The second trailer for The Bad Batch season two has been released!
The new season will premiere on Disney+ on January 4, 2023, with the first two episodes dropping that day. It will feature 16 episodes, running through March 29. It’s the latest animated installment from Lucasfilm, reuniting us with Clone Force 99 – an elite squad of clone troopers trying to adjust to a changing galaxy in the period following Order 66.
Though there aren’t many answers in the trailer that clue us in on the plot, there’s still plenty of interesting threads to discuss. So let’s dive in and break it all down!
This show continues to look absolutely gorgeous, and it’s like they wanted to start the trailer by reminding us of that. The squad is on some island on a remote water world, and they’re escaping from a bunch of large crabs with a crate of some sorts. We saw glimpses of this in the previous trailer, but we don’t know what this mission is all about. It’s cool to see how the whole team is involved and working together, though, including Omega.
If I had to guess, I’d be quite confident that this happens in the first episode of the season, perhaps even right at the start. It wouldn’t shock me to see the season start by thrusting us right into the mission and then letting us catch up later, a tactic Indiana Jones does so well.
The Bad Batch is seen reporting back to Cid’s for another mission. At one point in the trailer Cid tells them, “You wanna really be free? Then pull off this heist, and you can have a future.” We don’t know what heist she’s referring to, but we do see another woman with Cid, who isn’t identified. She’s with the squad. on a mission later in the trailer, when they encounter a fierce-looking creature, so perhaps that mission is related? We don’t know enough here to tell for sure.
What’s most interesting here is that this gives the indication that the second season of the show will be a lot like the first. Overall, in season one the Bad Batch mainly worked jobs for Cid while they just tried to fit in to the galaxy, and this trailer seems to be emphasizing that aspect once more. So rather than giving a ton of details about the unique aspects of this season’s plot, we see much the same story. It’s a fine format for the show to take, but I’m hoping that they branch out from it and explore some other threads rather than just keep working jobs for Cid.
And here’s where I think the show could branch out all the more and really take a clear focus: on the dynamic between the clones and stormtroopers. We see plenty of shots of clone troopers in action, including against Separatist battle droids, but we also see some early iterations of stormtroopers. We knew from season one that the Empire was already beginning to use enlisted recruits for their soldiers as they phased out the clones, and this is yet another glimpse at that. And I think that all sets up some really interesting points thematically for this show to explore in its second season, expanding on the threads established in season one, of how the clones are adapting and adjusting to the galaxy all the while the Empire is phasing them out and replacing them. The clones were bred for conflict and for serving the cause, but what happens when the government no longer wants them? This is one of the things I’m most looking forward to. And there’s one clone in particular that it seems we’ll get to see wrestling with it all…
Commander Cody is back. We saw him in the first trailer, but we get a much better look at him here – his armor style is the same, but the color has been wiped and it’s all-white, matching the other troopers (as the Empire does away with any sense of individuality). Yet he also doesn’t seem fully persuaded by the Empire’s ways. We see a conversation between Cody and Crosshair, and Cody says, “Rumors are, more and more clones have been questioning the Order.” For Crosshair, it’s simple: those clones questioning Order 66 are just as guilty as treason as the Jedi and are to be treated as traitors. But Cody, based on the look on his face, doesn’t seem so sure.
Again, this relates to the previous point, as it seems that Cody is fine serving the Empire and is loyal to them, but might he not be convinced his ‘brothers’ who question the Order are treasonous? I think that could create a nice foil to Crosshair’s character; he’s become entrenched in the Empire’s ways even though his chip was removed. If Cody remains loyal to the Empire yet doesn’t share the same view as the clones, it could show us these various points of view held by the enemy.
One quieter moment from the trailer that I think is worth mentioning is a sweet conversation between Echo and Omega. Omega comments about all the squad has given up for her, and Echo says that they made the right choice. This is a family, and it’s great to see Omega fully embraced and welcomed into it. But it’s also great to see that Echo has a bigger focus in this trailer, since I felt like he was sidelined a bit in season one. We see him here talking to Omega, and we see him talking with Hunter telling him. they can’t just hid but must do something to help others. Particularly if this season does dive into the mental state of the clones, Echo is one who should play a pivotal role in that, both for the plot purposes but also for our insight as the audience.
