How did Obi-Wan Kenobi infiltrate the Death Star? A Star Wars book finally introduces the subtle Force technique Jedi use as spies.
Ever since Obi-Wan Kenobi infiltrated the Death Star, it has been clear Jedi make the perfect spies – and a Star Wars book reveals why that’s the case. When the Millennium Falcon was brought on board the Death Star in the first Star Wars movie, it was immediately clear its crew and passengers were in trouble. Fortunately Han had hidden compartments for them to use to evade detection, and they were able to slip away before they were captured.
Darth Vader sensed the presence of Obi-Wan, but he proved to be the only one who could spot the elderly Jedi Master as he made his way through the Death Star on a mission to sabotage the tractor beams. Somehow Kenobi completely avoided detection, never spotted by any of the thousands of Imperials staffing the space station. Viewers couldn’t help but wonder whether this was testimony to Obi-Wan’s skill or to the inadequacy and inefficiency of the Empire. The truth, it seems, is very different – and suggests a Jedi would make the ultimate spy.
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Cavan Scott’s novel The Rising Storm is set during the High Republic Era, some 200 years before the events of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, a time when the Jedi were far more numerous. In one intriguing scene, a couple of Jedi successfully infiltrate a major base held by their enemies, the Nihil. Jedi Knight Indeera Stokes explains a subtle Force technique to a Padawan accompanying her on this important mission, revealing the Jedi can actually use the Force to assist them in matters of espionage. “Gently encourage those around you to look in the opposite direction so you can pass unnoticed,” she explains, naming this technique as a sort of “Force shield.”
Everybody tends to focus on the more spectacular Force powers, but this is an important reminder that the Force can be used subtly as well. Indeera’s Force shield is a smart way of using low-level telepathy, simply encouraging everyone around to look the other way; it doesn’t act as a substitute for stealth, because the Jedi would still need to be quiet and avoid entering an area where there were too many people, but it is of great help with any infiltration mission. No doubt this is how Obi-Wan was able to move through the Death Star with relative impunity.
Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The High Republic transmedia initiative is one of the boldest in the history of the entire Star Wars franchise, and it is expanding audiences’ understanding of the Force by exploring a time when the Jedi were at their greatest. In this case, it’s added a new depth to a pivotal scene in the original Star Wars movie, suggesting Obi-Wan’s success on the Death Star was likely a demonstration of his skill and power rather than of the Empire’s lax security.
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