Warning: This article contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Bad Batch.
Another week has passed, another episode of The Bad Batch is down, and the series continues to impress.
After a side adventure that brought old friend Cut Lawquane back to the screen, "Replacements" spent time character building for the Bad Batch team as well as their estranged brother, Crosshair. Impacted by the enhanced effects of the clone inhibitor chip, Crosshair is appointed commander of a new unit of Imperial recruits, tasked with hunting down Saw Gerrera on Onderon.
Unlike the premiere episode, Crosshair does not fail Tarkin's orders to wipe out Gerrera's people, though the rebel leader himself was already off-world. Crosshair's squad reluctantly complied with his commands after punishment for disloyalty was served, and the ruthless nature of the chip's control was brought to light once more.
While impressed with the commander's work, Tarkin remains unconvinced that the services of the clones will be required for much longer, instead sold on the plan of the show's new villain, Admiral Rampart, to use elite clones to temporarily train and lead enlistees. The events of "Replacements" once again showed the Kaminoans butting heads with Tarkin as the Empire looks to move on from their clones, and one potential outcome from the differing of opinions seems particularly likely: war.
When Tarkin first appeared in the pilot episode "Aftermath," the Kaminoans were blindsided by the news that the Empire intended to terminate their clone program. While Prime Minister Lama Su argued that contracts with the cloners were in place, Tarkin pointed out that those agreements were with the Republic, "which no longer exists".
Since that initial meeting, there have been several moments throughout The Bad Batch's first few episodes depicting the Kaminoans sharing their contempt for the Empire, and even undermining the new government's authority.
If not for the secret intervention of scientist Nala Se, the Batch never would've escaped Kamino in the first place. Lama Su has attempted to sell Tarkin on the discipline, compliance, and efficiency of their Jango Fett clones over enlisted recruits, but the Governor of Eriadu is more concerned with cost.
As "Replacements" came to an end, Lama Su and Nala Se discussed the need for more advanced clones, particularly given the degrading of Fett's remaining DNA. Any member of the Bad Batch unit would be required to obtain the genetic samples needed, as well as Omega, though Crosshair went conspicuously unmentioned. With the sharpshooter now operating under the watchful eye of the Empire, any tinkering done by the Kaminoans may be deemed a threat by Tarkin and his superiors.
Nala Se didn't seem intent on retaining the Bad Batch or Omega when she aided them in their escape, so working to draw them back and use them as tools of the Empire seems like an unlikely direction for the series. Lama Su may believe that more advanced clones are the only way to ensure the survival of his operation, but one can never trust the likes of Tarkin or the Empire to operate on an honorable level.
Far more likely is Tarkin pushing things too far and crossing the line for the Kaminoans, at which point they'll have a full army of trained soldiers at their disposal...
GOOD SOLDIERS FOLLOW ORDERS
The tension between the Kaminoans and the Empire is certainly an intentional set-up by The Bad Batch's creators, and things are trending towards a messy resolution to the conflict.
With an army of clones who can be controlled by any command administered through the inhibitor chips, an attempted revolution by the Kaminoans against the Empire seems all but inevitable. The chips were implanted at the request of Sidious and Tyranus to execute Order 66 when the time came, but, as "Replacements" has shown, the Kaminoans don't operate without contingencies.
When contacted by Sifo-Dyas and later going on to work with Tyranus, it's doubtful that the Kaminoans fully trusted their clients with the full power of a military that could be ordered to turn on them. With this in mind, there may be other orders ingrained in the inhibitor chips that could give the Kaminoans complete control of their "property," allowing them to fight back against their Imperial overlords.
But what could cause such desperate action to be taken?
By the time of Star Wars Rebels and the original trilogy, there are no clones serving in the Imperial military. A strong bet would be that Rampart has his way and fully convinces Tarkin to shut down the clone program, thus betraying the Kaminoans. Any resistance to this decision would likely be deemed treason by the Empire, at which point the recruited stormtroopers would be ordered to execute the Kaminoans.
Then, let the war ensue.
With one simple command, the clone army could pivot on the Empire and serve their creators in an uprising the likes of which have never been seen in Star Wars. Clone troopers versus stormtroopers, just the way millions of kids have imagined such a battle with their action figures.
The looks for the stormtroopers (and Darth Vader) already exist in The Bad Batch's animation style thanks to the final sequence of The Clone Wars, and those expensive designs were surely created with future use in mind.
How will it all end?
Not well for the Kaminoans or clones, in all likelihood. The Kaminoans have yet to appear in any story in the canon following whatever transpires in The Bad Batch, and when Rebels rolls along all living clones have been decommissioned and ride out their final days in retirement. But there aren't many of them, and that could be due to the dark results of an effort to strike back against the Empire.
The extermination of the Kaminoans and most of the Jango Fett clones would explain their absence in future parts of the timeline while further removing threats posed to the tyrannical Empire. It would also explain why creations like Snoke Skywalker and Palpatine clones were relegated to the services of the Sith Eternal, as opposed to the experts in the business.
It may not transpire until the end of the series, and it may never happen at all, but a failed clone uprising seems to be the most likely outcome of disintegrating relationship between the Kaminoans and the Empire. For those who grew up with The Clone Wars or have followed their careers with great interest, the ultimate disposal of the clones may be one of the most tragic things to come from Star Wars.