McGregor brings some nice gravity to this return of Obi-Wan, convincingly bridging the gap between “Sith” and Sir. Alec Guinness version from the first film, one that feels like he brought sadness and trauma to his time with Luke Skywalker. And McGregor is surrounded by talented performers, including the always strong Edgerton, and fun turns from Nanjiani and Flea. Ingram gave the most interesting early performance, putting up a strong foe for the season, but I was worried he would have to play the second fiddle at the Anakin / Obi-Wan reunion that was sure to come. Why form a new character when you can bring back the old ones?
In the end, it’s impossible to really judge “Obi-Wan Kenobi” after the third half of its six-season season. Is this the prelude to something standing on its two feet or is it ready to lie on the foundation of the Lucasverse for four more hours? I can’t say. There are signposts in both directions. On the one hand, the ensemble is ready for the challenge of telling a new story instead of a familiar one. On the other hand, the creators of this show seem to be very content to color within the lines of fans ’expectations, perhaps burned by the responses a few times that“Star Wars”Universe there felt differently in the last decade or so. The reality is that people seem content to play in a sandbox they already recognize and adore. Familiarity is comforting and safe. But it will not stand the test of time.
My concern is that Star Wars Disney + universes like Obi-Wan in the first episode — pressed into Tatooine, looking at Luke’s memory from afar, doing its job, but also questioning its purpose. I can imagine that the show that follows this main will help the title character find that purpose. Let’s hope the Star Wars television engine can too.
The first two stages were screened for analysis. “Obi-Wan Kenobi” will air weekly at Disney+.