#2844: ARC Trooper Echo



First introduced in the first season episode “Rookies,” Domino Squad is a group that The Clone Wars uses to really showcase the general progression of the clones throughout the wars, as well as also hitting home just how bad war can be, seeing as the Squad has a tendency to fall like, well, dominos.  Central to the squad’s early stories are Fives and Echo, the two that have the most advancement of any clones in the show, starting off as mere cadets, and eventually becoming full-fledged ARC Troopers.  Echo himself has gone even further, becoming one of the few Regs to continue his story post-Order 66 as part of Clone Force 99, aka the titular team from The Bad Batch.  This kid’s got some range, let me tell you.


ARC Trooper Echo is another of the four figures in the Target-exclusive Clone Wars-retro assortment of Star Wars: The Black Series.  He’s the first figure of Echo in the line, though it would be an incredible shock if he were the last, given the incredible prominence of Echo’s updated Bad Batch gear.  As the name signifies, this figure is based on Echo’s ARC Trooper look, which he sported in the “Citadel” arc of the show, which is notably the story that “killed” him, before the final season brought him back.  It’s the look that had the most appearances within the show (prior to The Bad Batch, of course), and it’s his coolest look as a Reg.  Plus, they haven’t done any actual ARC troopers in this scale, so he’s a good reason to introduce the tooling.  It does mean that he doesn’t actually go with any other figures in the line, of course, since he doesn’t match up with the Batch, and he also doesn’t match up with Rex, since Rex was in his Phase I armor still when Echo died, but there are worse things to have to deal with.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  Remember how I mentioned the weird mix-up of Hawk retooling Rex’s body into a more basic clone body, rather than using the newly introduced basic clone?  So, you might assume that Echo, with his ARC Trooper gear, would naturally be using the Rex body as well, right?  Nope.  Echo’s on the new basic clone body, with a bunch of stuff tacked onto it.  I know.  It’s weird.  I mean, it’s still a nice body, so I’m not complaining.  I’m just confused, that’s all.  In order to update that standard clone armor into a full ARC Trooper set-up, Echo gets a new set of forearms and lower legs, as well as new add-on pieces for his additional torso gear, as well as his belt, kama, and holsters.  He’s also got a brand new head and helmet to complete the whole set-up.  It’s interesting that he’s got a rubber kama, as opposed to the cloth we’ve gotten for the commanders thus far, but I don’t hate the look, and it doesn’t hold back the articulation too badly.  The unmasked head continues the trend of the unmasked clones not looking all that much like Temuera Morrison, though this one does at least seem to be heading a bit more in the right direction, I suppose.  The helmet sits well on the head, though, which is a definite plus, as some of the others have had a little bit of trouble with that fit.  The rest of the new parts mesh well with the old, and the end result is a quite nicely put together ARC Trooper set-up.  The paint work on Echo is generally pretty decent.  There’s a good deal of variety to it, but the application is generally pretty cleanly handled.  There are some fuzzier edges on a few of the blue lines, but it can be written off to a little bit of wear, to be honest.  He’s got the face printing on the unmasked head, which definitely helps with the likeness, at least a little bit.  And, just to make him properly Echo, he’s got the hand print graffiti, which is always a fun touch.  Echo is pretty well accessorized, getting a long blaster rifle, a short blaster rifle, and two blaster pistols.  He still can’t properly hold both pistols at once, of course, since only the right hand has a trigger finger, but at least you have some options.


“Rookies” was the first episode of Clone Wars that really spoke to me, and I’ve long since had a soft spot for Domino Squad, and Echo in particular.  I always liked his story, and I was sad when he was killed off in the “Citadel” arc.  I was very glad to see him brought back in Season 7, and he’s thus far been one of my favorite parts of The Bad Batch.  I hope to get a Batch version of him soon, but I’m also glad to have gotten him in his peak form here.  Sure, he doesn’t match up with anyone at the moment, but hopefully we can at the very least get a Fives to go with him.  Once again, thanks to Max for setting me up with this one.  I wasn’t expecting him to be quite as easily acquired, but I’m happy he was.

#1330: Arc Trooper



“Through the creative vision of Lucasfilm Ltd. and the Cartoon Network, the Clone Wars are brought to life in an exciting new series of short animated chapters. A unique animation style captures the drama of this epic period in galactic history along with its outstanding heroes and adversaries. Noble Jedi warriors lead Clone Troopers into battle against the evil Separatist forces and their droid armies. Anakin, Obi-Wan, Yoda and their comrades struggle against the rising power of the dark side and confront personal challenges against a backdrop of war-torn planets”

Easily the best thing to come out of the Star Wars prequels is Genndy Tartakovsky’s Star Wars: Clone Wars micro series, released in the period between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith.  It was the most fun that Star Wars had been since the original trilogy.  There were a couple of cool new ideas introduced by the series, including the Advanced Recon Commando Troopers, or ARC Troopers, an advanced group of clones personally trained by Jango Fett before his demise.  I’ll be taking a look at one of them today!


The ARC Trooper was released in the 2005 assortment of Hasbro’s animated-style Star Wars: Clone Wars line.  Though the figure is simply named “ARC Trooper,” he appears to be specifically based on Captain Fordo, the lead ARC Trooper from the series.  The figure stands about 3 1/2 inches tall (he’d be closer to 4 if he were standing upright) and he has 4 points of articulation.  This line was specifically based on Tartakovsky’s line-art from the series.  He’s style is very fluid, which means the figures are rather limited on the articulation front.  A number of figures opted for a more static pose, but the ARC Trooper was actually sculpted in a rather pre-posed manner.  He’s mid-stride, with his right outstretched in a commanding motion and his left down by his side holding a blaster.  While I’m generally not a huge fan of pre-posing on action figures, this is definitely one time where it really works, because it aids in capturing that fluid style I was talking about.  The sculpt does an overall pretty solid job of capturing the distinctive design of the clones from the cartoon.  The only slightly off part is the helmet; on the show, the helmets bowed inward at the bottom, but here it flares out.  It doesn’t result in a super different look or anything, but it’s ever so slightly off.  Still, it’s quite a nice sculpt.  The paintwork on this guy is pretty straightforward.  It’s just flat colors, as it should be.  The application is mostly pretty clean, though there’s a bit of slop on the edges of the kama.  Fordo included a pair of blasters, which can either be held or stowed in his fully-functioning holsters.  He also included the same black display stand included with all of the Clone Wars figures, though, surprisingly, he doesn’t really need it.


Captain Fordo was my first Clone Wars figure.  I was always interested in the line, but all the figures I wanted were in hot demand at the time, so I could never find them in stores.  I ended up getting this guy while on a day trip with my dad and my brother.  We had gone to a small comic show, which had been a bust in terms of action figures, so my dad took us to a Target on the way back and let us each pick something out.  Christian got an Anakin and I got this guy.  He’s not a super complex figure or anything, but I still really like him, and he reminds me that I should really track down more of this line.