With continued leaks from Ireland on Episode VIII and publication leaks for Rogue One its easy to forget that there is another Star Wars property that is in production and will be on screen this year, Rebels. Because of this many people have overlooked the interview with Dave Filoni where he says he would want Ewan to voice Obi-wan if they bring him in. The question is when and why they would bring in Obi-wan and is it a good idea? Lets explore!
The biggest question to me would be why would they bring in Obi-wan. I can only think of two reasons, one would be they were on a mission that brought him into their orbit. He’s obviously not going to leave Tatooine and if the Rebels crew went there, I’d half expect them to run into Owen, Beru, and Luke. This wouldn’t make sense with the overall narrative of Rebels as Tatooine isn’t important to the Empire in any way. So if they aren’t going to be coming into his orbit the only other reason is to replace the mentoring that Ahsoka provided Kanan and Ezra. Again since Obi-wan is very unlikely to be leaving Tatooine this would not be a situation where they would have much if any physical interaction but more like a mix between the way Ahsoka was in the first season and how Kanan and Ezra have communicated with Yoda. They would communicate like Ahsoka did when she was still known as Fulcrum but with Obi-wan dishing out more practical knowledge as opposed to the Jedi wisdom of Yoda. The goal being to help Kanan with training a headstrong, padawan that has touched the darkside. The other option is to have Obi-wan communicate like Yoda does. The training Yoda left for Obi-wan at the end of RotS was pertaining to living on through the force and I suspect this ability is linked with Yoda’s ability to communicate with Kanan and Ezra. Obi-wan could easily have learned this skill as well.
When(IF) will we see Obi-wan on Rebels? As of now I seriously doubt we will hear from him during season 3. At best he would show up during one of the last two episodes, perhaps as a call into Kanan, with a basic, “So I hear you have an unusual padawan, I have some experience in handling those” Then he would be a few random episodes in Season 4. I seriously doubt we would see him in person though it could be possible for Kanan to seek him out and perhaps meet off world but close to Tatooine. Obi-wan wouldn’t be there to help the Rebels as much help Kanan with whatever dilemma Ezra was presenting. No matter what he wouldn’t be a regular on the show or even an important part of it. One other way they could introduce Obi-wan is through his connection with Bail Organa. Kanan and Ezra have met Leia and she will no doubt play a role in upcoming seasons, its stands to reason Bail will also. If Ezra or Kanan are looking for guidance Bail would likely point them in his direction. This would also give Leia the knowledge of Obi-wan’s location which helps explain her actions at the beginning of ANH.
But is it a good idea to have Obi-wan as a character on Rebels? I don’t think so. This further confuses the established canon of Star Wars by having Obi-wan interacting with the Rebellion even if its through a Jedi proxy. I believe that if Obi-wan needed to get off planet and had a contact like Kanan he would have simply reached out to them instead of going to Mos Eisley to purchase a ride out of town. It also would take away from the current cast and story on Rebels. By eliminating Ahsoka they have allowed Kanan and Ezra to now define themselves in their own manner with out previous strings, bringing in Obi-wan to replace her would tie them back down. This should be avoided if the show wants to continue to grow and trust its characters.