Obi-Wan Kenobi: Part II
May 27, 2022 4:34 AM - Season 1, Episode 2 - Subscribe

Obi-Wan's new mission brings him to a crime-ridden world, home to all manner of scum and villainy.
posted by EndsOfInvention (38 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
I don’t understand why the Third Sister went to all this effort to try to rise in rank, when all she really had to do was work on her British accent.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 5:03 AM on May 27 [15 favorites]


Interesting that Obi-Wan didn't know that Vader survived. Is that because he'd been living in the middle of nowhere for a decade, or because Vader's existence had been kept hidden from the general public?
posted by EndsOfInvention at 5:37 AM on May 27 [3 favorites]


I got a little misty-eyed at the homeless clone trooper. And the look of fear and compassion on Kenobi's face! After everything he still can't hold a grudge. Ewan McGregor is such an amazing actor.
posted by orrnyereg at 5:59 AM on May 27 [14 favorites]


Interesting that Obi-Wan didn't know that Vader survived. Is that because he'd been living in the middle of nowhere for a decade, or because Vader's existence had been kept hidden from the general public?

Little of column A, little of column B. I'm not sure Vader would really be known anywhere unless he made a big spectacle of himself in public.
posted by Fleebnork at 7:14 AM on May 27


Honestly, this first two episodes have been near pitch perfect. From absolutely nailing the character of young Leia, to Ewan's somber portrayal, to Reva's driven revenge, everything is working fantastically great in this series so far, may it continue to do so.

I'm loving the "street level" view of the galaxy, where things aren't so clean and pristine, but there's a really dirty feel to things, on several levels. This sort of grounding just augments all the fantastical elements. It's easy to see how the Jedi could conjure all sorts of emotions among the "common folk".

Shout out again for all diverse casting to that is coming to be necessary part to almost any world building.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:20 AM on May 27 [2 favorites]


In extended universe material, the fact that Vader is Anakin Skywalker is a closely guarded secret. Obi-Wan may know of Darth Vader but may not know that he is Anakin. I was a little surprised that the inquisitor knew that.
posted by chrchr at 1:19 PM on May 27 [6 favorites]


I was a little surprised at the twist with the Grand Inquisitor; Going by the timeline between Episodes III and IV, the GI is alive and well and menacing the main characters from Rebels roughly 4-5 years from now. Considering that all of this stuff goes through a lot of hands before it gets approved and shot and everything, I have to assume we haven't seen the last of him.
posted by Strange Interlude at 2:51 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


I got a little misty-eyed at the homeless clone trooper

Even better that it was actually Temuera Morrison playing the trooper.
posted by nathan_teske at 5:46 PM on May 27 [24 favorites]


Yeah, I laughed out loud when I heard Temura's voice. I know I've said in the past that I'm tired of Tatooine and the fucking Skywalkers, but Ewan was enough to bring me to this, and I'm glad I did. Even with a prequel's usual lack of stakes, I still enjoy seeing stuff like how we get from Leia not trusting Obi-Wan to he plea to him in ANH.
posted by Kyol at 8:26 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


Morrison's cameo was good, but Kumail Nanjiani as the fake Jedi was great and hilarious. I'm guessing that, in a setting where Fennec Shand can be practically disemboweled and restored with cybernetics in a back-ally bionicist's, or, you know, Darth Vader's whole deal, a single light saber through the gut isn't necessarily it for the Grand Inquisitor. (Although that does make me wonder what's going to happen with/to Reva. She's being set up as Kenobi's Javert, so I assume that she's not going away too soon.)

Also, I'm guessing that the fact that Vader is Anakin is more or less a secret, and I always got the impression that Vader wasn't popularly known, although the higher levels of the Empire all know about him, probably. I'm trying to remember if we've ever seen Vader walk through an ordinary city street, and I can't think of an instance (at least in TV/movie canon). That's the Inquisitors' gig.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:37 PM on May 27 [4 favorites]


The extended "Detective Kenobi" sequence was probably my favorite part of Attack of the Clones, so I had a great time watching Obi manuever on planet Blade Runner here. Loved all the disguises and trickery.

