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Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

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‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch’ season 3 episode 10 ‘Identity Crisis’ recap/review

We don’t learn a lot, but ‘Identity Crisis’ serves as a stark reminder of how evil the Empire is.

Last week’s episode of Star Wars: The Bad Batch provided us with the return of Asajj Ventress, but not much else with regard to moving the narrative forward. This week’s doubleheader solves that problem and then some.

As always, the recap portion of this review will contain plenty of spoilers along with some brief explorations of Star Wars lore. The order of events has also been streamlined a bit for the sake of clarity.

Ethical Concerns

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

The episode opens with a child on an unnamed planet accidentally showing Force sensitivity. After a citizen reports it to the Empire, our old friend Cad Bane shows up and kidnaps the kid from their home.

Back at the Tantiss Mad Science Facility, Emerie Karr successfully lobbies Dr. Hemlock for a promotion to Chief Scientist so she can pick up the incarcerated Nala Se‘s work on Project Necromancer. He then takes her to see the project’s most valuable specimens, which turn out to be kidnapped children. Hemlock explains that it’s much easier to find kids with high M-Counts than adults these days, but she’s still visibly creeped out.

After Hemlock gets done explaining why it’s so vital to get Omega back, he turns to discuss some logistical issues with Commander Scorch. One of the children (Eva) notices Karr’s glasses and starts a conversation with her, prompting Hemlock to admonish her not to get attached to the specimens.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

Later, while Karr is collecting a blood sample from Eva, the little girl asks when she can go home again. Karr promises to look into it while struggling to contain the pain she feels as her soul evaporates.

When Karr goes to take a sample from another child (Jax), the boy grabs her datapad and makes a break for it. This results in Scorch stun-gunning him, which Karr says was unnecessary. It also didn’t help matters that before he was neutralized, Jax said he was promised he could go home soon. Eva is worried about her friend, but Karr assures her that Jax won’t be punished.

The next day, Karr visits Nala Se to ask about the absolute horror show she’s stepped into. As expected, Nala Se doesn’t have much to offer in the way of guidance except an elegantly subtle version of “You kriffed around with the Empire and now you’re finding out.”

When Karr leaves the cell, she’s met by Hemlock, who informs her that a new specimen will be arriving soon. Karr insists that she accompany Scorch & Co. to make sure the kid isn’t damaged/abused, but their argument is cut short when Hemlock gets a Zoom Holo call from Grand Moff Tarkin.

Push to the Brink

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

In one of the very rare instances where Hemlock garners some sympathy, Tarkin comes down hard on him like a vindictive middle manager. His anger initially stems from the Tantis Facility receiving so much funding, but grows exponentially when Hemlock refuses to reveal classified information about the work being done there.

Tarkin ends their call by threatening both Hemlock’s career and his life.

The added pressure causes him to call CX-2 for a progress report on finding Omega. The clone assassin responds that he was able to squeeze some information out of Cid, which has him on the right track to find their quarry. Hemlock is skeptical, but CX-2 insists he’ll get the job done. He also reveals that his lead involves a pirate (Phee), which can’t be good for the Bad Batch.

Later, Karr and Scorch meet up with Bane to receive the new specimen. Karr tests and confirms that the toddler is Force-sensitive, but is even more shaken by how young the subject is.

Upon returning to her lab, she learns that Jax has been put in solitary confinement. Her guilt is made exponentially worse when Eva gets after her about it. In an effort to make things right (or at least not so bad), she takes a doll that came with the recently kidnapped toddler and leaves it for her.

The Verdict

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)

While this was a solid episode, much of its strength can be chalked up to the Kiners’ amazing score and the atmosphere. Otherwise, we just got unneeded confirmation of the following well-worn ideas:

  • The Empire experiments on children and treats their employees very poorly.
  • Hemlock is a Nazi.

You could argue that Karr’s guilt is a “revelation,” but that was foreshadowed and shown with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. The only new information we received was that CX-2 is about to track down the Bad Batch — something Asajj Ventress already proved would be happening sooner than later.

All that being said, the amazing animation, music, and voice acting made it impossible not to be affected by “Identity Crisis.” It was also nice seeing Cad Bane again — although I have a feeling even he won’t want to stick around to see the dark turn things are going to take in the next episode.

 

Next Episode: ‘Point of No Return’

Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+)
‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch’ season 3 episode 10 ‘Identity Crisis’ recap/review
'Star Wars: The Bad Batch' season 3, episode 10 'Identity Crisis'
We don't learn a lot, but 'Identity Crisis' serves as a stark reminder of how evil the Empire is.
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
The animation, voice acting, and music are all superb.
Cad Bane cameos are always welcome.
The episode does a great job reminding us why the Empire is so evil.
Unfortuately, the narrative barely moves forward other than some telegraphed "revelations."
6.5
Good

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