Star Wars Is Dead To Me
Obi-Wan Kenobi Season One Review
Hello there! As fans repeated over again seeing Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen returning as Obi-Wan and Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader in the new Disney Plus series Obi-Wan Kenobi. Although there wasn’t much nostalgia or easter eggs in the series, fans will be please to see other familiar faces like Jimmy Smits as Bail Organa, Joel Edgerton as Uncle Owen, Bonnie Piesse as Aunt Beru, and some surprising cameos. The series is directed by Deborah Chow who has directed two episodes of The Mandalorian. Despite the returning of some of the Prequel's best actors and actresses, a director with a popular Star Wars series already under their belt, and some great moments, Obi-Wan Kenobi the series felt a little disappointing.
Ten years have passed since the Jedi Purge in Revenge of The Sith, where Obi-Wan suffered his biggest loss and made his greatness failure, the tragic fall of his best friend and former Jedi apprentice, Anakin Skywalker. While the remaining Jedi and force-sensitive inhabitants of the galaxy continue to hide from the crudities of Order 66 and the rise of the Galactic Empire, Kenobi, must reflect on his past and his actions, now that Anakin has gone to the Dark Side and manifested as the evil, Vader, Dark Lord of the Sith.
By giving his character emotionally deep anguish and regret that perfectly depicts the trauma that an incident like Order 66 would create, Ewan McGregor absolutely nails it. With personal guilt and an utterly heartbreaking, great loss, he is much more cynical than Luke Skywalker was in The Last Jedi, and McGregor perfectly captures both the despair and the pathway out of it. Hayden Christensen brilliantly slides into Anakin Skywalker between Attack of The Clones and Revenge of The Sith in a few flashbacks. He also gives a heartbreaking emotional scene as Darth Vader in the final episode, making one wish to see much more of him. Honorable mentions, although not feature much in the series, are Joel Edgerton and Bonnie Piesse who perfectly portray Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru.
Much like in The Book of Boba Fett, Obi-Wan does, for the most part, become a third wheel in his own show. The series story quickly began to follow a young Prince Leia and Reva, a female Inquisitor. Vivien Lyra Blair's performance as young Leia is quite good, though there were times she struggled with line delivery. Then there is Reva, portrayed by Moses Ingram. Reva’s character development and backstory were frankly bad. It provided nothing to Obi-Wan’s story and felt unnecessary. Moses Ingram won an award for best supporting actress for The Queen’s Gambit, however, here her performance was like that of a high school or college theater student.
In recent interviews, series writer and executive producer Joby Harold's statements implied he had possibly never seen Revenge of The Sith. The Obi-Wan series is meant to be a direct sequel to the prequel movie. It was also revealed in those interviews, Joby Harold had to ask Pablo Hidalgo, many questions on simple Star Wars facts. Harold also claimed he never broke canon or wasn’t inconsistent, however, there are many moments in the series that prove otherwise. It is clear, that the script was the weakest part of the series.
After directing two of the best episodes in season one of The Mandalorian, Deborah Chow returns to the Star Wars universe as the series director. Joining the crew is cinematographer, Chung Chung-hoon, who worked with directors like Park Chan-wook and Lee Joon-ik. So it's unfortunate to see that these creators had such a great tracked record, though the series fell a bit short. There were great moments throughout the series, however for a show that was supposed to be the last entry to the Skywalker saga, it just didn’t cut it. Chow revealed she chose Chung Chung-hoon because “he had done things that were smaller, that was emotionally intense with a strong visual identity,”. Chung’s visual identity would have been perfect as a character-driven story like the movie Logan and the Obi-Wan Kenobi original script by Hossein Amini.
Obi-Wan Kenobi bridges the gap between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope to nothing more than a fairly decent result, bookended by powerful opening and closing chapters. A dramatic finale deserving of admission in the canon of great Star Wars moments is reached after a problematic middle half of the show, which was only passable given Ewan McGregor's emotionally intense performance. It's a nice addition to the ever-expanding Star Wars mythology, even though the action alternates between being repetitive and thrilling and the poor script leaves so much to be desired in so many places.