“The Bad Batch,” a new animated Star Wars show began streaming on Disney+ on Star Wars Day (May 4). From the same studio that created The Clone Wars series, “The Bad Batch” picks up from where the seventh season of The Clone Wars left off with the declaration of the deadly Order 66, an event also seen in Revenge of the Sith.
“The Bad Batch” follows Clone Force 99, a squad of five clone troopers who call themselves the “Bad Batch.” The group was first introduced in season 7 of “The Clone Wars,” taking center stage in the first four episodes.
Each member of the squad possesses genetic mutations that give them certain desirable traits — Hunter has enhanced sensory abilities, Crosshair has improved eyesight — causing them to have significantly different appearances and personalities than the regular clones.
“The Clone Wars” is well known for doing something “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith” never tried to do: it gave the clones humanity.
Clones have names, they interact with each other and they form friendships. The show makes the viewer feel attached to these clones, making their turn into conforming, unforgiving soldiers after Order 66 all the more jarring.
“The Bad Batch” takes place during a time period that the main Star Wars movies and shows haven’t touched on: the fall of the Old Republic and the rise of the Empire immediately following Revenge of the Sith. Clone Force 99 must find their place in the galaxy as it falls to Emperor Palpatine’s dictatorship.
Meanwhile, the regular ranks of clone troopers are considered for replacement with conscripted soldiers by Tarkin, the same man who commanded the Death Star in A New Hope. Containing characters who have yet to be included in chronologically later Star Wars content, this Star Wars story has an uncertain future for the main cast.
The series sees the addition of Omega, a child female clone who joins the Bad Batch on their journey. She’s an entirely new character, posing many questions fan theories are trying to answer. The show is sure to include references to “The Mandalorian” with the appearance of a younger Fennec Shand and the similar storyline of a battle-hardened man taking on a parental role for a kid.
Fans of The Clone Wars are glad to see many characters from the original series return in “The Bad Batch,” which is scheduled to have 16 episodes this season. It is just one of many Star Wars shows planned to release on Disney+ in the near future.
New episodes release Fridays on Disney+.