Obi-Wan Kenobi is the saddest character in StarWars

Discussion in 'Attack of the Clones' started by Old Juan, Jun 23, 1999.

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  1. Janos_Arkegro Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    When Obi-Wan looked to Luke in ANH, I don't think he saw the future as such, but he saw hope for the future, and realised what he could do to nurture this if he let himself go. So he sacrificed himself knowing he could not defeat Vader, nor would the others leave him behind.

    Remember, in ESB neither Ben nor Yoda could see the future, and both foresaw doom for Luke. Yet Luke essentially flew in their faces and left Dagobah untrained to face Vader. Luke forged his own path and made his own choices. Again in ROTJ, it was Luke alone who felt Vader's goodness, again proving Ben and Yoda wrong.

    In TPM, neither Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan nor the Council got it wrong. Anakin appeared to be the 'chosen one', a prophecy he ultimately fulfilled, Obi-Wan defeated a powerful Sith Lord in a battle which claimed his experienced master (graduation if you ask me) and Yoda sensed danger in the boy's future. He didn't think 'hey, this boy will turn and wipe us all out!' Remember, Anakin's full of goodness and becomes a great Jedi Knight. The fact is something terrible happens to Anakin, and the Council had become slow and procedure-ridden, and never saw the Sith menace coming. Obi-Wan blames himself, and is redeemed by his own guidance of Luke. Luke redeems everyone, and is a very strong character because he stands on the same threshold as his father, but does not fall. He also proves Mace Windu and the Code wrong...you're never to old.

    So back to the point, yes Obi-Wan's sadness is very poignant. He lives in exile and blames himself. But he is waiting, and knows the fight is not over. Consider Anakin's sadness. Aside from Eps II and III, and whatever happens between him and Amidala, Obi-Wan and his mom, here's a guy who you feel wants to destroy the Emperor, but is afraid. He wants his son, but wants him to destroy his master for him. He has twisted, perversly good intentions, is hungry for power and is crippled by fear. As a man, he is physically and emotionally destroyed. A man who once had everything. That's pretty sad.
  2. WedgieAntilles Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2000
    I like the thought that Obi-Wan, being mindful of the future, saw his death as an opportunity to redeem himself. I think we'll see in Episodes II and II that Obi-Wan probably tries to consistently take on more than he can handle--Qui-Gon calls him "headstrong." But what I think he realized that the only way for Luke to be successful was to be trained by Yoda. I think throughout ANH, Obi-Wan sees Luke as a new project until he realizes that he shouldn't risk another misled student. He says in ROTJ that he "thought he could train Anakin as well as Yoda. I was wrong" He knew that his destiny was not to train Jedi, especially if he knew that Yoda was alive...what would be even more interesting is that if in that moment, somehow he realized that Yoda was alive on Dagobah, something that he may not have known.

    I also think he used it to show Luke that Vader was evil, not just trying to win a fight. If Vader were truly concerned about showing he were a better fighter, he would have not killed Obi-Wan in such a passive position. I think Obi-Wan in that instance knew that his death would show Luke what possesion by the dark side can do, and I think this was the best training that Obi-Wan could give Luke--and if he knew he would be able to communicate with Luke after his death, then he knew he would be able to serve as a kind of counselor.
  3. jbird69 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2000
    star 4
    I agree that Obi-Wan is a tragic character, and he thinks he might have failed with Anakin, but he sees a second opportunity with Luke, and that if he can bring Luke to the Force and his destiny, then he will have redeemed his failure with Anakin. I think the scene at the end of ROTJ says it all: Obi-Wan smiles at Luke, knowing that he has been redeemed through Anakin's son, and that he is proud of Luke, because in essence, Luke is the son Obi-Wan never had. Anakin is smiling because he is overjoyed at the sight of his children, whom he os probably seeing together for the first time since their birth(which I hope we see in Episode III!), and that he is thankful Luke saw the good in him, and that he helped him back to the good side of the Force.
    I also have one more thing to say:
    Before TPM, I always thought that ROTJ meant Luke, and how after he defeated Vader and Vader killed the Emporer, he would bring hte Jedi back to their glory. But now I am sure that it means Anakin returning. I honestly think that Vader is the most powerful Jedi in recent SW history, and his return to the light is what it is all about.
  4. Jason_Fett Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2000
    star 1
    I'd have to go with those who blame the Council and Qui-Gon. Obi-Wan couldn't possibly have been ready to take Anakin as his Padawan. And what of Anakin's "pre-Padawan" training, such as Obi-Wan took under Yoda? Does anyone know what happens with that?

    I'd also have to say the idea of Obi-Wan not having failed makes a lot of sense, especially with folks who talk about "destiny" so much.

    One last thing- you really wanna feel sorry for the guy? Picture cradling your dying father-figure in your arms while he talks to you about the importance of some strange kid. No "I love you," no "You're like a son to me," just Anakin, Anakin, Anakin. Will this be the seed of a future rift?
  5. Jason_Fett Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2000
    star 1
    Dang, I just read that bit about "Return of the Jedi" meaning "Return of Anakin". That's a beautiful bit of semantic theorizing that deserves some props.
  6. princess_of_naboo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2000
    star 4
    Wow! this is a wonderful thread I just spent about two or more hours reading all the post.

    Wonderful Thread!!!!!!

    I don't think it is all obi-1's falt that ani turned to the dark side it was a choice ani made.

    Obi-wan Kenobi the greatest and saddest character in the star wars saga.