I've been wanting to see unarmed Jedi kung-fu pretty much since the prequels, so I laughed out loud when it finally made it onscreen here, but from a Jedi too old and busted to be much good at it.

Lil Leia is absolutely killing it. I love this show so far.
posted by EatTheWeek at 10:14 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


My impression is that Vader is played pretty close to the vest until the Rogue One ending. Then Palpatine dissolves the Senate and brings his attack dog out into the open a bit more.

Obi-Wan knows Vader is Anakin, right? He sees the footage of Palpatine bestowing the name at the end of RotS, as I seem to recall. He just didn't know he was alive, and of course doesn't know what shape he's in.

Ewan McGregor is doing a tremendous job conveying a guy finding some of his old job coming back to him pretty nicely and some of it not so nicely. The clear fear of using the Force visibly, the flinching when he thinks he might have to ignite his saber...but then, making that little wisecrack when he pops the spice bulb and doses the kidnappers! THAT'S MY GUY!
posted by potrzebie at 11:58 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


It bothers me slightly that Bail Organa insisted that Obi-Wan was the only man for the job and Obi-Wan's objections were, "I need to watch Luke" and "I'm not the man I was ten years ago" rather than, "Bail, you know all those cool superpowers I used to have because of the Force? I don't use the Force any more because it's not safe. I really am just an old guy."
posted by The Tensor at 2:58 AM on May 28 [3 favorites]


Hard agree that everything is clicking here so far. My only—question, really, not criticism—is why Leia's "Help me" missive at the start of ANH seemed so impersonal when she is now established as not only (A) having gone through a very memorable (potentially scarring) event with "General Kenobi," but also (B) knowing that "General Kenobi" is also "Ben," since that's what Luke calls him when he first meets Leia. Like, I thought the Ben-Leia story here would end before she knew who he was or that he was a Jedi. OTOH, her tone in the message is pretty diplomatic/senatorial, which fits her character at that time and would account for minimal references to her own past.

Mrs. Cheeses is on a serious Star Wars kick right now and I thought she was going to try to reach right through the screen and drop coins in Temuera's helmet. I remember some critique of his performances in The Fett Show FF threads (I may even have made one), but he sure nailed that moment. And worldbuilding-wise, it makes perfect sense.

It bothers me slightly that Bail Organa insisted that Obi-Wan was the only man for the job and Obi-Wan's objections were, "I need to watch Luke" and "I'm not the man I was ten years ago" rather than, "Bail, you know all those cool superpowers I used to have because of the Force? I don't use the Force any more because it's not safe. I really am just an old guy."

Well, the writing of the Bail-Ben scene dealt with this rather gracefully IMO: Bail came to him not for his gnarly powers, but because he's the only person available that he trusts.
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 3:48 AM on May 28 [4 favorites]


Boy, I hope that's not the last we see of Kumail Nanjiani's character (though I imagine it probably is). And if Leia isn't in every episode of this show I am going to be unhappy.
posted by briank at 6:15 AM on May 28 [6 favorites]


Seconding briank. Kumail as a fake Jedi was HILARIOUS ("this is a Jedi mind trick...") and I hope we don't lose him this soon.

Little Leia is the new Baby Yoda, i.e. "you make this show worth watching for me." She's SO sassy. Love it.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:55 PM on May 28 [8 favorites]


My only nitpick so far is that three times in two episodes Third Sister replied to someone with a line that started “maybe” and flipped his statement back at him. These were in the same scene in ep 1:

“We’ve spent the last ten years looking for him.”
“Maybe you’ve been looking in the wrong places.”

“Be careful Third Sister, you go too far.”
“Maybe you don’t go far enough.”

And in ep. 2:
“All the power in the world can’t mask the stench beneath.”
“Maybe that stench is your failure.”

A little lazy. But otherwise, good stuff!
posted by schoolgirl report at 2:00 PM on May 28 [4 favorites]


Do you get to be Inquisitor by being the biggest fucking nerd in your regiment? These people just don’t work as villains for me at all, they have such “just got dropped off at Hot Topic by my mom” vibes.

