#3281: Asajj Ventress

ASAJJ VENTRESS

STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS (HASBRO)

“Asajj Ventress communicates via a holographic projector to her mentor, Count Dooku, as they twist events against the Jedi. Ventress can wield a lightsaber with devastating skill and precision and is fueled by the power of the dark side and her hatred of the Jedi.”

Perhaps the most important thing to come out of Tartakovsky’s Clone Wars cartoon (well, apart from General Grievous, who was actually already slated to show up in Episode III when he was added to the show) was Dooku’s apprentice, Asajj Ventress.  She made the jump from 2D to 3D, and went on to be a pretty prominent player in the 3D show’s run…well, at least until you get to the end part where they never got around to producing the episodes that would have wrapped up her story.  Maybe some day.  Well, in the meantime, how about another action figure?  She’s got a nice little handful to choose from, but let’s set our sights on the 2008 version.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Asajj Ventress is figure 15 in Hasbro’s Clone Wars tie-in line, right after Plo Koon numerically.  She was part of the third assortment and was one of the two Sith additions to the line in this particular assortment (the other being her mentor Count Dooku).  The figure stands right around 3 3/4 inches tall and she has 18 points of articulation.  Early in the line, the female non-clones actually made out a bit better than the male non-clones in terms of articulation, and as such Asajj actually gets a full set-up of leg articulation, which makes her quit mobile.  She does lose out on the elbow movement, but, honestly, where would they put it?  Asajj’s sculpt was an all-new one, based on her animation model from the show.  This whole assortment marked a definite step-up in accuracy to the show within the sculpts, and that’s very evident in Asajj, who sticks quite close to her show design.  There’s some really impressive detail work, especially on the texturing of her outfit.  her skirt is a separate, cloth piece.  It’s a nice, heavy fabric, which looks pretty decent, and allows for full movement on her legs.  It’s also removable, so that you can replicate the times on the show she’d ditch it to save the animators trouble free up her movement.  Asajj’s paint work is generally pretty solid stuff.  The small details are nice and clean, and there’s no notably missing elements, which is all pretty cool.  Asajj was packed with her two curved hilt lightsabers, as well as a small hologram of Count Dooku, which I don’t at all recall my figure ever having, but she absolutely did at some point, I suppose.  I’m just losing my mind.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I didn’t get Asajj during her first run.  She was rather tricky to find at retail, and wound up getting scalped a lot.  I also hadn’t really warmed to the character yet at that point, so I certainly wasn’t down for paying more.  As the show progressed, I came to like her more, and I recall finding this figure during her second run in the new packaging, along with a stack of other figures.  I wanna say it was during a errand for Christmas decorations with my dad, but it might have been for non-Christmas related purposes.  She’s a pretty strong figure, and holds up well this many years later.

#3279: Red Skull

RED SKULL

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The Red Skull sets his HYDRA forces against the Allies’ lone super-soldier, Captain Margaret “Peggy” Carter.”

What If…? provides us with alternate designs and looks for a good number of Marvel characters, but it also relies on pre-established designs for an even greater host of them, given that things are meant to only be diverging at one specific point and all.  For the most part, the characters who don’t change aren’t really in need of new figures, since, well, they don’t change.  Red Skull, for instance, serves as the main antagonist of the premiere episode, but is sporting a look that’s not changed from his The First Avenger appearance.  So, he doesn’t *need* another figure.  But, umm, he got one anyway?  Just go with it, guys.  It’s another Red Skull.  And it’s maybe not bad.  Let’s give it a try.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Red Skull is figure 6 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the last of the What If…? based figures, and the single figures in general (since I’m not reviewing the Zombie Iron Man, what with him not having a BaF piece and all).  He’s seen here in his long-jacketed look, which has gotten Legends treatment once before, albeit as a con-exclusive.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  From the neck down, this figure is the same sculpt as the SDCC figure from 2018 (which itself has arms and legs in common with the standard retail version).  It makes sense, since it’s supposed to be the same design in-universe, and the parts didn’t get much use.  It does mean that he’s still got visible pins on the elbows and knees, but it’s not the end of the world.  I myself never got to mess with the SDCC figure, so I dig getting another shot at the mold, and honestly find myself preferring this mold to the standard release.  This release gets a new head, which is a little more dialed into the animated design for Red Skull.  The more movie-based look wasn’t *bad*, but I think the nature of the design didn’t translate quite so well on the last two figures.  The more animated one, with its slightly more pronounced features, works a little better in toy form, I think.  The color work on this guy is a lot of black and red, which is what you expect.  The face gets a lot of accenting, somewhat simulating the shading from the show, and helping to sell the details of the sculpt.  Red Skull is packed with the Tesseract, as well as the right arm of the Khonshu Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I had the standard Ten Years Red Skull, which isn’t a bad figure, but was never my preferred look from the film.  The SDCC figure was harder to find, so I just made due.  Over the years, I’ve gotten a little iffy on the head sculpt used for them, so I was actually pretty happy to see this one.  Sure, he’s not an essential release, and he only very loosely fits the What If…? theme, but he’s still a lot of fun, and certainly the best MCU Red Skull to date.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3278: Howard the Duck

HOWARD THE DUCK

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“When an alternate Thor turns earth into an intergalactic tourist destination, Howard the Duck arrives to join in the festivities.”

