Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Season 2, the review: old heroes and new (expanded) adventures

Star Wars: The Bad Batch – Season 2 review: new adventures for Clone Force 99, back with a second season dedicated to the rise of the Empire. Between quotes, connections and new missions (some successful, some less). Streamed on Disney+.

Voiceover, action in media res and we immediately feel the desire to restart with the most influential film saga in history. After all, the universe of Star Wars continues to play with our dreams and our imagination, along roads that are increasingly connected and increasingly expanded, in a general framework that makes it (despite some creaks) still wonderfully vivid and current. A question of generations, a question of authors, a question of language. A language that alternates between cinema, seriality and animation. And animation is one of the strengths of the Far Away Galaxy, thanks to the genius of Dave Filonithat animator who wrote one of the most important pages of Star Wars thanks to the cult series Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Spin-off after spin-off, in an era where everything is malleable, another interlude of remarkable workmanship has arrived, Star Wars: The Bad Batchwhich is placed between Revenge of the Sith and A new hope.

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The Bad Batch 2: An image from the Star Wars series

In short, it takes place in the hottest, darkest and most complicated period of the LucasFilm epic, when the Empire was now absolute ruler, wedged between the corrupted fissures of a destroyed Republic. In its second season, The Bad Batch (available on Disney +, with every two episodes released weekly), confirms its narrative and visual peculiarity, leaving the modus operandi almost in the meantime according to a decidedly more elastic storyline that maintains a good dose of action. In short, everything changes in order not to change, with the Clones band finding itself facing new adventures and new challenges in a Galaxy that is trying to rebel (see the entry Andor), while below old characters, quotes alternate (the examination of Count Dooku and his legacy is interesting) and a certain personal evolution, especially towards the figure of Omega who has become the absolute protagonist.

The Bad Batch 2: the trailer of the new season of the animated series of Star Wars

The maturity of Omega

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The Bad Batch 2: a scene from the Star Wars series

So, in Star Wars: The Bad Batch 2 we find Hunter, Tech, Wrecker and Echo, we find Omega and a general approach not far from the first sixteen episodes. That is, short episodes in which the narrative focuses on self-contained adventures (the first two episodes are linked, but gradually there will be other stories developed in several parts) within a main story fragmented yet more mature. Net of a concept idealized for fans and for the younger audience. The past often returns – the execution of Order 66 or the destruction of Kamino, with which the previous season ended – and as an obligatory legacy it clings to the personalities of the protagonists, making us see Clone Force 99 in another aspect, or at least in another context.

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The Bad Batch 2: An image from the Star Wars series

After all, it is precisely the historical framework – in relation to Star Wars – to do of The Bad Batch 2 a series of junctures between the different chapters. The Empire is everywhere, the Stormtroopers have slowly infected the Galaxy to the edge of the Outer Rim and the population is subject to the rules of the Emperor. As anticipated in Andor, the sense of this season can be traced in the concept of resistance, both at the community and group level. Here Omega returns, that young Clone who – like Boba Fet – broke the rules of genetic alteration by finding a unique and primary identity. Omega is young, she is maturing and may not be very suitable for the mercenary missions of a Squad which, as never before, aims to protect and safeguard her.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch, the authors speak: “The series deals with a little-explored period of the saga”

Star Wars is a political act. Also in animated version

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The Bad Batch 2: An image from the Star Wars series

It is therefore complex to branch out a certain general plot linked to Star Wars: The Bad Batch, as each episode (there are sixteen) is a small chapter (some not very successful, some really delicious, such as the one set on Tatooine in which we witness a Wild Race very similar to the pods seen in Episode I), a speck in the middle of a diametral expansion that seems to know no stakes. However, it should be emphasized how much Dave Filoni’s show strengthens the imagination around the rise of the Empire thanks to four “defective” brothers who have decided to escape from homologation and Evil.

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The Bad Batch 2: An image from the Star Wars series

A very specific time frame, consequently illuminating how much the Saga is a political, cultural and social examination, even in an animated version. It’s the beauty of Star Warsand that’s the beauty of exercises like the one behind The Bad Batch, although it rotates around the point without ever seriously wanting to hit it. Finally, let us not forget the technical aspects and contributions. In terms of landscape, the animation has made incredible strides forward, outlining an engaging aesthetic although the 3D of the characters is not among the best notes (and it wasn’t even in Clone Wars). On the other hand, as tradition dictates, Kevin Kiner’s music fills the spaces and creates a direct connection between the three focal points of the show: epic, action and emotion.

Andor, Diego Luna speaks: “We explored what leads a person to become a revolutionary”

Conclusions

Lots of action, lots of dialogues and the usual good quality animation (here improved, but only for what concerns the backgrounds) for the second season of Star Wars: The Bad Batch. Concluding the review without spoilers, we point out how much Dave Filoni’s show is another interesting piece that expands the Star Wars universe, focusing on the darkest and most controversial era: the rise of the Empire. The episodes, however, often self-conclusive, revolve around the center without ever really aiming for it, with the main story advancing slowly and without any particular jolts. A prerogative that does not seem to have changed. Like it or not.

Because we like it

  • The animation, in terms of landscapes, has improved.
  • The evolution of Omega is interesting.
  • The connections, between quotes and characters.
  • Some episodes succeeded…

What’s wrong

  • … some less so, and don’t add much to the main story.
  • A main story that struggles to develop, with the narrative focusing on the almost self-conclusive episodes.

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