The point of Obi-Wan Kenobi isn’t to mark out great battles or universe-shattering encounters between the forces of good and evil, but instead to recognize the importance of individual perspectives and emotional arcs in a massive franchise that often seems intent on starting interstellar dogfights every 20 minutes.Obi-Wan Kenobi is storytelling rooted in how all of the main characters change their views of themselves.
The exact nature of the conflict doesn’t matter to the longer narrative, because everyone watching knows that the fight between Kenobi and Vader will be a draw with collateral damage… but we knew that going in!
This is his failure as a Jedi, and as a person, he is unable to change.
As Vader sinks deeper into his own sense of injustice and selfishness, Kenobi accepts his hurt, his fear, and ultimately his own desire to live.Darth Vader is unable to change.
He reinforces this reading when he says to Kenobi, “You didn’t kill Anakin Skywalker, I did.” This moment does two things: it again emphasizes that he is a fixed point, and it allows Kenobi to change his understanding of Vader, and therefore, his understanding of himself.
The show sums it up clearly in episode six, when Roken says to Kenobi “It’s about you and him” as they attempt to escape Vader. Within these moments of realization is the cycle of understanding and character development that this whole series is about, so much more so than it’s about the sword fights or kidnappings.Besides Kenobi and Vader, the series further emphasizes this nontraditional narrative with its treatment of Reva.
But at the end, she finally accepts that she cannot change the past or overcome her own trauma through continuing a cycle of conflict.
“The future,” as Kenobi says, “will take care of itself.”
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