Hunter and Echo in 'Star Wars: The Bad Batch' Season 3
(Disney+)

‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch’ Series Finale: Is [SPOILER] Really Dead?

Mission complete.

Grab a tissue box, because after three (too short) seasons, it’s the end for Clone Force 99. Now that the finale has arrived on Disney+, here’s a full breakdown of that heart-wrenching Star Wars: The Bad Batch Season 3 ending, and what it means for the future of Star Wars animation.

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All good things must come to an end, including The Bad Batch. Created by Lucasfilm CCO Dave Filoni as a companion piece/followup to Star Wars: The Clone Wars, the series premiered on Disney+ in May 2021. As the title suggests, the story follows the titular “Bad Batch,” a group of genetically modified clones who audiences first met in season 7 of The Clone Wars. Since then, we’ve all come to know and love Clone Force 99.

What is Star Wars: The Bad Batch about?

Over the course of three seasons, The Bad Batch sees Hunter, Tech, Wrecker, Crosshair, and Echo (Dee Bradley Baker) fighting back against the Galactic Empire in the aftermath of Order 66, to protect unaltered Jango Fett clone Omega (Michelle Ang)—the missing puzzle piece in Emperor Palpatine’s (Ian McDiarmid) Project Necromancer. Things came to a head during the climax of season 2, when Omega is imprisoned by Doctor Hemlock (Jimmi Simpson) and subjected to experimentation on Mount Tantiss, with season 3 being largely devoted to her escape and subsequent recapture.

Lucasfilm confirmed that the third season of The Bad Batch would also be its last during Star Wars Celebration Europe 2023, meaning it’s hardly a surprise that showrunners Jennifer Corbett and Brad Rau had to dot their i’s and cross their t’s by the time the finale came around. But don’t be too hasty with your goodbyes, because it might not be the end of the line for Clone Force 99 after all.

So, about that Star Wars: The Bad Batch finale …

**SPOILER ALERT: This post spoils all episodes of Star Wars: The Bad Batch Season 3.**

The series finale of The Bad Batch dropped on Disney+ on May 1, and with it came a pretty conclusive (and happy!) ending to the Clone Force 99’s journey, all while leaving a suspiciously open slate for future animated Star Wars stories. And even though it might not have been the gritty, “everybody dies” kind of climax that fans had suspected, tears were still shed nonetheless.

Picking up immediately after the events of last week’s episode, the finale, titled “The Cavalry Has Arrived,” sees our heroes divided as they storm Mount Tantiss. Echo, having enlisted the help of clone scientist Emerie Karr (Keisha Castle-Hughes), helps shuttle the imprisoned Force-sensitive children off-world, while Wrecker, Hunter, and Crosshair march straight into the line of fire to save their li’l sis. R.I.P. Crosshair’s shaky hand. Star Wars just loves to separate people from their limbs!

Thankfully, Omega is already one step ahead, as she and her newfound friends had already sneaked out of the vault to release the Zillo Beast being hidden in the depths of Tantiss—the perfect distraction. As we saw in The Clone Wars, these near-indestructible monsters are capable of wreaking havoc, and one that’s been in confinement for, presumably, years would likely be pretty pissed off at its captors. After it’s freed, however, the beast just kind of runs off into the sunset, never to be seen again. File under: “problems for later.”

Omega (Michelle Ang) looks up in Season 3 of 'Star Wars: The Bad Batch'
(Disney+)

Remember Vice Admiral Rampart (Noshir Dalal)? Well he’s still around, and just as slimy as ever. Capitalizing on all the uproar, Rampart gives Nala Se (Gwendoline Yeo) an ultimatum: give up her cloning research so he can sweet talk his way back into the Empire, or die. In an act of heroism, the Kaminoan scientist instead blows up the laboratory and, thus, erases Project Necromancer forever. As explained by Moff Tarkin (Stephen Stanton) later on, all funds given to Tantiss will now be redirected to Project Stardust, a.k.a. the Death Star.

Meanwhile, we finally get an answer as to who the mystery man in Clone CX-2’s mask is: no one in particular, really. While many speculated that this individual could be a familiar clone like Commander Cody or even Tech after some pretty obvious red herrings, writers took the Marrok route (à la Ahsoka) by pitting Hemlock’s reprogrammed clone assassins against Wrecker, Hunter, and Crosshair, only to be shot down once Echo and Omega come to the rescue.

Ultimately, the episode ends with Tantiss being destroyed, with Crosshair and Hunter shooting Hemlock in a particularly cinematic moment that proves the batch’s unwavering loyalty to each other. With Hemlock out of the way and the prisoners liberated, everyone is now free to live as they see fit, and the gang returns to Pabu to get some much-deserved rest after a lifetime of war. It’s confirmed that Tech is, indeed, dead (ahem, we still haven’t seen a body yet, technically), burying any hope that he survived his fall.

We get an epilogue at the end of the episode that really ties things together. In the last-ever scene of The Bad Batch, we time-jump forward ten or so years to the peak of the Galactic Civil War, as Omega jets off to join the Rebel Alliance, much to the reluctance of her brother/father figure. Still, Hunter, now older and wiser, having hung up his DC-17 blaster, understands what Omega has to do, and the two share a tearful goodbye as she leaves Pabu—this time, as a grown woman. It’s a fitting and emotional farewell to Clone Force 99, who got their “happily ever after,” after all.

What’s next for Star Wars animation?

Well, it’s hard to say, as the only animated series that’s been confirmed by Lucasfilm is the upcoming Star Wars: Tales of the Empire. However, the door is certainly open for Star Wars to explore more clone-centric stories down the line. After all, we’re still not really sure if Omega decided to pick up Jedi training or not (with Ventress?), or what happened to Captain Rex and Echo’s crusade to free their clone brothers. Until then, fans will continue to press Lucasfilm for in-universe explanations.

Although Lucasfilm is closing the book on The Bad Batch, fret not, because it’s only a few short days before the next animated Star Wars show, Tales of the Empire, lands on Disney+. Although the next entry in the critically acclaimed anthology series might not heal all the wounds left by The Bad Batch‘s tear-jerking finale, it will, at least, give us some fun lightsaber duels and typical “bad guy” antics to help us recover. Anyway, pour one out for Nala Se tonight.

All episodes of Star Wars: The Bad Batch are now streaming exclusively on Disney+.

(featured image: Lucasfilm)


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Author
Amanda Landwehr
Amanda is a Los Angeles-based entertainment writer who lives and breathes Star Wars, Marvel, and all things pop culture. She has worked in digital media since 2021, covering the latest movie/TV releases, casting updates, fan theories, and so, so much more. When she's not rotting away behind her laptop screen, you can typically catch Amanda maxing out her AMC Stubs membership.