“Use the Force, Luke.” Fewer words have gone on to define a franchise more than those fateful four spoken by Obi-Wan Kenobi to the young Luke Skywalker in Star Wars. They challenged the aspiring young Jedi to trust his feelings, close in on the Rebel base and fire the shot heard around the galaxy to destroy the Death Star, giving the Rebellion it’s first fighting chance against the Galactic Empire.
Ever since he sacrificed himself on board the moon-sized space station, struck down by Darth Vader’s lightsaber, Obi-Wan has proven himself to be among the most mindful and studious members of the Jedi Order. In times of great despair, he was a beacon of hope combating the temptations of the Dark Side and offering balance when the Force was at its most chaotic.
Although there are few Jedi as renowned in the Star Wars franchise as Obi-Wan, even the most legendary masters of the Force weren’t without their flaws. While our list of crazy facts may not deter fans from ranking the accomplished Jedi Knight among the most competent characters of the Star Wars galaxy, it’s certain to raise a few eyebrows.
We’re here to stir the pot of controversy as we present to you the 15 Things About Obi-Wan Kenobi That Make No Sense.
15. He Doesn’t Remember RD-D2 and C-3PO
At the age of nine, Anakin Skywalker was already exhibiting prodigy-level skills as a slave at Watto’s junk shop, using spare parts to build C-3PO from the ground up. Later on in the cartoon series The Clone Wars, he hands over ownership of the protocol droid to Padme. Although C-3PO’s memory is later wiped in Revenge of the Sith, it’s his former friends who fail to acknowledge him.
In addition to Darth Vader not remembering his robotic sidekicks, Obi-Wan famously says he doesn’t recall owning any droids when he hears R2 playing Leia’s message at the beginning of A New Hope. As some die-hard theorists have suggested, Obi-Wan could be feigning his ignorance. Still, with all the time he spent with the duo in his earlier days, it seems implausible that he wouldn’t have mentioned them as some point in Episode IV.
14. Force Speed
In Star Wars canon, Force Speed is a core power that resides in even the youngest Jedi learners. It gave the Jedi the leverage of slowing down their surroundings while increasing their accuracy against opponents. In The Phantom Menace, the technique can be seen on multiple occasions, including one instance in which Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon Jinn use it to escape two destroyer droids on a Trade Federation ship.
Although Force Speed is known to be a draining attack tactic which can decrease the Force user’s energy for a considerable time, it’s also an incredibly handy and efficient way to catch an opponent off guard. Throughout the prequels, there were multiple chances for Obi-Wan to use the ability to gain an advantage over his enemy, but countless times he fails to remember the useful skill, potentially costing people their lives along the way.
13. Higher Ground
When Obi-Wan’s fateful confrontation with Anakin finally comes to a head in Revenge of the Sith, the two Jedi find themselves in a deadly battle on the lava-filled planet of Mustafar. When Anakin finds himself on a moving platform caving beneath his feet, Obi-Wan famously wins by taking the high ground, a tactic which may wise fans have suggested doesn’t always mean victory.
Dating back to his confrontation with Darth Maul, a much younger and more inexperienced Obi-Wan defeated the Sith apprentice despite hanging off a ledge and narrowly escaping his own death. Given the many variables that go into a lightsaber duel, it was impossible for Obi-Wan to know the outcome of his fight against Anakin so prematurely.
12. Trained By Master Yoda
There are few things worse than being forgotten, but it has to hurt when your Padawan completely fails to mention you after witnessing you die in a traumatic fashion. In The Empire Strikes Back not only does Obi-Wan lead Luke to Yoda, but before departing he tells him that Yoda was once his teacher; a huge oversight, considering Qui-Gon Jinn was responsible for his training.
In truth, there are two likely explanations for why Obi-Wan skipped over his history with Qui-Gon. Firstly, when George Lucas was writing the original trilogy, it’s possible he intended for Yoda to be Obi-Wan’s master before changing things up for the prequels. Then there’s the fact that Obi-Wan could have thought of Yoda as another teacher, even if he wasn’t his primary master. Either way, it’s a confusing plot point that has irked fans since the The Phantom Menace.
