We’ve reached the end of our journey (for now?) with Obi-Wan Kenobi and the series tied up the loose ends, while leaving some threads dangling should everyone involved decide they want to go on more adventures.
WARNING: Spoilers ahead, so if you have not yet watched this episode perhaps you may want to pause and go watch the episode first.
This episode continues in the classic Star Wars tradition of intercutting between storylines, as we go back and forth between what’s going on with Obi-Wan and what is going on with Reva. Thus, we begin the episode back on Tatooine as Reva is beginning her hunt for Luke by asking around about her old friend Owen. Meanwhile, back on the rebel cruiser, as Vader is in hot pursuit Roken tells everyone that the hyperdrive is almost fixed and they’ll be heading to Tessen. Obi-Wan, however, sees through this and when confronted, Roken admits the motivator is shot and the power couplings are bad. Obi-Wan looks out over the scared crowd on the cruiser and sees Leia attempting to help keep people calm, showing what a leader she is already becoming even in the face of adversity at the age of 10. Leia tells him Lola helps distract people from their fear and Obi-Wan quips that perhaps he could use her too.
Obi-Wan has decided that he must separate from the group to divert Vader’s attention. Leia is VERY against this, and Obi-Wan is reminded that he told everyone in the prior episode that they needed to stick together. He tells the assembled group that this plan will give Roken the time he needs and that they’ve spent the past 10 years protecting the Jedi and this is his chance to return the favor, directly contradicting Reva’s claims from the premiere that there was no need to protect the Jedi because they would not do the same. Obi-Wan tells the group that they are the future, and Leia that SHE is the future (of course, with him being one of the only people in the galaxy knowing how true that is). Leia storms off, but Obi-Wan asks Haja to promise that he will get her back to Alderaan. Haja gives his word, but notes that he’s not sure if the word of a liar and a false Jedi carries much weight. Obi-Wan says that is good enough for him.
Meanwhile back on Tatooine, a water vendor who was grilled by Reva finds Owen and Luke in a shop and warns them. Owen and Luke return to the Lars farm and Owen warns Beru that Reva is coming. Beru gives Owen flak for driving away Obi-Wan (“Ben is gone.” “And whose fault is that.”) before telling Owen that she does not want to run and instead wants to defend their home. She says she doesn’t want to put anyone else in danger and that they will be enough and that Reva will make her move when the suns go down so they must get into position. Later on they will tell Luke to hide and that if anything goes wrong to run.
Obi-Wan is preparing to leave the group and has a last chat with Leia, who reminds him that he promised to get her home. Obi-Wan says he wishes he could and asks her to tell her father that he tried. Obi-Wan does have a parting gift for Leia, though — Tala’s holster, which was recovered by Roken before they left Jabiim. Leia notes that it’s empty, to which Obi-Wan replies that he wasn’t going to give her a blaster as she’s just 10 years old but that she won’t always be (a nice call back to their discussion in the second episode of how she doesn’t act like a 10-year-old and a nod to the rebel leader Leia will become in the future). Leia hugs him and tells him to please come back and Obi-Wan promises, but it’s unclear if either really believes him.
Obi-Wan stares at his lightsaber and makes another attempt to speak with Qui-Gon, telling him that he has to face Vader/Anakin and that no matter the outcome, this ends now. Roken tries one last time to talk Obi-Wan out of this plan, but also notes it’s really not about them but rather about Obi-Wan and Anakin/Vader. Obi-Wan gives Roken encouragement as they part, nothing that there are not many leaders left and people follow him. Roken replies that he’s just getting started.
Obi-Wan gets in his drop ship and separates from the cruiser, and Vader predictably eschews the larger target in favor of chasing after Kenobi, despite the Grand Inquisitor’s pleas to focus on eliminating the Path.
Obi-Wan makes his way to a non-descript planet and Vader says he will face Obi-Wan alone. Once he lands, Obi-Wan discovers that Leia has put Lola in his pocket, a nod to his earlier declaration that perhaps he could use her help to get past his fear. Vader arrives and asks if Obi-Wan plans to destroy him, to which Obi-Wan replies “I will do what I must” — a call back to Revenge of the Sith before their duel on Mustafar and in contrast to their duel earlier in this series in which he ran. Also in contrast is Obi-Wan immediately moving into his familiar Soresu stance, showing that this will be a far different duel than the one on Mapuzo. As their duel begins, we see perhaps the most aggressive Obi-Wan in canon since the duel of the fates in “The Phanton Menace.”
