Warning: Spoilers ahead for the finale of the first season of The Bad Batch.
Part one of the two-part season 1 finale for The Bad Batch was one of the strongest episodes in the first season of the show. There was tension, a compelling lead-up to a final confrontation, and a cliffhanger ending that set up perfectly for an emotional final episode.
Unfortunately, the second part of the finale didn’t quite deliver on the promise set up by part one.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the final episode of the first season of The Bad Batch, titled “Kamino Lost.” There was some good character development for Crosshair, touching moments as Omega and the rest of the Batch watched their “home” burn to the (ocean) ground, and several high-stakes moments where life and death were in the balance.
But as far as season finales go, there was quite a bit lacking.
The vast majority of the episode was spent focusing on the Batch escaping from the collapsing city. In fact, aside from the brief intro on board Vice Admiral Rampart’s Star Destroyer and the closing moments at an Imperial base built into a mountain, the rest of the episode was focused almost exclusively on the Batch escaping and nothing else.
While there was a constant threat of destruction in most of those scenes and some solid character moments between the six clones, there weren’t really any bigger implications after the Batch escaped Kamino.
Yes, Crosshair is now in a more interesting position even though he still appears loyal to the Empire, and the Batch are all still alive and back out into the galaxy, but what else did we learn from the episode?
Choosing to end the episode with Nala Se being taking to an Imperial facility was an odd choice, too. I personally was expecting another scene once that one finished, but instead, the credits rolled, and season 1 came to a close.
With so many story threads still up in the air and so many characters introduced in the first season, it would’ve been nice to see some hint of at least one of those in a closing scene. What is Rex up to, and is he going to help the Batch more? What about the bounty hunters? Cad Bane and Fennec Shand still have stories to tell, and Boba Fett’s name was dropped earlier in the season, hinting at an appearance down the line. There’s also the remaining clones and the fact that they don’t seem particularly pleased with the Empire’s decision to demolish Kamino. That was hinted at during the beginning of “Kamino Lost,” but it wasn’t returned to.
There’s hope for The Bad Batch
Luckily, we know we’re getting a second season of The Bad Batch, and I think the best is yet to come for the series.
Traditionally, the first season of Star Wars’ animated shows aren’t the strongest. The first season of The Clone Wars had some strong entries, but it had several misfires amidst those hits. The opening season of Star Wars Rebels was fraught with even more misses, but it still had moments of promise and intrigue.
While I would argue season 1 of The Bad Batch is overall a better first season than the debut seasons of those other two shows, it still had a few missteps that pockmarked the season.
If Clone Wars and Rebels are any indication of what is to come after the first season, then the future of The Bad Batch should be extremely bright.
A really nice foundation was set in the first season of The Bad Batch. We were introduced to a number of new characters, saw cameos of characters we already knew, and learned more about the early stages of the Empire. We also have several threads that still need tying up, and there are connections to other Star Wars properties that can lend themselves to more great story-telling.
Season 2 (and possibly beyond) brings the hope of seeing a clone uprising against the Empire, the fleshing out of the Empire’s cloning efforts before The Mandalorian and The Rise of Skywalker, a potential look at a teenage Boba Fett, and the explanation of why Rex ends up “retiring” to an old AAT walker in the desert.
“Kamino Lost” wasn’t a bad episode, but it failed to provide a springboard into the second season like expected. That doesn’t mean the first season was a disappointment overall, however, and it doesn’t mean the future isn’t full of possibilities for The Bad Batch.
Season 2 of The Bad Batch will start streaming on Disney+ sometime in 2022.