Obi-Wan Kenobi is entirely predictable — but that doesn’t make it any less fun

Obi-Wan Kenobi is entirely predictable — but that doesn’t make it any less fun

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Ewan McGregor successful Obi-Wan Kenobi. Image: Lucasfilm

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You whitethorn cognize wherever the communicative is headed, but the travel is inactive worthy it

Given its placement successful the Star Wars timeline, sitting snugly betwixt the extremity of the prequel trilogy and the opening of A New Hope, determination are definite things that Obi-Wan Kenobi simply can’t do. At its core, the Disney Plus bid is simply a dilatory simmering conflict betwixt its titular pb and his erstwhile protege, Darth Vader. But, nary substance however epic the lightsaber battles mightiness be, we cognize neither of them tin truly die. The aforesaid goes for cute small Princess Leia each clip she makes a daring flight with Obi-Wan’s help.

And that’s portion of what makes the six-episode series, which conscionable wrapped up its finale, truthful impressive. Even with truthful overmuch already known and galore of the characters truthful thoroughly analyzed and explored, it manages to support the stakes and the hostility high. Obviously, Obi-Wan makes it done the amusement live — but watching him bash that makes for immoderate of the champion Star Wars successful a agelong time. Even erstwhile the stakes aren’t beingness and decease (for everyone), the affectional confrontations betwixt these friends turned enemies tin beryllium conscionable arsenic satisfying arsenic a well-choreographed lightsaber duel.

This reappraisal contains spoilers for each six episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi. For our reappraisal of the archetypal 2 episodes, spell here.

As the rubric implies, Obi-Wan Kenobi is centered astir the Jedi Knight played by Ewan McGregor. At the outset, he’s surviving arsenic a hermit connected Tatooine, hiding himself and his Force powers from the Empire, which is inactive intent connected eradicating each remaining Jedi from the galaxy. He’s besides making definite to support 1 oculus connected Luke Skywalker from afar — successful a mode that’s lone somewhat creepy. But, similar a retired criminal, he’s pulled successful for 1 past occupation aft Princess Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair) is kidnapped. Her parents, wanting to beryllium discreet, enlist Obi-Wan to bring her backmost to safety.

From there, the amusement expands to beryllium astir much than conscionable Obi-Wan arsenic an individual, focusing connected his relationships with pivotal characters successful the Star Wars universe. There’s Leia, who dilatory shifts from reckless kid to the unit (no pun intended) we cognize her arsenic as an adult, successful portion owed to Obi-Wan’s guidance. Over the people of six episodes, Obi-Wan changes, too, and steadily becomes himself again, not lone successful presumption of resuscitating his Jedi powers but besides the compassion that is truthful halfway to his character. And helium does each of this with a young and impressionable Leia watching him — her fiery property helping to propulsion him retired of his shell.

Darth Vader utilizing the Force to power an full spaceship. Image: Lucasfilm

Obi-Wan pulls successful a fewer caller threads arsenic well. Reva (Moses Ingram) starts retired arsenic the large bad, a merciless huntsman who is wholly fixated connected Obi-Wan. And she makes a large classical Star Wars villain, 1 who is initially bereft of conscience but yet becomes sympathetic — adjacent if her root was precise evidently telegraphed from the opening moments of the show. Plus, she has an highly chill lightsaber. Most of the different caller characters are mostly inheritance material, though they’re occasionally inactive entertaining, similar Kumail Nanjiani’s instrumentality connected a con creator pretending to beryllium a Jedi.

But the astir evident focal constituent is betwixt Obi-Wan and Darth Vader (played variously by Hayden Christensen and James Earl Jones, some reprising the role). Their fallout is the full crux of the show. Leia is captured successful an effort to lure Obi-Wan retired of hiding truthful that an inquisitor, Reva — portion of a tiny radical of fearsome Jedi-hunting elite commanders — tin get into Vader’s bully graces. Vader, meanwhile, has intelligibly ne'er gotten implicit the events of Revenge of the Sith, which, to beryllium fair, near him burned to the constituent that helium needs a analyzable robot suit to function. Both Obi-Wan and Vader look to imagination astir thing but each other, the events of the prequel trilogy haunting their sleepless nights.

For six episodes, the amusement dilatory builds up to that eventual confrontation betwixt Vader and Kenobi. It spends overmuch of that clip showing Obi-Wan reacquainting himself with the Force portion besides reestablishing conscionable however terrifying Vader tin be. While galore of the Force users successful the amusement are adept (or consecutive up struggling similar Obi-Wan), Vader has a earthy powerfulness that is intelligibly unmatched. There are scenes erstwhile helium drags victims down him conscionable to scare radical and a infinitesimal erstwhile helium manages to halt a ample freighter vessel mid-takeoff utilizing lone the Force. This is Vader astatine the tallness of his powers — and a reminder of wherefore the postulation is truthful terrified of him. And adjacent with immoderate of the hostility removed due to the fact that of the information we cognize they some volition live, it inactive manages to beryllium an unthinkable infinitesimal — and implicit classical lightsaber duel — erstwhile the 2 yet look disconnected successful the finale. (In fact, Obi-Wan features a fistful of large one-on-one enactment sequences, astir of which impact Vader and his laser sword.)

Reva leads a platoon of stormtroopers. Image: Lucasfilm

There’s inactive plentifulness of Star Wars silliness successful Obi-Wan. Most of the large astonishment reveals are casual to predict, the flashback sequences are precise connected the nose, and the Force remains a mysterious, uh, unit that seems to crook to the volition of the show’s writers arsenic overmuch arsenic it does the Jedi and Sith. Characters besides occasionally marque baffling choices; Obi-Wan would’ve been a precise antithetic amusement if radical really took a infinitesimal to guarantee their victims were dormant alternatively of conscionable walking away. It ne'er gets excessively egregious, but you’ll person to suspend your disbelief a fewer times successful this amusement astir abstraction wizards.

With its slate of upcoming books, shows, and movies, Disney is intent connected erstwhile again filling successful each small spread successful the Star Wars timeline. (RIP expanded universe.) So far, the results person been mixed. Despite what my Kenner enactment fig might’ve predicted erstwhile I was 12, Boba Fett’s interior beingness is not each that captivating. He’s much absorbing arsenic a mystery. But for Obi-Wan, a quality who’s integral to this beingness and yet truthful often plays a supporting role, it makes a batch of consciousness to excavation into this cardinal portion of his story, 1 that besides helped signifier the motivations of characters similar Leia and Vader. It helps that Obi-Wan does a batch of classical Star Wars things truly good — chill lightsaber battles; menacing villains; a beautiful, lived-in satellite — successful summation to telling an absorbing story.

So, adjacent though you cognize however things volition end, the amusement manages to marque the roadworthy to that decision a indispensable portion of the Star Wars mythos — 1 that reminds you however amusive this beingness tin be.

All six episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi are streaming connected Disney Plus now.