The Ultimate List of What to Watch Before Season 3 of ‘The Bad Batch’

Their mission is not over yet…

On February 21st, the first 3 episodes of the third and final season of Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Bad Batch will debut on Disney Plus. Clone Force 99 has one last fight in them but before you embark on their final mission with them, there is plenty of time to catch up on what the clone commandos have been up to since they first debuted in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Good soldiers follow orders and we order you to check out The Ultimate List of What to Watch Before The Bad Batch Season 3.

Tier One

If you want to be fully prepared to understand all the references and nuances that will certainly be thrown your way beginning February 21st, you have some serious homework to do…including watching a couple of prequel films.

Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (22 BBY)

One of the great revelations of Attack of the Clones was that an entire clone army had been bred and trained right under the noses of the Jedi. Obi-Wan’s trip to Kamino gave the Jedi quite a mystery to solve and all these years later, the Clone Force 99’s last mission is still tied to what went on there. Kamino played quite an important role in the first season of The Bad Batch, so revisiting it and all its key players is a worthy venture as you prepare for the final season.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008) 22 BBY

Though it was only mentioned a couple of times in A New Hope, the Clone Wars–like Boba Fett–was one of those things that took on a life of its own in the minds of fans over the years. Attack of the Clones teed it up and though 2003’s Clone Wars series first brought it to life, most fans know that’s not considered canon so the 2008 film provides the first canonical Clone Wars story. It also sets up the animated series that ran for 7 seasons and introduced Echo and Clone Force 99 (and, of course, Ahsoka), so, by all means, take the time to revisit it before moving along.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (22-19 BBY)

Rewatching/watching all 7 seasons of Star Wars: The Clone Wars is a must for every true Star Wars fan; however, attempting to do so before February 21st might prove tricky. With that in mind, here are the key episodes that introduce the major players and some of the plot points you need to know to fully enjoy The Bad Batch.

Season 3, Episode 1-Clone Cadets

Clone troopers unite! As war rages across the galaxy, the Republic’s clone army strives for victory against the evil forces of the Separatists. Bravery, valor, unity — the lifeblood of victory on the battlefield and in space. It all begins on the planet Kamino, where Jedi General Shaak Ti oversees the training of clones with the help of contracted bounty hunters. Bred to be perfect soldiers, these cadets must first be subjected to intense physical and mental training before heading off to war….

“Clone Cadets” delves into the lives of clone troopers and witness their rigorous training in Kamino’s cloning facility. The episode showcases the determination and camaraderie of the cadets as they face challenges and prove their worth. The story revolves around a squad of clone cadets named Domino Squad. Led by an experienced clone trooper named Sergeant O’Niner, the squad consists of five unique members: Hevy, Fives, Cutup, Droidbait and Echo, who is destined to become a member of The Bad Batch. Unlike their fellow cadets, Domino Squad has struggled to pass the various tests required for graduation, making them the underdogs of the facility. As the episode progresses, we witness the squad’s struggles and the bond forming between the members. Despite their differences in personality and approach, they learn to work together and overcome their individual weaknesses. Hevy, the hot-headed member of the group, initially believes that their failure is a sign that they are not fit to be soldiers. However, with the encouragement of his squadmates, he begins to regain his confidence.

Meanwhile, a group of bounty hunters, including the infamous Cad Bane, infiltrates the cloning facility with the intention of stealing clones for their own purposes. As the cadets’ final exam approaches, they encounter the bounty hunters, leading to a thrilling showdown. With their training and newfound unity, Domino Squad successfully defends the facility and foils the bounty hunters’ plans. In the end, Domino Squad’s determination and growth are rewarded as they graduate from their training and officially become clone troopers. Their impressive teamwork and resilience earn them the respect of their superiors and fellow cadets. The episode ends on a hopeful note, with the cadets ready to face the challenges that lie ahead as they join the ongoing war effort. It provides deeper insight into the lives of clone troopers, emphasizing that even though they are clones, they possess unique personalities and abilities which really sets the stage for Clone Force 99.

