MILLENNIUM FALCON — KESSEL RUN
SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY (HASBRO)
Well, poor Solo’s kind of come and gone. You can still find it playing in a few theaters, but not nearly as many as you might expect. And that’s really a shame, since it wasn’t a bad movie at all. But, it had the misfortune of being the last in a string of summer blockbusters, being too close to the last Star Wars flick’s release, and being the Star Wars film that was in theaters when parts of the fanbase decided to…do…something? I haven’t gotten that piece figured out quite yet. Regardless, I thoroughly enjoyed Solo, and have picked up a slew of the toys, including the newest (but technically oldest) incarnation of the Millennium Falcon.
THE VEHICLE ITSELF
The Kessel Run variant of the Falcon hit stores alongside the rest of the Solo product in April of this year.It’s by far the biggest of the items offered this time.On the flipside, it’s also the smallest version of the Falcon we’ve ever gotten that was still intended for use with the standard figures.This size has certainly upset large parts of the fandom, who have become accustomed to more robust offerings for the Falcon, and weren’t pleased to see it scaled down quite so far. I’m of two minds on this. While I appreciate the play set approach of earlier versions of the vehicle (the POTF2 version is my jam), but they could certainly be a little unwieldy for actual use as a space ship. This slightly streamlined and smaller model, on the other hand, allows for more use for flying around and such. It’s not a move that’s going to please longer term collectors, but there’s definitely a rationale behind it. As it stands, this version of the Falcon is still noticeably bigger than most other recent ships, and upon opening it, it actually wasn’t quite as small as I’d expected. I’d say it’s about 80% of the size of
the POTF2 version, which is respectable. Obviously, the sculpt on this thing is all-new, given not only the new size, but also the cleaner, sleeker design of the Falcon in Solo. It’s a nice looking ship,to be sure. There are three main areas where the figures can interact. The most obvious, of course, is the cockpit. It’s somewhat negatively impacted by the scale. Getting two figures into the cockpit of even the vintage Falcon mold was difficult enough, but this one throws the concept out all together. There is one single seat in the cockpit, and one person’s going in there. If you really try, you can kind of get Han and Qi’ra both in there, but it’s far from natural looking. Of course, once the cockpit’s canopy is shut, it’s not like you can really see who’s in there anyway, so the point is kind of moot anyway. There are two panels towards the back of the ship which can also be popped off. Unlike earlier versions, there’s not a ton you can really do with either of these areas. I mean, it’s still nifty to see them there, though. The details seen there look pretty nifty, and it’s a nice little bonus. The last area of interaction is the escape pod between the mandibles. It’s really just a simple hatched piece, with space for another figure, albeit laying down. The interior matches the other sections, and is better than just smooth grey plastic. The pod is, of course, removable, and features further detailing for the thrusters and such, allowing it to fully function as it’s own separate piece. Personally, I prefer the ship without it, but the option is much appreciated. The paintwork is a little sparse on the Falcon, being limited mostly to the blue detailing. The Falcon is supposed to be cleaner, so it works alright. Smaller details and the like are done with decals, which have to be applied after you get the ship out of the box. The Falcon has a few action features built in. It’s compatible with Force Link 2.0, but that’s thankfully limited to the escape pod. The other features are native to the toy proper. There’s flight sounds, activated by a “takeoff” (theres a spring-loaded piece of landing gear that senses when the ship is picked up). There are then some lights and sounds determined by the gyroscope within the ship sensing motion. Pressing the buttons on the sides intensifies the lights and sounds which each subsequent push, with the third push enacting the “hyperdrive”, which has some rumbling, and pops off two panels on the back and two on the front, thus simulating the damage the Falcon takes during the Kessel Run. It takes a little bit of work to learn the rhythms of the mechanics.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Included with the Falcon is a variant of the title character, Han Solo himself. It’s a unique version of the character, based on his appearance from the very end of the movie (and not the Kessel Run as the figure’s name suggests). The figure stands 4 inches tall and has 7 points of articulation. This Han gets the coveted wrist articulation, which is pretty cool. The sculpt is, surprisingly, totally new. Not even the head is shared with the other two Hans. I think I like this one more than the one from the speeder. It’s certainly a sharper sculpt. Even the paint is a bit cleaner, which is a plus. Han includes his blaster, as well as a canister of cargo to go in the ship.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I realized at the time of this set’s release that I hadn’t actually gotten a Millennium Falcon since the ‘99s, which didn’t seem right. However, the higher price tag on this boy meant I was definitely waiting for a sale. And find a decent sale I did, so now I have it. Yay! It’s got its issues, and it’s not going to be for everyone, but I found myself quite liking it, a fair bit more than I’d expected to.