Star Wars: The Bad Batch Episode 14 “War Mantle” Review – by Adam D. Slobodzian
What an episode! This week we went on a fun ride and really moved the story forward by returning to Kamino, and getting an update on some familiar faces, and setting up for a face-off between Crosshair and Hunter. The visuals of this episode were absolutely incredible, especially the scenes on Daro in the night and during the dogfight.
Episode 14 REVIEW
The opening! Wow was this ever a fun and visually exciting sequence as we get to see another familiar face, Gregor, who is being chased and eventually captured by clone troopers. As with many of the episodes in this series, the intro sets up the story and mission for the episode as we catch up with the Bad Batch being contacted by Captain Rex who asks them to retrieve Gregor on the Planet Daro in the Outer Rim. We hear, in a conversation between the Batch, that they are currently still working for Cid and must alter their current mission to mount a rescue for Captain Rex’s friend.
Back to Kamino, after several episodes without seeing what is happening on Kamino we finally see that the rift between the Empire and the Kaminoans is growing as General Rampart has Crosshair keep a closer eye on the Kaminoans, and the Empire seems to be moving equipment and forces off planet. We also see young clone cadets inquire about why their training is occurring away from Kamino, which is against their protocol. The Prime Minister informs Nala Se that the Empire has cancelled all of their cloning contracts and he fears the Empire will attempt to eliminate them, because of this he begins to organize an escape for them off of Kamino. We are then taken to where Crosshair is setting up his own mission of hunting down the Bad Batch.
The Batch make their way to Daro where Hunter uses his enhanced tracking skills to locate an Imperial military base hidden inside a mountain, and get our first look at how the empire has updated the Clone Trooper armor to more of a Stormtrooper style (TK Class) armor that we know and love from the original trilogy. While The Bad Batch make their way through the Imperial facility to rescue Gregor, the Bad Batch triggers an alarm and in a tussle with these new Storm Troopers they find out that the Empire is replacing the clones with non-clone humanoid Imperial loyalists from throughout the galaxy.
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After an epic escape and aerial dogfight sequence all the members of the Batch are able to escape, except for Hunter who fell off the side of the Imperial mountain base during their rescue. After realizing that his chances of getting away are slim being surrounded by Imperial Stormtroopers, he orders the Bad Batch to leave him behind and is captured by the Empire.
Back on Kamino we see Admiral Rampart confront the Kaminoan Prime Minister about his attempted escape from the planet. During this confrontation Admiral Rampart “enlists” the Kaminoan Head Scientist while “dealing with” the prime minister, which brings his story to a conclusion. Back on Daro, this episode ends with Hunter being confronted in his cell by none other than Crosshair which sets us up for an exciting interaction next week!
An “Insanely” Familiar Face!
It is abundantly clear that the show’s creator, Dave Filoni, likes to include cameos from key characters as we have seen many familiar faces from other series throughout this season, and we get another one this week with CT-55576 a.k.a. Gregor! Gregor is a fascinating character being featured in both the Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels television series. We were introduced to him in the Clone Wars as a trooper that lost his memory due to a crash. He eventually regained his memory and was rescued but suffered brain damage which may explain his willingness to defect from the Empire so easily. We also caught up with him in Rebels as one of the troopers living with Captain Rex and even participated in the Liberation of Lothal with the other Rebel Heroes.
Stand Out Scenes:
The stunning visuals of Daro – This episode featured stunning visual elements of the Outer Rim planet, first during the night chase, then again during the aerial dog fight. It was hard not to notice all the stunning detail in this episode.
Storm Trooper (TK Class) Version 1 – It was interesting to get a glimpse at the Empire’s transition from Clone Troopers to Imperial Loyalists and the corresponding change in armour. Also, the subtle Stormtrooper musical themes playing when the new troopers were in action during the rescue mission was a very nice touch to this week’s episode.
Bad Batch Reunion – With only a few episodes left in the series, this episode set us up for what is hopefully an epic reunion between the members of The Bad Batch and their former brother, Crosshair.
Adam D. Slobodzian
Not only is Adam, aka Darth Slobo, a lifelong Star Wars fan, he is also PhD a Candidate in Marketing at Smith School of Business. Researching Family Consumption and Brand Meaning. Big time Raptors, Marvel, and Star Wars fan. Proud Dad