The Bad Batch Review: “Infested”

The story continues as the Bad Batch steps into the current episode grumbling about their latest job and how the gundarks weren’t a part of the intel that Cid had given them. Star Wars fans should be able to sympathize at least a little bit with Hunter and his group since gundarks aren’t exactly pleasant creatures to deal with. But when the group makes their way into Cid’s place they happen to notice several new faces that they don’t recognize, and upon trying to see Cid find out why they’re accosted, or at least someone tries to stop them before we see a body go flying as the group rounds the corner into Cid’s office. The only problem is, Cid isn’t there. Instead, Roland Durand, son of Isa Durand, has decided to use his forces to live up to his mother’s name and has ousted Cid from her place to use her location as his current headquarters to deliver a load of spice to the dreaded Pyke Syndicate. It’s more than a little obvious that the clones aren’t ready or willing to deal with Roland as they go in search of Cid, who tells them what happened before enlisting them in her bid to take her place back. 

Luckily, Cid has an idea on how to get her place back, but it involves a rather dangerous mission to sneak into her office, steal the load of spice that Roland is holding, and then let the Pykes deal with him. That plan actually starts off fairly well as Cid takes the clones on a trip through the underbelly of Ord Mantell City, using the old rail system that had been blocked off due to an ‘infestation problem’. Upon seeing the extensive webs strewn throughout the cavernous spaces that existed beneath the city, it’s fair to say that the clones were a bit uneasy in thinking about what might be waiting in the shadows. Doing their best to keep quiet, the group still manages to hear something clattering around in the darkness after Wrecker accidentally drops his light into the depths. 

Stealing the spice is easy enough as Cid has two of her patrons lure Roland’s pet away, the same pet that Cid procured for him earlier in the series. Once Roland and his guards are out of Cid’s place, she and the clones snag the spice and are on their way. Unfortunately, the patrons bungle the operation and the pet gets loose, and with this development, Roland returns to the establishment a little too early and is able to have his guards follow Cid and the clones. As one can guess, this results in a botched job as the spice goes falling into the cavernous depths of the tunnel system. Eventually, as it turns out, the Pyke’s aren’t willing to just up and go away when Cid and the clones return to the cantina, since they need that spice and aren’t willing to let go of it. Given that no one wants the Pykes as enemies, Cid agrees to retrieve the spice with the clones, under the stipulation made by the Pykes that Omega stays with them as collateral. This is the criminal world of Star Wars, so yes, it’s a bit brutal. 

But lo and behold, Omega and Roland get to talking, and she finds out that he’s attempting to follow after his mother, Isa Durand, and has been taught that being ruthless and taking what you want is all that matters. Meanwhile, the clones and Cid manage to locate and retrieve the spice, but not before waking the insects, known as Irlings, a species that’s especially sensitive to light as Tech finds out. While Wrecker and Cid are retrieving the spice, it does happen, as one would guess, that they make too much noise and are set upon by a swarm of Irlings as they’re being hauled up with the last load. Wrecker of course starts lighting up anything that moves, while Tech finally finishes a device that creates a massive burst of light that not only scares off many of the Irlings, but obliterates a good number of them as well as Wrecker and Cid, and the rest of the spice is hauled aboard. 

Returning the spice and satisfying the Pyke Syndicate is an edgy ordeal, but since Roland failed his punishment, while initially bound to be severe, is lessened by Omega’s words as the Pykes chop off one of Roland’s horns, instead of finishing him then and there. It’s another bit of kindness that Omega is willing to show as she continues to remind those around her that they don’t need to be savages to survive. With four episodes left to go in the season, one can’t help but wonder where the group is going to end up by the time the season is over, and if the finale might see them meeting up with an old comrade for a final showdown. 


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