Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Greatest Returning Character Isn’t the Most Obvious One
Obi-Wan Kenobi features some high-profile reprisals of fan-favorite characters. Most notably Hayden Christensen returned to the franchise as Darth Vader and, of course, Ewan McGregor as the series' title character. But beyond the obvious, there is one former Star Wars actor who may be the show's secret weapon: Australian native Joel Edgerton.
While he's only appeared in the first episode so far, Joel Edgerton has proven to be a stand-out in the cast. Edgerton's performance as Uncle Owen on the streets of Tatooine set the stakes for the show and brought depth to a character that was originally a plot device. Edgerton is one of the strongest artisans in the business and always heightens whatever project he's a part of. Let's discuss what his return has brought to the series and what he might deliver in the final episodes.
When Edgerton was first cast as Uncle Owen in Attack of the Clones, he was an unknown actor appearing mostly in guest-starring roles and TV movies. From there, his career began to gain momentum until his breakout performance in the award-winning Zero Dark Thirty made him a mainstay in Hollywood. After that, the 48-year-old actor was able to show off his incredible range in astounding films like Loving, Warrior and The Green Knight. While he didn't direct any episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi, he has proven himself to be a formidable talent behind the camera with critically acclaimed films The Gift and Boy Erased.
His addition to the cast brought fans much delight, as most were aware of the evolution of his career that followed his Star Wars appearance. The fact that Edgerton signed on to reprise his role instantly helped solidify the credibility and potentially high quality of Obi-Wan Kenobi, along with the additions of audience favorites like Benny Safdie, Kumail Nanjiani and O'Shea Jackson Jr.
So far, Edgerton has only appeared in two scenes during the first episode of the highly anticipated Disney+ event. In both scenes, he brought a demanding and protective presence to his role as Luke's guardian. After Ben attempted to gift Luke a toy T-16 Skyhopper, Owen confronted him and demanded the former Jedi leave his family be. Just moments later, Owen stood his ground firmly and likened the Jedi to "vermin" on his farm when facing Reva's threats.
And while he was certainly trying to cover for his family, it seemed like Owen wasn't lying and holds a true disdain for the Jedi Order. This makes perfect sense as he watched from the outside while his cousin deteriorated during his time with the Jedi. It's completely possible that Owen holds the Jedi responsible for Anakin's "death" and for the separation of his niece and nephew.
According to IMDb, Owen will appear in the last two parts of the limited series. While it may seem like a deviation from the main story, it would be intriguing to see Luke's childhood from Owen's perspective. If given the screen time, Edgerton could easily deliver a performance that takes the series to new dramatic heights and deepens the backstory of Owen and Luke's relationship. Ultimately, what makes Edgerton's reprisal of Uncle Owen so great is that it acts as a full-circle moment for the career of one of Hollywood's great auteurs.
Watch new episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi on Disney+ every Wednesday.