‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ Did the Unimaginable: It Made All Star Wars Followers Glad

simply earlier than Obi-Wan Kenobi launched on Disney Plus again in Might, I wrote in regards to the present’s impending launch.

I believed that, for one cause or one other, Obi-Wan Kenobi felt like a final hope for Star Wars beneath Disney. After an incohesive sequence trilogysome hit-or-miss spinoffs and a handful of mediocre TV reveals, I used to be drained of all enthusiasm for Star Wars.

Obi-Wan Kenobi felt like a final stand for my very own Star Wars fandom.

Regardless of disliking virtually all of Disney’s Star Wars output, I had a sense Obi-Wan Kenobi had an honest shot at being “good.” The stakes of a present targeted on such a key character – mixed with the potential the present needed to bridge the hole between the prequels and the originals – set the scene for a brand new sort of Star Wars nostalgia. Youngsters who grew up on the prequels are adults now. Do not they deserve the form of fan service Disney has been delivering for the final decade?

Moses Ingram created one of the memorable new characters in latest Star Wars historical past.


I believed so. However I additionally believed the present had the potential to occupy a brand new center floor. One which appealed not simply to newer followers of Star Wars, however all followers. And what? For probably the most half, that is precisely the way it performed out.

Obi-Wan Kenobi was… superior?

Positive, the actress enjoying Leia regarded means too younger to be enjoying a 10-year-old woman. Positive, she was a part of one of the unintentionally hilarious chase scenes in TV historical past.

And positive (that is my final positive, I promise), stakes have been lowered with the information that Leia, Luke and Obi-Wan would all survive the present’s encounters.

However regardless of all these sures, in opposition to all the chances, Obi-Wan Kenobi nonetheless managed to be the very best TV present Disney has produced since buying Star Wars.

Maybe extra impressively, it achieved the not possible: It made (virtually) all Star Wars followers completely satisfied.

Whats up there!

Most fandom tends to have poisonous components, however Star Wars followers are among the many most tough to please.

I believe it is as a result of Star Wars is so broad, so ubiquitously intertwined with folks’s private histories, that it is not possible to reconcile. Everybody has their Star Wars imprint, their very own thought of ​​what it ought to symbolize. I liked The Final Jedi as a result of it confirmed me Star Wars might reinvent itself, that Star Wars might make attention-grabbing selections, function in shades of grey. Others hated The Final Jedi as a result of it felt like a betrayal of characters they grew up with.

Anakin Skywalker smiles in Obi Wan Kenobi

Anakin Skywalker makes a number of appearances within the present.


Maybe the very best praise I might give Obi-Wan Kenobi is that the majority Star Wars followers – outdoors of the racists who got here after Moses Ingram – loved it. Virtually throughout the board.

Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan has an enormous half to play on this. His efficiency, broadly considered a excessive level within the prequels, is pitch excellent within the present. McGregor has a charisma and vulnerability that elevates Star Wars, even at its worst. You consider Obi-Wan when he has a disaster of confidence. You are feeling linked to his struggles his and lifted when he overcomes his personal doubts and rises to the event.

However I believe Obi-Wan is profitable principally as a result of it connects two distinct Star Wars fan bases seamlessly. It takes the very best of the prequels – its aesthetic, McGregor – and combines it with probably the most timeless a part of the unique trilogy – Vader as an irredeemable, overpowering villain who ought to be feared in any respect prices.

With these two components in place, Obi-Wan Kenobi, regardless of its flaws, simply works. The inventively choreographed lightsaber duels between the 2 have been pitch excellent.

Darth Vader, his helmet cracked and revealing Anakin Skywalker's burnt face underneath, raises his red lightsaber in Obi-Wan Kenobi

May wish to get that fastened Ani.


However Darth Vader’s portrayal is probably the present’s biggest power. Within the center elements of the present he rampages like an ultraviolent slasher villain, and it is extremely thrilling. I do not suppose Vader has ever felt fairly as terrifying. Nonetheless, his insecurities his really feel uncooked and, ultimately – his masks broken, his physique damaged – you get an actual sense of what he is wrestling with and the way far gone he’s.

Disney’s have to endlessly plug the gaps in Star Wars’ more and more inflexible meta-narrative has at all times felt unusual. A universe that when felt awe-inspiring and gigantic was rendered as tiny as a snow globe. However Obi-Wan Kenobi felt like a narrative value telling, a narrative that created connective tissue all Star Wars followers might resonate with. A narrative that everybody – with their very own distinctive concepts about what Star Wars ought to be – might get behind.

That, in and of itself, appears like an enormous achievement.

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