But what was Master Kenobi until the last time we saw him? Do you have to watch a lot of animated series to know what’s going on? And what breadcrumbs did Disney drop about the Obi-Wan Kenobi plot?
This means that at this point in the Star Wars timeline, Luke and Leia are about 10 years old and Anakin has only been Darth Vader for a decade. Watching Luke from afar, Obi-Wan is on his way to becoming Old Ben. (Although, to be fair to McGregor, his Obi-Wan is more than average-aged and gracefully aging Ben.)
Uh, I forgot – what happened in the movies before this show?
Don’t have time to spend more than six hours watching pre-shows? Here’s a crash course on what Obi-Wan was about to do in episodes one through three.
“the first episode”: Obi-Wan, then Qui-Gon Jin’s Padawan, encounters Tatooine, where “Ani” and his mother, a feisty young Anakin Skywalker, have been enslaved. Qui-Gon, certain that Anakin is the “chosen one” based on his midichlorian count (don’t ask), is killed by Darth Maul, but enlists Obi-Wan to train young Anakin.
“the second episode”: Obi-Wan, who has now mastered the moody and shy Anakin of the Sands, checks out what is happening in Kamino, where a clone army is secretly assigned, and the wars with Jango Fett. Anakin and Obi-Wan are close, although Anakin avoids Obi-Wan’s logical paths to pursue his impulses.
“the third episode”: Anakin embraces the dark side and Obi-Wan duels on Mustafar, where Anakin becomes Vader. Emperor Palpatine/Darth Sidious orders the Clone Army to carry out Order 66 (aka Kill All Jedi). Most of the time they succeed, though unsuccessfully, in killing two of the most important Jedi – Yoda and Obi-Wan, the latter dazed at the loss of his “brother”.
Do I need to watch TV series beforehand to see what’s going on?
Probably not, unless you’re into homework and good TV. Many of the Obi-Wan Kenobi characters are featured in the Star Wars Rebels animated series streaming on Disney+. (More on these shaded characters below.) Like this show, Rebels takes place after episode three, and Obi-Wan makes a memorable appearance in season three.
Who is the villains in this series?
In this series, we meet the “Inquisitors”, a community of trained hunters imbued with a dark side.
It was first introduced in the Rebels, and their leader is the Grand Inquisitor, now played by Rupert Friend. Oddly enough, the detectives use a lightsaber in combat (just wait for Moses Ingram, who plays Detective Riva, to wave her red double-edged spinning sword – Darth Maul trembles). Yes, the lightsaber is no longer reserved for Jedi and Sith – and not every factor of strength belongs to either of those things.
Speaking of the Sith, the detectives work with one person – Darth Vader, who wants them to track down a certain Jedi Knight.
What’s wrong with the father?
The Father of All Heavens is back and worse than ever. Obi-Wan Kenobi marks Hayden Christensen’s return as Darth Vader, a role that he fully embodied Only for a few minutes at the end of “Episode Three”.
So what does Vader plan to do after losing his wife, believing his children are dead and cutting ties with Obi-Wan (who in turn cuts off several of his limbs)? The trailer skimps on details, but we can assume it’s still a loud sniff focused on crushing the growing Rebel Alliance and finding the titular Jedi. Prepare the tissues for their inevitable reunion.
Is that the little Luke I’m seeing?
In the trailer, we see Obi-Wan watching a boy wearing racing glasses and pretending to drive a ship. We can assume that this kid is a young Luke Skywalker who appears to be the same age as his father when Qui-Gon found him.
Young Luke lives with Owen Lars, Clegg Lars’ son, who married Anakin’s mother, Schmi. Owen and his wife, Beru, raise Luke on their humble damp ranch and don’t tell him the truth about his parents, but Obi-Wan knows he’s destined for more.
Joel Edgerton and Bonnie Bessé will reprise their roles from previous roles as Owen and Beau, though they will hopefully get more screen time to flesh out the characters before they meet their very violent ending in “Episode Four.”
Aren’t there other celebrities out there?
There sure is! Joining OGs McGregor and Christensen are comedians Kumail Nanjiani and O’Shea Jackson Jr. From Straight Outta Compton and Benny Safdie, co-director of Uncut Gems, among others.
We haven’t seen footage of any of them, except for Nanjiani, who is in the trailer for a split second, looking sad. Other than that, we don’t know who plays the stars—a fun surprise when the series begins.