EW has published an interview with Obi-Wan Kenobi writer Joby Harold, and in it, he discusses how far the galaxy has fallen to the Dark Side now that it is being ruled by the Sith.
If you thought things were getting dire towards the end of Revenge of the Sith, or during the first season of The Bad Batch, it sounds like Kenobi will outshine both in terms portraying how dark and tragic the state of the Star Wars galaxy has become for those not inline with the Empire’s way of thinking.
Harold first set up how dire things will be at the start of Kenobi for those not named Emperor Palpatine:
“It takes place 10 years after Revenge of the Sith, in a time of darkness in the galaxy. The Empire is in the ascendancy. And all the horrors that come with the Empire are being made manifest throughout the galaxy. And the Jedi Order as we know them are being all but wiped out. So everything that was in the prequels has crumbled.”Joby Harold
Basically, if you like bad guys, you will be in for a treat with Kenobi, because the dark side is raging, and the galaxy is paying the price for embracing Palpatine’s lies.
Joby went on to explain how perilous this time is for the Jedi and ultimately, Obi-Wan himself:
“Those surviving Jedi, those that do survive, are on the run, and they’re in hiding. And Vader and his Inquisitors are chasing them to the end of the galaxy.”
“Within that hopeless fatalistic world, we find possibly the most famous of all our surviving Jedi in hiding struggling with that faith that defines the Jedi, and wanting to hold onto it and hoping to regain that faith within that sort of hopeless world.”Joby Harold
He’s telling us that we are going to witness a near broken Obi-Wan Kenobi in this series. He will almost be fully cutoff from the Force due to his depression, and the state of the galaxy will not make it easy for him to regain his confidence in the light side of the Force.
Fear not though, Obi-Wan isn’t going to be all Sad Angry Luke for the whole series, because Harold explains that the journey he goes on will help him regain some form of hope, while also transitioning the character closer to the stoic Alec Guiness version from A New Hope:
Within that environment and that galaxy, his faith is tested, and he goes on a journey that allows him to travel from that character that we saw in the last of the prequels, where [McGregor] really felt like he was embodying Obi-Wan Kenobi to a pretty extraordinary degree, and ends with him as the more finished article that Sir Alec Guinness gave to the world in A New Hope. And so in this very specific time in the history of Star Wars, when the Jedi are on run, we get to sort of stand next to and watch Obi-Wan as he runs the gauntlet and has to survive a pretty extraordinary experience.”Joby Harold
In summary, Joby is saying we are going to see Kenobi put through the ringer, and thanks to these trials and possible failures, he will ultimately benefit from the experiences. He’s also saying that fans are in for a freaking treat as they get to see one of the most iconic Star Wars characters of all-time go from sad cave dweller, to the ultimate Master in ANH.
The interview wrapped with Joby discussing how Obi-Wan’s past, and his bond with Anakin will shape his journey and emotional growth in the series:
“Obi-Wan is defined by his past to a pretty great degree. I mean, Obi-Wan and Anakin [Hayden Christensen] share so much screen time together. They’re so close that everything that he’s experienced and everything that happened with Anakin cannot help but define him. And we meet a man who’s very much defined by that history, whether he wants to be or not.”
“Part of the journey of what he goes through is reconciling that past and coming to understand it and coming to understand his place in it, and that journey and the places he has to go emotionally as well as physically, and some of those battles he has to fight, are very much to do with facing that past and understanding who he was, his part in his own history, in the history of others.”Joby Harold
Joby is essentially saying that Kenobi is going to enlist in some good old aggression therapy with some of his old friends, which in turn will allow him to grow emotionally, and be better prepared for the big fight ahead of him once he regains hope.
Nick and I will talk more about Joby’s interview on next week’s episode of the SWTS, so don’t forget to tune into the Star Wars Time Show on a weekly basis via our podcast platforms or via YouTube if you prefer the livestream angle.