STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES
Once a line of figures gets a few series in, there will inevitably crop up one or two characters that are noticeably absent. Following the first three series of Star Wars: The Black Series, it was quite obvious that these two characters were Darth Vader and Chewbacca. Then, both found their way into the 5th series of the line. And there was much rejoicing! Yay! Except for one small issue: they weren’t exactly easy to find. See, there were two things that led to this. The first was that stores were sitting on lots of unsold stock of the first four series, so they under-ordered Series 5. In addition, while the series was all new figures, two of the four were variants of previously released characters. Obviously, this made the two new characters even more desirable, causing quite a bit of scarcity. I myself missed out on Chewbacca the first time around, but, fortunately for me, he got a rerelease!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Chewbacca was originally part of Series 5 of Star Wars: The Black Series, however he eventually found his way into Series 7 cases as well. He’s figure number 04 in the second round of numbering for the line. The figure has 27 points of articulation and stands a whopping 8 inches tall. He’s actually so tall that he was pushed back to Series 5 from Series 4 so that Hasbro would have time to re-design the packaging so that poor Chewy wouldn’t have to be crammed in some contorted pose in order to be properly seen. Dude’s really big. Chewbacca is one of the handful of characters who essentially look the same in all of the Star Wars films they appear in. That being said, you can sort of tell which movie he’s from by what his “bangs” are doing. For this figure, they’ve gone with the slicked back A New Hope look, which works fine with me. Given Chewbacca’s unique look, it’s no surprise that he makes use of an entirely new set of sculpted pieces. To be totally honest, it isn’t one of my favorites that the line has produced. It’s certainly not bad, and in fact, they’ve done an admirable job of translating a design that doesn’t work very well on an articulated figure to…umm…an articulated figure. The fur is all pretty well textured, but the breaks for articulation are rather obvious and obtrusive. Not sure it could have been any better, but it looks off. The head was actually the part of the figure I liked the least at first, but my opinion has changed over time and now I think it might be my favorite part of the figure. I’m still not 100% sold on the decision for the mouth to be open, but it looks perfectly fine in person. The sculpt being a little on the wonky side is not at all helped by an iffy paint job. Now, to be fair, this paint isn’t poorly applied or messy. It’s all exactly where it should be. It’s just not as…subtle as it could be. There are two different shades of brown: one dark and one light. The problem is that there’s no shade between, so the change from one to another is rather sudden. It really doesn’t help that many of these changes occur at the connections of joints, which are already a bit jarring to begin with. Chewbacca is armed only with his trusty bowcaster. It might have been nice to get another Stormtrooper rifle or maybe a set of handcuffs, but the lighter accessory load is excusable given the figure’s size.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
When Series 5 was announced, I knew I wanted to get a Chewbacca figure. However, when I ended up finding the series, I could only find Luke and Vader, with no sign of Chewbacca. That bummed me out quite a bit. I mentioned it to my dad, who kept an eye out for Chewbacca for several months. He finally came across one while getting lunch from Wegman’s one day, much to my excitement. I know I was a little down on this guy in my actual review. I stand by that, but I will say that just having the figure in hand improves my personal opinion of the figure, even if the actual quality could be a bit better. I think part of it is just that Chewy is an important piece of the films and a collection wouldn’t be complete without him.