Why The Bad Batch season 2 won’t lose out to The Mandalorian season 3

Imperial troops escort Hunter. "Return to Kamino." The Bad Batch. Courtesy of StarWars.com.
Imperial troops escort Hunter. "Return to Kamino." The Bad Batch. Courtesy of StarWars.com. /

Now that the second trailer for The Bad Batch season two is out, and Disney has confirmed both its release date and episode release information, audiences can see that the latter half of the season will overlap with The Mandalorian season three.

This has caused some worry that Cloneforce 99 will get crushed under the weight of the fight for Mandalore, but this is unlikely.

This is for a few reasons. The effects of the Star Wars funnel, the marketing of both shows, and the release date of The Mandalorian compared to where The Bad Batch will be. Taking each reason in turn, there’s a compelling argument that The Bad Batch won’t lose out to The Mandalorian, but will actually gain.

The Star Wars funnel is an idea that the YouTube channel Star Wars Explained has come up with, and it’s that each medium of Star Wars content attracts varying amounts of fans. For example, the live action films are at the top of this, as the most amount of people watch them.

Live action TV shows are next, attracting less but not an insignificant amount of viewers. Animated content sits below this, with less people watching it because of the misperception that animation is for kids, and that some people might not even know there is an animated show out. Books come next, and then comics come at the bottom, meaning they tend to only attract a dedicated audience.

Because The Bad Batch sits in a tier lower than The Mandalorian, less people will watch The Bad Batch anyway. The fans watching The Bad Batch will definitely be watching The Mandalorian alongside the show, and mean it won’t lose viewers. The Mandalorian drawing a more casual crowd to Disney+ might even encourage them to check out this other Star Wars show that’s coming out at the same time, thus increasing viewership.

Turning to marketing, it’s fair to say that The Bad Batch season two has had a bumpy ride. The show was supposed to come out much earlier in 2022, then the trailer released at Star Wars Celebrations trailer promised a fall release, and then at D23 this was delayed until January. Marketing for season two only properly began on December 5, less than a month before the show’s debut.

People might have forgotten that The Bad Batch is even coming out, and might miss the show’s start date. This in turn might encourage them to simply binge it later in the year, once it’s fully out. But The Mandalorian, being the flagship show of Disney+, will likely have much more marketing, and make people remember that it’s coming out.

Finally, it’s worth remembering where The Bad Batch will be in its season when The Mandalorian comes out. On March 1, the release date of The Mandalorian season three episode one, The Bad Batch will have already had ten episodes, and be over halfway. Audiences that are already that invested in The Bad Batch are unlikely to drop the show completely. While they might not watch it straight away, they will come back to it.

Of course, people do only have so many hours in a day, and might initially put watching The Bad Batch off. But it’s unlikely that it will have such a catastrophic effect on viewership that some are predicting, and it certainly won’t tank the show. If viewership is the only metric for measuring a show’s success, then Andor is a complete failure, and no one is saying that.