Please be aware that there are SPOILERS ahead.
The finale of Obi-Wan Kenobi is a moving, emotional tribute to everything I love about Star Wars.
Basically, it’s split into two pieces: the rematch between Obi-Wan and Vader, and Reva’s quest to find revenge by going after Luke. I’ll talk about the duel first.
At this point, Obi-Wan has found his center and his purpose again, and does what a Jedi does: what he has to in order to protect the people under his care. He decides to leave the transport and lure Vader away, because he knows it will work. But as Roken says, it’s also more than that: he must face Vader. They’ve got unfinished business, and it must be dealt with before Obi-Wan can move on.
In stark contrast to their last encounter, Obi-Wan is ready. I do believe that Vader was a bit disappointed that Obi-Wan was so weak that last time; I think he relished more of a challenge. Well, he gets it this time, even more than he bargained for. Kenobi is on fire, and Vader really has to work at it. “Your strength has returned,” he says at one point. “But the weakness remains. That is why you will always lose.” Anakin’s arrogance is so much on display here, and throughout the entire series. “Did you really think you could defeat me?” he asks, as he piles rocks on top of Obi-Wan. Then he walks away, thinking he’s killed him. Again, his arrogance causes him to make a huge mistake.
Obi-Wan thinks of Leia and Luke, and everything he’s fighting for, and blasts out of the pit to face Vader again. And this time, he’s not only on fire, he’s an inferno, not of anger, but of skill and determination. He succeeds in bringing Vader to his knees, and in the process, knocks part of his mask off. When he sees Anakin’s ruined face beneath the mask, he stops. He’s horrified, and grief-stricken, and just devastated. He breathes his name, and Vader replies, “Anakin is gone. I am what remains.” When Obi-Wan’s eyes fill with tears and he gasps out, “I’m sorry, Anakin,” I think my heart broke (again; it’s been broken so many times in Star War, lol).
And Anakin’s response is heartbreaking, as well, spoken in halting sentences in a chilling combination of Vader vocoder and Anakin’s voice: “I am not your failure, Obi-Wan. You did not kill Anakin Skywalker. I did.” He seems to smile a little bit at this; some people have claimed that Anakin is trying to make his old master feel better here, but I disagree. He’s Vader, and he’s proud. He’s boasting. Anakin, that weakling, is dead, and I killed him. “The same way I’ll destroy you,” he threatens. But he’s in no shape to do any such thing at the moment.
“Then my friend is truly gone,” Obi-Wan responds, and we can see something let go in him, the weight of the galaxy lifting off his shoulders. He’s just sad. Vader’s words are exactly what he needed to hear to move on. “Goodbye…Darth,” he says, and walks away. Again. History repeats itself as Obi-Wan once again walks away from a defeated Vader, unwilling to kill him–not because he can’t kill Anakin (Anakin is gone), but because a Jedi practices mercy. Remember that flashback? Anakin tells Obi-Wan, “Mercy doesn’t defeat an enemy, Master.”
Doesn’t it? As Obi-Wan walks away, Vader can only shout out his name in anguish (which is so haunting to me, it kind of freaks me out, lol). He’s lost this round, and will continue to lose, because the dark side does not allow growth. You stay stuck in your patterns, clinging to your rage. It’s only when the Emperor calls him out on it does Vader decide to step back a bit, and let Kenobi go.
This whole sequence was just absolute perfection, and ranks high on my “Best Star Wars Moments” list.
Okay, so Reva.
She’s managed to stay alive after Vader impaled her (again), and has found her way to Tatooine. She’s going after Luke because it’s the only revenge she can get on Vader at this point. She probably doesn’t know that Vader has no idea that Luke exists, or she doesn’t care. She makes her way to the homestead, but Owen has been warned and he and Beru are waiting for her.
I think this sequence here will give fans a new appreciation for Owen and Beru. They fiercely defend their home and their boy. At one point Reva says, “You really love him. Like he’s your own.” And Owen responds, “He is my own.” Of course he is. Even in A New Hope, though Owen is grumpy and kind of mean to Luke sometimes, I never doubted he was just trying to protect him. As he does here, bravely confronting an Inquisitor, though a seriously wounded one. Otherwise, I think she would have just swept in and killed them both to get to Luke.
Anyway, she gets past both Owen and Beru, and chases Luke out into a desert canyon. She causes him to fall and he gets knocked out. As she prepares to kill him, memories of herself as a youngling flash through her mind, of Vader killing her friends and impaling her. Ultimately, she can’t go through with it.
By this time Obi-Wan has arrived. She carries Luke back to them, unconscious but alive. Owen and Beru take Luke away, and Obi-Wan is left with a crying Reva. She asks him if she’s become “him,” meaning Vader. Obi-Wan tells her no, she’s chosen not to. What she becomes now is up to her. This is the first time we see a baddie in live action be redeemed and not die immediately afterward (that I can think of). If we see Reva again, it will be interesting to see how she atones for her crimes. Maybe she’ll help with The Path, as Tala did.
So then we get a few happy endings similar to The Return of the King (after Vader’s exchange with the Emperor):
First, Obi-Wan goes to Alderaan to see Leia (and return Lola to her). I just loved this scene so much. To see him laugh heartily again was such a gift. And I do think he’ll be sleeping much better now. Again, I love how he’s had the chance to have this relationship with Leia. It always seemed kind of sad to me that he never got to know her, but that’s been rectified in a wonderful way. Now I’m just sad that the next time Leia sees him is when he dies on the Death Star. 😦
Then he makes a trip to the Lars homestead. He’s packed up his gear and moved out of the cave, and I’m assuming he’s moving into the home we see in ANH, or will be looking for a house of some kind. Anyway, he tells Owen he’ll keep his distance, and that Owen was right: Luke just needs to be a boy right now. “The future will take care of itself,” he says. He’s trusting in the Force again. As he walks away, Owen sheepishly asks if he wants to meet Luke. So he brings the toy over to him and we get to hear the famous words: “Hello there.” I loved it. And the casting for young Luke (Grant Feely) is so perfect; that kid just captures Luke’s sweetness the same way Vivien Lyra Blair captures Leia’s sassiness. Perfection for both.
Lastly, as he rides his eopie toward the canyons, Qui Gon Jinn suddenly appears. I figured we’d see him at the very end of the series, and the exchange was short and sweet, but not quite what I had expected. I’m not sure what I expected. Maybe a little bit more, but at any rate, I was glad to see him. “I was always here, Obi-Wan. You just weren’t ready to see.”
I enjoyed this series immensely, and it just made me very, very happy, lol. It brought everything together beautifully, and yes, I kind of felt like it was ticking off some boxes at the end, but honestly, I don’t care. The emotional impact of a story is always more important to me than its execution (to a certain point, of course), and while this series stumbled a bit in its execution in a few places, it didn’t ruin the experience for me.
Will there be a Season 2? I think the better question is, do we need a Season 2? And the answer, in my opinion, is no. It’s perfect the way it is, and brings Obi-Wan’s story to where it needs to be for A New Hope. Would I like to see more Ewan and Hayden? Hell yes! But only if another story adds to what we already know in a meaningful way. Only time will tell, I guess.
Here’s an amazing piece by one of my favorite Star Wars artists, Uzuri Art:
What did you think of the Obi-Wan Kenobi series? What’s your opinion on a Season 2? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!