Oh man, is that a Howard the Duck figure?  Like, on his own?  Not packed with, like, a Silver Surfer, or something?  That’s crazy.  Is that allowed?  I guess so.  I mean, here’s the figure.  So, you know, it exists.

Prior to his appearance in his self-titled, George Lucas-produced film in 1986, Howard the Duck began as a back-up feature in Adventure into Fear, headlined by Man-Thing of all characters.  He was a breakaway hit, getting spun-off into his own series, and then getting the aforementioned movie, which was both a critical and financial failure.  The character fell out of the spotlight after that, but resurfaced in the public eye for a cameo in 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy film.  He’s gotten a few more spots in the MCU since then, and got a little bit of actual focus in What If…?, which was enough to net him another figure.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Howard the Duck is figure 5 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the third What If…? based figure in the set.  Interestingly, bio suggests the figure is based on “What If…Thor Were An Only Child?”, which is admittedly odd.  While Howard *is* in that episode, and does get a little bit of focus, he’s far from important to the overall plot.  On the flip side, “What If…T’Challa Became Star-Lord?” gives Howard an actual plot relevant focus, and is the episode of the two that’s gotten figure coverage already from Legends.  It’s also just a much better episode.  It’s all kind of irrelevant, I suppose, though, since his animation model’s the same across the board.  Who am I to complain about specifically which episode I get my Howard the Duck action figure from?  Also, the bios aren’t even on the box anymore, so the whole thing becomes increasingly irrelevant.  The figure stands 4 1/2 inches tall and he has 14 points of articulation.  Howard’s articulation is on the lesser side of things.  I mean, sure, he’s more posable than the *last* Legends Howard, but that one was just a pack-in, not his own figure.  This one gets decent movement on the arms, okay movement on the neck and waist, and movement that barely counts as movement on the ankles.  There’s nothing actually on the legs proper, which, with a lot of things on this figure, seems to be a licensing thing, since we know Disney’s very particular about Howard merch.  The sculpt is all-new, and it’s fairly accurate to the source material, which is itself a pretty nice Howard the Duck design.  The one notable deviation from his main look is the inclusion of the hat, which is its own piece, but is glued in place on the head, so it’s not budging.  This again seems to be a licensing thing, since we know the Minimate was also required to have the non-removable hat.  It’s a minor issue, and I’m curious to see how hard it might be to remove it with some modding.  The color work on him is pretty basic; largely it’s molded in the proper colors, but there’s some paint work head and torso, which gets all the important stuff.  Howard has no accessories of his own, but the pack also includes the disembodied head version of Scott Lang from “What If…Zombies?”, which doesn’t really have anything to do with Howard, but it offsets the smaller size of the figure.  It also looks nothing like actual Paul Rudd (though I suppose it’s not a *terrible* take on the animated likeness), so it’s really only context that sells what it is.  To further offset the core figure’s smaller size, there’s also the torso of Khonshu, complete with his robe, which is the largest piece of the Build-A-Figure by far.  Like, to the point that, in the box, the torso is actually packed in the “figure” slot, and Howard is bagged up like one of the accessories.  It’s kinda goofy, but I sorta love it.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was honestly pretty excited about Howard, because he’s just such a rarity in the toy world, and harkens back to the earliest days of Legends.  I tempered my expectations, of course, because the legal requirements always mess with the end product.  With that in mind, I acknowledge that this guy’s got some definite flaws, but he’s also just still a lot of fun.  Probably a bit pricey for what you get, but certainly more worthwhile if you’re after the Build-A-Figure.  Honestly, the only part of this package I’m not really thrilled about it Scott, and that’s probably more to do with my general lack of enthusiasm about the episode that spawned him.  But Howard’s definitely cool.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3277: Zombie Scarlet Witch

ZOMBIE SCARLET WITCH

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Infected by the zombie virus sweeping the globe, Wanda Maximoff is kept in captivity by her former lover, the Vision.”

