Thursday, June 23, 2022

Hello There!







 Hello there…

Two words that have me bursting into tears for two days now.

I was one who never asked for an Obi-Wan series and approached it with caution and bated breath.

Over the past few years, Disney has brought us The Mandalorian, Boba Fett and now Obi-Wan Kenobi. And I’ve enjoyed the hell out of each and every one, though I never thought I’d watch any of them.

The Star Wars properties empire is mostly referred to as space opera or science fiction but certainly has its roots firmly grounded in horror (among other genres such as Westerns) and that’s likely one of the universal appeals of the franchise. And perhaps that’s why I’ve been a fan since I was a teen watching the first one simply called Star Wars on opening day.

The mini-series Obi-Wan currently playing on DisneyPlus is very much a horror story, especially the finale, and it’s great to wallow around in.

The Obi-Wan series had a lot of what some would call fan service but when you’re dealing with a prequel full of dearly loved characters, you really need to stay with the script. We saw what happened with the final trilogy of the main movies and what a mess they were as each director/writer attempted something new when something old would have worked far better. The mere existence of the series Obi-Wan Kenobi is fan service, so haters can go hate somewhere else.

The Obi-Wan Kenobi series stuck to something old. We have Luke and Leia and their requisite adopted parents, we have Anakin/Darth Vader, we have the Emperor, and so on.

We also can finally figure out how everyone aged forty years in ten years; life on Tatooine is rough if you ever doubted it before! There was even a joke about aging fast in the final episode. Ewan McGregor is up on what the fans are saying!

And how many damn light sabers are buried in that desert planet!

In the first episode, I felt like we were going through the Boba Fett depression all over again, but luckily the story soon turned to adventure. Yes, all these guys have some serious PTSD from all the shit they’ve been through, but we tune into Star Wars for fun and games, not therapy.

I watched the show week by week so had lots of time to think about it, unlike when I binge-watch things. For the first few episodes, I was on board with what they were doing but a little frustrated it was turning into another Lone Wolf and Cub adventure that we just went through with Mandalorian.

However, little Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair) was great and so I didn’t mind. We had a few storylines going which is always appreciated. Little Luke (Grant Feely) did a great job as well. Both children had huge boots to fill and both did so with flying colours!

Is Carrie Fisher channeling Leia into Vivien? It was uncanny how much they were one and the same.

I absolutely loved the character of Third Sister, Reva (Moses Ingram). She rocked. I loved her parkour scene in one of the early episodes. So badass! Her story was amazing and was pretty much what I had expected but that didn’t take my joy away. Moses Ingram did a fantastic job of playing conflicted Reva, especially as we hurtled towards the end of season one. Hate and revenge had her survive that death blow and her character arc worked really well. There’s a rumour she’ll get her own show and I hope so.

 The scene where Darth is unmasked like the Phantom of the Opera or Phantom of the Paradise in the final battle with Obi-Wan was both poignant and horrific. We can see Hayden Christiensen in there which is why I’m sure they made sure to unmask him a bit. After all, why bother bringing him back if we never actually see him as James Earl Jones is still voicing Vader. But we got to see and hear Hayden as Darth for a few minutes and that was very cool. That was one of my favourite scenes, how he was Vader and Anakin, his voice changing, his face changing, the lighting changing as Anakin somewhat forgives Obi-Wan (or at least relieves Obi-Wan of Obi-Wan's guilt) and embraces Darth Vader. That’s how I see it, anyway.

Obi-Wan is set free from ten years of angst by Anakin Vader’s revelations. Much like a parent who finally realizes their child is their own person and will not always make the choices we had hoped for them.

The flashback duel in the fifth episode was great as we got to see Hayden playing younger Anakin which was worth bringing him back for. I always liked him and never got the hate for him at all, but of course, I thought he was cute, even when or maybe especially when he was evil, but that’s my horror writer heart speaking again.

How cool was it to see Darth Vader kicking ass all over the place and pulling down that Star Destroyer?

And we finally learned why Jedis are always learning how to lift rocks! It sure comes in handy to know how to lift them, now doesn't it?

How cool was that fight scene?

There were lots of touches, fan service, easter eggs, whatever you want to call them. Lots for fans to delight in but a simple enough story that new people could enter the franchise and not be lost.

Of course, let’s not forget the music. Real Star Wars music for the finale with some of our favourite official John Williams themes in just the right places to make us all sob like babies.

There were a couple of timeline/wtf issues fixed and by the end of it all, I don’t think there were any plot hole issues going into A New Hope and yet, room for another season as well with the addition of Qui-Gon Jinn.

I’m keeping this short as I’m fighting deadlines but had to chime in on this. It’s been well over a day since I watched the finale but I’m still super emotional about it all.

Which is funny because I never ever thought I’d be emotional about this show. And especially after I got to see Luke being badass in The Mandalorian, I felt I could die complete. But I’m glad I’m not dead yet and can continue to enjoy these little Star Wars shows that I had always hoped for back when I was fourteen!

Sure, there are flaws and blahblahblah but who cares? This show delivered much more than I ever dreamed and I’m thankful Ewan McGregor put so much love and care into it as both an actor and a producer. 

Thank you, Obi-Wan Ewan, you have brought us all so much hope!

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