REVIEW: ‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch,’ Season 2 Episode 13 – “Pabu”

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The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13

After a heartwrenching episode with Crosshair last week, The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 returns the focus to Clone Force 99. Following their run-in with the Zilo Beast, it seems all signs pointed to another mission to stop the Empire’s cloning operation. However, ‘Pabu’ takes the Batch on a different course that might inform their future after the fight with the Empire is done.

The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 opens with Clone Force 99 supporting Phee Genoa (Wanda Sykes), the space pirate introduced in ‘Spoils of War,’ as she attempts to liberate yet another ancient wonder from one of her contacts. Like in ‘Spoils of War,’ Omega is by Phee’s side, continuing to learn the trade. When the deal goes array, as they tend to do when the Batch is involved, a shoot-out breaks out where the clones quickly dispatch the swindlers.

Following the action, Phee joins the clones on the Marauder. Phee points out that Omega needs training and friends instead of just being a soldier like her brothers. Before the conservation goes further, the Batch gets a message from Cidd Scaleback, who all but threatens to turn over information about them to the Empire after they all but cut ties with her. Given the events of last week’s episode, the Empire is more than willing to take information that leads them to Omega to continue their cloning operations. This leads Phee to offer a place for Clone Force 99 to lay low while giving Omega a place to be just a kid.

Phee takes the Batch to Pabu, her self-described home away from home. Here, viewers get a sense of who Phee is as a person and why she does what she does. Genona mentions that many of the villagers in the settlement are refugees. Star Wars continues to focus on the ramifications of the war on the common folk. Not only in The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 and the early episodes of the season but in other properties like The Mandaolrian as well. Further, Phee mentions that the items she liberates are directly connected to the culture of the refugees on Pabu. So, even if they don’t have monetary value, their cultural significance is worth preserving.

This notion of preserving culture in the face of the Empire’s wake has been highlighted this season dating back to the premiere episodes of season 2. Phee’s dedication to using her abilities to inspire hope in the refugees draws very similar parallels with Cere Junda in the recent release of Star Wars Jedi: Battle Scar, which occurs more or less around the same time. Junda, one of the last of the Jedi Order, is adamant about finding a Jedi artifact, even if it jeopardizes her crew’s mission early on in the story. While the artifact isn’t powerful, Cere understands the importance of preserving what is left of a dying culture, much like Phee does in The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13. 

Throughout season 2, there have been hints about what Clone Force 99 might do instead of just fighting the Empire. As ‘Pabu’ progresses, the Batch becomes more and more comfortable with just existing with the other refugees. Omega has the opportunity just to be a kid, which hasn’t happened much this season. Wrecker enjoys anywhere that gives him a full plate of food. Tech appears to have a budding romance with Phee. Even Hunter suggests the notion of staying on Pabu permanently. However, nothing is quite so simple for our heroic clones.

The rest of The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 places Clone Force 99 in the middle of a natural disaster situation. When an earthquake triggers a tsunami, the Batch must help the villagers escape to higher ground or be swept away by the ocean. While the sequence is very straightforward, the overarching context highlights what fans have seen throughout various recent Star Wars projects. No one is safe in this era. Displaced, whether by the Empire or the New Republic, are at much bigger risk when things go south. Sometimes, the fight isn’t always against the big bad government. Sometimes, it is one just to stay alive.

While The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 takes another detour away from the fight with Empire, it doesn’t mean that the stories of Clone Force 99 aren’t progressing. With episodes like thousands of other episodes this season that have just been passed off as “file,” the crumbs of what’s next are laid out in these types of stories. The Batch can do more than fight the Empir, and there are those in need who can directly help without being under Imperial noses. When it is all said and done, I hope that we see our heroes in search of other ways to feel fulfilled, as we see in ‘Pabu’: Omega as a treasure hunter, Tech as a racer who settles down with Phee, Wrecker getting to eat all the food his heart desires, and Hunter getting to be the father and not the solider.

The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 is currently streaming exclusively on Disney+, with new episodes every Wednesday.

The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13
  • 8.5/10
    Rating - 8.5/10


While The Bad Batch Season 2 Episode 13 takes another detour away from the fight with Empire, it doesn’t mean that the stories of Clone Force 99 aren’t progressing.

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