Thinking Ahead

Obi-Wan Kenobi theory reveals a time-travel twist ripped from the cartoons

Star Wars could be playing the long game.

Star Wars discourse is a fickle beast. Fan Twitter accounts will fight over Rey’s parentage one day and the properties of beskar the next. This weekend, however, one claim caught everyone’s attention. A now-deleted tweet from account Mac_D_Dad claimed Obi-Wan Kenobi should wrap up two huge “plot holes”: The age disparity between Ewan McGregor and Alec Guinness’ iterations of Obi-Wan Kenobi, and the fact that Obi-Wan just let Darth Vader strike him down.

The tweet also suggested Ahsoka will somehow bring Obi-Wan into the future. That probably won’t happen, but it does breathe life into a huge fan theory that could have its seeds planted in Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Time travel is an oft-forgotten part of the Star Wars universe that’s possible through the World Between Worlds, an ethereal plane introduced in Rebels. Ezra uses the realm to save Ahsoka, and he tries to save his late master Kanan Jarrus as well, but Ahsoka tells him he can’t change the past in such a huge way.

Introducing time travel to a sci-fi franchise is like squeezing all the toothpaste out of the tube; once it’s out, you’re not cramming it back in. However remote a possibility, time travel can always be factored into Star Wars fan theories now.

Ahsoka and Ezra in the World Between Worlds. Lucasfilm

It’s unlikely we’ll see the World Between Worlds in Obi-Wan Kenobi, but that doesn’t mean we’ll never see it again. There’s actually a mounting pile of evidence to suggest the realm will be included in Ahsoka. Take the strange Easter egg in the show’s logo, or the fact Bryce Dallas Howard said fans of The Clone Wars (and, presumedly, its spinoffs) would be “greatly rewarded.”

So if the World Between Worlds is going to appear in Ahsoka, it needs to be established in Star Wars live action canon for fans who haven’t seen the animated series. This means Obi-Wan could mention it off-hand, bringing it into the Disney+ canon for Ahsoka to develop.

Obi-Wan’s series could lay the groundwork for something huge. Lucasfilm

Even if that doesn’t come to pass, there’s a clear pattern established in the Star Wars live action shows where one series is used to heavily foreshadow the next. The Mandalorian Season 2 reintroduced the star of The Book of Boba Fett, which in turn had Ahsoka show up before the launch of her self-titled series.

Maybe Obi-Wan Kenobi is the next iteration of this scheme, and he’ll use his Jedi knowledge to lay the seeds for this mystical lore in Ahsoka. Time travel isn’t the answer to Obi-Wan’s problems, but it could be the start of something big.

Obi-Wan Kenobi premieres May 27, 2022 on Disney+.