season, and is many people’s favourite. A side note is that across the season V-Wings have been shown to be extremely deadly, a ship truly to be feared.
Omega is badly wounded in their escape, so they flee to Ord Mantell to AZ-3, and to Cid. The group is processing Tech’s death on their own, a sign of their broken unity. Cid shows some uncharacteristic sympathy, but only because she’s turned the group over to Hemlock. The payoff to her warning the Bad Batch about the Empire’s arrival on the planet turned out to be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
What follows is an incredibly brief fight, followed by Scorch knocking out Omega and capturing her. Hemlock even manages to take her away. This development again is a huge shock, and puts more urgency on getting to Tantiss. The final scene with just Hunter, Wrecker and Echo is them vowing to not rest until they find Omega, a noble goal showing their love for her.
The final scene for the season is Omega landing on Tantiss, and finding out that Emerie Karr is actually her sister. This is another bombshell development that raises many questions that for now have little answers.
But both this and Hemlock’s wider plans for the clones are left to a probable next season, one that will hopefully arrive much quicker. Season two has been very up and down, both in quality and tone. A probable Season three looks like it will have a much tighter focus on finding Omega, something that’s desperately needed.