Interestingly enough, “Clone Cadets”–though part of Season 3–is a prequel episode to Season 1’s “Rookies.”

Season 1, Episode 5-Rookies

Clone forces rally! As the war escalates in the Outer Rim, the Jedi Knights are spread thinly across the galaxy. Many new clones are rushed into service to support their Jedi generals. Unfortunately, because of the relentless demands of battle, many young clones must join the struggle before their intensive training has been completed. These clones, manning a vital network of tracking stations, are all that stand between the Republic and invasion…

“Rookies” sees Domino Squad stationed on the remote Rishi moon outpost as they find themselves facing a significant challenge when their base is unexpectedly attacked by separatist droids. The episode begins with the clone troopers going about their routine tasks on the desolate Rishi outpost. However, things take a turn when a distress signal from a nearby listening post is intercepted. The outpost is ordered to investigate, and the troopers are left as the only line of defense. Meanwhile, the droids, under the command of the tactical droid commander, infiltrate the moon’s surface undetected. Their mission is to capture the base and install a listening device to intercept Republic transmissions.

Back at the Rishi outpost, rookie clones Hevy, Cutup, Droidbait, and Echo are left feeling uncertain and overwhelmed with their new responsibilities. Their lack of experience and doubts about their abilities make them an easy target for the droid invaders. As the droids launch their attack, the inexperienced rookies find themselves struggling to defend the outpost. However, they manage to hold their ground and fight back using their limited resources and skills. Despite the odds stacked against them, the rookies display bravery and determination in their efforts to protect the base. By the episode’s end, only Echo and Fives remain alive and are both inducted into the 501st.

Season 3, Episode 2-ARC Troopers

Separatist attack! After the destruction of the Republic outpost on the Rishi Moon, General Grievous and Asajj Ventress plan an attack on the planet Kamino, home of the cloning factories. Meanwhile, aboard a Jedi cruiser, Jedi Knights Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi examine an intercepted message from General Grievous….

Season 3, Episode 2 follows the elite clone trooper units known as Advanced Recon Commandos (ARCs) as they face off against the Separatist forces on the planet Kamino. The episode opens with the Separatist invasion of Kamino, home to the Republic’s clone army. As the Separatist droid army storms the cloning facility, the ARCs, led by Captain Rex and Commander Cody, spring into action to repel the invaders. The ARCs, renowned for their specialized training and combat prowess, prove to be a formidable line of defense against the overwhelming odds, including Asajj Ventress and General Grievous. By the end of the episode, Fives and Echo are promoted as ARC troopers.

Season 3, Episode 18-The Citadel

Captured! Returning from a perilous assignment in the Outer Rim, Jedi Master Even Piell’s cruiser has fallen under attack and been boarded. Seeking vital information he carries about secret hyperspace lanes called the Nexus Route, Separatist forces have taken him alive. Now the Jedi are preparing a stealth mission into the heart of Separatist space in an effort to rescue Master Piell from the deadly prison known as the Citadel….

Led by Anakin Skywalker and Captain Rex, a team of elite clone troopers embarks on a daring infiltration mission that will test their skills, resolve, and loyalty to the Republic. The episode opens with the Republic learning of the capture of Jedi Master Even Piell, who possesses vital information about hyperspace routes crucial to the war effort. Determined to retrieve this valuable asset, Anakin Skywalker and Captain Rex assemble a team of seasoned clone troopers, including Echo, Fives, and Commander Cody, to undertake the perilous rescue mission to retrieve Piell from from the impenetrable fortress known as the Citadel.

