Does That Obi-Wan Kenobi Reveal Mess With Star Wars Canon Or Is There More To It?

Warning: spoilers ahead for the series premiere of "Obi-Wan Kenobi."

Sith Inquisitors are nothing if not ambitious. In "Obi-Wan Kenobi," The Grand Inquisitor (Rupert Friend) claims that Jedi are compelled by their nature, and the same can be said for the Sith who hunt them — but where the former all altogether altruistic, the latter are motivated by personal aspirations. This is definitely true for The Third Sister, Reva (Moses Ingram), who's set on capturing Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) and rising through the ranks of the Sith hierarchy.

By the time Reva is fully introduced in the first two episodes of "Obi-Wan Kenobi," it's clear she'll stop at nothing to find the former Jedi and present him to the Sith lord Darth Vader. In fact, Reva very nearly catches him — and though she doesn't exactly succeed, she does sow a seed for the major conflict to come. By the end of the series' second episode, Kenobi learns that his fallen padawan, Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), is alive — and he's now living as Darth Vader.

It's a pretty shocking revelation for Kenobi, who's been kicking himself over Anakin's fall (and supposed death) for the better part of 10 years. A lot of fans have wondered how Obi-Wan came to learn the truth — especially since he seems to know all too well by the time he meets Vader in "Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope." Though it makes sense that the secret be revealed in "Kenobi," it's surprising that an Inquisitor is the one to reveal it, as Vader's identity isn't exactly common knowledge. 

The truth untold

In the "Star Wars" fandom, you'd have to be living under a rock to not know that Vader was once Anakin Skywalker. His turn to the dark side in the prequels, as well as his redemption in the original trilogy, are the linchpin of the Skywalker Saga. That said, Vader's identity is only known by a handful of people within the "Star Wars" universe. In the age of the Empire, it's been made clear that only Emperor Palpatine really knows who Vader is under the mask — and that's because he was the one to turn Anakin in the first place. Of course, there are some characters that are smart enough to put two and two together, but the majority of them are killed (usually by Vader) before the secret comes out. The knowledge of a former Jedi serving under Palpatine would apparently damage the integrity of the Empire, so it's imperative that Vader's former life be kept under wraps.

Other members of the Empire who work closely with Vader, like Grand Admiral Thrawn and Grand Moff Tarkin, both suspected the truth. However, they were never really able to confirm their theories, so they were never really a threat to the Sith. The Grand Inquisitor is another Imperial that comes close to uncovering the secret himself. In Marvel Comics' "Star Wars: Darth Vader" #6, the Inquisitor is tasked with researching the old Jedi Archives — but even he is attacked by Vader before he gets the chance. Obviously, if he were to access any Jedi records, he'd eventually uncover something about Anakin. And if he had, he likely would have died shortly after doing so.

Wrong place, right time

So how exactly did Reva, who works directly under the Grand Inquisitor, figure out Vader's identity? It's possible that she was able to pick up where the Inquisitor left off in the archives, since she mentions doing some research there in the first episode of "Kenobi." But given that Vader likely would have sensed her presence in the Jedi Temple — just as he was alerted to the Grand Inquisitor's — that theory might not hold.

With the Archives theory out of the way, one other remains. It's possible that Reva, like many Inquisitors, was once a member of the Jedi order. "Kenobi" opens with a recap of the infamous Order 66, where Vader (pre-suit, of course) storms the Jedi Temple with a squadron of clones, and massacres every Jedi in their path. One Jedi Master featured in the series is killed defending a group of younglings (seen above) — and one of them bears a resemblance to Reva herself.

Maybe Reva knows so much about Vader because she saw him attacking other Jedi with her own eyes, and later hid her identity from the Inquisitorius in order to join them. Of course, time will tell, but it's certainly a creative way to avoid any retcons or plot holes, and it gives Reva an interesting stake in the drama between Obi-Wan and Vader.

"Obi-Wan Kenobi" is now streaming on Disney+.