I must be some sort of mirror universe geek because I love all the new Trek stuff but I hate the shit out of this.
posted by jordemort at 8:02 PM on May 28 [4 favorites]


Kumail is living the dream.
posted by potrzebie at 9:46 PM on May 28 [9 favorites]


Will the music ever develop, do we think? I’m finding it very wishy washy so far:
posted by aesop at 10:15 PM on May 28


Well that was way better than I was expecting. Somehow they managed to distill all the good stuff from Star Wars, particularly the prequels, and turn it into something compelling in a way I think all the other TV shows and most of the movies failed to do. But to bend it a bit.

The whole Bartertown sequence was great; Star Wars does scifi-Western towns well but I don't recall them doing Blade Runner LA / neo-Tokyo so effectively. The homeless Stormtrooper, Kenobi avoiding his powers, the grifter fake Jedi who turns out to have a true Jedi heart. Good stuff.

I thought Moses Ingram absolutely nailed it as the Third Sister. So much pride, wrath, ruthlessness. What a mustache-twirler. And Vivien Lyra Blair totally steals every scene she is in. She's apparently quite an experienced young actor and it sure shows in her performance here. I'm having to be careful; I want to get friends to watch the show but the fact it's Leia seems a bit of a spoiler so I'm not sure what to say to them.
posted by Nelson at 7:03 AM on May 29 [2 favorites]


My only—question, really, not criticism—is why Leia's "Help me" missive at the start of ANH seemed so impersonal

My ex post facto headcanon is that Leia’s impersonal delivery was to obscure the connection between them in case R2-D2 and the message were intercepted by the Empire. (When Luke frees her from captivity on the Death Star and says that he’s “here with Ben Kenobi,” she responds with immediate and emotional recognition: “Ben Kenobi?!? Where is he?” despite using his real name in the message.)
posted by donatella at 10:49 AM on May 29 [12 favorites]


It's very clear that both Luke and Leia are confused by the old guy using the moniker Ben even though Kenobi seems to be a bit of a giveaway.

(I think he's only said Ben to her so far in the show. I don't think she knows his full name yet.)
posted by crossoverman at 6:04 PM on May 29


Tiniest Easter egg: the spice dealer who tries to hook Kenobi up with some spice, who tosses him the line “I was someone’s daughter, too” is played by Esther-Rose McGregor. She is Ewan McGregor’s daughter.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 9:13 PM on May 29 [26 favorites]


Obi-Wan may know of Darth Vader but may not know that he is Anakin. I was a little surprised that the inquisitor knew that.

In the little cluster of five or six younglings we see trying to escape Order 66 in the first scene of Part I, one of the taller and older ones is brown-skinned. I wonder if this might be young Reva, who may well have known Anakin (pre-fall) well enough that she has sussed it out. I am well behind on the supplementary canon like the animated serieses and the comics but I seem to recall one or two characters deducing his identity independently. Thrawn, maybe?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 9:20 PM on May 29 [2 favorites]


I too find the idea that Reva is one of the younglings from the temple massacre scene dramatically interesting and I hope it gains solid textual support. It adds pathos to her speech in the cantina on Tattooine, to the effect that the Jedi will abandon you and cannot protect you.
posted by chrchr at 2:35 PM on May 30 [1 favorite]


Yeah Thrawn figured it out on his own. I think the inquisitors are pretty tight knit and clubby in their own way and somewhere I got the impression Vader is fairly hands-on with them so it wouldn't surprise me if his previous identity were either common knowledge or an open secret among the inquisitors. Especially since many of them are former Jedi - seems like a good way to shortcut resistance, to be like "oh cool u think u can resist the dark side? See that sith apprentice over there? Ever hear of a guy named ANAKIN SKYWALKER??? think you're stronger than him bucko" and watch the hope leave their faces.
posted by potrzebie at 2:42 PM on May 30 [2 favorites]


Nice writeup over on Tor.com.
posted by suelac at 3:12 PM on May 30 [1 favorite]


I loved the off-ness of the fake Jedi dialogue.

