#2132: Chopper (C1-10P)

CHOPPER (C1-10P)

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)

“Chopper is the resident droid of the Ghost, assisting the crew in everything from ship maintenance to combat, even though he doesn’t always want to. After many years of repairs and patch jobs, Chopper has a beat-up, worn look that sometimes matches his cranky personality.”

No Star Wars story is really complete without a stubborn droid or two.  And while most of the main-series uses R2 and 3PO for that role, there are occasionally times where they’re not available, due to continuity stuff.  Rebels was one of those times (well, apart from a cameo appearance early on), so we got an all-new droid, C1-10P, better known as Chopper.  Chopper takes the usual stubborn droid traits and amps them up to 11, which has made him quite the fan-favorite.  With that in mind, the only thing that’s truly surprising about him getting a Black Series figure is how long it took for him to finally make it into the line-up.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Chopper is figure 84 in the Black Series line-up, part of the most recent assortment of figures, where he shares the Rebels spotlight with the Ezra figure from yesterday and the astromech spotlight with BT-1.  The figure stands roughly 2 1/2 inches tall and he has 13 points of articulation, which is pretty darn impressive by astromech standards.  As a droid, Chopper is the member of the Ghost crew who required the least changes to make him workable in a more realistic line, so he actually stays pretty close to the show’s design for him.  Many of the recent Star Wars offerings have made use of Ralph McQuarrie’s design work for the original film, and Rebels had that in spades.  Chopper himself makes use of a lot of elements from McQuarrie’s R2 design, being more squat and utilitarian than the final R2 design.  This makes Chopper more divergent from the other on-screen astromechs, which honestly isn’t that out of place given his characterization.  The figure follows the lead of the main Black Series R2 and his various attachments.  However, unlike R2, who had lots of clip-on parts, most of Chopper’s parts are internal and can fold out.  By far the most impressive example of this is the arms on the head, which are completely articulated and fold back into the head totally flat.  It’s actually so convincing that I myself almost missed them when opening my figure.  There’s another arm at the front, which is pretty cool too, if slightly more simplistic in its implementation.  Chopper’s paintwork is true to this design on the show, so he’s plenty colorful, and all of the small details are there. Of course, Chopper’s hardly a brand-new model, so the figure is sporting a fair bit of muck and grime, which is handled via the same technique they’ve been using on the faces recently.  In addition to everything packed into the main figure, Chopper’s got a few add-on parts as well.  His third leg can be swapped out for a rocket booster, which also includes a rocket blast effect piece to keep him elevated.  He’s also got an extra left leg, which is paired with his right, so as to allow him to match, as seen in “The Forgotten Droid.”

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Since I was already picking Ezra, it wasn’t too hard to convince myself to pick up Chopper too.  Honestly, he’s probably the strongest figure in this line-up.  The fold up arms are fun, and his animation-true design is a very clean look.  It’s a nice change-up from the more formulaic figures of the line.  He’s just a lot of fun, and I’m happy to have added him to the collection.

Chopper was purchased from All Time Toys.  If you’re looking for Star Wars, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#0843: Chopper Predator

CHOPPER PREDATOR

PREDATORS (NECA)

Chopper1

Alien vs. Predator is NOT a good movie. It’s pretty terrible from start to finish. However, it’s failure as a film is more punctuated by the fact that there’s actually a lot decent ideas (or at least the beginnings of decent ideas/concepts) that are completely dropped in favor of making the film as generic and forgettable as possible. One of the most disappointing aspects of the film is it’s handling of the second titular character, the Predator, or more accurately to the film, the Predators. The movie presents us with three unique Predators. They look cool, and their super imposing, and you’re super excited to see what they can do. But, they spend the first half of the film cloaked, and when they finally engage the Aliens, two of the three are taken out in the space of 5 minutes (by the same Xeno, no less!), leaving us with only the least distinctive of the three Predators to carry the rest of the film. Fortunately, NECA’s currently in the process of making super cool toys of just about every Predator ever, so the AvP Preds have gotten new life via action figures. Today, I’ll be looking at my personal favorite of the trio, Chopper Predator.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Chopper2Chopper Predator is part of the 14th Series of NECA’s Predators line, which is the first of a handful of series (in both the Predator and Aliens lines) based on AvP. The figure stands almost 9 inches tall and has 32 points of articulation. Chopper uses a new base body for the Predators, introduced in this series, and shared with his two series-mates. This new body is much larger than previous Predators, and also offers a much greater range of motion and posability. The body is nicely proportioned, and it has a ton of really great texturing and fine detail work. Seriously, every part of this sculpt is covered in texturing, which makes him look really cool. While a lot of the body is shared with the other two Predators, Chopper does get a unique head, forearms, and plasma caster. The head depicts Chopper’s bio mask very nicely; the texturing on it really makes it look like the real thing. The “hair” is a little bit unruly, but it’s made from Chopper3soft rubber, so it can be managed.  The forearms are the real star here, since the large blades are what he takes his name from. The gauntlets have some fantastically ornate work on them, while still being nice and sturdy, and the left one even has a flip-up display. The actual blades are well-handled, and surprisingly sharp; they’re included in both semi-stowed and fully extended lengths, which is a nice touch. One of Chopper’s more distinctive elements was the pair of skulls mounted on spikes on his back, which this figure replicates as best it can. They’re included as separate pieces; one is slotted into the base of the plasma caster, and the other is supposed to pop into the little clip on Chopper’s back. I say “supposed” because mine included the clip included on Celtic and Scar, rather than the smaller unique clip that Chopper was meant to have. Chopper4Fortunately, a carefully shaped and cut twisty tie was enough to keep it in place! The actual skulls are just as awesomely sculpted as the rest of the figure, and replicate the in-movie look very well. Chopper’s paint work is another pretty great area. There’s some nice variance in the sheens of the various parts of him, with the skin being shinier than the armor and cloth. He’s also got some fantastic accent work on the armor, which gives it a nice worn in look and adds a lot of depth to the figure. There are one or two spots of bleed over, but the overall work is good enough that they don’t jump out at you. In addition to the two Chopper5sets of blades, and the skulls on spikes, Chopper also includes a Combi Stick (in retracted form), a pretty brutal looking knife, and a shuriken looking thing (which he can’t hold, what with having two fists. It’s the thought that counts!). That’s incredibly impressive given that prior Predators were lucky to get more than one accessory!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Despite not caring for the film, I’ve actually been anxiously awaiting this series’ release ever since they were announced. I was always bummed that Chopper was so under-utilized, and even more bummed when he was the only Predator left out of McFarlane’s tie-in line. I bought Chopper from All Time Toys, after catching their post on their FB page that this series was in stock. I’m so happy to have him, and he’s hands down my favorite Predator to date. NECA did an amazing job on this one!

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