11. His Exile
Retroactively speaking, a lot of things about the original Star Wars trilogy that don’t add up, but when you consider that the entirety of Luke and Leia’s story should have never happened in the first place, it really calls into question George Lucas’ skills as a writer.
At the end of Revenge of the Sith, Obi-Wan chooses to hide Luke and Leia after their mother Padme dies in childbirth. Instead of changing their identities, however, he chooses to raise red flags for the Empire by letting Leia become a princess and giving Luke a new life on Anakin’s home planet of Tatooine.
Adding to Obi-Wan’s bad decision-making, he attracts attention to himself by living like a hermit out in the desert. With all the obvious signs left out in the open, it’s a miracle that Darth Vader never found any of the characters sooner.
10. “Old Ben”
At the beginning of A New Hope, Luke discovers Leia’s recording for Obi-Wan while cleaning R2-D2. After connecting the dots, he suggests that the recording may be referring to “Old Ben” Kenobi.. Despite calling him Ben at the start of the franchise, Luke never uses the name again and neither he nor Obi-Wan ever explain how the name came to be.
In the EU novel Kenobi, Obi-Wan explains that the name originated from Ben’s Mesa, a flat-topped mountain located on Tatooine. In contrast, the name is also given a different origin in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, when the Jedi goes by Ben while going undercover as a bounty hunter.
9. Only One Skywalker
By the end of The Empire Strikes Back, Luke’s course to become a Jedi Knight had already been chosen for him. Directed by Obi-Wan to find Yoda on Dagobah, he trained extensively to learn the ways of the Force, but all the hopes of the Rebellion didn’t have to hinge on the abilities of one Skywalker.
As Luke departs Yoda’s home, Obi-Wan’s Force ghost remarks that the boy is the galaxy’s last hope; that is, until Yoda reminds him that there is another capable of taking down the Empire. Not only does Obi-Wan know about Leia’s relationship to Luke, but he knows she could be potentially Force-sensitive.
After saving her from the Death Star, the proper Jedi move would have been to train them both, but instead he allows the two to share some oddly confusing intimate moments without letting them know about their familial connection.
8. His Age
As a desert planet devoid of vegetation and scorched by its suns, Tatooine is one of the least hospitable environments of the Star Wars galaxy. As some have suggested, such a terrain could noticeably take a toll on someone’s appearance, especially if the someone in question has lived with little shelter to speak of.
In the 20 year gap between the events of Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, Obi-Wan hides himself from the rest of the world, choosing to resurface only after Princess Leia calls upon him. When he is last seen handing Luke over to Uncle Owen in Episode III, he is reported to have been in his late thirties, but when he returns in Episode IV, he’s noticeably older – appearing to be in his 70s – leaving many to question what must have happened to him in the two decades he was gone.
7. His Inconsistency As a Fighter
At the time of the Empire’s rise, Obi-Wan Kenobi was one of the most respected Jedi in the galaxy. Having held a seat on the Jedi Council, he was also one of the few to survive Order 66. Throughout the films, his power as a Force-wielder and duelist is never explicitly stated, leaving many questioning just how great his abilities were.
As a fighter, his Soresu style wasn’t as flashy or intimidating as other forms, but through its simplicity, Obi-Wan could stand against the most formidable of opponents, evidenced by his skills against such enemies as Darth Maul, General Grievous, and Anakin Skywalker. His struggles against other opponents like Jango Fett and Count Dooku, however, immediately suggest that his powers were inconsistent at best.
6. His Feelings About Anakin
After discovering Anakin on Tatooine, Qui-Gon Jinn returns the young boy to Coruscant to teach him as his Padawan. Despite Qui-Gon believing the boy is the Chosen One, the Jedi Council senses conflict in Anakin, an opinion which Obi-Wan shares. Still, after Qui-Gon dies, Obi-Wan seeks permission to train Anakin himself.
Although it could be argued that a true Jedi would never have gone against his better judgment, that doesn’t stop Obi-Wan from trying to sway Anakin from the Dark Side. After being blinded by his own affection, things come to a head when Obi-Wan’s forced to kill Anakin on Mustafar.
