Hello and welcome to Laughing Place’s regular recap of the Lucasfilm animated series Star Wars: The Bad Batch on Disney+. This week’s installment, entitled “Common Ground,” is the tenth episode of the show’s first season.
“Common Ground” begins on the planet Raxus (first seen in Star Wars: The Clone Wars) with an Imperial officer named Captain Bragg (voiced by Shelby Young from Star Wars: Forces of Destiny) addressing a gathered audience of citizens. “We promised to treat all planets within the Confederacy of Independent Systems fairly. All we asked in exchange was for your loyalty.” A senator named Avi Singh (guest star Alexander Siddig of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) behind her bemoans privately to his droid GS-8 (Sian Clifford from Fleabag) that he is becoming a puppet for the Empire. Bragg explains that a mandatory curfew is being put into effect, to boos from the crowd. She introduces Singh for further comment, but tells GS-8 to follow his instructions if anything happens to him. The citizens react more positively to the senator, but mid-speech he changes his mind and stops backing the Imperial occupation. Bragg takes Singh into custody and orders troops and walker tanks to move in on the irate crowd. GS-8 covertly sends a message out into the galaxy asking for assistance.
On Ord Mantell, Omega (Michelle Ang) and Wrecker (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker, as are all the adult Jango Fett clones) enjoy some more Mantell Mix. Tech says it would be wise for Clone Force 99 to keep a low profile considering there are two bounty hunters after Omega, and Hunter agrees. They enter Cid’s cantina, where Cid (Rhea Perlman) offers them a mission to Raxus for an extraction, which Tech notes is the former center of the Separatist government. Cid says they’re being hired to locate and rescue Senator Singh after meeting a contact on Raxus. Hunter refuses to help a Separatist, and is also wary of bringing Omega “to a planet swarming with Imperials.” Cid offers to babysit, which Hunter hesitantly accepts. Omega is frustrated to be left behind, but she follows Hunter’s orders regardless. As the Bad Batch leaves, Cid tells Omega to start scrubbing the cantina.
The Havoc Marauder arrives on Raxus and lands outside the capital city of Raxluon, but not before being intercepted by local security vehicles, which clear the ship for entry after they transmit a stolen code. Planetside, the group argues among themselves about working for Separatists before they meet up with GS-8 in the forest. “We’re working for a droid?” asks Wrecker. Hunter demands to be taken to where the senator is being held, and they follow GS-8 through the woods. Back on Ord Mantell, Omega looks depressed as she half-heartedly washes the bartop. Cid tells her if she weren’t so helpless she wouldn’t get left behind. “I’m not helpless,” defends Omega, as she goes to sulk in the corner. On Raxus, Imperial clone troopers patrol the streets of Raxulon as Clone Force 99 approaches. They analyze the target building and Echo accuses GS-8 of setting them up until Hunter intervenes.
They sneak past a security camera and Wrecker stealthily takes out a reg. Hunter sends in GS-8 as a distraction, and she draws away the troopers defending the front entrance so Wrecker can knock them out too. GS-8 enters the passcode to open the door, and the Bad Batch enters the building. Tech hacks the exterior cameras so he can monitor the Imperial troops and the team splits up. Hunter gives everyone orders and accidentally includes Omega, who he forgets is not on the mission. GS-8 volunteers to distract more guards, who are then taken out by a stun grenade. Hunter takes out another trooper and almost destroys a priceless vase, but GS-8 grabs it before it crashes to the ground. On Ord Mantell, Cid plays dejarik against her bar patrons and Omega starts advising her on what moves to make. Cid learns that Omega is an extremely talented strategist and offers her a cut of 30% from future winnings, but Omega counters with 60%.
On Raxus, Captain Bragg intimidates Senator Singh with the use of an interrogation droid until the door slides open and a gas grenade drops through. The members of Clone Force 99 enter and stun Bragg, her two troopers, and the droid. They release Singh from his binders and GS-8 tells him she saved his vase. Tech says an alert has been triggered throughout the city, and outside a klaxon blares. The group rushes out onto the balcony, where they look down to see troops scrambling into position. Hunter orders the team to seize one of the tanks, which they easily do, to GS-8’s astonishment. They put Singh into the tank and head out through the city, but Bragg regains consciousness and orders a pursuit. The commandeered tank is shot at by another walker and disabled. Tech says they will have to recalibrate the stabilizer manually while Wrecker and Hunter hold off the Imperials.
Together the team takes out another tank, but they soon find themselves outnumbered as more troops enter the area. Tech is about to be captured, but Senator Singh throws his valuable vase at one of the regs’ heads, buying them enough of a distraction for Tech and Echo to use their stun blasters. With the repairs complete, the Bad Batch gets back in the tank and resumes their egress. Singh directs them to turn down a certain alleyway even though it seems to be a dead end. He explains that the wall at the end of an alley leads to an subterranean passage, and has Wrecker blast a hole through it. “That I can do,” says Wrecker, and they escape through the tunnel just as the Imperials destroy their tank. Back in the forest, everyone starts to board the Havoc Marauder until Senator Singh starts to have second thoughts again. “I cannot abandon my people,” he says. “I must help them.”
GS-8 convinces Senator Singh that he can do no good for his people if he’s in Imperial custody, and he agrees to board the ship. The Havoc Marauder takes off and leaves Raxus’s atmosphere. Upon returning to Ord Mantell, Clone Force 99 finds a crowd gathering in Cid’s cantina. Inside, the locals are cheering as Omega goes head-to-head against another competitor in dejarik. “She did it again!” shouts one of the patrons as Omega wins the game. Omega smiles as she sees the Bad Batch enter the bar, and Cid clears out the crowd. “Where’d you learn to do that?” asks Wrecker. “She’s a natural. I’ve never seen anything like it,” answers Cid. Hunter is upset that Omega isn’t keeping a low profile as ordered, but Cid tells him to ease up because Omega has successfully paid off their debt to her.
After Cid takes the senator into the back to talk payment, Hunter and Omega have a heart-to-heart. “I wanted to be useful, even if I couldn’t go on the mission,” says Omega. Hunter says they’ll put her strategy skills to the test and challenges her to a match of dejarik. If Omega wins, she doesn’t have to sit out on any more missions. “You ready for this?” asks Hunter. “Are you?” replies Omega.
New episodes of Star Wars: The Bad Batch are released Fridays, exclusively on Disney+.
Mike serves as Laughing Place’s lead Southern California reporter, Editorial Director for Star Wars content, and host of the weekly “Who’s the Bossk?” Star Wars podcast. He’s been fascinated by Disney theme parks and storytelling in general all his life and resides in Burbank, California with his beloved wife and cats.