You didn’t really go to middle school in the 2000s if you didn’t hear classmates echo the refrain, “May the Fourth Be with You,” every year in honor of Star Wars Day. Though only officially celebrated by Disney starting in 2013, May 4th has long been canonically recognized as the sci-fi franchise's unofficial holiday.
This year, fans got a special Star Wars Day present in the form of a brand-new trailer for Disney+ series Obi-Wan Kenobi. Released on Wednesday, the 90-second trailer sees Ewan McGregor reprising his iconic role as the titular Jedi master.
The spin-off takes place 10 years after the events of 2005 Star Wars prequel Revenge of the Sith, which ended with the tragic corruption of Obi-Wan’s beloved pupil and friend, Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen). It was then that Anakin transformed into arguably the most notorious villain in pop culture, everyone’s favorite respiratorily-challenged baddie, Darth Vader.
Frankly, it’s challenging to make sense of what’s actually happening in the trailer. There’s lots of spaceships and sand and bad guys walking around in all-black outfits. Exiled to Tatooine in the aftermath of his confrontation with Vader, Obi-Wan is being tracked by bounty hunters and Dark Side adherents, including an Imperial Inquisitor played by Moses Ingram (The Queen’s Gambit).
Joel Edgerton appears as Owen Lars, Luke Skywalker’s uncle. In the preview, Obi-Wan watches young Skywalker from afar and insists that the young Jedi will eventually need to be trained. Lars replies with what feels like a needlessly low blow, rhetorically asking, “Like you trained his father?” Ouch, Ewan, do you need some ice for that burn?
The main event of the trailer, however, is the first glimpse at Darth Vader. Christensen’s return to the Star Wars franchise as the legendary villain for the first time in 17 years is one of the most anticipated aspects of the new series. Naturally, Disney has been dragging out the reveal, only including a barely intelligible audio snippet of Vader’s labored breathing in the first teaser back in March.
The “first look” in Tuesday’s preview is, in a word, underwhelming. Sorry, not sorry. It’s very much a tease, once again including audio of Vader’s signature huffing and puffing, only this time, we get to see–gasp–a close-up of his chest pad lighting up. The clip does suggest that there will be a duel between Obi-Wan and his one-time mentee which is cool, I guess, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Obi-Wan Kenobi also stars Rupert Friend, Bonnie Piesse, Maya Erskine, Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Benny Safdie, and Simone Kessel. The two episode-premiere is set for May 27th.