The HoloFiles

REVIEW: Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Season 3, Episodes 6-7

By George & Josh Bate

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for The Bad Batch – Season 3, Episodes 6-7

From the early days of Season 1, Star Wars: The Bad Batch has unfolded as an ensemble piece on multiple levels. The series’ title reflects the focus on a team of special clone troopers, which, by definition, is an ensemble, but there’s far more complexity to The Bad Batch as an ensemble piece. Whether it be Cid, Phee, Rex, Cody, Cad Bane, Fennec Shand, or various others, the show has continually shown it can provide interesting depth and screentime to characters beyond the main crew. This particular facet of storytelling in The Bad Batch is evidenced once again in “Infiltration” and “Extraction,” two new episodes of the third and final season.

The episodes kick off with a re-introduction to several of the series’ broader ensemble players – Captain Rex, Senator Riyo Chuchi, and Avi Singh. Rex has coordinated a meeting between the politicians, who interestingly remark on the Emperor’s concern that systems and organizations may one day unite to stand against him. It’s not long into this meeting, however, that proceedings are interrupted by a mysterious Imperial assassin.

Teased in the promotional material for Season 3 and briefly appearing in Season 2, this class of Imperial assassin is new to Star Wars. Further details are revealed by Crosshair later in the episode, but already the story kicks off in an intriguing manner with this new enemy – an Imperial assassin who appears to be another clone of Jango Fett. 

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

Rex takes the Imperial assassin back to his base on Teth, the purple planet that appeared in the 2008 film Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Rex’s storyline in The Bad Batch has intersected at times with that of Clone Force 99 as Rex has his sights on liberating clones around the galaxy and improving their well-being in a quickly changing galaxy. This storyline is strong and interesting enough to serve as a television series on its own, but also works perfectly well in the context of The Bad Batch. This is especially the case as the captured Imperial assassin possesses a data puck that reveals the Empire are pursuing Omega, which allows Rex’s story to connect with that of the Bad Batch.

Seeing as how their interests have aligned once again, the Bad Batch arrives on Teth to team up with Rex and his crew. Similar to the last episode in which Hunter distrusted Crosshair, this two-part episode sees Howzer, the clone from the Ryloth arc of Season 2, distrust Crosshair given his history with the Empire. However, unlike the last episode, this plot thread of distrusting Crosshair doesn’t work quite as well here. Howzer was an extremely interesting character in Season 2, whose arc is unfortunately reduced to distrusting Crosshair in Season 3 so far. The idea of Crosshair facing consequences for his alignment with the Empire remains interesting, albeit one that has far greater emotional resonance when the distrust comes from members within the Bad Batch like Crosshair.

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

Using knowledge required when he was an agent of the Empire, Crosshair reveals some more about the Imperial assassin. He reports that these clones are part of a deep cover project by Dr. Hemlock in which identities are erased and soldiers undergo extreme conditioning. He remarks that the few who come out of it alive are left particularly twisted. While this reveal offers yet another answer to the question of what happened to clones after Order 66, it isn’t particularly novel or remarkable, meaning fans who have developed theories about the identities of these masked assassins will likely come away disappointed. 

Things heat up considerably in this two-part arc when another Imperial assassin arrives in order to silence and kill their comrade held captive by Rex. After infiltrating Rex’s facility (far too easily), this second assassin completes his mission and kills the other assassin, ensuring that he does not spill secrets about Tantiss or anything Empire-related to Rex. 

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

Adding another layer of conflict is the arrival of Wolffe and his crew of clones, who have arrived on the planet to capture Omega and bring her back to Dr. Hemlock for experimentation. At this point, there are a number of different individuals/groups at play with a range of intersecting emotions. The Bad Batch are on one side, wanting to protect Omega and keep her out of Imperial hands. Rex and his crew, meanwhile, are desperate to find out more about Tantiss, while also trying to survive the infiltration of their hidden base. Then there’s the Imperial assassin, who has completed his initial mission of assassinating his colleague and has now turned his sights to Omega. Finally, Wolffe and his team represent a separate Imperial entity, who, despite their converging interests with the Imperial assassin, find themselves at odds with the masked killer. All of these different characters and motivations at play make for an exciting conclusion to the two-part arc and move the story forward on a number of fronts.

