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We knew what became of the Separatist leadership and it wasn’t good. Darth Vader, before his epic duel with Obi-Wan Kenobi, cut them down one by one in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. We didn’t know what happened to the greater Separatist Senate, however. It wasn’t until Season 3 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars that we even knew they had one.
The episode “Heroes on Both Sides” introduced us to their senate on the planet Raxus. Some of them had good intentions, but none of them realized that they were being toyed with by Darth Sidious and Count Dooku like they were dejarik pieces. Dooku looming over them during sessions as a giant hologram didn’t clue them in.
What happened to all of those dopes? Star Wars: The Bad Batch hasn’t forgotten them, and Episode 10 of the series takes us back to Raxus to see how all of their bad choices worked out for them.
***WARNING: There are spoilers ahead for Episode 10 of Star Wars: The Bad Batch. If you have not watched yet, proceed no further.***
In The Clone Wars, Ahsoka (Ashley Eckstein) was the one who learned that being a separatist senator did not automatically make you evil. Here, it is mostly Echo (Dee Bradley Baker, he plays every clone) who has to adapt. The episode title “Common Ground” likely relates to him and the rest of the Batch having to save a former enemy. You hate the Empire, I hate the Empire, look we're on common ground!
How are things on Raxus? They’re great... if you love Imperial occupation. Walkers patrol the streets, clones enforce curfews, and Captain Bragg (Shelby Young) says they all just want to be friends. She expects one of the only senators left to help her pacify the rabble.
He refuses, so he’s gonna need to be rescued before he presumably gets iced like the rest of the separatist senate. His droid gets a message to Cid, who sends the always-indebted Batch to rescue him.
Clones rescuing a separatist? Sounds loony, but the madness doesn’t stop there! The senator is Avi Singh, and he’s played by Alexander Siddig. The Batch is rescuing a separatist who is voiced by a Star Trek legend.
Siddig played Doctor Julian Bashir in all seven seasons off the perpetually under-appreciated Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Not to spoil anything from that show, but Bashir knew a few things about DNA enhancement. Siddig, a veteran of many other projects since the end of DS9, has now traded in the Trek for the Wars.
It’s not the first time that this has happened. George Takei (Hikaru Sulu on the original Star Trek) memorably joined The Clone Wars for an episode in Season 1 where he also played a separatist. He was a plump Neimoidian who was hot for genocide, so Avi Singh is an easier swallow by comparison.
By episode’s end, Echo (and the rest) learn that separatists can be alright, especially when they sacrifice special gift vases for the cause. If they can be friends, then maybe there’s hope for Star Trek fans and Star Wars fans. Witches can be right, giants can be good.
We’re mostly joking, because a vast amount of people are huge fans of both franchises. They scratch entirely different itches and the debate over which one is better is just exhausting at this point.
Also this on deck this week: Cid (Rhea Perlman) turns a left-behind Omega (Michelle Ang) into the Elizabeth Harmon of dejarik, with all of the Batch’s debts getting paid off in the process. The next Omega tries to sleep on the Havoc Marauder, will she see dejarik pieces on the ceiling?
There was something for everyone this week, whether you love Star Trek, The Queen’s Gambit, Cheers, or all of them. Star Wars fans got some answers and a potentially ongoing storyline too, so big success all around.
(The kriffing gall of Hunter though! He tells Omega that she’s supposed to lie low when he’s just been off dancing around a planet occupied by Imperials wearing his clone armor loud and proud. We’d bet Cid every credit we have that Omega whipped his bandana butt in that “sorry I left you out” game of dejarik at episode’s end.)
Looking ahead, a former separatist senator may be very useful for the Batch. It would mean more Alexander Siddig on this show, so they should just make him a main character. Doctor Bashir walking into Carla Tortelli’s bar on a Star Wars series isn’t something we realized we needed until it happened.
New episodes of Star Wars: The Bad Batch stream on Disney+ every Friday.