The Bad Batch – S02E03 – The Solitary Clone
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On the Separatist world of Desix, civilians go about harvesting crops outside a city. A mother and her son share drinks. Sirens ring as an Imperial Nu-class attack/transport shuttle lands on a landing platform. Civilians scurry as Governor Grotton and a contingent of stormtroopers disembark and approach a masked woman who identifies herself as Tawni Ames, the Governor of Desix. Ames asks Grotton to state his business. Grotton replies that he is here to relieve her of her position by order of the Galactic Empire. Ames refuses to recognize Imperial authority and orders Grotton to depart. Grotton rejects her request and Ames orders her B1 battle droids to surround Grotton and his troops.
Meanwhile, CT-9904 (“Crosshair”) awakes in his room. He joins several Clone troopers for breakfast. Crosshair overhears two Clone troopers talking about the Defense Recruitment Bill, which they hope doesn’t pass. Crosshair joins the two clones, who move away. Before Crosshair can settle into his meal, he is ordered to report to Vice Admiral Rampart’s office immediately.
In his office, Rampart informs CT-9904 that he has been cleared for duty. Rampart recalls that Crosshair had been left on Kamino for 32 rotations and asks why he chose to return. Crosshair replies that he is a soldier of the Empire. Due to his loyalty to the Empire, Rampart assigns Crosshair to rescue the newly-appointed Imperial Governor of Desix, who has been taken hostage by insurgents demanding that their homeworld’s independence be recognized. Rampart explains that Crosshair will be sent as part of a fake diplomatic mission to secure the city and Governor Grotton’s release. Crosshair learns that he will be serving under a new commander and receives orders to report to the First Battle Memorial at 0900 hours.
At the Battle Memorial, Crosshair is greeted by Clone Commander Cody, who informs him that he specially requested Crosshair as part of the mission. Cody also raises the topic of the desertion of Clone Force 99 following Order 66, describing them as genetically defective clones. When Crosshair points out that regulars have also been deserting, Cody talks about rumors that more Clone troopers have been questioning Order 66. Crosshair dismisses them as traitors like the Jedi. Cody is visibly uncomfortable but responds that good soldiers follow orders. The two board a Nu-class shuttle.
While traveling through hyperspace, Cody briefs Crosshair and the other Clone troopers that a group of Separatist insurgents have activated a battalion of battle droids, seized the city, and captured Governor Grotton. When Clone troopers ask whether the battle droids received the shutdown order, Crosshair suggests that they could have been reprogrammed. Cody explains that their plan is to use the cover of a diplomatic mission to ambush the Separatist defenders, wipe out the droids, and locate Governor Grotton.
Flying into a trap
After exciting hyperspace, the Imperial pilot requests passage for Imperial Shuttle 995 to enter Desix airspace. A tactical droid grants them landing rights. Meanwhile, Governor Grotton protests that he is the legitimate governor but the battle droids dismiss his protests. Governor Ames promises to free him once the Empire accepts her terms. When Grotton protests that the Empire will not accept her demands, Ames reveals that she is aware that the diplomatic mission is a sham before removing her mask. Ames says that Count Dooku was right that the Galactic Republic would collapse and be replaced by the Galactic Empire. Grotton responds that her side lost the Clone Wars and that she will lose this war as well.
The tactical droid spots the Imperial shuttle with a pair of macrobinoculars and informs Governor Ames. On the rationale that the Imperials have chosen not to negotiate, Ames orders her battle droids to assemble Armored Assault Tanks (AAT) and rocket launchers, which hit the approaching shuttle. The Imperial shuttle crash lands in Sector Five, which lies in the outskirts of the city. Ames orders her tactical droids to send scouts to search the wreckage for survivors.
A squad of battle droids approaches the shuttle and discovers several dead bodies. The lead battle droid informs Ames that they found no survivors. Before the droids can return to the city, they are shot by Crosshair and Cody. Crosshair remarks that shooting the patrol buys them some time. Cody decides that the surviving squad members should continue on foot. While Cody is concerned about the injured squad members, Crosshair reassures him that he has survived worse odds.
