Well, here is my Obi-Wan Kenobi Episode 5 review. For those unawares, I will delve into some non-spoiler thoughts for this episode to begin with, then get more specific after a spoiler jump.
As per the title, there was some good this week, a lot more than in Episode 4, for me. There was also some bad, and again in my opinion came down to some poor editing/set design choices. As for the old men, well, I’ll get to specifics after the spoilers, but I guess it comes down to the question of when to use CGI and when not to?
Overall, as said, I enjoyed this episode much more than last week. There was some time for character development again, which was nice. Episode 5 also unravels a few mysteries from the rest of the show, though I think most of the audience had already got there first. As for the action scenes, much better this week again.
Whenever Vader has appeared thus far in the series, he has stolen the show, and Episode 5 is no different. If Episode 4 was a dip, then Episode 5 is has definitely shifted the needle back up. However, once again I am left frustrated by some design and editing choices which could have been planned out much better than the end product we got on screen.
Episode 5 SPOILERS Review Below!
You want specifics? Ok, no need to be dramatic, here we go. I’ll start with the elephant in the room and the CGI debate re, the old men.
I loved the flashbacks in this episode, I really did. However, one wonders why no de-ageing tech, used so well on Mark Hamill, was employed for Christensen? I think the answer is, that they wanted to give him a moment to just be Anakin again and it be his performance on screen. I’m therefore torn slightly. What we got was pure, but at the same time Hayden looks so much older than pre-Clones Anakin.
I get why a pre-Clones moment is used. However, perhaps using a moment later, and closer to Revenge of the Sith from The Clone Wars period would have been better? I don’t really think Hayden looks like an old man, but me believing he is in his early 20’s is easier than his late teens if that makes sense? Maybe this is just one of those moments where you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t?
Vader was great again, and I loved the way this episode was almost told like a lesson Anakin still has to learn. You really feel like the Obi-Wan we remembered is almost back, and the fear is leaving him. However whilst Anakin may have much to learn still, he’s also grown far more powerful than the man Obi-Wan remembers.
I enjoyed seeing Vader use the Force to pull that ship from the sky. However, here is where some of the design and editing issues rose again. So we have a shot of the ship in the air, and Vader pulling it back down. Then another ship which was behind this one launches and gets away.
I’ve re-watched the scene, because at first I was sure there wasn’t even another ship there. There was, and Vader would have seen it also. However, the way it was shot initially threw me for six and forced me to rewind and watch it again. Ultimately, that’s shot choice, set design and editing issues. Additionally, having Obi-Wan look at both ships and say, ‘I have an idea’ would have helped sell it. It also makes it seem like Kenobi planned it knowing what Anakin would do, which I’m sure is the idea. However one could argue as we are not shown on screen, that the ship chosen was purely random.
So far I feel like I’ve only criticized, but its frustrating to see potential greatness ruined by sloppy little errors.
I really did love all Vader’s scenes. I thought the flashbacks for both Kenobi and Reva were excellent. Tala’s death was handled fairly well and gave her character a proper send off. Though, where did the torched bodies all go to? Obi-Wan must have walked past pieces of Tala several times after her death. At least show us a small caved in section which Obi-Wan bypasses next time around?
The fight between Vader and Reva was great, Vader looks like the strongest Force user of them all, which he kinda is here. Reva in retrospect has no chance against Vader, he merely toys with her. Clearly Vader already suspects something is going on with Reva. Vader has already healed, (or resurrected?) the Grand Inquisitor just waiting to step in.
I love how this speaks to my own head cannon of the Darkside and the Lightside of the Force. Assassination and betrayal are of the Darkside, and thus Vader senses this in Reva, probably for some time. Which in tuns leads to the conclusion of the saga (no the sequels don’t count), Vader was the only one in that moment who could have gotten close enough to the Emperor to kill him. The fact he did it to save his son rather than his hatred for Palp’s meant that Papa Palp’s didn’t see it coming whatsoever.
Vader is simply on another level to Reva and that’s 100% by design. The Emperor would never allow someone to grow strong enough to help Vader move against him. The Inquisitors are likely not the strongest Force users and we know they are not trained to the level of a Jedi or a Sith. Well, Obi-Wan did try to warn her, and she didn’t listen. Why did Reva wait until the ship had gone to try and attack Vader, why not whilst he’s holding it back?
In fact there’s a better scene right there. Have Vader attacked by Reva whilst he’s ripping the side of that ship off so that the other ship escapes just as he has to focus on Reva for a moment. You could even have Obi-Wan look back and know he’s just left Reva to die at Vader’s hands.
Ultimately, this is an episode I wanted to watch again straight away. There is good here. Sadly, there is also a little bit of bad and some old men.
I hope Episode 6 is a long one as there is a hell of a lot left to wrap up here. That being said, what did you think of my Obi-Wan Kenobi Episode 5 review. Be sure to leave your own thoughts, or Episode 5 review in the comments below. Or, hop over to Discord where we have a Kenobi spoiler discussion going for everyone to chat about Obi-Wan Kenobi Episode 5.