Star Wars: Obi-Wan is a promising, if unexpected, start to a new series.
Warning: This review contains *light* spoilers.
In preparation for the upcoming Disney+ show, Marvel and Disney are firing on all cylinders to provide fans with a variety of new content surrounding Obi-Wan Kenobi. Marvel’s latest effort takes the form of a new comic series Obi-Wan, which debuts its first issue today, May 4th, 2022. The highly anticipated series is written by Christopher Cantwell with art by Star Wars veteran Ario Anindito.
In the opening pages, we’re greeted by an older Ben Kenobi as he prepares shelter for a sandstorm, roughly 20 years after his arrival on Tatooine. Cantwell does well to convey Obi-Wan’s weathered and somber tone, and I enjoyed the way that he acts as the narrator for the book. As he takes shelter, he begins journaling to reflect on past emotions and readers are transported back to his very early days as a padawan. Here, we find Kenobi at the Jedi temple on Coruscant, attempting to resolve a conflict with a fellow classmate and friend.
I believe that young Obi-Wan’s character is handled well and it’s easy to make direct comparisons to the Jedi master he’ll one day become. It seems from the pacing and structure that future issues will continue this trend, as an episodic account of Obi-Wan’s past experiences. The short-form story that this issue tells is done quite well but I’m curious to see if these memories will eventually build into a larger story arc.
Ario Anindito is no stranger to the Star Wars universe, his recent work on The High Republic receiving high praise from fans. His detailed and expressive faces bring a sense of life to the comic. He captures elder Obi-Wan’s calm demeanor in the solitude of the desert beautifully, and does an equally great job during more complex sequences with multiple characters and setpieces. Colorist Carlos Lopez is a great addition to the team as well. He gives great contrast to simpler settings, while places like Coruscant are vibrant and lively.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the first outing of Obi-Wan. I didn’t expect the series to take on an episodic structure based around old memories, and I’m not quite sure how I feel about that choice, but I’m looking forward to the next installment. This achieves everything a #1 issue aims for. The creative team gives us a great setup, excellent artwork, and an interesting thread to follow. If you’ve been keeping an eye on this series, I strongly recommend you give it a try.
4 out of 5 Blue Milks