John Williams, that legendary score composer for the entire Skywalker saga of Star Wars films, returns to the Star Wars galaxy once more… This time, to compose the theme music for the Disney+ Obi-Wan Kenobi (2022) series! It’s a mixed bag as to if this is good or bad news: good because Williams does do great score work and could do so again; bad because his work on the last two Skywalker saga Star Wars movies — The Last Jedi (2017) and The Rise of Skywalker (2019) — were not very good compared to his previous masterpieces.
Williams recorded the theme “last week” as stated in an article from Variety; apparently under very tight security and with a Los Angeles orchestra. I wonder if Artoo could sneak the “plans” out and deliver to us Rebels before the big show… Lord knows the Disney/Lucasfilm Empire would scour the planet to get it back!
I said before that Williams’s work on Episodes VIII and IX weren’t great… Oh, and do I mean that! As amazing — and I mean soul-moving — as his other past film scores are, have been, and always will be, it’s my judgment that the music for The Last Jedi was filler which didn’t stand out while that of The Rise of Skywalker was primarily throwbacks to past Star Wars score material with little new stuff which also didn’t stand out. I truly do not understand how the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences found these two scores worth nomination… I mean, name a memorable piece of the score to each Sequel film without looking up track titles; now compare it to how easily memorable the tracks are to the scores from the Original and Prequel trilogies!
But to be fair, Williams has been at the film score game, much less the Star Wars score game, for a long time and not everything is going to be fried gold.
That all said, this is one theme piece of Star Wars music; I’m very willing to at least listen and see for myself if the maestro’s still got it. I’m not huge on the idea of a Kenobi series — much less another duel between Kenobi and Vader *before* their Death Star reunion — but you take the bad with the good and Williams has more chance of producing something good.
Williams rarely composes for television; his last theme for a weekly dramatic series was Amazing Stories (1985-1987), although he has written two for PBS series (Masterpiece Theatre in 2000, Great Performances in 2009), and his news and Olympics themes, written decades ago, continue to air on NBC. Returning to his Star Wars material, he did compose the theme for Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) and Disneyland’s “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge” theme park in 2019.
Williams scored the original Obi-Wan Kenobi, as played by Alec Guinness, with a theme that became better known as that of the Force (“the spiritual-philosophical belief of the Jedi Knights and the Old Republic,” as the composer explained in 1977), perhaps best remembered for its use in the Throne Room scene that concluded that first Star Wars film and which Williams has often performed in concert.
The new theme for Obi-Wan Kenobi is unknown and unheard for now… If it revisits past material, or is something altogether new, we’ll have to wait and find out the hard way. But even though I didn’t enjoy his recent Star Wars score material, I find there is more reason to give Williams and his work the benefit of the doubt that it will likely be good. I’ll find out… We’ll all find out! The maestro who had seemingly retired from scoring Star Wars must have come back for a good reason, I like to believe…
Obi-Wan Kenobi releases on Disney+ May 25th, 2022. There is no word yet as to who will be scoring the six individual episodes, which are believed to be recording in London.
Do you think John Williams’ theme for Obi-Wan Kenobi will be a triumph or a tragedy? Comment below! Check out the article from Variety from which this news is based! Check out also the awesome Geek News Now giveaway for the Lego version of the Razor Crest from The Mandalorian (2019-present)! Subscribe to Geek News Now and give it a like on its Facebook page!