At the end of the series premiere for The Bad Batch, the crew heads off in search of an old friend, in sector J-19. Many connected the dots in figuring out who that would be, particularly with the second episode being titled, “Cut and Run.”
As many expected, the Bad Batch traveled to Saleucami to reunite with Cut Lawquane. It’s not the first time we’ve seen Cut – he first appeared in a season two episode of The Clone Wars titled “The Deserter.” So who is Cut?
Like other clones, Cut was bred in the facilities on Kamino, trained for war. Shortly after the Clone War began at the Battle of Geonosis, in the very early days of the War, Cut’s squad was caught in-between two Separatist gunships and shot down. After they crashed, most of them were either dead or injured, and the Separatist forces began making their way through the wounded, killing them off. Realizing that he had no chance of survival if he stayed behind, Cut ran. It was a moment that would continue to haunt him, but it reinforced in his mind that his life had no meaning, since everyone he cared about was gone. He realized that he was simply waiting his turn to be slaughtered in a war that made no sense to him. He realized that he “was just another expendable clone, waiting for my turn to be slaughtered in a war that made no sense to me.”
Having deserted the Grand Army of the Republic, Cut made his way to Saleucami, a remote world where he met a Twi’lek named Suu Lawquane. He married Suu and adopted her two children, Shaeeah and Jek. The Lawquane family kept a farm and lived a quiet life, until one day the War made its way to the planet. Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi led a Republic attack on General Grievous’s forces, rescuing Eeth Koth and driving Grievous and his troops to crash-land on Saleucami. Kenobi pursued the droid General to the planet, but in the process clone captain Rex was badly injured. The others found a place where he could shelter and recover, and it just so happened to be the Lawquane’s farm.
Upon meeting Cut, Rex was angered at the sight of a clone deserter and said that he had no choice but to report him. But as Rex got to know Cut and his family, Rex grew more understanding of Cut. During Rex’s stay, the girls accidentally awakened a series of commando droids, forcing Rex and Cut to team up to defend the family from the droid attack. After repelling the enemy forces, and with Rex now able to re-join the Republic army, the clone captain told the deserter that even though he should report him, after all he’d been through he might not remember it – his way of saying that he wouldn’t turn them in.
It turns out that Rex wasn’t the only one who knew of Cut and his family’s whereabouts, however, as the Bad Batch also had a history of him and knew where to find him. That’s what leads them to Saleucami in this episode, and in this episode Cut and his family leave the planet, as with the rise of the Empire they realize the planet is no longer safe for them.
Cut Lawquane is a clone who didn’t agree with the War or his purpose as a soldier, instead choosing to have a family for himself. While others, like Rex, couldn’t understand the decision right away, as the more sinister motives behind the clone army became known, Cut’s decisions and thought process looked far more prescient. And with both Rex and Clone Force 99 now trying to figure out how they fit in with this rapidly changing galaxy, it’s no surprise that they both traveled to pay Cut a visit in the immediate aftermath of the Clone War.