As the Republic forces infiltrate the Citadel, they encounter a series of formidable obstacles and deadly traps designed to thwart intruders. The tension escalates as the team navigates the treacherous corridors of the fortress, facing off against Separatist droid guards and other obstacles at every turn. The stakes are raised when the team encounters Osi Sobeck, the sadistic warden of the Citadel, who will stop at nothing to prevent the Republic forces from succeeding in their mission. With Sobeck’s cunning traps and ruthless tactics posing a constant threat, the team must stay one step ahead to outsmart their adversaries and secure their objective.

Season 3, Episode 19-Counterattack

Escape from a Separatist prison! Carrying information about secret routes into the heart of the Republic and Separatist homeworlds, Jedi Master Even Piell was captured and imprisoned in a fortress known as the Citadel. Leading an elite strike team, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker rescue Master Piell and his officers. Now the Jedi have split up to evade Separatist forces as they attempt to escape the Citadel….

The Republic’s heroes face dire circumstances as they are trapped behind enemy lines on the planet Lola Sayu. As the Republic forces push forward, they encounter fierce resistance from the Separatist droid army, led by the sadistic warden Osi Sobeck. With Sobeck’s cunning strategies and ruthless tactics, the Republic’s escape becomes increasingly perilous, testing the resolve of the heroes to their limits.

Echo’s technical expertise and strategic thinking are instrumental in the Republic’s plans to break through enemy lines and secure their escape. As a seasoned soldier, Echo contributes valuable insights and tactical suggestions to the team, helping them navigate the treacherous terrain of Lola Sayu and outsmart the Separatist forces. During the episode, Echo is critically wounded while attempting to secure the Republic’s escape from the Separatist-controlled planet. As a result, his condition is left in doubt, and there are concerns among his fellow clone troopers about whether he has survived the ordeal.

Season 7, Episode 1-The Bad Batch

The battle for Anaxes! One of the Republic’s largest shipyards is under attack from Admiral Trench’s Separatist forces. Jedi Generals Mace Windu and Anakin Skywalker lead a two-pronged assault on the ground and in the air. But after weeks of heated battle and mounting losses, the Republic’s grip on Anaxes begins to slip away….

The first appearance of Clone Force 99! The episode starts with Anakin Skywalker and Captain Rex receiving a distress signal from the planet Anaxes, which is under attack by the Separatist forces. Rex and Anakin send a squad of Clone Troopers called the “Bad Batch” to investigate the situation. The Bad Batch consists of four genetically enhanced clones, each with unique abilities. They are Hunter, who has enhanced sensory skills, Crosshair, an expert marksman, Wrecker, a super strong trooper, and Tech, a clone with advanced intelligence and technical skills. As the Bad Batch infiltrates the Separatist-held Cyber Center, they encounter droids with enhanced tactical strategies. Despite the droids’ advantage, the Bad Batch manages to outsmart and defeat them. Alongside the Clone Troopers, they rescue Echo, a clone trooper who was presumed dead but is actually being held captive and used to gather intel for the Separatists.

Rex and Anakin begin to suspect that Echo’s rescue was too easy and that the Separatists might be using him to feed false information. As they leave Anaxes, Rex shares his concerns with Commander Cody, hinting at a potential trap. Overall, “The Bad Batch” sets up the storyline for the rest of Season 7, establishing the Bad Batch as unique and formidable allies for the Republic. It also introduces the mystery surrounding Echo’s captivity and establishes the impending danger that Rex and the other clones will face in the upcoming episodes.

Season 7, Episode 2-A Distant Echo

Conspiracy! After repeated setbacks on the planet Anaxes, an elite clone squad is deployed to investigate the Separatist tactical advantage. This special unit, called the Bad Batch, infiltrates Admiral Trench’s cyber center to steal a strategic algorithm capable of predicting the Republic’s every move. What our heroes found was a live signal from the ARC trooper known as Echo, a clone long believed to be dead….

