The Galactic Empire is well-represented in Obi-Wan Kenobi, from Inquisitors to stormtroopers to Darth Vader himself, with the show implying that former Jedi Grand Master Yoda is already dead. The episode focuses largely on the Empire’s Inquisitors and their preoccupation with tracking down any Jedi who may have escaped Order 66. This leads the Inquisitors to Obi-Wan Kenobi, causing his exile to be temporarily disrupted.
However, one line from Obi-Wan Kenobi‘s second episode hints at the Empire’s attitude about the Jedi and their survivors. Order 66 has recently been featured prominently in a number of Disney projects, adding more layers to an already horrific incident. Despite some Jedi survivors of Star Wars’ Order 66, the Empire’s effectiveness at removing Jedi appears to be the common denominator in each of these situations, leading the Inquisitors to assume that most major Jedi threats have been extinguished.
The Grand Inquisitor and the Fifth Brother are shown discussing Kenobi’s powers as a Jedi while hunting for him on the planet Daiyu. According to the Grand Inquisitor, Kenobi is not an ordinary Jedi, but rather the last spark of the Jedi Order as it once was. Given that the Empire considers Kenobi to be a higher priority target than any other Jedi on their list, it’s reasonable to assume that the Empire believes Yoda is already dead. Given his status and title as Grand Master, Yoda has always been regarded as the most powerful Jedi. Yoda, the Jedi Master from Star Wars, has trained generations of Jedi and served throughout the High Republic and the Clone Wars. Despite his defeat to Darth Sidious in Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, Yoda would clearly be considered a major threat to the Empire. If the Empire and the Grand Inquisitor see Kenobi as the last living Jedi of significant power, it implies that Yoda is no longer alive.
Given that Yoda hid on Dagobah, a lonely and undiscovered planet, it’s apparent that the Empire struggled to locate him or any evidence of his survival. Reva’s preoccupation with catching Kenobi, as well as her plot in Obi-Wan Kenobi episode 2 involving a young Leia Organa, appears to be the only thing that lures Kenobi out of hiding. The Inquisitors have thus discovered one of the most powerful Jedi from the prequel era who is still believed to exist.
Given what is known about the Star Wars timeline before and after Obi-Wan Kenobi’s events, the Empire is justified in believing Yoda is dead. In Revenge of the Sith, Yoda tries but fails to vanquish Darth Sidious. He doesn’t leave Dagobah again until his death in Return of the Jedi, at least as far as audiences are aware. The Empire would have no reason to believe Luke Skywalker is alive until Yoda trains him, because he has entirely separated himself from the rest of the galaxy. However, Obi-love Wan’s for Anakin and his children draws him into the Empire’s orbit, and this will almost certainly lead to a meeting with Darth Vader himself in the final four episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi.