I wasn’t blown away by this episode of The Bad Batch. I can tack Infested up as an entertaining detour.
The latest episode of The Bad Batch has arrived. When I first heard this title, Infested, I immediately thought about the Geonosian brain worms for some reason. And I can’t say whether I’m happy or unhappy that I was wrong.
This episode begins with The Bad Batch returning to Ord Mantell after doing a job for Cid. Ord Mantell has become Clone Force 99’s sort of base of operations. And since they have nowhere to go, they still work for Cid. Yet, when they get back to her cantina, they discover that she has been “pushed out” by a smooth-talking aristocrat-like Devaronian crime boss, named Roland. It isn’t clear why this guy just showed up, but he is dealing spice to the Pykes. Ah yes, the Pykes.
Many fans know them from The Clone Wars and the Solo movie. And I have to say, for reasons unknown to me, they are one of my favorite alien designs in the canon mythos. Luckily, they didn’t kill Cid and Omega convinces the clones to help her out. Hunter lately seems to like bailing on people. And it’s good that Omega serves as his moral compass.
They go underground to steal the spice from Roland, and again, it’s not very clear what they intended to do. Getting Roland in trouble with the Pykes is one thing, but how is this going to get Cid’s cantina back. The storyline is not structured very well, yet there are still lots of fun elements to pick at. I love how Wrecker’s acrophobia is continuously depicted as I share that phobia, and I love Cid’s snarky personality. She has a nickname for each of the clones and is truly the brains of the operation.
ROLAND AND THE PYKES
I also love Roland’s pet alien-thingy named Ruby. She reminds me a little of my cat Izzie, and she is the soft spot in the otherwise bad heart of this Roland guy. He truly loves her and demonstrates that he will do anything to keep her safe. The Pykes are cold and expressionless, which I love, but I feel that they were a little too cooperative when the spice was stolen. They are gangsters after all, and those types tend to shoot first and ask questions never.
The story is to steal the spice, lose it, then get it back. It doesn’t flow well and this episode has no real significance to the big picture. The title Infested IS bugs and it could also have two meanings, as Cid’s cantina was infested by Roland’s soldiers who took over the place. The insects aren’t anything more than a nuisance. Not dangerous like the Leveler or the Rancor, but annoying and overwhelming in large numbers.
My favorite part of the episode is how Omega continues to show what a compassionate person she is. Ruby takes a liking to her, which Roland finds surprising. And Omega figures that if Ruby likes Roland, perhaps he is not so bad after all. This plays heavily into a major Star Wars theme – redemption and the fact that there is good in everyone. I wasn’t blown away by this episode, but the next episode promises some possible story progression, and I can tack Infested up as an entertaining detour.
The Bad Batch is streaming exclusively on Disney Plus NOW!
Max Nocerino is a regular Staff Writer for The Future of the Force. He is a passionate Star Wars fan and loves the literature of the galaxy far, far away. Follow him on Twitter where he shares his love of the Force frequently!