#2640: The Mandalorian w/ Speeder Bike

THE MANDALORIAN w/ SPEEDER BIKE

STAR WARS: MISSION FLEET (HASRBO)

Alright, are you guys ready to get cyclical?  I sure hope so, because we’re going to be rounding up this year’s post-Christmas reviews by circling back to where we kicked them off, namely Star Wars, or more specifically, The Mandalorian.  Before the dumpster fire that was last year had really kicked into high gear, Hasbro was looking to experiment a little bit with their Star Wars output.  Obviously, The Black Series and The Vintage Collection have the collector’s side covered, but that leaves a bit of a lack of stuff for a younger audience, or indeed someone who just likes a good, fun toy.  Their first attempt at slight more all ages fare was Galaxy of Adventures, which I covered as they were released in 2019, and which was *supposed* to have more product added in 2020 but…didn’t.  The other line, shown off at Toy Fair last year, was Mission Fleet, a stylized line with a heavier focus on vehicles.  The line started showing up at retail last fall, and it’s been a fun little experiment.  Today, I’m taking a look at its first set based on The Mandalorian.

THE TOYS THEMSELVES

The Mandalorian with Speeder Bike is part of the launch wave of Mission Fleet product, in a set officially dubbed “Battle For The Bounty.”  They have a few different sizes and price points for the sets, and this one is part of the Expedition Class set up, which covers more proper vehicles of the smaller persuasion.

The core figure gives us Mando in his full Beskar armament, and was in fact the first toy from Hasbro to do so, having beaten both the Black Series and Vintage Collection versions to market by a little bit.  The figure stands about 2 1/2 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation.  Despite the small stature, he does still get a ball-jointed neck and universal joints on the shoulders, so he’s got an alright range of motion.  His sculpt is a pretty respectable little offering.  He’s definitely rather stylized, with a slightly enlarged head, hands, and feet.  He’s not quite as far removed as, say, a PlaySkool offering, but definitely not a hyper realistic recreation of the live action stuff by any stretch.  I think it works pretty well for him, and gets all of the important details for the character, while making him perhaps a touch more kid-friendly.  His paint work is pretty on the basic side, but all of the important details are again present.  Application is clean, and he matches the show depiction pretty well.  Mando is packed with both his cape and jetpack, though, like the Black Series figure, you have to choose one or the other.  He also includes both his rifle and pistol.  The only downside to the two weapons is a lack of storage for them while he’s on the vehicle, an unfortunately recurring issue with the line.

Though not quite as much of a figure proper as the Mando, this set also includes the *other* major player in The Mandalorian, the Child, who was still unnamed at the time of this figure’s release, so he sticks with just being “The Child.”  In an effort to be kind to people who aren’t entirely current on the show, I’ll just stick with that here.  He’s about an inch tall and is articulated only at his neck, which is honestly more articulation than I’d been expecting, really.  He’s definitely way too large to be in proper scale with the Mando or any other normal sized characters from this line, but for proper scaling, he’d be incredibly minuscule, and even more easily lost than he already is.  He’s sculpted holding the control knob from the Razor Crest, and is caricature-ized, much like the Mando.  His paint work’s not quite as clean as Mando’s, but it’s still not too bad.  Again, all of the important details are there.  The Child includes his floating pram from the first few episodes.  Like the Child itself, the pram is quite up-scaled compared to the rest of the line, but it’s a cool piece.  I do wish it was a little easier to get him sitting up in it, though.

