The Best ‘Star Wars’ Clones, Ranked
They're not just numbers, they're individuals.
The clones are the backbone of both The Clone Wars and The Bad Batch. In the movies and Legends, they were mostly cannon fodder or part of the background, but the animated shows go out of their way to show the clones as individuals with their own opinions and personalities. That means there’s a wide variety of them and how they see service to the Republic, and later, the Empire.
I was originally going to make this a ranking of every clone from Star Wars, but quickly realized there are close to a hundred named clones, most of whom only appear for a scene or two before they are killed. Also, I would have to acknowledge Rise of Skywalker‘s existence, and I wanted to focus mostly on clones of Jango Fett who appear in multiple episodes of the animated shows, or clones who had a major impact on the shows.
That said, here’s my ranking of the 16 best clones in all of Star Wars. Feel free to leave your personal faves in the comments below!
Mild spoilers for The Bad Batch season 2, and major spoilers for The Clone Wars and Rebels ahead
16. Clone 99
Clone 99 may have only appeared in two episodes of The Clone Wars, but his influence has continued in Star Wars years later. 99 was the namesake of Clone Force 99, a.k.a. the Bad Batch, to honor his sacrifice and show that just because they are clones does not mean they have to fit a certain mold. There is unfortunately a lot of tragic ableism with 99, who is seen as defective and only “proves” his value as a soldier when he is killed during the Invasion of Kamino. But I do think that is somewhat the point: The clones are effectively seen as property by the Republic / Kaminoans, so they would obviously not see value in a disabled clone.
15. Waxer & Boil
I rank Waxer and Boil together because as a team, these two made for a surprisingly memorable episode in season 1 of The Clone Wars. When the Separatists capture the planet of Ryloth, the Republic invades to free the populace from occupation. From there, these two clones meet a little Twi’lek girl, Numa, who avoided capture. They protect the girl, whose knowledge of the town’s tunnels helps them free her people. Eventually, the clones must move on from the town, but the girl sees them off, calling them “brother” in her language.
If that weren’t sad enough, a later episode reveals that Waxer painted Numa’s portrait on his helmet … right as he died from a friendly fire attack. In Rebels, Numa appears as one of Cham Syndulla’s resistance fighters, donning clone trooper armor implied to have been given to her by the surviving clone Boil. I hope we see their reunion at some point during the Bad Batch.
My biggest issue with Hunter is that, despite being the leader of the Bad Batch and the clone with arguably the most fatherly role with Omega, there isn’t much personality given to the character. His enhancements are rarely used in the show, and while his visual design is a fun callback to action heroes of the ’80s like Rambo, there’s not a lot to him that stands out.
Initially, I felt like Tech was just Echo but even more “nerdy,” being the science genius of the Bad Batch. However, his bonding moments with Omega and friendship with Phee Genoa have endeared me to him. I do think his character does fall into stereotypes about smart people being emotionally illiterate.
12. Boba Fett
I actually think that Boba is most compelling in The Clone Wars as a boy trying to avenge his father’s death while grappling with his identity as a clone of said father, and seeing his dad’s face in every clone standing between him and revenge. While I didn’t take as much issue with The Book of Boba Fett as some people, it felt like it did very little to interrogate his character or make him stand out as the protagonist. (Give us flashbacks of teenage Boba being mentored by Cad Bane, you cowards.) Still, Temuera Morrison is a gift and I do hope Fett factors into season 3 of The Mandalorian.
The last one standing, Echo is the only surviving member of the Domino squad. Echo was originally my favorite of the Dominos, though Fives won me over with his Umbara and Kamino arcs. While I was happy to get more of Echo in The Bad Batch, he was frequently overshadowed by the other members and somewhat redundant with Tech, who was similarly brainy and technologically gifted. Echo leaving the group in the middle of season 2 felt a little premature, even if it’s not a goodbye forever. It also doesn’t help that he is the most whitewashed out of the Bad Batch, having become unnaturally pale after his time as a prisoner of the Separatists. (Yes, I know it’s meant to be a visual parallel to Darth Vader, but Anakin is white and Echo is a clone of a Maori man, he should not be THAT pale.)
