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Star Wars’ Obi-Wan forgotten enemy nearly killed him long before Vader

Obi-Wan Kenobi is everyone's favorite Jedi and escaped death long before Darth Vader killed him in the first Star Wars movie. This villain nearly did it sooner.

Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan and Obi-Wan and Vader fight

If you love Star Wars, you love Obi-Wan Kenobi. The Jedi master, brought to life in live-action by Alec Guinness and Ewan McGregor, has been in Star Wars since the very beginning as he helped Luke Skywalker to leave the world of Tatooine behind and grasp his destiny.

As one of the best Star Wars characters, Obi-Wan Kenobi helped to train Anakin Skywalker before his apprentice succumbed to the dark side of the Force and was transformed into Darth Vader by the Sith Lord Palpatine. Kenobi and Vader would reunite years later before Vader ultimately killed his old master on the Death Star as Luke, Leia, and Han escaped.

That’s the story everyone knows. But since the original and prequel trilogies, Obi-Wan Kenobi’s backstory has been fleshed out in the Clone Wars and Rebels Star Wars series, in addition to the creatively titled Obi-Wan Kenobi limited series on Disney Plus. Through the movies and the series, we’ve witnessed Kenobi battle against the likes of General Grievous, Cad Bane, Count Dooku, Asajj Ventress, Reva, and a whole host of other Star Wars villains.

He dodged death on many occasions thanks to his skill with a lightsaber and canny tactics; but the adversary who came closest to killing the adversary before Vader is also his most forgotten.

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Obi-Wan Kenobi is one of the central figures in the animated series of shorts Star Wars: Clone Wars from 2003. These animated adventures were a precursor to the Dave Filoni series The Clone Wars, following the same story arc. Since The Clone Wars, Clone Wars has largely been purged from canon as it features too much overlap, though some events depicted in the series are still part of the lore. Yes, it’s confusing.

Really, to get a handle on it, you have to watch Clone Wars for yourself. The show has been compiled into two movie-length volumes which now reside on Disney Plus, and it’s absolutely brilliant with awesome visuals and great story arcs.

Durge in Clone Wars

One of these sees Kenobi face off against the terrifying bounty hunter Durge. Despite being a Star Wars bounty hunter, Durge was also one of the leaders of the Separatist forces under the command of Count Dooku. As seen in Clone Wars, the armor-clad warrior has a long and fearsome battle against Kenobi using his marksmanship, strength, various weapons, and regeneration to nearly kill the Jedi.

In the climax of their battle, Durge envelopes Kenobi inside himself, swallowing the Jedi with his formless body. Kenobi is suffocating inside Durge, who he’d earlier believed he’d killed before Kenobi finally manages to use the Force to explode Durge from the inside out.

Durge in Clone Wars fighting Obi-Wan

It’s really gross, really cool, and the closest we’ve ever seen Kenobi come to death until he battled Vader. Durge proves himself to be Kenobi’s equal, nearly managing to take the Jedi Master down before his own eventual demise. Perhaps we’ll get to see Durge brought into canon in one of the new Star Wars movies or many series.

For more on Star Wars, check out our guide to the Star Wars cast and see our thoughts on the best way to watch the Star Wars movies in order. You can also read more on Clone Wars with our feature on the best Star Wars movie you’ve never seen.