[Warning: Article contains spoilers for the latest episode of Star Wars: The Bad Batch. If you’ve not yet seen it, read on at your own risk.] Dave Filoni continues his mastery of Star Wars storytelling with the latest episode of The Bad Batch, “Devil’s Deal.” Granted, the titular band of enhanced clones are barely in the episode at all. Likewise, the episode could technically be considered “filler.” But that’s where Filoni excels; even his filler episodes have far reaching impact on the greater story he’s trying to tell.

Hera Syndulla; The Bad Batch
Young Hera Syndulla with her father Cham in The Bad Batch. (Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.)

Over the course of the last forty-plus years we’ve come to realize that the galaxy far, far away really is a small, interconnected place. “Devil’s Deal” sees Hunter & co. (briefly) delivering weapons to the Twi’lek freedom fighters of Ryloth… including a young Hera Syndulla and her droid companion, Chopper. We also reunite with Hera’s father, Cham, and meet her mother for the first time. So why is The Bad Batch focusing so much on Ryloth in this episode? It’s all part of Filoni’s greater, world-building plan.

The Bad Batch and the fall of Ryloth

The bad Batch; Cham Syndull
Cham and Eleni Syndulla in The Bad Batch. (Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.)

One of the underlying themes of the show is how the Empire, through charisma and calculation, slowly chokes the galaxy into submission. This episode illustrates just how manipulative the regime could be following the Clone Wars. Surprisingly, we see Cham Syndulla supporting the Empire, at least initially. It’s not long, however, before the Empire’s actions open his eyes much the same way its actions opened those of the Bad Batch. By the episode’s end, we learn the full extent of how Cham, and later Hera, grew into the characters we met in The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels.

The continuity Dave Filoni displays in the show is outstanding. For instance, we see in the background the derelict Y-wing from which Hera rescued Chopper. In Rebels we learned that Hera’s mother, Eleni, died fighting the Empire. Chances are, sadly, that she doesn’t survive her capture at the end of The Bad Batch episode 11. Perhaps what’s best about this episode is the notion that non-Jedi can still have a huge impact on the fate of the galaxy. It’s none other than Clone Force 99 that help sow the seeds of rebellion on Ryloth. (And yes, even Crosshair, albeit on the other side, played his part in that, as well.)

Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch airs Fridays on Disney+.