Obi-Wan Kenobi on Disney + brought one of the greatest heroes of the Star Wars universe back to the screen, much to the delight and awe of countless viewers. However, as triumphant as Kenobi is in this six-episode series, it’s the villains who truly shine in this tale from a galaxy far, far away.
Darth Vader and his Inquisition are perhaps the biggest threat to a pre-Death-Star galaxy, and all of the villains seen in the series get a chance to shine. Their skills in combat, presence, and intimidation are truly something to behold, but they’ve also seen some of the best writing the extended universe has known, particularly in the dialogue department.
The Grand Inquisitor
“Jedi Cannot Help What They Are. They’re Compassion Leaves A Trail. ”
The live-action version of the Grand Inquisitor might lack Jason Isaacs’ suave and sinister sophistication, but he definitely doesn’t skip on his verbose and threatening nature. Right from his introductory sequence, viewers are informed as to just what a force to be reckoned with him and his leather-clad cronies are, and how they establish their brand of order.
The Inquisition is more than just Darth Vader’s team of enforcers, they are hunters, assassins, and spies of the Empire. A certain special brand of presence is required for this branch of the Dark Side.
“They Were The Only Family I Knew, And He Slaughtered Them.”
Despite the backlash from a few certain fans, Reva is one of the most interesting and complex villains seen in the extended universe. A former Jedi youngling turned Sith inquisitor, Reva’s desire for vengeance and blood is what drives her into being a dangerous force for both Obi-Wan and Vader to deal with.
Reva has been playing the long con to get in Vader’s good graces, which is an impressive feat all by itself, and she has more than enough reason to want him out of the picture. In the end, the only thing she failed to plan for was Vader’s planning of everything else.
“I Will Get What I Deserve, Third Sister. And So Will You! ”
The Fifth Brother does not get a whole lot of screen time in the series, but when he does decide to speak, it’s almost always something cold and crucial. Even with his ridiculous helmet, he manages to maintain an absolutely frightening presence, especially when confronting Reva.
The line he delivers in the Fortress Inquisitorius to the Third Sister is not only a threat, it’s a prediction. Oscar Wilde once said, “There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.” Judging by what happens to Reva later in the series, it certainly seems the Fifth Brother might have been taking notes.
The Grand Inquisitor
“Revenge Does Wonders For The Will To Live, Don’t You Think.”
Once more, the Grand Inquisitor comes out with an absolutely marvelous and malicious quote, this time mirroring the obsession that becomes Reva’s undoing. By wanting revenge against Darth Vader for the events of Order 66, Reva fuels her desire to survive and take him down. Likewise, the Inquisitor uses her betrayal to fuel his desire to take back his position of power.
Sometimes, a villain just needs to be a villain with no further exploration or explanation needed, and the Grand Inquisitor fits this description to a T. This quote absolutely drips with malice and cold cruelty, and its delivery shows just how much the character loves his position, reputation, and infamy.
“You Should Have Killed Me When You Had The Chance.”
Seeing how Darth Vader is practically the face of the Sith, it makes complete sense that he would be given some of the best lines in the series. While the quote above might not seem like the character’s best work in terms of threatening moments, it acts as the spark that ignites his fire.
Like Reva, Vader is out for blood in his search for Kenobi. His former master left him bisected on Mustafar the last time they met, so of course, he’s going to be more than a little upset. This phrase isn’t a warning to his old friend, it’s a definite threat.
“He’s Not Just Any Jedi.”
One of the best details about Vader is his ability to say so much in so little. In this case, he is absolutely right. Kenobi is not just any Jedi, but one of the most powerful, and even dangerous Force users still in the galaxy. Apart from the likes of Master Yoda, Kenobi is a mix of cunning warrior and sorcerer supreme, and Vader knows it.
With the previous statement in mind, this might be one of the few instances where Vader actually shows a tremor of fear. He knows what a powerhouse Kenobi is, and defeating him means establishing his dominance in the universe.
“Fail Me, And You Will Not Live To Regret It.”
Anyone who’s ever seen the original Star Wars trilogy can attest to how absolutely terrifying some of Darth Vader’s quotes and threats can be. Sure, he could have easily ordered Reva not to mess up, or simply “Do not fail me this time, Inquisitor.” but he never missed an opportunity to be dark and menacing.
This isn’t Vader warning that she will face consequences if she fails her mission, this is him saying “If he lives, you die before you even think about it.” Vader hasn’t been inside his suit very long, but he’s already established himself as the top dog amongst his minions.
“Your Strength Has Returned, But Your Weakness Still Remains.”
It lines like this one that solidify that Anakin has indeed succumbed to the Dark Side and the alter ego of Darth Vader has officially taken over. The way he speaks in a more verbose, almost Shakespearean, manner is what indicates that a completely different mentality is in the driver’s seat.
As displayed in The Clone Wars and prequels, Anakin is an interesting and tragic character, but he is not nearly as well-spoken as his older self. That does not mean there’s not some semblance of his old self still present, but it’s almost like he’s become possessed by this other entity.
“Anakin’s Gone. I Am What Remains. ”
As if to solidify the previous statement, the final confrontation with Anakin / Darth Vader in the series is punctuated by the reveal of the man behind the mask. More accurately, the shell of Skywalker in Darth Vader’s skin. This isn’t just a theatric moment composed by gifted storytellers, this is a confession from Obi-Wan’s fallen apprentice.
It’s at this point Anakin knows there’s no going back, there’s no possible way anything good inside him can still exist after his acts of terror and the lives he has destroyed. In a sense, he’s right. Anakin would not have done these things, but a Jedi seduced to the Dark Side would.
“You Didn’t Kill Anakin Skywalker, I did.”
This line acts as the nail in the coffin for the Anakin saga. With this admission of fault, Anakin dies with a rasp and a wheeze from Vader’s breathing apparatus. Along with confirming Kenobi’s statement of Vader killing Luke’s father, it’s Anakin’s official verbal statement of letting himself depart from the galaxy.
One interpretation might be to read this as Anakin’s official declaration of submission to the Sith, another might be his admission of guilt, but it still remains as one of the most poignant quotes in the series. The fact that Obi-Wan does not even stay to finish him off and just reiterates that his friend is truly dead only further accentuates the finality of the statement.
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