With this, much of the second part of this two-episode arc focuses on action and suspense. The highlight of this action comes from the duel between Crosshair and the Imperial assassin, who have an intense battle at the edge of a massive waterfall. The visuals depicting the waterfall at night are impressive to say the least and once again showcase just how beautiful Star Wars animation can be. It’s also in this battle that a more subtle consequence of killing Tech off is felt. With Tech’s death, the audience was taught an important lesson that reshapes the way in which you view the show: that none of our main characters are safe. So, when there is a life-or-death situation involving a member of the Bad Batch, like Crosshair and the assassin at the edge of the waterfall, the stakes feel considerably higher. If they killed Tech off previously, what’s stopping them from killing Crosshair off now? Especially when encased in a small part of a far larger story as The Bad Batch, the tendency for stories to unfold more predictability may naturally dominate, but this is not the case here. Following the death of Tech and the announcement that Season 3 is the show’s final season, The Bad Batch keeps the audience on its toes by ensuring that no one is safe.

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

After narrowly surviving his encounter with the Imperial assassin, Crosshair rejoins with the Bad Batch and Rex, who are confronted by Wolffe. Fans of The Clone Wars and Rebels will recognize Wolffe, who first appeared in the Malevolence arc of The Clone Wars Season 1. Wolffe is a fan favorite from his time in both shows, and his appearance in The Bad Batch serves as nice connective tissue to his roles in The Clone Wars and Rebels. In viewing this climactic interaction between Wolffe and Rex, many audience members will know that the two eventually team up in Rebels. Wolffe’s inclusion in The Bad Batch begins to set the stage for this eventual team up as Wolffe decides to let Rex and the others go, prioritizing his loyalty to his clone trooper brothers over his loyalty to the Empire. It will be interesting to see what kind of repercussions Wolffe will face for this betrayal and how he gets from where he is at in The Bad Batch to where we find him in Rebels. 

With the Bad Batch and Rex escaping, the end of the two-part arc sees the Bad Batch commit once again to protecting Omega. In order to do so now, they set their sights on Hemlock as they conclude that protecting Omega will require more knowledge about why she is so important to the Empire. In this sense, “Infiltration” and “Extraction” nicely set the stage for the rest of the season. The team will not retreat, but, instead, proactively pursue information about Hemlock and stop the Empire from pursuing Omega.

The Bad Batch Season 3 review

On a final note, it’s worth pointing out that this two-part arc features one of the best jokes of the entire series. Aboard their ship, Omega delivers a hilarious remark about Batcher, “Don’t worry. She only bites half the time.” Amidst the gravity and severity of its overarching plot, The Bad Batch still finds a way to make us laugh.

VERDICT: 8/10

The Bad Batch’s latest two-episode arc sees the crew reteam with Rex as they confront a new class of Imperial assassin. Although narrative developments regarding this class of Imperial assassin unfold somewhat disappointingly and the plot point about Howzer distrusting Crosshair pales in comparison to last week’s dynamic between Hunter and Crosshair, there is plenty to still enjoy about these episodes. Most strikingly, these episodes demonstrate the series’ appeal as an ensemble piece that extends far beyond the core team at the heart of the show. With multiple characters holding differing, intersecting motivations, the suspense is palpable and the tension is high. A beautifully designed waterfall battle between Crosshair and an Imperial assassin highlights the subtle ways in which Tech’s death in Season 2 affects audience expectations, while the climactic confrontation between Wolffe and Rex is interesting when considering where their relationship is at in Rebels. With an increased focus on overarching narrative over one-off episodes, The Bad Batch’s third season has established a captivating plot to drive the show forward toward its finale.

The HoloFiles

The HoloFiles is a website and series of social media accounts, including Star Wars Holocron, Marvel Tesseract, DC Motherbox, Film Codex, and Horror Necronomicon. We love cinema and television, and aim to spread positivity across different fandoms. Come to us for news, reviews, interviews, trivia facts, quotes, behind the scenes photos, analytic features, and more!