Since Obi-Wan Kenobi premiered on Disney+, Reva (Moses Ingram) became a divisive character. A faction of Star Wars fans went as far as sending Ingram racist messages, prompting Obi-Wan Kenobi star Ewan McGregor to publicly condemn the racist fans.
At the start of the miniseries, a great deal of complaints about Obi-Wan Kenobi revolved around Reva. As the show progressed, Reva’s true intentions became more apparent. In the miniseries’ finale, the conclusion of Reva’s arc was revealed.
When Reva’s true complexity was shown, the narrative about the character changed. Because some Obi-Wan Kenobi fans were so focused on actively hating Reva, they missed that her complexity was present all along.
[Spoiler Alert: This article contains spoilers for the first season of Obi-Wan Kenobi.]
Some ‘Star Wars’ fans were critical of Reva when ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ premiered
The first two episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi premiered on Disney+ on May 27. After the episodes were released, social media was filled with discussion points about the show.
Common complaints about the Star Wars miniseries involved Ingram’s acting, Reva’s motivations, and other observations about the character.
One fan wrote on Reddit, “Is anyone else bothered that reva said anakin skywalker is still alive? Like nobody knew who Vader was aside from yoda and obi wan his name was a closely guarded secret ?”
“Don’t like Reva. I guess that’s the point of the character. But I also feel like everything is very nuanced, like Ewan’s acting which is top notch, and then she comes in and cheeses it. It’s very ‘I AM THE VILLAIN’ overacting,” wrote a Reddit user.
“I love the show so far but yeah I think they struggled writing and directing reva… with Reva it feels like they want her to be menacing too but it’s just not convincing yet and I think they either need to progress her arc so that it is or pívot away from it,” a fan wrote on Reddit.
The opinion about Reva changed after the miniseries’ finale
In the fifth episode of Obi-Wan Kenobi, it is revealed that Reva was a Jedi youngling who survived Order 66. By surviving Darth Vader’s (Hayden Christensen) attack on the Jedi Temple, Reva carries the knowledge that Darth Vader is actually Anakin Skywalker.
She makes it her mission to kill Darth Vader to avenge her Jedi family and becomes an Inquisitor to get closer to him. When she fails to kill Darth Vader, Reva sets her sights on killing Anakin’s son Luke Skywalker (Grant Feely). She is unable to go through with it, effectively turning away from the Dark Side.
Following the finale of Obi-Wan Kenobi, some fans of the series praised Reva’s storyline which was previously condemned.
“The big bad reva, reduced to what she’s always been. The scared youngling , with intense potential. Controversial as it is; I love her character. A great addition to the inquisitorious lore,” wrote a fan on Reddit.
“Wonderful arc with Reva. I’d be interested to see where she went from there, but I’d also be happy to never find out,” one Reddit user wrote.
“Reva is really a great character…Obiwan‘s words are things he didn’t get the chance to say to Anakin, now he said to her. there’s still good in her,” a fan wrote on Reddit.
Reva’s complexity was there all along
As with any large fandom, there are still some naysayers who detest Reva. However, public opinion of the character on social media appears to have shifted in Reva’s favor, and it feels like a disservice that some fans failed to see the nuance of the character was always there.
What some fans interpreted as Reva being a one-dimensional villain in early episodes was actually her desperation to get closer to Darth Vader. Reva’s involvement in Order 66 as a youngling was foreshadowed across multiple episodes before it was revealed.
Some fans’ impatience caused them to hate Reva for knowing Darth Vader’s true identity when it would be explained in due time. Others missed Ingram’s subtle acting, showing Reva’s distaste for Darth Vader’s violent ways and her reluctance to torture a young Leia Organa (Vivien Lyra Blair).
Most blatant of all, official Star Wars social media accounts released posters for Obi-Wan Kenobi characters. While the Grand Inquisitor’s (Rupert Friend) poster showed Obi-Wan (McGregor) as his main opponent for the series, Reva’s poster revealed Darth Vader was her true target.
Fans who were patient and open-minded about Obi-Wan Kenobi were able to see the clues about Reva’s character, but some fans who were quick to hate the character completely missed out on Reva’s nuance until it was spelled out in the finale.