Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know Obi-Wan Kenobi is getting a new Disney+ TV show later this month. Smartly, Marvel Comics is producing a comic series to go along with it, which launches today. Crafted by Christopher Cantwell and Ario Anindito, the new series explores Obi-Wan’s time on Tatooine but also probes deeper into Obi-Wan’s past. Judging by the first issue, this is a must-read for Star Wars fans as it has key in-canon info on everyone’s favorite Jedi.
Everyone’s favorite Jedi, that is, if you loved the prequel films. Fans of those films will immediately notice Cantwell has captured Obi-Wan’s voice very well. Much of the book is told via captions and thus internal monologuing by Obi-Wan. That’s set up by the fact that Obi-Wan spends most of his time on Tatooine jotting down stories from his past. This issue explores a memory from a much earlier time before Obi-Wan was a Jedi.
That makes this story much more raw and compelling as the creators investigate who Obi-Wan is at his core. Aside from the scenes in Obi-Wan’s later years, the earlier years show he’s an open-minded and hopeful character. We also get some firsts as young Obi-Wan throws around some Force powers. That makes a few moments feel iconic.
There’s a nice mix of aliens that pop up in the story too. You get the sense that this is Star Wars thanks to a few familiar alien species popping up. A new key character in Obi-Wan’s life is also an interesting introduction. It’s too early to say if that character will play a part in the series, but if so, it’s a nice start. There’s a bond here that’s well worth exploring further.
Anindito and color artist Carlos Lopez bring the older Obi-Wan to life quite well. He looks just like Alec Guinness. Young Obi-Wan can be a bit more cartoony and expressive in a manga style. At times it’s more realistic which adds an emotional drama in key moments. That jumping back and forth could be more consistent and make for a less jarring experience. Coruscant looks great popping up in backgrounds, reminding us Obi-Wan once lived on a technologically advanced planet.
I know Obi-Wan is young in this story, but he comes off as a bit rash rushing in to help his friend. He’s certainly heroic, but Obi-Wan always seemed more interested in figuring out the best course of action first. It’s a rather minor gripe though since Obi-Wan isn’t even a Jedi yet, but it seems a bit off.
It’s an exciting time to be an Obi-Wan fan and Star Wars: Obi-Wan #1 is a big reason why. The first issue delivers some impactful moments in Obi-Wan’s days as a young boy with the promise of more. It also nails the voice of an older Obi-Wan who spends his days doing not much more than thinking about his past.
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