BATTLE DROID — GEONOSIS
STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)
“Rather than use flesh-and-blood warriors, the Separatists prefer mindlessly loyal soldiers that are easily controlled. Battle droids are dim-witted and no match for clone troopers or Jedi, but they weren’t designed to be smart – they were designed to overwhelm Republic civilians through sheer numbers, something they do very effectively.”
Since the Stormtroopers were off limits due to timelines and continuity and all that jazz, the Prequel Trilogy had to come up with its own form of armies of troops for the bad guys to throw our heroes’ way. Taking advantage of being able to do designs and concepts not as easily allowed by the technology of filmmaking in the early ’80s, Lucas and company introduced the Trade Federation’s Battle Droid army, who became the backbone of the separatist forces for the next three films (and Clone Wars, of course), all while some how becoming more comically slapstick in their mannerisms with each subsequent appearance. At this point, it really wouldn’t be that far-fetched for them to come out with a rendition of “who’s on first?” Whatever the case, they were absent from The Black Series for a good bit, but finally joined the line early last year. Of course, the assortment they were a part of was kind of unbalanced in its distribution, so Hasbro opted to give us another chance at the mold, this time with a tweaked color scheme. Yay for me!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
The Battle Droid (Geonosis) is figure 108 in the Black Series line-up. He’s the third Battle Droid we’ve gotten, following the tan Episode 1 version and the Gaming Greats heavy gunner. All three of them are the same mold, which is sensible, since the core droid design didn’t change throughout the three prequel films. The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation. Battle Droid figures historically have a lot of trouble matching the movement of the droids in the films. Given that the joints are right there in the design, it’s a shame that they almost never articulate them. However, this figure addresses that, and actually manages to articulate most of the built-in joints, making this by far the most Battle Droid put out by Hasbro. The hip joints are slightly limited, and a few of the smaller joints were stuck on mine right out of the box, but he’s overall really posable, and a lot more steady on his feet than prior Battle Droids I’ve messed with. Most impressively, he can actually properly fold up like the droids do in the movie, which is pretty cool. The sculpt is also a pretty spot-on recreation of the designs seen in the movie, with all of the detail work being nice and crisp, sharp, and clean. He’s quite a sleek-looking figure. The colors are where this figure differentiates himself from the prior releases. This one uses the Geonosis coloring, so he’s all red to match the rather amber terrain of the planet. I’ve always been kind of partial to this coloring, so I’m happy to see it represented here. The paint work gives him some wear and tear, so that he looks like a proper “battle” Droid. He’s armed with the standard E-5 blaster, and also includes both a backpack, and the streamlined antenna pack, to allow for some distinction of ranks within the set-up. It would have been cool to also get a C-3PO head to swap out, but perhaps they’ll just make the heads swappable when they make the inevitable AotC 3PO.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I was tempted by the tan release of this figure last year, but never saw him in person, and didn’t feel majorly inclined to track him down after the fact. Once I knew this one was coming, I officially switched over to just wanting him, because I like this color set better. Now that I’ve finally gotten to mess with this mold, I can definitely see why people like it so much. I’m sure Hasbro’s already planning to do a few more rank variants with it, and I can see myself picking some of those up to be sure.
Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this guy for review. If you’re looking for Black Series, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.