While Obi-Wan felt he had no other choice, his biggest jerk move was leaving a limbless Anakin to burn to death. Rather than giving him a mercy killing, he leaves him to suffer, suggesting he never cared for his protege.
5. His Force Ghost
In A New Hope, Obi-Wan separates himself from the rest of the Millennium Falcon crew after the ship is pulled into the Death Star’s hangar bay. Although he leaves the rest of the group to disable the station’s tractor beam, many fans believe Obi-Wan had already predicted his death when he stepped on board. Still, with all his heroism aside, there’s still a question of whether he should have died in the first place.
Before famously being slain by Vader, Obi-Wan tells the Sith apprentice he’ll only become stronger in death, but in reality the Jedi would have helped the Rebellion more while still alive. In his physical form, the aging Jedi is still more able-bodied than most of the Imperial army and could have prevented Luke from traveling to Dagobah by simply training him himself, making us wonder if the sacrifice was really necessary.
4. He Should Have Raised Luke Himself
After leaving Anakin for dead on Mustafar, Obi-Wan felt inadequate. Believing he had murdered his best friend and wanting a better life for Luke, he handed the infant child over to his Uncle Owen. According to Yoda, it was the correct decision, but despite trying to do the right thing, Obi-Wan actually put the boy’s life in more danger.
As a Jedi strong with the Force, Kenobi was being hunted by the Empire, which would seemingly explain why he never raised Luke. However, upon further inspection, he should have decided to train him much earlier. Having known about Luke’s heritage, Obi-Wan would have sensed something special in him as a child. Knowing he would be at risk, the right decision would be to teach him the ways of the Force, but instead Obi-Wan wasted time that could have been spent teaching valuable lessons.
3. Leia’s Only Hope
Prior to the opening scene of Episode IV, the Rebellion’s fight against the Galactic Empire seemed lost. With the Empire in sole possession of the galaxy’s deadliest weapon, the Battle of Scarif provided the only morsel of hope for a victory. Having delivered the Death Star’s schematics to Princess Leia, the crew of the Rogue One sacrificed their lives in a last ditch effort to destroy the space station.
Picking up from the events of the Star Wars’ prequel, Leia sends R2-D2 to Tatooine to find her “only hope” Obi-Wan Kenobi. Given that Leia had no knowledge of Luke and the fact that Obi-Wan didn’t want to involve him in the war, this means the Rebellion was relying on Obi-Wan’s deteriorating skills to save them, an idea which seems ridiculous in hindsight and makes the Rogue One crew’s sacrifice even more devastating to think about.
2. Training Anakin
Throughout the prequels, there are tell-tale signs that Anakin’s transformation to the Dark Side are taking place. His overzealous tendencies coupled with his inability to follow the Jedi code make him inept as a learner, but rarely do we witness Obi-Wan actually teaching Anakin anything.
As a strong Force user, not only would Obi-Wan have sensed the darkness residing within Anakin, but he should have been able to detect anytime he committed a great crime. Not only does he fail Anakin in Attack of the Clones by not punishing him for killing a village of Tusken Raiders after the death of his mother, but he then proceeds to hide Anakin’s marriage to Padme from the Jedi Council, knowing such a relationship is strictly prohibited. Perhaps if more time had been spent training his Padawan, Darth Vader could have been avoided entirely.
1. Compulsive Lying
A popular fan theory exists which suggests Obi-Wan Kenobi may have been senile in his later years, having succumb to the treacherous conditions of Tatooine during his exile. Perhaps Obi-Wan became insane after nearly killing Anakin or maybe he was just the galaxy’s biggest jerk, but for whatever reason, almost every word that comes out of his mouth is a lie in the original trilogy.
Apart from the aforementioned forgetfulness of the two droids he spent an entire trilogy next to, there’s also the small fact that Obi-Wan tells Luke that Darth Vader was responsible for the death of his father. Adding insult to injury he then proceeds to hand Luke his father’s old lightsaber, telling him Anakin wanted him to have it. With so many falsehoods spoken by the Jedi, it’s entirely plausible that he was indeed crazy, drastically changing the way the franchise is viewed.
What else about Obi-Wan makes no sense in Star Wars? Let us know in the comments!
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