Honestly, I’m not as much of a Cody fan as some people. He always felt like an extension of Obi-Wan and having seen him already execute Order 66 made it difficult to grow attached to him. However, I am excited to see where he goes now that we know he defected from the Empire, and when (or if) he and Rex will ever reunite.
Wolffe is Plo Koon’s Clone Commander and was very close with his Jedi General. In the Clone Wars, he was notable for having a cybernetic eye, and was one of the few Clones with a visible disability / prosthetic. When he appeared in Rebels, it was as a shell-shocked veteran both wracked with guilt over his part in Order 66 and desperately trying to keep Rex away from the fight. Still, he eventually comes around and helps the Lothal rebels when they need him most.
The unique thing about Hevy is that, unlike most of the other clones on this list, he only appeared in two episodes. But his character was so well-liked that despite dying in his debut episode, the creators brought Hevy back for a prequel episode showing the beginnings of his squad and his friendship with clone 99. Which of course twists the vibro-blade even further, knowing that this character is just going off to his death, but that’s Clone Wars for you.
Jesse is a terribly tragic figure, being the face of Order 66 in The Clone Wars season 7. He is a clone so devoted to the Republic that both his helmet and face were marked with the Insignia of Unity (i.e., the Republic Cog wheel that would become the symbol of the Empire). Which made it all the more tragic when Ahsoka and Rex buried him and the other 501st clones, using their helmets as markers. Jesse’s death marked both the death of the Republic and the end of the Clone Wars.
Wrecker is my personal favorite of the original Bad Batch clones; his love of destruction and explosions contrast nicely with his fear of heights and teddy bear personality. He’s a great older brother to Omega especially, and has a lot of fun and endearing moments.
Fives may very well be the most tragic clone because he’s the one who saw the coming tragedy of Order 66 and almost stopped it. But a meeting with Chancellor Palpatine and a shot from Commander Fox ruined all hope of avoiding the inevitable. Worst part, he died thinking his brother Echo was dead and his friends were doomed. Though his sacrifice was not in vain as it did allow Rex to resist the programming (albeit briefly) and gave Ahsoka the information she needed to extract Rex’s chip.
Gregor is a hot mess and we love him for it. In Clone Wars, he was the standout of the 100th episode of the series, overcoming amnesia and escorting R2-D2’s squad of droid spies to a shuttle, and taking on dozens of droids single-handedly. Initially, fans thought he had given his life in the struggle, but were pleasantly surprised to see him still kicking 15 years later in Rebels (though his mental state wasn’t in the best of places). Gregor came out of retirement to help the Lothal rebels retake their home from the Empire, giving his life in the process. The Bad Batch also shows how he continued to help Clones like himself defect from the Empire.
Crosshair is fascinating because he’s a clone trooper unlike almost any other. He was the only one of the Bad Batch to have his chip activated, yet remains loyal to the Empire even after getting the chip removed. Still, season 2 of The Bad Batch saw Crosshair go through his own reckoning with the Empire, ultimately leading to him turning against his commanding officer. Good for him.
Omega is the heart of the Bad Batch and the reason the squad defects from the Empire. Revealed to be an unaltered clone of Jango Fett, Omega is fascinating both in how she contradicts many Clones we know, how she grows as the adopted daughter of an elite squad of defector soldiers, and for how she factors into the Fett family. I feel like it’s inevitable that she will meet Boba, and I wonder how they will react to each other when that happens.
Of all the clones fans want to see in live-action (particularly Ahsoka), Rex is at the top of the list, and for good reason. He is perhaps the most universally adored clone; being Anakin Skywalker’s second in command and a close friend of Ahsoka, Rex was a driving force in the Clone Wars, a mentor to Ezra Bridger in Rebels, and an ally to the squad in Bad Batch. The man constantly struggles with what it means to be a good soldier, compared to being a good friend or a good person, and despite his trials and tribulations, he never loses faith in his friends.
(featured image: Lucasfilm)
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