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SW: Bad Batch Ep. #5

Courtesy+of+Disney+Platform+Distribution.

Courtesy of Disney Platform Distribution.

David Eckstein-Schoemann, Reporter

It took a while, but we finally get to see the titular group take on a real mission in this week’s episode of Bad Batch

In “Rampage,” the group are looking for information on Fennec Shand, the bounty hunter who was tracking Omega in last week’s episode. They decide to go to Ord Mantell where they meet with an informant named Cid who offers to find out more about Shand if they can do a job for her. In this case, the group has to track down Zygerrian slavers who have kidnapped a “child” named Muchi if they want to receive any information. From here, the group has to face multiple obstacles and setbacks if they want to complete the mission unscathed. 

As someone who’s been watching this series for the past month, this episode is more along the lines of what I wanted to see with something like Bad Batch. While we have gotten a good amount of action and character so far, it’s nice to finally see the group take on an official mission since the Clone Wars ended. I like the idea that they would become a part of the mercenary world and take on jobs like this. The bounty hunter part of this world has always fascinated me as there’s a lot that can be done here with it’s more grounded perspective and shady characters. While we’re seeing more of this side of the universe in other shows such as “The Mandalorian,” to once again visit this type of world is always cool to see.

Courtesy of Disney Platform Distribution.

The voice cast as always is wonderful. Rhea Perlman who people may recognize from films and shows like “Matilda” or “Cheers” voices Cid and her cynical personality makes her perfect for this role. I like how they set her up as someone who seems like a potential ally as she has a history of working with the Jedi. But as Star Wars fans know, it’s unwise to trust a character based on background alone. Perlman’s delivery is especially good as even though she states she’s trustworthy, it’s done in a way that leaves people guessing of what her true intentions are. While things may seem fine now, there’s no telling when an opportunity will arise that will cause this character to change sides. 

Courtesy of Disney Platform Distribution.

The mission seems pretty straight forward, however things are not as easy as they seem. The Bad Batch are beaten down by the Zygerrian’s Brezak almost immediately and are captured by the slavers, leaving Omega to free them on her own. Fans of the previous series know that Zygerrians are one of the more nefarious races in the Star Wars universe. It’s not hard to see why as they have a rich history of capturing people to be sold as slaves. They justify their work since the Republic was replaced by the Empire. This gives viewers an idea of how the massive change in government has allowed so many outlaws to cause mayhem across the galaxy.

Courtesy of Disney Platform Distribution.

 

While the mission aspect plays out how you think it would, they do throw in a few surprises that make it interesting. For example, it is eventually revealed that Muchi is not an ordinary child, but an adolescent rancor that’s been captured. While I’m usually good at seeing surprises like this, I will admit I didn’t see this coming. It eventually leads to a cool action scene where Omega frees Muchi which leads the creature to lash out against its captors. Rancors have an interesting place in the Star Wars lore, as they’re often seen as one of this universe’s most iconic monsters. They have made numerous appearances in media such as the famous pit scene in “Return of the Jedi,” and even becoming challenging boss battles like in games like “The Force Unleashed.” To see an adolescent version of the creature throwing slavers and their winged creatures around like ragdolls was very entertaining to see. While Star Wars fans do enjoy this universe for its dynamic characters and big stories, we sometimes want to watch something as simple and crazy as Wrecker getting into a fistfight with a baby rancor.

Diptych courtesy of David Eckstein-Schoemann.

 

The episode then ends with a surprise reveal: Muchi was being searched for by Bib Fortuna, who die-hard fans know is Jabba’s right hand man. Before fans go too far with fan theories, Muchi is not the same rancor from “Return of the Jedi,” which was surprising considering the time period that this series takes place. I guess if Jabba can have a son in “Star Wars: The Clones Wars” that was never mentioned beforehand, then he can have multiple rancors.

While the story wraps up pretty nicely, they do leave some plot threads open ended that may have major implications for the series. One of the most notable examples being Wrecker having a headache before the mission starts, showing signs that his inhibitor chip is acting up which may lead to trouble down the road. Even the final scene of the episode with Hunter looking suspicious of Cid does create a lot of tension as we’re not sure of what will happen in the future.

“Rampage” definitely lives up to its name as it gives us new developments, monsters fights, and enough subtle hints that will have fans question what will happen over the course of the series. 

 

Rating: 5 / 5 Spinnaker Sails.

____

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