I have always been familiar with the universe of Star Wars but it was just a few months back that I finally decided to dive deep into the hyperspace leading to the Star Wars galaxies. After having watched all of the films and almost all of the TV shows, I cannot seem to get enough of Star Wars. I loved the whole universe a lot and I am glad that I gave this franchise a chance. There were some writing issues in some of the films here and there but overall I am leaving the galaxy satisfied. Now, I have some very different opinions from the rest of the fan base and I want to share one of them in this blog post. In my opinion, Darth Vader vs. Obi-Wan in the show Obi-Wan Kenobi is the best-ever lightsaber duel to take place in the Star Wars universe.
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I know that many would disagree with this opinion given that Disney’s take on Star Wars is not well received in fandom, and particularly the lightsaber duels in the recent installments of Star Wars films and the Obi-Wan Kenobi show itself, are being backlashed. Some people say that the new era of lightsaber duels lacks the fast-paced action of the old movies and that the overall choreography of the fight is not good. To be honest, I don’t have these specific complaints. In fact, I particularly enjoyed the duels in The Force Awakens and its next two sequels.
However, I do agree with the fact that the way new lightsaber duels are directed, they involve too many cuts in the shots to make the battle enjoyable. In past films, the camera used to stay on the characters in battle for a while so that fans could get the whole picture of the ongoing events. In the recent films and Obi-Wan Kenobi show, there are just too many cuts and vague shots that apparently add more to the confusion rather than excitement.
But all in all, I personally like the new lightsaber duels and love in particular the battle between Darth Vader and Obi-Wan Kenobi in the 2022 show of the latter.
Darth Vader vs. Obi-Wan Kenobi
Of all of the lightsaber duels, the Obi-Wan Kenobi finale battle tops my chart. Of course, there are honorable mentions like Ahsoka vs. Darth Maul (The Clone Wars), Obi-Wan vs. Darth Maul (The Phantom Menace), and a few others. But no fight so far has achieved to give me goosebumps. It was Darth Vader vs. Obi-Wan Kenobi in the 2022 show that gave me utter joy.
Even though this battle scene has the same direction issue mentioned above, the good parts of it overwhelm the dark side. To me, this is the most emotional fight in the whole franchise. We finally get to see Hayden Christensen‘s Darth Vader getting toe-to-toe with Ewan McGregor‘s Obi-Wan. The last time, we saw these two actors in action, was in 2005.
Furthermore, after the events of The Revenge of the Sith, it was now that Obi-Wan came to know that his once-Padawan survived the last battle and is now the leading commander of the Empire. This realization alone gave this battle so much depth. This Obi-Wan Kenobi vs Darth Vader wasn’t just an action sequence but it served as the closure for both Obi-Wan and Darth Vader’s feelings for each other. We see that in the end, Obi-Wan acknowledges that his student is now completely gone and it was Anakin himself that killed himself. Same for Darth Vader, as in the end, he overcomes his obsession with his master and internalizes that Obi-Wan means nothing to him after this duel.
And this makes a lot of sense if you watch the original Star Wars in which we feel the disconnection between Darth Vader and old Obi-Wan. At that moment, both of these characters had moved on from their feelings and had long accepted their fates as they were. So, there was no need for the master-padawan padawan.
Emotional aspect aside, Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Darth Vader vs. Obi-Wan was also very exciting to see. The choice of music and scenery in the final battle was almost perfect. The display of Force from both characters was a sight to behold. Especially the scene where Obi-Wan raises the surrounding boulders to overwhelm Darth Vader. Sheer goosebumps. So far in the show, Obi-Wan was shown to be in his rock-bottom state but in this lightsaber duel, after thinking deeply about Leia and Luke on the verge of getting crushed, he gets to the level which I consider to be his prime. Never have I seen any character in Star Wars show this level of Force in a battle.
And the moment when Obi-Wan gets to smash the helmet of Darth Vader only to see the disfigured face of his old friend Anakin Skywalker was too heartbreaking. The squeal of Vader from Obi-Wan’s attacks incites pity for the once-beloved Jedi. The change of voice from Darth Vader to Hayden’s Anakin was particularly remarkable. The crying face of Obi-Wan gleaming in the blue light of his saber added more to the depth. “I am not your failure, Obi-Wan.” The whole scene was just perfect. It was yesterday that I rewatched the complete battle and I am going to watch it again today. This is how much of an adrenaline rush the battle gives me.
Yes, it still could have been better if there was better camera direction and if the scenes weren’t cut again and again to show the less interesting parts of the story but overall I am happy with what I got to see. The show Obi-Wan Kenobi itself wasn’t really a great show but the final Darth Vader vs. Obi-Wan Kenobi alone carried the whole show for me. I personally think we would have missed a great deal if this fight had never come to exist.
So, yeah, that’s it. Now, I am off to go rewatch the battle. You can mention your thoughts in the comment section but in a respectful manner. Also, do check out my discussion of watching Star Wars films in the timeline order.
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