Getting to Know The Bad Batch: A Who’s Who in Clone Force 99
The Bad Batch, officially known as Experimental Unit Clone Force 99, are genetically defective clones with desirable mutations. The initial iteration of The Bad Batch consists of Hunter, Tech, Wrecker, and Crosshair. They may not look like much, but they got it where it counts, and they get the job done every time. So who are these guys, and where do they come from? It all started on Kamino…
In The Clone Wars season 3 episode, Clone Cadets, a malformed clone named Clone 99, considered a failure to the Kaminoan geneticists, loyally served the clone army in maintenance and janitorial duties. Despite his physical drawbacks, 99’s resilient nature created a strong bond between him and his clone brothers. In his last moments, 99 sacrificed his life, saving the cloning facility from a Separatist attack. A more noble clone never lived. In memory of 99, Clone Force 99 took his name in hopes they can live up to the legend and do his name proud.
The Bad Batch Reporting for Duty
The Bad Batch made its debut in the final season of The Clone Wars. With the war close to an end, Captain Rex first crossed paths with the motley crew when the battle on Anaxes took a turn for the worse. Rex couldn’t ignore the feeling that the Separatists might be using intel from a once thought deceased clone, Echo. After meeting with Jedi Generals Windu and Skywalker, Commander Cody called in Clone Force 99 to help infiltrate the cyber center that held the secret to the Separatists’ strategy.
The atypical squad was a well-oiled machine by the time they arrived on Anaxes. With unconventional strategies and enhanced tactical gifts, the Bad Batch made easy work of a battalion of battle droids closing in on them. The strike team, consisting of The Bad Batch, Cody, Rex, and Skywalker, made it into the cyber center with little resistance. Tech tracked the Separatists’ strategic algorithm to a live signal on Skako Minor. A garbled but familiar voice called out through the beacon.
Now certain Echo was alive, Rex led the Bad Batch and Skywalker on an unauthorized mission to Skako Minor. Tech and Rex found Echo inside a stasis chamber, near zombie-like and attached to the central computer with conduits leading to his brain. His entire body had cybernetic implants tasked to seize control of his mind from him. They escaped with Echo safely in tow.
Despite being back home with the clone brothers, Echo’s loyalties remained in doubt. The Bad Batch, Rex, and Anakin took Echo on a stealth (not Wrecker’s favorite) mission to penetrate the Separatist command ship to feed the droid army fake intel. Echo sent all the droids to one location to neutralize them all with an energy pulse, proving his loyalty to the Republic. Thanks to Rex, Echo, and The Bad Batch, the battle was won. Echo, however, felt more at home with the Bad Batch than the clone army and decided to leave with them. Making The Bad Batch what we know now.
The leader of the group, Hunter, always keeps a level head under pressure. (Maybe it’s the Rambo-like headband.) The sergeant’s weapon of choice is a vibro-knife, which he wields with lethal precision. Hunter was genetically engineered with heightened senses, making him an expert tracker, making droids easy targets. He can even find specific locations from anywhere on a planet by sensing electromagnetic frequencies. Not bad!
The talkative techie is the team’s IT tech. Genetic manipulation granted him a gift with science and all things technological. Whether he’s analyzing data, cracking code, or translating alien languages on the fly, Tech is the best, most helpful support you can have on your side. Linguistics is part of his long list of skills.
Large, loud, super-strong, and a wee bit child-like, Wrecker is the team’s muscle. He loves his work, especially when he gets to blow things up. “Boom!” is his enthusiastic catchphrase. Needless to say, Wrecker isn’t a fan of stealth. He’s quick-tempered and virtually fearless, except when it comes to heights. Whereas Tech speaks eloquently, Wrecker…not so much.
On the other end of the social gamut is Crosshair. While Crosshair often challenges authority, it’s almost always because he has his team’s well-being in mind…almost. He’s fond of chomping on a toothpick a la Cad Bane and saving the day with a perfectly timed shot. To be honest, Crosshair was my favorite of the group because I preferred to play as the sniper in Star Wars Battlefront. No spoilers, but Crosshair is not the greatest guy ever.
It’ll be interesting to see how The Bad Batch reacts to the newly formed Empire and their emphasis on discipline and ability to follow orders. How will they fit into the new stormtrooper ranks? What about the inhibitor chips? So many questions! The war is far from over.
The Bad Batch arrived on Disney+ in a full length, 70-minute episode on Tuesday, May 4th to celebrate the Star Wars pun Day, May The 4th Be With You! Episode 2 and beyond airs every Friday for at least 14 episodes. Read Richard and Sarah’s review of the first episode “Aftermath”, or listen to their audio review on Episode 328.
Join us every Friday at 7:45pm PT for a Zoom chat discussion on the episode of the week! Sign up for our Newsletter for the link.
A Little About Me
My name is Eric Onkenhout, I live in Massachusetts, and Star Wars is my jam and has been since I was 6 or 7. Besides Star Wars, I also enjoy Marvel and Game of Thrones. I love to write, whether it’s fiction, reviews, or journalistic articles. I also enjoy long walks on the beach! As far as movies, books, comic books, or tv shows, I tend to gravitate towards good writing regardless of the genre. I have a Bachelor’s degree in English-Creative Writing; I like sports like hockey, football, and soccer.