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Star Wars: The Bad Batch Episode 16 Ending Explained

When the news broke that "Star Wars: The Bad Batch" was the next animated adventure Lucasfilm would take fans on, excitement was understandably high. After all, the titular clone squad left most fans impressed following their "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" debut in Season 7, making a series about them in a post-Republic world seemed like a no-brainer. Though the "Star Wars" faithful haven't hidden their handful of gripes, it stands to reason that Season 1 was a resounding success all the same — even sticking the landing before the hype train for Season 2 could leave the station.

Episode 15, "Return to Kamino," was as emotional as it was informative. Clone Force 99 went all in on yet another rescue mission, this time seeking out Hunter (Dee Bradley Baker), who had fallen into Imperial custody in the previous installment, "War-Mantle." They freed their brother with relative ease but soon found themselves face to face with their estranged sibling and stalwart Imperial loyalist, Crosshair (Baker). He revealed that he was free of his inhibitor chip for some time now and just wanted to reunite with his family under the Empire, but their chat was cut short by the destruction of Kamino's capital, Tipoca City.

In rounding off the inaugural season of "The Bad Batch," here's how Episode 16, "Kamino Lost," bid viewers farewell.

A waterlogged escape

We open "Kamino Lost" on Vice Admiral Rampart (Noshir Dalal) as he continues to watch over Tipoca City's destruction. Callously, he and his fleet of Venator-class Star Destroyers depart, centering the spotlight firmly on the Bad Batch. With their home crumbling around them, the team attempts to navigate the wreckage with more than a handful of close calls. Their first big obstacle comes when a door cuts off Omega (Michelle Ang), Crosshair, and AZI (Ben Diskin) from the rest of the party and nearly causes them to drown.

Thankfully, everyone's combined efforts keep the trio alive, but danger is around every corner at this point. They then make for an underwater tunnel that lacks power, nearly allowing a sea creature to eat our heroes (and Crosshair) on their way out. The Batch must now contend with the fact that the tunnel leading to the landing platform from Nala Se's (Gwendoline Yeo) secret lab has been destroyed. Their solution? Using old cloning pods as buoys to get them back to the surface with AZI steering them out of the way of incoming debris.

Although their escape had viewers everywhere gasping for air at times, everyone that was trapped in Tipoca City when it fell makes it out in one piece. Tragically, as Crosshair points out, the annihilation of the facility marks the end of an era, phasing out the clones and the Republic they served even further.

Omega gets through to Crosshair

Despite the fact that the Kamino cloning facility is falling to pieces around them, Crosshair still finds plenty of time to make snide comments toward his former teammates. He criticizes Hunter's leadership skills, pokes fun at Wrecker's (Baker) intelligence level, and plays the blame game over who really got them all into this situation. Furthermore, he draws the ire of everyone whenever he cites the Empire's fascist vision for the galaxy as something he wanted to be a part of — turning his brothers down whenever they offer an alternative.

Perhaps worst of all, Crosshair continually mocks Omega for her inexperience in situations like the one they're in and voices his distrust in her leadership skills. The most she receives from him after saving his life was a subtle nod, nothing even close to gratitude. This combined with his generally unpleasant demeanor essentially breaks the glass-half-full Omega, who tells him off and effectively calls him a bad person — inhibitor chip or not. This must have an impact on him, seeing as he saves her and AZI from drowning after she leaves her pod to save her droid companion. 

Once back at the Havoc Marauder, Omega reminds Crosshair before a rare Kamino sunrise that he's still her and the Batch's brother, whether he likes it or not. Per his request, they leave him behind once again, but it's clear her words and those of his brothers won't leave his mind for some time.

Nala Se's promotion

Just before the credits roll on "Kamino Lost," we get a look at where Nala Se has been taken now that Kamino and the Kaminoans have been wiped off of the Empire's radar. Surrounded by armed Imperial troopers, she's transported to an unnamed installation where an unnamed medical officer (Helen Sadler) awaits her. She explains that Nala Se's work in cloning has gotten the Empire's attention and that the regime has big things in store for her, not giving her much say in the matter.

Given the long history of cloning in the "Star Wars" universe, this scene likely hints at future stories. It could be inferred that this tease is pointing to Emperor Palpatine's (Ian McDiarmid) experimental cloning techniques that ultimately resulted in the First Order Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) and the father of Rey (Daisy Ridley). In doing so, this could connect "The Bad Batch" to "The Mandalorian," given how much the latter has focused on Imperial interest in developing cloning technology, most likely for Palpatine's gain as well.

It's almost a certainty that Nala Se will reemerge in "The Bad Batch" Season 2, and in doing so, will provide us all with more answers as to why the Empire has such a deep-rooted affinity for cloning tech.

Where to next?

As mentioned previously, the end of "Kamino Lost" brings with it the end of "The Bad Batch" Season 1. The entire team survives along with Crosshair, Vice Admiral Rampart continues the implementation of Project War-Mantle, Kamino is in shambles, and the galaxy is becoming more and more divided. So, with those elements in mind, where could the impending second season of "The Bad Batch" take us and its cast of characters? Well, it will most likely go in a handful of relative directions, given the layout of the "Star Wars" universe.

Odds are we'll see Clone Force 99 continue their work for Cid (Rhea Perlman), but it's not far off to say that their Kamino experience has changed their outlook on life. Maybe just as Rex (Baker) and the Syndulla family have mentioned in previous weeks, it's time for the Batch to start actively standing up to the Empire and its rapidly growing reach. That could mean assembling with other rebelling leaders, rescuing other clones from their inhibitor chips, or even taking the fight head-on to the Imperials. The possibilities are as close to endless as one can get.

All in all, "The Bad Batch" Season 1 serves as a fine epilogue to "The Clone Wars," providing plenty of entertainment and valuable additions to the canon along the way. The premiere of Season 2 truly can't come soon enough.