As their fight continues, including a sequence in tight valley that seemingly evokes the scene in Revenge of the Sith when they are dueling through a tight corridor on Mustafar, Vader notes that Obi-Wan’s strength has returned, but taunts that his weakness remains and that is why he will always lose (an allusion back to their sparring session in the previous episode why Anakin chides Obi-Wan for his mercy and that it will not help him best an opponent). Vader cracks the ground, causing it to collapse beneath Obi-Wan and he further buries Obi-Wan in debris and dismissively asks Obi-Wan if he really thought he could defeat him, saying with sarcasm, “You have failed, Master.”
Meanwhile, at the same time Reva is approaching the Lars homestead almost like a villain in a slasher film — wounded, but still coming with determination. Owen and Beru have taken their defensive positions and try to slow Reva down, using their cover and anything in the homestead to stop her, but she fights through their defenses. Reva notes that Owen really loves Luke like he is his own, to which Owen replies that he is, showing that under all his gruffness he truly does love Luke and wants what’s best for him, even if it means facing a Force user. He asks her what she wants, and Reva replies “justice” before knocking Owen down. Owen yells out to Beru that Reva is coming, allowing Beru to get a shot in on Reva and giving Luke enough time to escape from the homestead. Again, similar to a villain in slasher film, Reva limps after him, channeling her rage into her pursuit.
Back with Obi-Wan, we discover he is not out of the fight yet, holding up the debris with the Force. He hears all of Anakin’s taunts going back to Revenge of the Sith, but then has a flash of Luke and Leia and uses that to power his way out of peril and re-engage with Vader. Once again, Obi-Wan goes on the offensive, Force pushing Vader and pummeling him with rocks. Eventually he damages Vader’s breathing box, taking control of the fight. He leaps and slices off half of Vader’s helmet, but is stopped in his tracks when he sees Anakin’s face underneath. The simple word “Anakin” out of his mouth contains a sea of emotion, which is expertly played by Ewan McGregor. Obi-Wan tearfully apologizes for everything, but in a Hayden Christensen voice, Vader says Anakin is gone and he is all that remains. Still in Hayden voice, Vader says he is not Obi-Wan’s failure, although the Vaderized timbre of James Earl Jones is mixed in as well by the end of the statement. It was was quite powerful to have the voice go in and out of Hayden/Anakin and James Earl Jones/Vader, adding further emotion to the scene.
In half Anakin/half Vader voice, he says that Obi-Wan didn’t kill Anakin Skywalker, Vader did (thus giving cover to Obi-Wan’s “from a certain point of view” statement to Luke that Vader killed his father). Obi-Wan tearfully says then his friend is truly dead and says goodbye, waits a beat, Darth, giving a new meaning to when Obi-Wan only refers to Vader as Darth on the Death Star years later. He leaves an enraged Vader, who is too weakened to stop him. Vader, first in a more Anakin voice but then in a more hybrid Anakin/Vader voice, shouts for Obi-Wan but he departs and once back on his ship senses Luke is in trouble and makes his way back to Tatooine.
Reva has caught up to Luke and uses the Force to pull him down to her, rendering him unconscious. As she approaches him with her lightsaber activated, she begins to see her younger self in his place and has flashbacks to Anakin/Vader approaching during the siege of the Jedi temple and sees herself in the role of Anakin/Vader. She lifts her lightsaber up, but we don’t see what happens as we cut to Obi-Wan arriving at the Lars homestead to help search for Luke. But before the search can begin, Reva appears carrying an unconscious Luke, causing everyone to go still for a moment wondering if she’s killed him. All breathe a sigh of relief when he groans and begins to move, as Owen and Beru scoop him up and take him inside.
Reva, in a masterfully performed sequence from Moses Ingram, tearfully tells Obi-Wan that she couldn’t do it and that she failed her crèche mates after Anakin/Vader killed them all and she couldn’t gain revenge. Obi-Wan counters that by showing mercy, Reva has given them peace and honored them. Reva asks Obi-Wan if she has become him, referring to Vader, to which Obi-Wan says no, but that who she becomes now is up to her. She throws down her Inquisitor lightsaber and Obi-Wan helps her up. He tells her she’s free now, they both are, implying that Obi-Wan is perhaps finally forgiving himself for Anakin’s fall and the fall of the Republic.
Speaking of Vader, we see him back in his castle on Mustafar telling Darth Sidious (in an unexpected cameo from Ian McDiarmid) raging that he will destroy everything in his path until Kenobi is found that he will not evade him again. Surprisingly, Sidious seems to put a halt to this and questions whether Vader’s feelings for his old master have weakened him, seemingly getting ready to deliver a threat that if his past cannot be overcome … . But Vader, interrupts saying Kenobi means nothing and that he only serves the Emperor, seemingly explaining why Vader does not continue his pursuit of Kenobi from the end of the series to the beginning of A New Hope.