"This is a Jedi mind trick. Do not be alarmed. I'm inside your mind... I'm now leaving your mind."
posted by TheophileEscargot at 8:29 AM on May 31 [4 favorites]


Although that does make me wonder what's going to happen with/to Reva. She's being set up as Kenobi's Javert, so I assume that she's not going away too soon.

Obi-Wan Valjean
posted by ActingTheGoat at 9:04 AM on May 31 [9 favorites]


I loved the off-ness of the fake Jedi dialogue.

Yeah, real Jedi say much more natural-sounding things like when using the mind trick, "My mind to your mind, my thoughts to your thoughts..."
posted by The Tensor at 9:43 AM on May 31 [3 favorites]


It's very clear that both Luke and Leia are confused by the old guy using the moniker Ben even though Kenobi seems to be a bit of a giveaway.

That's Obi-Wan Steve Ben Larry Kenobi. He's hard to keep track of.
posted by charred husk at 12:04 PM on May 31


It would be hilarious to find out that there are millions of people with the surname Kenobi, because big galaxy; there could be a big picture of the Kenobi Family Reunion, with a small sea of people waving to the camera and a fellow in a brown bathrobe off to the side, looking glum.
posted by Halloween Jack at 3:37 PM on May 31 [4 favorites]


There's a fannish idea I've seen a few times that the name Kenobi is either common as shit on his home planet, or literally means, like, "John Doe". The idea being that he was basically a foundling and was assigned a very common name, and therefore people running around looking for him are finding lots of other Kenobis.
posted by suelac at 3:58 PM on May 31 [2 favorites]


> That's Obi-Wan Steve Ben Larry Kenobi. He's hard to keep track of.

Fingers crossed for a flashback to a Jedi dance party.
posted by Pronoiac at 3:42 PM on June 3


Do you get to be Inquisitor by being the biggest fucking nerd in your regiment? These people just don’t work as villains for me at all, they have such “just got dropped off at Hot Topic by my mom” vibes.

Their ferocity was established in Episode VI: Revenge of the Nerds.
posted by kirkaracha at 7:48 PM on June 6


Not being a Star Wars completist, I am definitely missing-out on the little details, character backgrounds, and whatnot that seem to make this series a deeper enjoyment for others. The beggar that Obi-Wan give money to, for instance. It was totally lost on me who/what the beggar was (and why Obi-Wan seemed shocked/nonplussed/nervous approaching them) until a friend pointed it out. Until then, it just seemed to be an odd bit of local color dropped into the scene.

Lil’ Leia runs right up to the edge of being unremittingly annoying, dances with her toes juuust hanging over that edge, but never quite crosses the line. But, she’s definitely exhausting.

When Obi-Wan was trying to disguise Leia, the bunch of us watching all immediately declared “let her hair down!” That top bun is like a spotlight in the sky. I get that it’s a callback to ANH Leia’s side-buns, but, by that scene, we got the point and her hair could have definitely been let down if it meant making her less recognizable.

The chase through the city was better than the forest chase scene, if marginally so. To be honest, a little kid could have easily evaded an adult in that mess.

They seemed to burn a ton of screen time with Reva doing Jedi gymnastics across the rooftops, only to have her accomplish...nothing. It just seemed like an odd bit of extended action to have no real payoff.

The entire planet is locked-down to ship traffic, save for this one automated cargo ship? An automated cargo ship that nonetheless has a passenger-friendly environment and manual override controls? And yet “no one will be looking for you there” ? Oh, c’mon.

Did not see killing the Grand Inquisitor coming, but it made sense. It was sort of a just-in-case-you-haven’t-figured-out-how-unhinged-Reva-is-yet scene.

I’m enjoying the show so far, but it’s not really keeping me involved the way Mandalorian did.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:29 AM on June 7


Can someone help me here? I missed how Kenobi found Leia.

I feel like I missed a scene. One minute he is wandering around in the supposed "sewers" then he watches a Tostonian chat on his phone which he then follows(?) and then suddenly he is in a chemical lab with some outfit and he also knows where he needs to go? Was it just assumed he was following information that the fake Jedi guy gave him?
posted by vacapinta at 7:12 AM on July 1


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