Star Wars: The Bad Batch S2 Ep 10 Review
I’ve said it before and will say it again: the Empire sucks. They destroy planets, wipe out civilizations, and most are jerks. Their worst crime, though? Besides blowing up Alderaan and hunting the Jedi, their worst crime is letting bullies run the Galaxy. They encourage people to look out for themselves and exploit everyone around them to get ahead. But why am I talking about this when the Bad Batch’s stranded on a remote planet without their ship? Because they discover a mining racket that’s essentially the Empire in a microcosm.
A Mining Racket Exploiting Child Labor
After losing their ship to a thief while mining for ipsium, the Bad Batch were stranded on a remote planet with limited rations and no clue when Cid could pick them up. Fortunately, an offhand comment from Tech gives Omega a brilliant idea: they can’t track the Marauder. However, they can still follow their power droid, Gonky! I liked this little moment. It shows that Omega is learning how to take care of herself, which I heavily discussed last week.
As it turns out, the Marauder never left the planet, and it’s now in the hands of a…boy around Omega’s age. Meet Benni, voiced by Yuri Lowenthal (AKA Ben Tennyson, Sasuke Uchiha, Simon, Spider-Man, etc.) He’s an orphan whose part of an entire group of orphans working in a mining operation that does not meet safety standards. The operation’s run by a man called Mokko.
From the moment we met Mokko, I knew he was bad news. Tech points out at one point to Omega that his way of running things is a smaller version of what the Empire and Darth Sidious did and will do to the Galaxy. He pretends he’s acting in everyone’s best interests despite the terrible conditions and keeps the people under him divided. In truth, though, he doesn’t care about anyone but himself. At one point, we see him enjoy an entire feast while Benni and the others starve.
Sound familiar? It should: this is the same con Sidious pulled to get in power.
The Empire Encourages the Worst in People
Mokko reflects what the Galaxy will become under the Empire’s reign. Unscrupulous people look at the Emperor and his actions and realize that if they copy him, they can gain power, even if it’s over something as small as a mining operation. It’s why people like Rampart and Tarkin gain control and do whatever they want. In other words, Sidious encourages people to embrace their worst aspects.
As fans, we already know this, but the Bad Batch is starting to wake up to this for themselves. The Empire will make things worse for everyone, allowing a handful of greedy, selfish beings to exploit those beneath them. Worse, they encourage others to follow their example, creating this abusive chain.
When the Bad Batch manages to track down the Marauder and force Benni to help them take it back, Omega sees for herself how horrible Mokko is. Despite stealing a valuable ship for him, Mokko passes Benni up for the bonus he deserves. Yet Benni doesn’t say anything and makes excuses for Mokko even when Omega calls him out on it. He even turns Omega in to Mokko’s droid guards just to stay on his good side.
Fortunately, there’s only so much abuse one can take before they reach their breaking point. And Benni hits his thanks to Omega.
There are More Good People than Bad in the Universe
While helping the squad get their ship out of the mine, Omega makes a discovery. Despite Mokko saying that the ipsium they’re mining is degrading, it’s the opposite. He’s lying to everyone to keep them under his thumb while he rakes in the profits. Once he learns this, Benni tells everyone right as Mokko’s threatening to throw Omega down the mine shaft to stop the Bad Batch. After that, the rest goes as you’d imagine it. The people rise and overthrow their tyrannical master, who then suffers from the classic “Disney Villain Death” trope: falling to his death in the mineshaft.
I have to say, I enjoyed the climax of this episode. This mirrors the Empire’s ultimate fate in keeping with the microcosm theme. When enough people decide to tolerate the tyrant’s lie no longer, they rise and overthrow them. Mokko’s death even mirrors what will happen to Sidious, right down to the fall to his death.
By the end of the episode, the Bad Batch leaves the planet on good terms with the miners, who are now all working as equals and sharing in the profits together. However, the experience has left a mark on them. There are going to be more bullies out there. Thankfully, as Omega points out, more people will be willing to stand up to them and inspire others to do the same. And we know the Bad Batch can stand up to the Empire.
I hope that by the season’s end, the Bad Batch will ultimately realize that, instead of trying to survive, they need to start fighting back against the Empire. They might not live to see its fall, but if what they did today’s any indication, they’ll inspire others to stand up to the Empire.
Overall, this was a good episode that reinforced the lesson the show’s been trying to teach us since the trip to Coruscant. They need to start standing up to the Sith because that’s how they’ll eventually win. Fingers crossed, we get this.
#EmpireSucks #SidiousStinks #BadBatchRulez
Also, MANDO AND BABY YODA BE BACK NEXT WEEK!