Then we get into what is basically the epilogue for the series. We see Leia, in a nod to the growing independence that will define her in the original trilogy that perhaps she has grown into during the course of this series, dressing herself in a sequence similar to the one from the premiere where a bunch of handmaidens prepared “Leia” to meet her cousins. We do see her put on the gloves Obi-Wan bought her on Daiyu and Tala’s holster, which her adopted mother Breha says she loves. Bail also seemingly approves, and when Leia reminds him that he told her there are many leads and that she is going to want to make some changes, he says they will do it together. This again is a sign of the leader she is growing into being, her growth from her adventure with Obi-Wan and the seed of the rebellion.
Leia asks who is coming, asking if it’s more cousins, but she is pleasantly surprised when Obi-Wan appears, returning Lola to her, noting “Who am I to separate a young lady from her droid?” Obi-Wan has a warm welcome from the Organas, and Bail says they can never repay him, but Obi-Wan notes that Leia has already done that. Bail shares his fears of the Empire’s growth and boldness, to which Obi-Wan replies if they ever need his help again, Bail knows where to find him. This could be interpreted as either leaving the door open for further adventures with Obi-Wan on Disney+ or an allusion to Rogue One or A New Hope, even.
Obi-Wan admits to Leia that he lied when she asked if he knew her parents and proceeds to give her a gift — he tells her she is wise, discerning and kindhearted like her mother, but also passionate, fearless and forthright like her father. He says her parents were exceptional people who bore an exceptional daughter and that he wishes he could tell her more. However, she replies that it’s OK he doesn’t have to, as she looks toward the Organas. She asks him if she’ll ever see him again, to which he replies maybe, if she ever needs help from a tired old man, getting in one last old jab at Obi-Wan’s expense. But, he tells her they must be careful and no one can know about their relationship or it could endanger them both, filling in a plot hole for some in how Leia seems somewhat dispassionate in calling for Obi-Wan in A New Hope. They have one last embrace and he says “May the Force Be With You,” before departing.
Back on Tatooine, Obi-Wan is cleaning out his old cave, back in the Jedi garb we remember from the prequel trilogy and that we will see him in during A New Hope. This seemingly closes out the chapter of his life where he was broken and lost, representing a new start for the Jedi master and bringing him ever closer to the man we met in A New Hope. As he is packing, he picks up the toy he had bought for Luke and makes his way to the Lars homestead. He assures Owen that he will indeed keep his distance and even says that Owen was right before and that Luke just needs to be a boy for now and that the future will take care of itself. He says the only protection Luke needs now is Owen and Beru and tells him to take good care of Luke. All of this seems to thaw Owen’s icy feelings toward Obi-Wan, as he calls out to him and asks if he wants to meet Luke. Obi-Wan comes up to Luke and of course says the “Hello, there” we’ve all been waiting for. And then Obi-Wan rides off into the desert.
I have to admit, at this point I had resigned myself that perhaps we really weren’t going to get that Qui-Gon Jinn cameo that seemed to be telegraphed throughout. And I was OK with that, the finale had done enough to satisfy all my wants and needs. But then as Obi-Wan is traveling the sands of Tatooine, in front of him appears his long gone master. Qui-Gon greets his padawan by saying it took him long enough, with Obi-Wan replying that he was beginning to think he wasn’t going to come. Qui-Gon assays he was always here and that Obi-Wan just wasn’t ready to see, again showing that Obi-Wan is no longer lost and broken and now is reconnected with the Force. Qui-Gon tells him to come along and that they’ve got a ways to go and the finale ends with Obi-Wan riding off into the sunset.
The key question now is did Ewan McGregor’s version of Kenobi ride off into the sunset as well? All along Disney and Lucasfilm have said this is a limited event series, with all the key creatives noting that this series was designed with a clear beginning, middle and end. However, for weeks there have been rumblings about a potential second season, and McGregor and Christensen have begun to speak out more about their willingness to come back for more. Certainly, the discussion with Bail Organa, the declaration that Luke does not need his protection and Qui-Gon’s declaration that they have a ways to go all could be leaving the door open for more adventures. I think the key question becomes is there a story worth telling that rises to level of importance of this character and the existing canon surrounding him. I thoroughly enjoyed this series and would welcome more time with McGregor’s Kenobi. Time will tell, but as Obi-Wan once said, things are always on the move.
