The Clone Wars are over, but the story is just beginning. The first Twitter reactions are in for Star Wars: The Bad Batch and it looks like Lucasfilm prodigy, Dave Filoni, has another galactic home run on his hands.
Set in the aftermath of Order 66, the new animated series follows a group of rogue clones (all of whom are voiced by the prolific Dee Bradley Baker), who decide to become bounty hunters in an ever-changing galaxy that can no longer rely on the Jedi for protection. Naturally, the Empire isn't too happy about their own Troopers going off script and Admiral Tarkin — he's not a Moff quite yet — is tasked with terminating them.
According to the few lucky fans who have had a chance to pre-screen the first two episodes, The Bad Batch — which hits Disney+ tomorrow in time for May the 4th — is a lovely return to form for the animated side of the Star Wars universe. Now that we're focusing on non-Jedi characters (including Ming-Na Wen's Fennec Shand), viewers are comparing the show to more gritty and grounded Lucasfilm efforts like Rogue One and The Mandalorian. In addition, audience members are loving the subtle nods to the wider mythos, while the plot itself dives into a seldom explored era of the Star Wars timeline: the early days of the Empire's consolidation of power.
"It's a remarkable political military story that George Lucas paints. It's quite grand, it's quite grand in scale," Baker recently told SYFY WIRE. "And I don't think everybody who's just casually familiar with Star Wars grasps that. But it's pretty remarkable that it's not just a personal story of overcoming a bad early life or problems with dad or whatever, losing your wife, losing your mentor. But that it's also this grand political manipulation by a really evil and really smart, really capable fellow, Palpatine, who engineers democracy to give itself away to tyranny. That's the profound political tragedy that's really painted."
Take a look at what's being said below...
"The first 2 episodes of #TheBadBatch are a promising & exciting start to a series that will be satisfying for longtime fans. The series carries some unexpected surprises & an intriguing narrative, whilst delving deep into the psyche of Clone Troopers post-Order 66." - @DiscussingFilm
Star Wars: The Bad Batch kicks off with a cinematic, polished & surprising premiere. Feels like a Clone Wars sequel, evokes The Mandalorian & has an opening that is among the best SW animation. Deliberate pace & unique character development excites us for what’s next #TheBadBatch - @sw_holocron
"I had the pleasure of watching #StarWarsTheBadBatch the other day, and believe me when I tell you #TheCloneWars fans are gonna be psyched with this one!" - Meagan Damore
"The thing I want to emphasize about #TheBadBatch is that it fully delivers on the unspoken promise of animated #StarWars: Use the title of your show & its basic premise to secretly deliver a really soulful exploration that’s *way* more than the easiest explanation.
Just as TCW, Rebels, & Resistance became more than just war stories, this is an introspective look at “Lucasfilm’s TMNT.” It’s action packed, but layered. Love that it puts the overarching story first. It’s NOT TCW Season 8. Jennifer Corbett & Brad Rau struck gold. #TheBadBatch
Last reaction bit: There’s something that is SO UNBELIEVABLY GOOD, but it’s one of those “just accept that it differs from established canon” things. Like Ahsoka’s sabers, details of the Siege, & Cobb Vanth’s backstory. BUT...it’s more than worth it. I freaked out. #TheBadBatch" - Alden Diaz
"I've seen the first two episodes of #TheBadBatch and really enjoyed them. The second episode veering off from the main story was a little too soon for me, but that was standard for #TheCloneWars too. Regardless, that and the premiere show a lot of promise. One for #StarWars fans!" - Josh Wilding
"Having seen the first two episodes of #TheBadBatch, I can say I am not at all surprised at the quality of this show. The artistry, the story, the nods to wider canon, and the action are all top class. It has all the hallmarks you expect from a show continuing the legacy of TCW." - Nicky Kumar
"The first two episodes of @thebadbatch are filled with surprising appearances, chilling sequences, clever humor, & a healthy dose of big scary men being complete softies for a cute kid. It is a true @StarWars Story. The incredible @KinerMusic score steals the show. #TheBadBatch" - Maggie Lovitt
"Even as someone who's struggled to immerse myself in The Clone Wars, I really loved what I've seen from #TheBadBatch so far. Rogue One is my favorite SW movie and the relatively grounded nature of TBB echoes that: reluctant, ragtag group of heroes fighting for the greater good." - Eric Italiano
Filoni executive produces alongside Athena Portillo (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels), Brad Rau (Star Wars Rebels, Star Wars Resistance), and Jennifer Corbett (Star Wars Resistance, NCIS). Carrie Beck (The Mandalorian, Star Wars Rebels) and Josh Rimes (Star Wars Resistance) serve as co-executive producer and producer, respectively. Rau and Corbett both pull double duty as supervising director and head writer, respectively.
The Bad Batch hits Disney+ tomorrow morning at 3 a.m. EST with a 70-minute premiere. New episodes will then premiere every Friday, starting May 7.