Obi-Wan Kenobi differentiates itself from its predecessors, The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett, making it an excitingly unique live-action Star Wars series. The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett explore a relatively new part of the Star Wars canon timeline, with each series following a bounty hunter (or former bounty hunter) as their place in the galaxy changes, whether by choice or circumstance. Obi-Wan is far more closely tied to the movies, starring one of the Skywalker Saga’s most important characters in a series with a different directorial style than the previous Disney+ show.
Set 9 years prior to the events of Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (or 9 BBY), Obi-Wan centers on the titular Jedi Master’s time on Tatooine, watching over Luke Skywalker and waiting for the moment to begin training him as a Jedi Knight. While seemingly in exile, Kenobi is playing the long game, ensuring that the Jedi return and the Sith are defeated. Meanwhile, the sinister forces of the Empire send dark side-trained Inquisitors across the galaxy to kill any remaining Jedi, posing a threat to Kenobi.
The key differences between Obi-Wan and its predecessors are its relation to the films and directorial style. The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett both take place in 9 ABY, a point in time that canon has left largely unexplored, and both shows break new ground with an original protagonist and a film character after his final saga appearance. The shows also featured multiple directors, leading to different styles across their combined three seasons. Obi-Wan has a more singular creative vision under Deborah Chow’s direction, set between numerous properties and integrating itself in a well-explored point in the Star Wars canon timeline.
The time in between Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope has been depicted through numerous canon properties. The Empire’s anti-Jedi pogrom was explored in detail in 2017’s Darth Vader comics, the 2019 video game Jedi: Fallen Order, and the first two seasons of the Star Wars Rebels animated series. Rebels season 3 notably spent an episode showing Obi-Wan Kenobi in hiding on Tatooine, showing how devoted he was to protecting a young Luke Skywalker and settling his feud with the former Sith Lord Maul once and for all.
Obi-Wan coincides with Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, serving as an interquel for a point in Kenobi’s life that was mostly known in the broad strokes. The series provides a glimpse of Kenobi’s most important mission as a Jedi, as well as a surprise rematch between him and Darth Vader in between trilogies. As a miniseries with a more focused creative vision and a more constrained story, Obi-Wan Kenobi is a fundamentally different Star Wars series than its two predecessors.