- The finale was the second-longest episode of the series at 51 minutes, behind only the premiere which clocked in at 55 minutes. While it could be argued that perhaps there was a little bit of filler at times, overall I thought the series did well not to just give into the temptation to go long just because they could thanks to their streaming platform.
- I know that the key creatives behind the series said prior to its premiere that the series would likely focus mainly on events from the films, but given how popular the Clone Wars series has been and how much other the Star Wars series on Disney+ have drawn from it, I am somewhat surprised how little it factored into this series. I had assumed we would get at least some allusions to events from the series, be it Ahsoka, the clones, the Duchess Satine or even the Rako Hardeen arc, but there was little if any of that to be found in this series. Perhaps that is for the best considering that many are not familiar with that part of the canon, but if they do choose to come back for more I would hope that the Clone Wars will be more represented and be a greater inspiration.
- I will say that Rebels was decently represented in this episode. Obi-Wan slicing off half of Anakin’s mask was definitely evocative of Ahsoka doing the same in Rebels’ second-season finale, Twilight of the Apprentice. Similarly, when Vader replies to Obi-Wan with “Then you will die,” that mirrors his response to Ahsoka during that aforementioned Rebels duel when she says that she will not leave him again. Again, if they choose to green light a second season of this series, I would love a plot where Obi-Wan tries to discover the fate of his grand-padawan.
- I also wouldn’t be opposed to Haja returning as Obi-Wan’s sidekick in a potential second season. Aside from Tala, I would say Haja was my favorite of the new characters introduced. Kumail Nanjiani was great in this role and helped bring just the right amount of levity to the proceedings.
- I think the series did a good job in putting Luke in peril from Reva and making it dramatic despite knowing there was no way he could die. It definitely gave off some real slasher/horror vibes and was well acted/choreographed.
- Similarly, I would say that while it did not have the flair of their duel on Mustafar, this duel between Obi-Wan and Vader was very satisfying. One assumed that when Kathleen Kennedy referred to the rematch of the century, that the duel in the series’ third episode, while dramatic, was not it. This was another beautifully shot and choreographed fight and one of the better duels in Star Wars history. Taken along with last week’s Vader/Reva duel, this series did quite well with its fight sequences despite being on a television rather than movie budget.
- I would really challenge all of those who were criticizing Reva and Moses Ingram early on in this series to speak up now that we’ve seen Reva’s story to its conclusion. I think the last two episodes have done well to reveal the character’s motivations and have shown the acting chops that Ingram possesses. Once again, some corners of the internet were quick to judgment and if nothing else Reva’s story arc should serve as a reminder that perhaps some should let a story play out before they immediately dismiss it. That is, of course, assuming that those complaints weren’t just bad-faith arguments.
- Ingram was phenomenal in the finale and I am interested to see if her character pops up elsewhere given that she is still alive. Perhaps we could see her or Roken in Andor, or even their own series? I wouldn’t be opposed.
- Getting to see Obi-Wan Kenobi get to have a relationship with Princess Leia is almost enough alone to make this series worth it. Again, kudos to Vivien Lyra Blair for so seamlessly channeling Carrie Fisher and portraying a believable young Leia. The shades of future Leia were all there — the leadership, the independence, the sass, the intelligence, the ability to see all the angles. The ability to have a relationship with Anakin and Padme’s daughter allowed Obi-Wan to get past what happened at the end of the clone wars and be ready to be what Anakin and Padme’s son will need him to be in the future. I didn’t expect going into this series that I needed to see Obi-Wan get to build a rapport with Leia, but the Star Wars universe is so much better for it.
- As the series progressed, we saw Obi-Wan get rebuilt from broken to Jedi Master once again, and this was subtly reflected in his wardrobe. From the fourth episode on, he adds more to his, for lack of a better word, Jedi armor as we progress. By the end he is back in his familiar garb and even evokes his appearance in the Star Wars comics.
- Better late than never, but I was glad to see Qui-Gon Jinn in the finale. I would have been fine if we truly did not get that cameo, but it was nice to see Obi-Wan back as a padawan to his old master. And I can only imagine what a sweet deal Liam Neeson got for about five minutes of work.
And with that, we close the book on this series … at least for now. In the end, it wasn’t a perfect series, but I truly enjoyed it. To me, this was the best original series on Disney+ to this point, and yes that’s including The Mandalorian, Loki and WandaVision. Do you agree? Let me know on Twitter, my handle is @a_silva32. May the Force be with you!