The Star Wars fanbase is in for a rollercoaster this week as allegiances change, the dead come back to life and Vader ends up dual wielding a lightsaber. An opening flashback to a young(ish) Anakin (Hayden Christensen) and Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) sets the stage for the showdown that’s been building throughout the series, with both old friends thinking they know everything about each other from the time they’ve spent fighting back-to-back.
The Third Sister (Moses Ingram) starts the episode being knighted as the new Grand Inquisitor, but that’s hardly her biggest reveal this week – as we finally learn what her backstory is. Escaping the Order 66 massacre as a child by pretending to be dead when Anakin stormed her school, Third Sister (real name Reva Sevander) was actually a Jedi in training when she first met Vader. Swearing revenge, she joined the Dark Side to try and take Anakin down from the inside – pretending to be evil so she could find the right moment to strike back. Needless to say, it doesn’t work.
First though, we get a great siege episode. Tracked to Jabiim by a Leia’s now evil Lola droid, Obi-Wan finds himself responsible for drawing the empire to a rebel refugee outpost. Haja (Kumail Nanjiani) is there, and so is Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair), Tala (Indira Varma) and Roken (O’Shea Jackson Jr.), along with a group of families and children desperate to escape. Evil Lola has jammed the doors, preventing the ships from escaping, and Leia volunteers to crawl inside the vents to fix it (knowing a surprising amount about advanced circuit board mechanics for a nine-year-old).
— Obi-Wan Kenobi (@obiwankenobi) June 14, 2022
When Vader arrives with a troop of stormtroopers, the battle begins. The plot might be thinning out here but Obi-Wan Kenobi still knows how to stage a good fight – with a great corridor stand-off seeing the end of Tala and her silent loader droid, NED-B. Obi-Wan switches back to full-on Clone Wars mode here in an attempt to defend them, but he ends up surrendering himself to Vader as a ploy to buy the rebels enough time to escape.
Reva decides to take her chance against Vader while he’s distracted with Obi-Wan (who pulls a switcheroo with a transport ship and manages to get away just in time), and the series gives us the best duel so far. Unleashing her double lightsaber far too late, Reva doesn’t stand a chance against Vader – but it’s still great watching her try. Toying with her after a bit of intense sparring, Vader snaps Reva’s weapon in two and ends up swinging two blades himself before unceremoniously spearing her through the chest.
Revealing that he knew who Reva was the whole time, Vader gloats over her dying body with (surprise!) the original Grand Inquisitor (Rupert Friend), who isn’t dead after all. “Revenge does wonders for the will to live,” drips Friend, doing nothing to explain how he survived a lightsaber to the gut in the first episode. For some reason, deciding to leave Reva almost dead with some inspirational words still ringing in her ears, Vader and the Grand Inquisitor all but guarantee that we haven’t seen the last of her.
Finding Obi-Wan’s half-broken pager as she lies bleeding on the floor, Reva hears enough of Bail Organa’s (Jimmy Smits) garbled last message to make things tense for next week’s finale. Hearing “the boy” and “Tatooine”, we know where we’re headed next. Obi-Wan Kenobi continues to move at a break-neck pace through the Star Wars backstory, but there are surely far too many loose ends to tie up in just one series finale?
- One explanation for how the Grand Inquisitor survived his stabbing in episode two is that, as an alien species called Pau’an, he has two stomachs – which means he can probably stand to lose one of them.
- Look out for the symbol of the Jedi Order carved onto the wall in Jabiim – the last remnant of the old days (and the shape that later develops into the Rebel Alliance flag).
- Vader gives us the strongest display of the force that we’ve seen from him so far this week, pulling a spaceship out the sky like a kite and ripping chunks out of it without even trying.
‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ airs every Wednesday on Disney+