There are glimpses in the trailer of a Trandoshan using a flamethrower in a heavily forested area, and then another shot of Trandoshans driving Separatist tanks while escorting a Wookiee prisoner. I really wonder if this is Kashyyyk, and we’re seeing the Trandoshan slavers move in and oppress the Wookiees. If so, I think we could be seeing an adaptation of one of the unfinished arcs of The Clone Wars. There was a story planned for the show in which the Bad Batch was to be sent to Kashyyyk alongside Grand Master Yoda to aid the Wookiees as they were under Separatist invasion. The unfinished story reels have been released, but we’ve never actually seen that story. Obviously, if they were to return to that it would be different (no Yoda, for one), but it would make perfect sense for the Bad Batch to wind up on Kashyyyk here to aid the Wookiees – this time, not from a Separatist attack, but from Trandoshan tyranny.
And perhaps that’s how another Wookiee, seen prominently in both this trailer and the previous one, comes into play. There’s an unknown enemy, but the Wookiee Jedi padawan Gungi uses the Force to draw his lightsaber to himself and ignites it. Gungi is alongside Omega and Echo, so somehow they come to befriend him. Is that through helping the Wookiees? Or is Gungi the one who lets them know of the struggle? Or are these things totally unrelated?
Gungi, for those who aren’t familiar with him, showed up in The Clone Wars as a Jedi youngling who traveled with Yoda and Ahsoka Tano to Ilum for the ritual of getting his lightsaber crystal, and in the process got caught up in more of an adventure than he bargained for.
Coruscant! The capitol world of the Emipre (and the Republic before it) shows up here, and somehow the Bad Batch makes their way all the way into the Galactic Core. We see vehicles flying through a tunnel, one of which is piloted by Tech. I’m glad to return to Coruscant, and between this and Andor recently we’re getting a renewed look at this familiar world now under Imperial rule.
Speaking of the Empire, Palpatine looms large. There’s a session of the Imperial Senate presided over by the Emperor himself (accompanied by Mas Amedda), and while I don’t expect him to have a super large role in this show, I’m excited to see him return. The dynamics of the Senate in the Imperial era were glimpsed in Andor, and I wonder if Mon Mothma could make a cameo appearance here as a connection point to that (while we don’t know about her, we do know about another Senator… more on that in a moment).
There’s a really brief shot of the Bad Batch running away from something, but what’s most significant about it is not what they’re running from (we don’t know yet) but where they’re at. We’ve seen that place many times before, and based on the familiarity of it I’m almost positive that’s Count Dooku’s Palace on Serenno. Dooku is dead by now, but his fortress still stands – and it seems like the Bad Batch is going to infiltrate it. What might they be looking for in there? And who are they working for?
I mentioned earlier a familiar Senator showing up, and we see Bail Organa! This was the most surprising appearance in this trailer, as the others we already knew would be in the series in some way. We didn’t know that about Bail, but it makes sense. He’s a key Imperial Senator who is secretly working behind-the-scenes to fight it, much like his close friend and ally Mon Mothma. If the Bad Batch is getting involved with him, it means that they’re one step closer to a larger fight. It might not be about running missions for Cid, but about fighting to make the galaxy a better place. The trailer makes it clear: the Empire is operating in the name of peace, but it’s not possible by the Empire’s definition or tactics. Palpatine is out in the open now, but people like Bail Organa are operating in the shadows, always, in the fight.
And where Organa is, well, it’s possible Ahsoka Tano could follow. We don’t know how much of a time jump there is between seasons one and two, but it’s notable that Tales of the Jedi seemed to shorten Ahsoka’s time away from the fight from what it was previously. By the end of that series, Ahsoka takes Bail up on his offer to get back into the fight. It’s certainly very possible that The Bad Batch season two shows up after that, in which case I wouldn’t be surprised if Ahsoka shows up in this series too.
One person who could help connect these threads is someone the Bad Batch already knows: Captain Rex. They worked alongside him in season one, and he’s obviously very close with Ahsoka. He shows up in the trailer asking the Batch for help on a mission, and that’s where it ends. What mission? We don’t know. But I’d be willing to guess that it’s got to be connected: is this how the Batch finds Gungi? Is this what leads them to Bail Organa? Is this why they go to Dooku’s lair? Whatever the mission is, we’ll see Rex again.