New Star Wars Theory Explains Why Obi-Wan Kenobi Sacrificed Himself

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More than four decades later, the original 1977 Star Wars remains a continuing source for speculation among the fans, with this latest theory about Obi-Wan Kenobi even linking loosely into potential developments in next year’s Star Wars: Episode IX.

According to this new line of speculation, Obi-Wan deliberately sacrificed himself in his fight with Darth Vader in order to show Anakin that only the Jedi could become one with the Force. The theory goes on to argue that this moment planted a seed in Vader’s mind, gradually inspiring the villain to question the teachings of his master. This doubt allegedly culminated in Vader’s decision to kill Palpatine in Return of the Jedi.

If this was indeed Obi-Wan’s plan, then he sure lost hope in it very quickly after the events of A New Hope. In Return of the Jedi, the late master even tries to talk Luke out of attempting to turn his father from the dark side, claiming that Vader is “more machine now than man.”

But regardless of Old Ben’s intentions, the theory goes on to suggest that Vader’s choice to kill the Emperor may have also been rooted in an ability to see into the future, observing how his grandson Kylo Ren would also need to be steered back on the right path some day. It’s argued that Anakin therefore killed his master in order to become one with the Force, so that he too could return as a Force Ghost and attempt to convert Kylo in the events of Episode IX.

That last part in particular seems like a real stretch, not least because Vader didn’t exactly need a hidden bonus reason for slaying Palpatine at the climax of Return. Besides, if J.J. Abrams really wanted to bring back Anakin as a Force Ghost (and that, in itself, is a pretty big ‘if’), he’d hardly need an excuse like a decades-old prophecy to do so. Nonetheless, we’ll find out if the saga’s most famous villain is present for the Sequel Trilogy’s grand finale when Star Wars: Episode IX hits theaters on December 20th, 2019.

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