In Star Wars: Rebels, Maul’s dying words carried an echo of hope. He hoped that Luke Skywalker would avenge Obi-Wan as well as him. This was because even though Maul and Kenobi were enemies, but they both had one common goal.
When Maul was dying in Obi-Wan’s arms in the moonlit desolate Tatooine terrain, then Maul’s last wish in Star Wars canon was the desire to get avenged by Luke Skywalker and by not any other Jedi. Now, this might seem strange, especially since it’s coming from Maul who was consumed by the darkness of the Force. Also, fans know that he despised the Jedi and especially Obi-Wan.
But his final faceoff against Obi-Wan gave him the closure he needed and allowed him to let go of the resentment that was 30 years in the making. The two fought during the climax of season 3 of Star Wars: Rebels episode “Twin Suns.”
Fans who watched the fight know that despite the hardships he had to go through and the enemies he made along the way, Maul didn’t forget once about the one Jedi who cleanly sliced him in two. This drastically changed his life’s path and he became consumed by suffering and hate. So it was surprising that Maul asked Luke Skywalker to avenge him.
And not anyone else. Let us find out why.
Obi-Wan and Darth Maul had a common enemy- Darth Sidious. He was the architect who plotted the downfall of the Old Republic and destroyed both of their lives. Maul’s hate and obsession led to his downfall, but he did realize that he and Kenobi had one similar goal about destroying Darth Sidious. And when there’s a similar goal, then old rivalries can’t stand a candle to it.
Maul hated Darth Sidious because he felt that he was betrayed by him and discarded for Count Dooku after he lost his place in the Clone Wars. At first, Maul blamed Obi-Wan but he gradually realized that he was just a pawn till Darth Sidious got the apprentice he actually wanted. After this revelation, he tried to derail Darth Sidious’ plans regarding Mandalore’s siege.
Maul also tried to lure Anakin so that he could stop him from ultimately becoming Darth Vader. However, we all know that he did this because of purely selfish reasons. But this did end up connecting Maul and Obi-Wan via their attempts to prevent the Empire’s rise. We all know that both of them failed and their previous lives were ruined.
To make matters worse for Maul, between the events of Solo: A Star Wars Story and Rebels, he didn’t have control over his painstakingly built crime syndicate called Crimson Dawn anymore. By then Obi-Wan was also in exile and had lost all of his loved ones too.
In Rebels, Maul was clinging to his hatred and rivalry with Obi-Wan because he had nothing left except that. He tried to insult Obi-Wan when they finally met, but in turn, he was the one who got agitated by Obi-Wan’s simple response of- “Look what I have risen above”.
This hit Maul’s ego and maybe Maul realized the truth in that statement. In this situation, it was Maul who was the pathetic one. He was the one who was chasing after Obi-Wan as the Jedi lived his life looking at the future. After the fight, right when he was about to die, he allowed himself to be embraced by his enemy and asked the elder Jedi to confirm if he was hiding to protect the Chosen One. After that, he said, “he will avenge us.”
That one touching and heartfelt moment stripped away the layers of hatred, obsession, and ego from their eternal conflict. However, this didn’t mean that Maul was a Jedi convert. He was still very much against the mighty Jedi order. But no one expected him to change quickly. After all, he was made into a vessel carrying only hate from a very young age. Darth Sidious raised him to believe that the Jedi were his true enemy.
Not to mention that Maul personally hated the Jedi order for never choosing to properly train him as a kid. But here’s where Luke Skywalker is different. He didn’t come from the old Order. Since he was the Chosen One so he was prophesied to end the Sith.
This was a comforting notion to Maul- that Luke would defeat Darth Sidious and in a way avenge Maul. Maul’s statement about Luke made him a unique character in the Star Wars galaxy- that of a tragic character. In fact, he is said to be the most tragic character in Star Wars.
When Maul was taking his last breaths, he got some semblance of peace. But he really couldn’t let go of his hate. However, he did find a common ground with his enemy Obi-Wan Kenobi. After being used and then abandoned by the Sith his entire life, Maul could see how similar his and Obi-Wan’s aims had become.
Do remember that Maul never knew who Luke Skywalker was, but to him, that didn’t matter. His arc ended with the hope that his avenger- Luke had a destiny that Maul wasn’t fortunate to have.
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