After much speculation about this summer’s big Star Wars event–the return of Ewan McGregor in a painfully short six-episode mini-series for Disney+ titled simply Obi-Wan Kenobi–the first teaser-trailer for the series reveals Lucasfilm’s decision to lean hard on the aftermath of Revenge of the Sith. This is the still blonde, 50-year-old Kenobi shortly after the prequels as opposed to the wise old Jedi wizard portrayed by gray-haired Alec Guinness at age 63. If you were a fan of the prequels and the animated Star Wars Rebels, this seems made for you, as the music and characters new to the live-action side of the franchise are firmly seated in that source material. From John Williams’ score from The Phantom Menace to the Inquisitors from Star Wars Rebels, there’s a lot to wrap your head around, but it’s clear this is going to be a dark, bleak look at the franchise, complete with a villain that looks like he was plucked from Hellraiser.
We finally got to see Luke Hamill as Luke Skywalker in full Jedi mode in The Mandalorian and Darth Vader saber-waving in Rogue One, will we finally get to see Obi-Wan let loose on the Empire?
Check out this first look at Disney’s Obi-Wan Kenobi:
Just as The Book of Boba Fett features a 60-year-old Boba Fett because of the age of its star, Temuera Morrison, this series will leave plenty of time for a sequel down the road for McGregor to show us how Kenobi gets from being actively hunted by Darth Vader’s new troupe of minion Jedi hunters to calmly watching over Luke Skywalker on a remote desert planet.
As far as matching the mood and look of what George Lucas himself created in his prequels, this couldn’t look more dead on. As for matching the Imperial bad guys of Star Wars Rebels, this also looks to be a perfect match. You have Rupert Friend as the Grand Inquisitor (the Dave Filoni creation based on Flash Gordon’s Ming the Merciless played by Jason Isaacs in Star Wars Rebels), and Fast & Furious franchise star Sung Kang (disappointingly) as another Inquisitor (perhaps Fifth Brother) instead of a Chirrut Imwe hero type, plus Luther’s Indira Varma as an Imperial officer, although the main villain appears to be Reva The Third Sister played by The Queen’s Gambit’s Moses Ingram. And Joel Edgerton looks like he hasn’t aged a day since he last played Owen Lars in Revenge of the Sith.
The best part will be hearing the results of John Williams creating even more new music for the franchise. More than any other single person, his contribution continues to be the greatest of all, and if anything stirs fans from this teaser it’s the familiar music.
With only six episodes to play with, it seems likely we’ll see little of Hayden Christensen’s take on Darth Vader, all but some voice-overs or brief takes from more of Ian McDiarmid’s Emperor Palpatine, and even less of young Luke. It does seem likely that this will not be an entirely Tatooine-based story, so maybe we’ll see young Leia, too. For certain, it’s time to get caught up on Star Wars Rebels if you want to know what’s happening here.
The first episode of Obi-Wan Kenobi is coming later this year on what was for decades the only Star Wars Day–May 25. Look for it exclusively on Disney+.
C.J. Bunce / Editor / borg