The main vehicle component for this set is the speeder bike the Mando uses while on Tatooine in the episodes “The Gunslinger” and “The Marshall.”  It’s a pretty basic speeder bike layout, and it’s certainly a more economical vehicle choice for the character than going the Razor Crest route, so I can dig it.  It’s about 6 inches long, so its scale relative to the Mando is pretty decent.  The detail work is more on the basic side, focusing on the more broad stroke details to sell it.  It works well with the style they’ve gone for with the figure.  There are some slightly obtrusive ports on the sides, two of which are for the included cannon, and the other two don’t seem to match up to anything.  I’m guessing they’re for something in the future, maybe?  There’s also a spot on the back allowing the pram to be hooked up, making this whole thing one larger piece.  Also included with the vehicle is a rather large missile launcher, with included missile.  Obviously, it’s not based on anything from the actual show, but it’s a cool extra, more toyetic thing to throw in, and you can mount it in a few different spots on the bike.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was pretty interested in Mission Fleet when it was shown off at Toy Fair, and when it hit, I enlisted some help from Cheyenne in tracking down a few of the sets.  She obliged on a handful of them, and requested that I maybe, possibly, not buy any for myself, so that she’d have an easier time getting me gifts and the like.  So, I held off, and then I honestly forgot, truth be told, until she presented me with this bad boy just a few days after Christmas.  This is a fun line, and one that I honestly put off actually reviewing for far longer than I should have.  This set in particular is a nice little contained package of all the major Mandalorian elements, but the whole line is just great.  Maybe I should review those other ones I’ve got sitting around at some point, huh?

#2435: The Child

THE CHILD

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)

The Mandalorian was a pretty huge hit right out of the gate, but pretty much everything else about the show pales in comparison to the Baby Yoda phenomenon.  Kept a well-guarded secret by those involved in the show, “The Child” (as he was officially dubbed by Disney) was immediately met with pretty much universal approval, and an insane demand for all the merchandise imaginable.  Of course, part of keeping Baby Yoda such a well-guarded secret was not letting any of the licensors even know the character existed until after the first episode had dropped, meaning there was a bit of a gap between his appearance on the show an any merch.  Fortunately, things have turned around pretty darn quickly on that front.  There are a lot of options right out of the gate, but I’m kicking things off with a look at Hasbro’s Black Series offering.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Child is a one-off Black Series release, which started hitting retail right at the beginning of May.  He’s using the packaging style introduced in 2018 with the Porg two-pack, but he’s at a slightly higher price point.  The figure is incredibly small, and indeed a lot smaller than many people expected.  However, at just over an inch tall, he’s pretty much exactly the size he should be to go with the rest of The Black Series line.  He’s better articulated than you might expect, with 7 points of articulation.  That includes ball joints at the neck, shoulders, and ankles (yes, he’s got a fully detailed pair of feet that no one’s ever going to see).  His range is rather limited overall, especially on the shoulders.  I was, however, quite pleased with the mobility on the neck joint, which allows for a good deal of expressiveness to his posing.  The sculpt is rather well detailed for the size, with the head exhibiting the best work.  The likeness to the puppet from the show is pretty spot-on, especially in the face.  The paintwork on this figure is fairly light.  The construction of the figure is such that most of the color work is done via straight molded coloring.  There’s a little bit of work on his face and ears, which is up to par with the current standard for the main line, so no complaints there.  Baby Yoda’s got a fun selection of cool extras, including the frog-like creature it eats after the Mando finds it, the bowl of broth he carries during Mando and Cara’s face-off in Chapter 4, and the knob from Mando’s ship that he gives to Baby Yoda as a toy.  There’s also a clear box to keep all of the extras in, so that you don’t lose them.  I definitely appreciate that, and they’ll be staying in that box pretty much exclusively for my display.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I will fully admit to being drawn in by the Baby Yoda craze, and his inclusion in The Mandalorian was definitely one of my favorite parts of the show.  I definitely wanted him for my Black Series collection, in what ever capacity Hasbro chose to deliver.  It’s hard to say that this guy’s really a full-fledged figure in his own right, but he’s a pretty fantastic companion to the rest of the Mando stuff they’ve put out so far.  He’s a fun little package.

I picked up this little guy from my friends at All Time Toys.  He’s currently sold out, but they’ve still got a bunch of other Black Series, and other cool toys both old and new, so please check out their website and their eBay Store.