Crosshair decides to take out a Separatist AAT tank. He tells Cody that he will draw their fire while the other Clones move into position. He convinces Cody to trust him. While Crosshair fires upon the tank, Cody and his troops crawl through a field of corn-like crops. Crosshair uses his rifle to fire a blaster bolt into the main cannon of the AAT, causing an explosion that causes the tank to fall off its bridge. As Cody and his troops enter the ramp leading into the castle, they come under fire from battle droids.
Crosshair takes out two snipers, which allows Cody and his troops to use grappling hooks to reach the top battlements of the castle. Cody compliments Crosshair for his marksmanship. Crosshair realizes that the a tactical droid is directing the battle droids since they are moving in coordinated waves. Cody proposes dividing their forces and orders Wyler and Nova to accompany him and Crosshair to the north access. Team two is ordered to enter through the south access. The tactical droid reports their movements to Governor Ames, who tells the droid to proceed with Protocol Four while she secures Grotton.
Cody and Crosshair find Governor Grotton but his captor flees with him down a turbolift. The two clones are soon cornered by droidekas and pinned down from above by battle droids. During the gun battle, Cody uses grenades to disable the droidekas. They move upstairs and take out more droid defenders. One of the Clone troopers is killed. Crosshair spots the tactical droid in the bell tower but is unable to get a clear line of sight. Cody uses a grenade to destroy a droideka and battle droid above the stairwell.
Rescuing the hostage
Crosshair, Cody, and the surviving Clone trooper reach a dark chamber where they find Governor Grotton’s cap. The Clones are ambushed by BX-series droid commandos but destroy them with grenades. Ames dispatches more BX-series commando droids to secure the tower. The Clone troopers take out several reinforcements through a mixture of firearms and knives. While proceeding upstairs, Cody takes out several more BX commando droids to provide Crosshair with a clear line of sight to fire a projectile. After ricocheting, the projectile hits the tactical droid, taking it out. Elsewhere, other Clone troopers eliminate the remaining battle droids with flamethrowers.
Cody and Crosshair soon corner Governor Ames, who has taken Grotton hostage. Grotton pleads with the clones to do something. Ames claims to be the rightful Governor of Desix and says that the planet separated from the Republic several years ago. She demands that the Empire recognizes Dexis as an independent system in exchange for the return of Grotton and his troops. Cody replies that he is not here to debate politics with her. Ames asks him to reconsider the “unjustness” of his actions. Cody responds that her droid forces attacked two Imperial convoys, prompting Ames to respond that they were resisting a hostile occupation.
Cody counters that the Empire is not the enemy, claiming that it only seeks to establish peace and security through the galaxy. Ames says she once believed in peace and supported Senator Mina Bonteri’s diplomatic efforts to end the Clone Wars. When Supreme Chancellor Palpatine rejected it, she realized that peace was never an option. Cody takes off his helmet and lowers his blaster. He tells Ames that he is willing to negotiate peacefully in order to avoid another war. Cody believes they can resolve this without more bloodshed. He convinces Ames to release Grotton in order to protect her people.
Once he is free, Grotton orders the clone troopers to execute Ames. Cody responds that he promised a peaceful solution. Grotton countermands Cody’s orders and orders him to execute Ames. Cody refuses but Crosshair complies with Grotton’s order. Cody looks at the masked Crosshair with shock. Grotton orders the Clone troopers to display Ames’ body in the square as a warning to the inhabitants of Desix. Cody is visibly upset.
Later, stormtroopers and clone troopers conduct door-to-door searchers of Desix’s city. Civilians carry boxes while Grotton’s surviving squad members climb a shuttle. A second shuttle arrives carrying stormtroopers. Cody boards a shuttle with Crosshair but does not speak with him during the journey back to Coruscant.
At the Battle Memorial, Cody asks Crosshair if they are making the galaxy a better place. When Crosshair responds that they are just following orders, Cody responds that Clone troopers have the ability to make their own decisions and choices unlike droids. He warns Crosshair that they have to live with their own decisions and choices before walking away. When Crosshair next reports for duty, Vice-Admiral Rampart commends him for his successful operation on Desix. Crosshair also learns that Cody has deserted and his new commander is CC-1226. Rampart questions the loyalty of clone troopers due to their increasing rate of desertion but Crosshair expresses disinterest.