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The Bad Batch

Juggernaut (The Bad Batch - S03E12) - Animated Series

Series: The Bad Batch

Title: Juggernaut

Season: Three

Episode: 12

Original Air Date: April 10th, 2024

Runtime: 21 minutes

Credits: Review & Text: Thomas; Page layout & Design: Chuck Paskovics

Discuss the latest Chapter! (Discussion)

"Quiet as usual! Hopefully, next assignment we see some action!" SPOILERS.

Back where we started 12 episodes ago...

"Juggernaut" is the episode I expected to see this week. With Omega once again on Tantiss and the Bad Batch still not knowing where this planet is we need an episode where they finally find out where it is... and "Juggernaut" is this episode, well, kind of.

Crosshair suddenly remembers he knows something...

The episode picks things up where the previous week ended, the Empire is retreating from Space Tahiti and Hunter, Wrecker and Crosshair discuss the state of things. When Crosshair suddenly tells the other two that he may know of a way to find Tantiss after all... which is met with a somewhat incredulous reaction by Wrecker, who is evidently the audience surrogate here. It is such a lazy plot device when your show relies on characters keeping secrets for no good reason, if in LOST people had actually talked to each other the show would have been six episodes long. Anyway, Crosshair says he never talked about one other way of finding Tantiss before because he really doesn't want to return to that place... really now, Crosshair? Even though it was very clear how important it is to all the others? On a fundamental level I can understand Crosshair's reasoning, but given the context of the series and the fact that this is an overused trope that needs to be retired it feels incredibly lazy. Anyway, Crosshair tells Hunter and Wrecker that Rampart will probably know the location, since he sent Nala Se to Tantiss. As you may (or may not) remember, Rampart was arrested in season 2 and this is the last time we ever saw him. It turns out he was not executed, but is now a prisoner on a penal colony.

Automatically lowered score for the episode, whenever I see this character I want to turn the show off (super obvious hint: it is NOT the droid I am referring to)

Of course there is one issue, the Bad Batch no longer have a ship, but once again things are awfully convenient when Phee Genoa (argh) appears in the hideout via some secret access no one knows about (sure) just at that very moment. She offers the team a ride to Space Guantanamo. So off we go!

Rampart is doing forced labor now on this lovely planet, it has 0 stars on Tripadvisor for some reason

So Phee Genoa flies the Bad Batch to the planet... there is this small issue of not getting detected while making planetfall... in typical super dumb Star Wars fashion Phee Genoa merely needs to switch off all systems, go dark, and drop in freefall towards the surface, passing various ships on the way down, none of which notice the intruder. This quaint thing called "radar" or "windows" and "people noticing that massive object falling through the sky with their own two eyes" does not seem to exist, unless when it's required by the plot. Would it have killed the writers to maybe add 20 seconds to the runtime of the episode where Phee Genoa tells us about the stealth nature of her ship, i.e. how it has a minimal radar signature akin to an F-35 or so and uses special materials for its hull, so that switching off systems and the transponder will allow them to reach the surface undetected? As it is we have to assume the Imperials are all idiots and have no tech that allows them to track incoming objects regardless of whether they are ships with all electronics switched off or some stray asteroids.

The Bad Batch track down Rampart

The rest of the episode is an action filled sequence where the Bad Batch infiltrate the installation, track down Rampart, take over the vehicle that transports him back to the main compound and then have to fight off other turbo tanks, gunships, stormtroopers trying to board the tank and make their escape at the last second before their damaged tank drives off a cliff.

Things go boom for an extended period of time in this episode

Rampart is his usual scheming self of course and immediately realizes that the Bad Batch want something from him... he even tries to make a deal, but Crosshair tells him that he is in no position to bargain. After getting stunned and making the escape, back on Phee Genoa's ship, Rampart tells the Bad Batch that he doesn't know the location of Tantiss either... at which point I laughed hysterically for a full hour (or not). Anyway... he tells the team that Tantiss' location is so top secret that it was made sure that no one ever can track its location... but... wait for it... Rampart knows of a way to maybe circumvent this. So we (the Bad Batch that is) still don't know where Tantiss is, but next week for sure! Especially since only three more episodes are left after this one.

Emerie is not a happy camper

Back on Tantiss Hemlock has Emerie check Omega's blood immediately, just to make sure. Omega tells Emerie that she doesn't have to do this, but she simply says she has to. But you can tell that she is not really happy doing all these things. A bit later Hemlock returns and he openly spills all the beans about the project to Omega like any responsible head of a super secret science project would do to some 12-year-old kid. So he once more talks about how they want to replicate the m-count but that it can't usually be replicated, because it will degrade or so, but that Omega is the first person they know who allows the replication of the m-count. And while giving Omega the full progress report for the SUPER SECRET project he leads her to the underground vault housing the force sensitive kids.

Omega's new home

And this is where the episode leaves us... Omega is now with the other force sensitive kids, so she can start her revolution. Emerie is on the verge of depression because she has to experiment on kids (someone should give her a hug). Hemlock sees no issue in revealing all the secrets to Omega. And Rampart will probably FINALLY allow the Bad Batch to locate Tantiss next week.

In "switched off brain" mode the episode was entertaining, the action sequence was pretty good and you are never really bored during the episode. Once you begin to think about it all, the overused tropes, the super convenient things happening or how Hemlock openly talks about his super secret project to Omega you wonder how the same team that gave us something like last week's episode with Emerie or the season 2 two-parter with senator Ruyi can give us such a collection of lazy ideas, contrivances and overused tropes. The argument "it is for kids" is not valid, because it implies kids are idiots, when they are not.

While season 3 is much more consistent than season 2 when it comes to overall quality, I feel the basic arc in season 3 is not very good. We spent too many episodes trying to find out the location of Tantiss, when we all know they will find out the location anyway. Why delay the inevitable for so long? The entire "what is m-count" arc was also super boring, because any secret or mystery the audience already knows the answer to and now has to patiently wait for the protagonists to catch up is boring and mostly just a waste of time. Also, the fact Omega is back where she was in episode 1 of season 3 is just bad plotting. They really could have condensed the whole season and gave us a six episode mini series as a proper conclusion. So instead they bloated the season with a wild goose chase for Tantiss and the usual monster of the week. On the plus side there was no monster this week.

And given the fact we only have three more episodes to go it is obious now that The Bad Batch will never have Omega meet Boba Fett or that characters like Ventress will almost certainly never return and help with the Tantiss mission, meaning all those cameos were just that... cameos, but not really all that relevant to the overall plot. Why even bring back Ventress etc when you have no actual plan for them to be relevant to the actual story? This is like season 2 all over again where the team found ancient war machines or made friends on various planets, only for none of that to matter and having no real impact on the actual plot or the finale.

Anyway, I am glad when this will all be over. And while this episode, or the entire season, is "ok" the fact it is such a huge missed opportunity makes The Bad Batch just infuriating and sometimes even annoying. And I also wish the writers gave at least some basic thought to how things work, like Phee Genoa's "stealth" approach to the planet. When real world NORAD would track that ship with ease and a hyperspace civilization can't it's silly. At least include a short line of dialogue where Genoa talks about how her ship uses stealth materials that absorb radar etc. But in fact, her ship looks like the most unstealthy thing ever and she even fully powers it up again in the atmosphere... yet no one on that planet seems to care or notice that an unauthorized ship is flying around near one of the penal colonies... but for some strange reason they immediately believe one of their tanks has been compromised because communications are interrupted... whatever. At least the explosions look pretty.

Added: April 11, 2024
Category: The Bad Batch
Reviewer: Thomas
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