WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Obi-Wan Kenobi Part V.
After the heist of last week’s episode, our heroes are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Holed up in a facility on the planet of Jabiim, Obi-Wan, Leia, Tala and The Path rebels prepare to leave, until a complication presents itself. Unbeknownst to Leia, Reva had implanted her droid Lola with a tracker while they were at Fortress Inquisitorius. Now the Empire knows their location and Vader is en route with an army of stormtroopers. The facility’s doors are locked and the characters are seemingly trapped.
Meanwhile, Third Sister is having a great time. Vader is so impressed that he has promoted her to the position of Grand Inquisitor—a change of fortunes that I’m sure will ensure a long and profitable career for her.
The drama leads to an inevitable confrontation between Obi-Wan and Reva. It’s then we discover a shocking truth: she used to be a jedi youngling who then survived Order 66. The same young girl we see in the opening of Part I is our Third Sister. It is revealed that she was seemingly slain by Anakin herself—after witnessing the death of her mentor and numerous friends—but that she somehow survived and later joined the Inquisitors.
The circumstances around that last part is left ambiguous but Reva’s motivations are also revealed. She doesn’t hate Obi-Wan; she’s using him to get close to Vader.
The expedition to Tatooine, kidnapping Leia, murdering the Grand Inquisitor, kidnapping Leia a second time, allowing the trio to espace, putting a tracker on Lola and rising to the rank of Grand Inquisitor itself—everything Third Sister has done has been in service of this singular goal. She wants to kill Vader and get revenge on the death of her childhood friends and mentors—the only family she has ever known.
Obi-Wan shed some light on this dynamic in Part III. He relates to Leia his murky recollection of his real family. Jedi are taken from their families at a young age, so Reva’s padawan classmates would have been the closest thing to siblings and her mentors the closest thing to parent figures she would have ever had. Their deaths at Order 66 would have been like losing the only family she would have ever known.
Her motivations are more understandable now but I still wonder: was it worth it? Obi-Wan has gone from being the central focus of the plot to now just a means to an end. He and Leia are only important inasmuch as they serve the purpose of drawing Vader closer to Reva. Her fate is also more-or-less sealed—there’s no way she can actually succeed in her plan. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Obi-Wan and Reva tentatively agree to work with each other. Obi-Wan promises to lead Vader into a trap so that Reva can make her move. We already know where this is going but let’s humour the show. There’s a claustrophobic fight scene with an improbable amount of stormtroopers dying and Tala heroically and tragically gives up her life to hold them off. Leia somehow fixes Lola and power is restored to the hangar doors, meaning the rebels can make their escape.
Finally, Big V makes landfall. Reva informs him that Obi-Wan has been captured and Vader, true to form, rushes in.
This final act mirrors the opening scene I haven’t mentioned thus far. Christiansen and McGregor reprise their roles as pre-Attack of the Clones Anakin and Obi-Wan (and yes, it IS pre-Attack of the Clones as Anakin’s hand is still very much intact). As they go through their training, it’s a great character moment for the pair. Anakin is clearly stronger and more aggressive than his master, though this proves his undoing. Anakin is so focused on victory at any cost that he fails to interpret the nuances of the fight. Obi-Wan uses this to his advantage, besting his apprentice and giving him a gentle message of wisdom and patience over aggression and strength.
This flashback not only is a wonderful character moment; it also serves as foreshadowing for what Obi-Wan and Anakin become. Obi-Wan retreats further into his more cautious side, only coming out of his shell when great need arises. By contrast, Vader is more powerful, confident and arrogant than before. Their previous fight on Mapuzo solidified this, setting up Vader as the superior fighter and Obi-Wan a mere shadow of his former self. This flashback illustrates a flaw in Vader’s attitude though: he’s so focused on victory that he blinds himself. This mirrors in the final moments of the episode. Vader bursts into the hangar as the rebel ship attempts to leave, holding it down with the force and ripping its hull open—only realise it was a decoy when another ship takes off moments later. His need to win in the end blinded him to a simple bait-and-switch.
In the aftermath of his failure, Reva makes her move. Not-so-subtly sneaking up behind Vader, she attempts to kill him, with predictable results. in a fight more like a dance, Vader toys with Reva until finally she ends up with a lightsaber in her stomach (echoing not only her childhood trauma but also the way in which she supposedly killed the original Grand Inquisitor). It’s when all her cards are on the table that Vader reveals his hand: Rupert Friend’s Grand Inquisitor is revealed to be alive and well, having miraculously recovered from his own stab wound. The duo derisively gloat over Reva: they supposedly knew her intentions the whole time and exploited her ambition to get close to Kenobi. They remind her what they stated at the beginning: she came from nothing and is now returning to nothing. Satisfied, they leave her to die.
It’s here that the show once again slips into silliness. Reva doesn’t check to make sure OG Grand Inquisitor is dead in Part II and here, they don’t check to make sure she’s dead either. For two powerful force users (one of them the most powerful Sith Lord this side of Alderaan), they’re remarkably sloppy. They assume Reva will die, leaving her in the dirt as a symbolic gesture of their superiority and hubris.
Of course, Reva doesn’t die, discovering a communication device from Bail Organa confirming the identity of both Luke and Leia as Vader’s children that was carelessly left behind. This sets up the final conflict in Part VI, leaving us the audience wondering how the plot will resolve itself. What will Reva do with this information now that she has it? Will she take it to Obi-Wan and defend the man she has been hunting the whole time? Will she attempt to reconcile with Vader, hoping to get in his good books with this new-found information? Only time will tell.
I’m just hoping that someone learns how to use a lightsaber properly in the final installment of the series.
Jesse Herford is a pastor and associate editor for the Australian/New Zealand edition of Signs of the Times. He lives in Sydney, Australia with his wife, Carina and their dog, Banjo.