The story continues in “A Distant Echo,” with Captain Rex, Anakin Skywalker, and the Bad Batch pursuing their mission to find Clone Trooper Echo, who was presumed dead during a battle on the planet of Anaxes. The episode begins with the team landing on Skako Minor, a remote planet controlled by the Techno Union. They meet a local alien named Poletec, who guides them through treacherous terrain to the Techno Union’s headquarters, where they believe Echo is being held. While making their way through the complex, the team encounters intense resistance and faces deadly droids. However, they manage to find a lab where the Techno Union experiments on Echo. They are shocked to discover that Echo is still alive, but he has been heavily modified with cybernetic enhancements, linking him to a computer system. Rex pleads with Echo to remember who he is and that they are there to rescue him. Echo hesitates, unsure of whether he can trust them.

Meanwhile, the Separatist General Trench, who is overseeing the Techno Union’s operations, becomes aware of the Republic’s presence and orders a full-scale attack. As the clones and the Bad Batch fight their way out of the facility, Echo eventually decides to join them. Together, they manage to escape the besieged headquarters, but not without severe casualties. The team barely makes it back to their ship, holding onto the hope of Echo’s potential recovery. Back on Anaxes, Rex and the others deliver Echo to the Jedi Council, who plan to investigate the Techno Union’s cybernetic modifications and obtain crucial information about the Separatists. However, the council worries about the risks of using Echo’s knowledge, given the possibility of him being compromised. In the final moments of the episode, Anakin expresses his concern for Rex, fearing that his close attachment to Echo might cloud his judgment.

The rescue mission to save Echo proves successful, but it also raises questions about the consequences of war and the line between humanity and machinery. With Echo now back in their grasp, the Republic faces new challenges as they prepare to uncover the secrets that could significantly impact the outcome of the Clone Wars.

Season 7, Episode 3-On the Wings of Keeradaks

Trapped! On an unsanctioned mission to rescue ARC trooper Echo, General Skywalker, Captain Rex, and the Bad Batch travel to Skako Minor, headquarters of the Techno Union. After a harrowing encounter with the natives, our heroes infiltrate the city of Purkoll, only to find themselves surrounded by Wat Tambor’s forces….

The story continues with the daring rescue mission of the captives from the Techno Union facility on the planet of Skako Minor in “On the Wings of Keeradaks.” The episode begins with Anakin, Rex and with the Bad Batch making their way through the dense forests of Skako Minor towards the Techno Union facility to free Echo. As they approach the facility, the team encounters fierce resistance from the native creatures known as Keeradaks. These winged reptilian creatures prove to be a formidable obstacle, attacking the clones and causing their transport ship to crash.

Undeterred, the team splits up, with Anakin and Captain Rex heading toward the facility while the Bad Batch attempts to repair the ship. Anakin and Rex manage to infiltrate the facility and locate Echo, who is hooked up to a machine that is extracting information from his mind. Anakin and Rex rescue Echo, but their escape is cut short when they are confronted by Watt Tambor, the Techno Union foreman. A fierce battle ensues, during which Echo showcases his enhanced abilities and knowledge of the Separatists’ plans. Ultimately, Anakin, Rex, and Echo manage to overpower Watt Tambor and escape with the help of the Bad Batch, who arrive just in time with their repaired ship. The episode concludes with the reunited team flying away from Skako Minor, determined to bring Echo back to the Republic and uncover the true extent of the Separatists’ plans.

Season 7, Episode 4-Unfinished Business

Reunited! With the help of the Bad Batch, Captain Rex rescues his old friend, ARC Trooper Echo, from the Techno Union. The Separatists’ loss of Echo’s strategic algorithm provides a chance for the Republic to turn the tide in the Battle for Anaxes. However, Echo’s horrifying experience behind enemy lines leaves lingering questions of his true loyalty and uncertain future….

