Briefing

Obi-Wan Kenobi: The biggest lingering questions after the finale

What happened — and what's next?

The Star Wars series Obi-Wan Kenobi ended on Wednesday with a bang. Here are the biggest lingering questions after that epic finale:

What's next for Reva?

Obi-Wan Kenobi's finale delivered something rare for Star Wars: a villain who turns back from the dark side and doesn't immediately die. So what's next for Reva? Could she become a full-fledged Jedi again, or perhaps join up with the Path? 

There have already been rumors of a possible Reva spinoff, which could be an opportunity to explore how a former villain can redeem themselves after doing terrible things — something fans were hoping to see with Kylo Ren, had he survived The Rise of Skywalker

How does this affect our reading of a classic Vader line?

When Darth Vader and Obi-Wan Kenobi meet again in A New Hope, Vader famously says, "When I left you, I was but the learner. Now, I am the master." For years, fans assumed this was referring to the fact that they last fought on Mustafar in Revenge of the Sith, but we now know they battled at least two more times after that while Anakin was Vader. So does that line make sense anymore? 

Actually, it arguably does. For one, "when I left you" can be interpreted to mean "when I left your side" or "when I left the Jedi Order," rather than "when we last saw each other." But a flashback in Obi-Wan Kenobi also made clear Vader still hasn't overcome his need to prove himself — as Obi-Wan warned about during their training — which likely contributed to his defeat in the finale. So this suggests Vader is still a learner during the show, and in A New Hope, he's pointing out he has progressed since their encounter in this episode, where he even refers to Obi-Wan as "master." 

Is this why Obi-Wan calls Anakin 'Darth'?

One long-standing nitpick with A New Hope has always been Obi-Wan calling Vader "Darth," as if it's his first name — seemingly a mistake from before it was established that Darth is a Sith title. But the Obi-Wan Kenobi finale includes a beat where Obi-Wan, having realized his friend is gone, calls him "Darth" instead of Anakin, suggesting this was always his way of acknowledging that Anakin has become something else entirely. 

The show also helps justify why, by the time of the original trilogy, Obi-Wan believes Anakin is "more machine now than man" and can't be redeemed, leading Vader to tell Luke Skywalker that Obi-Wan "once thought as you do." Plus, we now know that when Obi-Wan fudges the truth by telling Luke that Vader "betrayed and murdered your father," that's an explanation he got straight from Anakin. 

Why didn't Obi-Wan kill Vader?

On the other hand, if Obi-Wan now believes Anakin is truly dead, why doesn't he just kill Vader after their final battle? Could he still not bring himself to kill his friend, despite not seeing Anakin and Vader as one and the same anymore? Or perhaps it's just that killing isn't the Jedi way (though Obi-Wan sure seems fine with Vader being killed by Return of the Jedi, when he pushes Luke to do so). 

Why didn't any of this come up in the original trilogy?

When Leia delivers a message to Obi-Wan asking for help in A New Hope, she tells him, "Years ago, you served my father in the Clone Wars." For weeks, fans have wondered why Leia didn't mention the fact that Obi-Wan also personally rescued her years earlier and that the pair actually have a meaningful relationship of their own based on that.

The finale offers a decent explanation: Obi-Wan tells Leia that if they see each other again, "no one must know or it could endanger us both." Still, you'd think this bond between them might have come up at some point in the original trilogy. Given this, why doesn't Leia seem as upset as Luke when Obi-Wan dies in A New Hope, and why does Obi-Wan appear to straight-up forget about Leia in The Empire Strikes Back when he calls Luke "our last hope," only for Yoda to remind him there "is another"? 

This new backstory does, however, help explain why Leia named her son Ben, after Obi-Wan, in the sequels. Before now, it seemed like Leia barely knew Obi-Wan — but now, it makes more sense. 

What's the deal with that Jedi tomb?

One of the series' biggest revelations was that Fortress Inquisitorius is home to a tomb filled with Jedi bodies. This is probably just a twisted way for the Inquisitors to show off the Jedi they've captured, displaying them like trophies. But alternatively, could it be an early example of Palpatine experimenting with cloning technology as part of his contingency plan to be resurrected in a new body, as we later see in The Rise of Skywalker

Does getting stabbed just not mean anything anymore?

Between the Grand Inquisitor surviving getting stabbed by Reva and Reva surviving getting stabbed by Vader, Qui-Gon Jinn's death-by-stabbing in The Phantom Menace is looking a bit questionable. But presumably, it's the quest for vengeance that kept the former two alive, something Qui-Gon didn't have. 

Will we learn more about Obi-Wan's brother?

The third episode revealed Obi-Wan apparently had a brother, whom he has vague memories of from before he was taken to join the Jedi. An early draft of Return of the Jedi revealed Luke's uncle, Owen Lars, was actually Obi-Wan's brother, but this idea was scrapped and is no longer canon. So does Obi-Wan have a brother out there, and will he ever meet him? 

Will there be a second season?

Obi-Wan Kenobi was advertised as a limited series, but Ewan McGregor has said he's down for more, and director Deborah Chow says there are "more stories that you could tell." 

Presumably, a potential second season would pick up with Obi-Wan on Tatooine training with Qui-Gon Jinn. But it was already difficult to justify why Obi-Wan leaves the planet when he's meant to be watching over Luke, so coming up with a reason for him to leave again might be a challenge — especially considering leaving the first time nearly resulted in Luke's death. Plus, it would be hard to raise the stakes after that final Vader duel, and having them fight yet again would just be repetitive. 

But even if this is it for the show, Obi-Wan could still pop up elsewhere — like in the upcoming Ahsoka series, which is already bringing back Hayden Christensen as Anakin. So don't be shocked if this isn't McGregor's final "hello there."

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