The HoloFiles

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ‘The Bad Batch’ Star Dee Bradley Baker Talks Season 3, Crosshair’s Arc, & a “Beautiful” Final Episode

By George & Josh Bate

Bad Batch Dee Bradley Baker interview

Hunter, Wrecker, and company return to the fold this week with new episodes of Star Wars: The Bad Batch! Ahead of the third and final season, The HoloFiles had the opportunity to participate in a roundtable interview with the voice of the Bad Batch himself Dee Bradley Baker about the new season, Crosshair’s redemption arc, emotions surrounding the series finale, and more.

One of the more intriguing elements of The Bad Batch has been Crosshair, an expert marksman who unexpectedly aligned himself with the Empire and against his clone brothers following Order 66. In Season 2, Crosshair finally turned his back on the Empire, which led to him being captured by Imperial forces and held in the cloning facility on Mount Tantiss. Baker reflected on the evolution of Crosshair’s character in the interview. “Crosshair is a complex character, whose interesting because he starts as a selfish, grumpy, incredibly competent person,” Baker explained. “And then [he] is caught with his own selfishness and also some bad calls he has in terms of what the lay of the landscape is. And, so, he is someone who needs to be sprung from two different cages. One is the actual prison cage that he has been trapped in. And the other is a personal psychological cage.“

This season begins with Crosshair and Omega both being held captive by the Empire on Tantiss. Baker went into detail about how Omega is a perfect counterpart for Crosshair this season. “I think [Crosshair] is also trapped in because he’s a beaten man,” Baker said. “He’s lost, and he thinks all is lost. He think it’s he is done, and this is completely done. And the counter to that is Omega, who has learned over these past two seasons with the Bad Batch, to be not only confident in herself, but to have a sense of optimism.”

Crosshair’s journey has led him from being with the Batch, to a devout loyalty to the Empire, and then a lone wolf. Baker teased how Crosshair is going to repair the relationships with his brothers after turning on them in the new season. “Crosshair has got to walk through the fires that he has set,” Baker detailed. “He’s got to make an honest effort and do the work to not only get himself out and to get himself free, but also to make good on who he is and where he stands with his brothers and sisters. So that personal journey is part of what’s at play in this new season.”

Bad Batch Dee Bradley Baker interview

Beyond his work as Crosshair and others in The Bad Batch, Baker has appeared in various Star Wars projects for almost two decades now. Baker explained his personal journey in the franchise, and how his fandom led set him on a path to become a mainstay in Star Wars animation. “Star Wars drew me in when I was a kid,” Baker revealed. “That was just a bucket of of space water thrown on my head that completely changed and galvanized my young mind. I immediately had my parents create for me a Jawa costume for Halloween back in 1977, so I was in love with Star Wars. I fell hard for it, as did many, many people. It’s been gratifying to jump into that and to find my place in this amazing universe that that I loved so much as a kid.”

Across the two seasons so far, The Bad Batch has been praised for its wholesome depiction of a group of unique clones, all of whom have their own quirks and personalities. Baker explained how his favorite moment from the show involved Tech and Omega in Season 2. “My two favorite moments would be one would be Tech in the water cave, talking to Omega about how he processes the world differently. That resonated with a lot of people. And that might have to be my favorite moment because it’s something that totally fits in with the story, but it’s something that people are hungry to hear and to feel is at play and acknowledged and accepted in the world.”

Bad Batch Dee Bradley Baker interview

The Bad Batch has continued a story arc introduced in The Clone Wars that has made clone troopers individuals with unique personalities. Baker explained how this is a theme years in the making and was initially implemented by George Lucas and Dave Filoni years ago. “[The clones] are different people,” Baker remarked. “That’s the key is that they may look the same, essentially, although they have, tattoos and facial hair and stuff like that. It’s cool to see how they want to express their individuality because they are individuals. That’s the real key to it is they are individuals. And that’s what I think people love about this. What I love about them is they’re not just robots. I mean, in the prequels, it is humans versus robots. And that’s really what George Lucas and Dave [Filoni] underscored when they launched into the Clone Wars series way back when is that these guys are human and they are distinct individuals. And so a big part of the mission for doing all these shows all these seasons, is to keep these guys their own people.”

Given that The Bad Batch is heading into its third and final season, The HoloFiles asked Baker about his initial reaction to the highly anticipated final episode of the series. While hesitant to give anything away, Baker said that “the emotions that are in play are real human emotions,” before adding that “there’s a lot of authenticity that’s in play with how the season finale and in the epilogue play out.” Baker teased that the final episode is “very affecting. It’s very beautiful. And I’ll defy you to avoid tears.” It looks as if Star Wars fans might need to have their tissues handy come the end of the show.

Bad Batch Dee Bradley Baker interview

Speaking more on this being the end of The Bad Batch as a series, Baker revealed that a part of him was happy that the show was concluding. “I was actually heartened to hear that they said we’re finishing it with three seasons,” Baker said. “That was a sour note for me when we stopped The Clone Wars without finishing The Clone Wars. And I thought as all fans did, that was the end of it. The creative pipeline is smashed, as Dave [Filoni] said, and we can’t recover the elements. We’re not gonna do it. [Another season] ain’t gonna happen. But then it did. And so that was the lovely thing is that The Clone Wars got this wonderful, satisfying, devastating finish, and The Bad Batch get their own finish too.“

Baker went on to praise the rest of the cast and crew working on The Bad Batch, describing himself as just one part of the larger team. “Yes, I voice these characters, but I did not write them,” Baker continued. “I did not direct these episodes. I didn’t animate it. I didn’t light it. There’s a whole collaborative army of these artistic, brilliant technicians and artists who are creating every single frame. And so I temper my actors ego with the perspective that this is a grand collaboration of a story.”

Listen to the full interview with Dee Bradley Baker below:

Stay tuned to The HoloFiles for continued coverage of The Bad Batch Season 3, including weekly reviews, episode analyses, and more.

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