Star Wars: Episode III-Revenge of the Sith (19 BBY)

The first episode of the season of The Bad Batch takes place following Chancellor Palpatine declaring Order 66 to be executed and that, of course, takes place during Revenge of the Sith. The revelation that the clones obedience to the directive came via chips implanted in their heads is a major plot point in The Bad Batch. When executed, Order 66 commanded the clone troopers to kill their Jedi Generals, effectively wiping out the Jedi Order. The order was implemented towards the end of the Clone Wars, when Chancellor Palpatine revealed himself as a Sith Lord and took control of the Republic, transforming it into the Galactic Empire. The end of the Clone Wars and what that meant for clones is also heavily explored in The Bad Batch.

The Bad Batch, Season 1 (19 BBY) and The Bad Batch Season 2, (18 BBY)

No reason to ramble here. Obviously to understand Season 3, the two seasons that came before it are required viewing.

Tier Two

If you’re short on time and are looking for the essential episodes of the first two seasons of The Bad Batch, try this on for size. While it’s probably pretty important to watch every episode (because you truly never know which character or location will come back in a big way), this list does provide you with a pretty solid idea of the overarching plot.

Season 1, Episode 1-Aftermath

Separatists pushed to the brink! Republic forces continue to mount victories on battlefronts across the galaxy. After the Jedi Knights thwarted an attempt to kidnap Chancellor Palpatine, the evil droid general Grievous retreated to the Outer Rim. With his legions of battle droids severely depleted, Grievous mounts a desperate and brutal counterattack across several star systems. We find Republic clone troopers locked in deadly combat on the besieged world of Kaller. Led by Jedi Master Depa Billaba, they struggle to hold their position as they wait for reinforcements to arrive….

Season 1, Episode 3-Replacements

Season 1, Episode 5-Rampage

Season 1, Episode 7-Battle Scars

Season 1, Episode 8-Reunion

Season 1, Episode 9-Bounty Lost

Season 1, Episode 14-War-Mantle

Season 1, Episode 15-Return to Kamino

Season 1, Episode 16-Kamino Lost

These 9 Season 1 episodes deal with the themes of identity and individuality while exploring exactly what was going on at the cloning facility of Kamino.

Season 2, Episode 1-Spoils of War

Season 2, Episode 2-Ruins of War

Season 2, Episode 3-The Solitary Clone

Season 2, Episode 7-The Clone Conspiracy

Season 2, Episode 8-Truth and Consequences

Season 2, Episode 11-Metamorphosis

Season 2, Episode 12-The Outpost

Season 2, Episode 14-Tipping Point

Season 2, Episode 15-The Summit

Season 2, Episode 16-Plan 99

Family. Season 2 of The Bad Batch spends a lot of time allowing each character to grow and to establish that Clone Force 99 wants to be done running missions and to settle down as a family. The two-part season finale, of course, makes that impossible and sets up their one last mission.

About The Bad Batch Season 3

In the epic final season of Star Wars: The Bad Batch, the Batch will have their limits tested in the fight to reunite with Omega as she faces challenges of her own inside a remote Imperial science lab. With the group fractured and facing threats from all directions, they will have to seek out unexpected allies, embark on dangerous missions, and muster everything they have learned to free themselves from the Empire.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch showcases a talented voice cast, including Dee Bradley
(American Dad!), Michelle Ang (Fear the Walking Dead: Flight 462), Keisha Castle-Hughes (Whale Rider), Jimmi Simpson (Westworld), Noshir Dalal (It’s Pony) and Wanda Sykes (The Upshaws).

Star Wars: The Bad Batch is executive produced by Dave Filoni (Ahsoka, The
Mandalorian), Athena Portillo (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels), Brad
Rau (Star Wars Rebels, Star Wars Resistance), Jennifer Corbett (Star
Wars Resistance, NCIS) and Carrie Beck (Ahsoka, The Mandalorian), with Josh
Rimes (Star Wars Resistance, Star Wars: Visions) as co-executive producer and Alex
Spotswood (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels) as senior producer. Rau
is also serving as supervising director with Corbett as head writer.

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