    (Edited for spelling errors)
  7. kristof Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 4
    I doubt whether Qui Gonns faith in Anakin will result in any bitterness in Obi Wan in events leading up to Anakins downfall. We know that they become good friends despite Qui Gonn's insisitence that Obi Wan train Anakin. I think their falling out so to speak will result purely in Anakin's journey towards the darkside, engineered by Palpatine and any bitterness felt will be felt by Anakin alone, most probably towards Obi Wan himself.
  8. Valiowk Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2000
    star 6
    Very good opinions mentioned.

    In bringing this thread up a lot of old memories occur to me. This has always been my favourite discussion thread simply because of the numerous and fantastic POVs and thoughts mentioned.

    princess_of_naboo: I understand what you mean. That's exactly what happened to me (reading and reading and reading) when I first found this thread in SotS's old E2&3 UBB index.

    Continue discussing, this thread is a true legend indeed! :)
  9. nmpaahz Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2001
    I think you all are missing the big picture... good points all, but what is at issue here is Kenobi's percieved failure as a teacher. on what are you basing his failure? on anakin's fall to the dark side? what was kenobi's sucess despite anakins fall? Kenobi trained the man who destroyed the emperor and ultimately, the dark side of the force. so a few lives were lost along the way, (ie alderaan, rebels, etc) to the hand of Vader. Vader would have never been attractive to the emperor without his Jedi training provided by kenobi, and vader would have never been close enough to the emperor to kill him without turning to the dark side.
    Kenobi saved Luke as an infant, discovered him as a teen, began his training, sacrificed his physical life for Luke, and led him to Yoda. The Dark Side and the Emperor were destroyed BECAUSE of Obi Wan Kenobi. He almost singlehandedly orchestrated the chain of events that led to the dark side's failure. I see no failure in obi wan kenobi's career.
  10. Valiowk Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2000
    star 6
    Perhaps Obi-Wan is not a failure at all, but he still is the saddest character no matter what. He suffered so much, sacrificed himself to help balance the Force. I think that it's sad because he is in many ways the true spirit of the Force yet it never gave him the happiness he deserved.
  11. ObiWan99 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2001
    This is a magical thread, and covered the mythology of Obi-Wan without missing anything. I've read the first couple pages and I will doubtlessly read it all before long. Obi-Wan is my favorite SW character, and I can very much relate to some of the struggles.

    Long live Obi-Wan :).
  12. Valiowk Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2000
    star 6
    Nice to know I didn't bring up this thread for nothing. :)
  13. jedi-girl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2000
    star 4
    thanks for upping the thread!
  14. Valiowk Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2000
    star 6
    You're welcome. This was always my favourite discussion thread as well as where I met a lot of the people I respect.
  15. Jedi-fame Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2001
    Greetings all!
    I am new to these forums but I just had to give my 2 cents to this great thread.

    Yes, Obi-Wan is a sad character. Not becuase he is a failure (since his actions eventually lead to the destruction of the emperor it cannot be counted as failure) but because he has to live so many years without knowing the outcome of the actions he once began. Imagine becoming a hermit, far away from everything you once held dear, in a barren desert where your only impact comes from guarding a boy. Up until the day when Luke shows signs of being strong with the force Obi-Wan can have not idea that the Emperor and his pet Sith will be beaten.

    In truth, Obi-Wan is a sad character and he needs his hour of fame in the PT.
    Go Jedi, go!
  16. ObiWan99 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2001
  17. Jedi Greg Maddux Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 1999
    star 6
    Obi-Wan is the saddest character while Anakin is tragic hero. Both have their obvious weaknesses but I'll concentrate on OB1.

    Obi-Wan was a Jedi practically his entire life. He trained hard, especially under Qui-Gonn's supervision, and became a true Jedi Knight after defeating Darth Maul.

    After that he got a lot of bad breaks - mostly through Anakin. He lost Anakin to the Dark Side since he was unable to control his protegé's gung-ho, reckless attitude towards life, and went on to live a hermit's life after that.

    He "discovered" Luke on Tatooine some years later, and decided to teach Luke the ways of the Force. OB1 convinced Luke to come with him to Alderaan to save the people (which they ultimately failed to do) and wound up on the Death Star, where OB1 sacrificed himself so Luke & Co. can escape.

    He guided Luke via his apparition, and the rest is history.

    Obi-Wan may not have had the most comfortable life, but he knew what he was doing and I'm sure he has little to apologise for.
  18. The Starkiller Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 12, 1999
    star 2
    I don't think I've ever seen a thread this old being pushed back up to the top. Wow...
  19. Jedi Windu Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 8, 1999
    star 4
    Obi-Wan is the saddest character in Star Wars.
  20. naw ibo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 1999
    star 5
    Oh I loved this thread. It was one of the very first I posted on. This is a great old chestnut. Maybe it will get some new interesting responses like Jedi Greg Maddux's.
  21. Old Juan Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 1999
    star 4
    Wow, this thread still exists! Hot digity!
  22. DarthSapient Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 26, 2001
    star 10
    I have always seen Obi-Wan Kenobi as a tragic character. This is even further solidified in my mind as we learn more of his background story in the PT. His sacrifice for the good of the galaxy is the most noble act in all six movies.
  23. DarthVegas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 4
    Great thread.

    This one really takes me back.
  24. DarthVegas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 4
    This thread must never die.

    Broken or unbroken... [face_plain]

    :cool:
  25. DarthVegas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 4
    Obi-Wan is trying very hard to steer Anakin in the right direction. And it seems he truly cares about his well being more so than wether he feels he's doing a good job or not.

    That's what makes it sad when Obi-Wan ultimately fails. The way he looked at Darth Vader when he approached him on the Darth Star was brilliant.

    Like, "Christ, man. Look at what you've done to yourself."

    Obi-Wan sets things straight in the end though, but it's still sad.
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