What If…? was, admittedly, a bit of a mixed bag, and its central episode, “What If…Zombies?” was a pretty good microcosm of the show as a whole.  There’s some good stuff in there, but it doesn’t really seem to stick the landing on its potential.  One of the things I did rather enjoy in the episode was its Vision and Scarlet Witch sub-plot, which was darkly touching in its own way.  We’ve thus far only gotten one Legends Zombie, Zombie Captain America, but Wanda’s joining the party with her own figure, which I’m taking a look at today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Zombie Scarlet Witch is figure 3 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends.  She’s one of four What If…? figures, and one of two Zombies in this line-up, specifically, the other being Iron Man.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall (thanks to all of the crazy hair) and she has 29 points of articulation.  Since the point of deviation in “What If…Zombies?” was right before Infinity War, the Avengers are all wearing whatever gear they had at that point in the movies.  That means Wanda was still sporting her Civil War era costume at the time of her zombification, and, by extension, this figure makes use of the Civil War sculpt.  She gets a new head, arms, and jacket add-on piece.  The original sculpt was pretty strong, so it’s a good starting point for a new figure.  The new parts mesh pretty nicely, and they’re actually pretty fun.  The head sculpt is particularly dynamic, and just really changes the whole look of the figure, bringing her more in line with the more energetic design scheme we saw with the Zombie Captain America.  The new arms not only give her double elbows and swivels at the shoulders, but they also do the pinless construction, which is a bit sleeker.  I also dig the damage to the jacket, both on the sleeves and on the actual jacket piece.  The figure’s paint work is pretty decently handled, with a bright and bold color layout, as well as some really impressive accenting, especially notable on the jacket piece.  The tear on the pants is only painted, which is pretty goofy looking up close, but it’s just the one spot, so it ends up working out alright.  Zombie Scarlet Witch is packed with a pair of magic effects for the wrists, as well as the left leg to the Khonshu Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Zombie Cap was a surprise success for me in the first What If…? assortment, so with that in mind, I was a little more excited by additional Zombies.  Iron Man didn’t prove different enough for me to justify grabbing him, but I really liked the look of Wanda as a prototype.  She’s a fair bit of re-use, but it’s good re-use, and it results in another rather fun Zombie variant.  As much as I wasn’t enamored by the episode, I do quite like the figures that came out of it.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3276: Plo Koon

PLO KOON

STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS (HASBRO)

“A member of the Jedi Council and an intrepid warrior descended from a long line of Jedi Knights, Plo Koon has fought in many battles in the Clone Wars. An imposing figure, he wears special protective goggles and an antiox mask on oxygen-rich worlds.”

Clone Wars placed a lot of effort into building up and fleshing out the clones, but it also did the same for a lot of the Prequel Trilogy’s Jedi Knights.  By and large, they’d just been background fillers with cool looks, but the show really ran with some of them, making them fully crafted characters in their own right.  A particular favorite of the show was Plo Koon, who got quite a fair bit of focus throughout the show’s run, pretty much right from the get-go.  Unsurprisingly, he was added to the tie-in toyline quite quickly after the show’s launch, as the line’s first non-core Jedi release.  Not bad for ol’ Plo!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Plo Koon was figure 14 in Hasbro’s Clone Wars tie-in line.  He was the second figure in the line’s third assortment, the fourth Jedi, and the first proper alien in the line’s run.  The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 14 points of articulation.  He predates the line giving the Jedi improved articulation to match the clones, so he’s unfortunately lacking much mobility below the waist.  They did at least try to offset things by making his pose just a little more dynamic than Obi-Wan and Anakin’s had been, so he wasn’t quite as static looking.  The arms also retained a lot of movement, so there was still plenty that could be done with him.  Plo’s sculpt was an all-new one, and it was a very nice one at that.  After the first few assortments being just a little bit off in terms of animation accuracy, this one actually looked a lot more on point.  The head in particularly really captures his show design, and the whole thing is very clean and sharp.  There’s also a nice, dynamic flair to the lower portion of his robes, which really aids in making him look a little more action-oriented, as well as making it a bit easier to pose the legs at the hips.  Plo’s paint work is pretty solid.  There’s a lot of rather basic work on the main body, but the head and hands get a nice bit of accenting to bring out some of the textures, and he’s also got some pretty cool small detail work on his gauntlets.  Plo was packed with two different versions of his hood (up or down), two different lightsabers, and a lightsaber gauntlet.  The hood adds some nice variety (or would if I wasn’t missing the one that’s up), and the gauntlet re-uses an old RotS concept in a new and fun way.  You could even plug his standard sabers into the back for a four saber set-up!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Plo’s early focus episodes were some of my favorites when the show first launched, and I’d always been interested by the character in the Prequels, so I was anxious to see him get added to this line back in the day.  I recall actively looking for this one, and being very excited to add him to my collection.  Though he’s more restricted on the articulation front, he’s otherwise still a really cool figure, and probably my favorite Jedi from the line, even after all this time.

#3274: He-Who-Remains

HE-WHO-REMAINS

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“A ruler. A conqueror. Creator of all. Controller of all. At the end, it is only HE Who Remains.”

Loki was full of a lot of things that would influence the greater MCU moving forward, and at the top of that list was the introduction of Jonathan Majors as He-Who-Remains, our first official Variant of Kang the Conqueror, the antagonist who’s set to serve as the MCU’s next big threat.  Appearing in Loki‘s season finale, He-Who-Remains is definitely a different sort of take on the character, who’s clearly got some Immortus leanings to him, as well as being merged with He-Who-Remains from the comics, who is, notably, not Kang at all.  Obviously, this guy’s not going to be our main Kang going forward, but he’s an interesting look at the frazzled, somewhat crazed man at the end of time.  And, hey, he’s got an action figure.  Let’s take a look at that, shall we?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

He-Who-Remains is figure 4 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the second Loki-themed figure, following up on Classic Loki, as well as our fifth overall Loki figure in the line.  He’s also our second figure of an incarnation of Kang in the modern Legends, as well as the first figure of Jonathan Majors in the role.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation.  He-Who-Remains’ articulation scheme is a little restricted by his design, but generally makes the most of it.  As with a lot of slightly more restricted figures, the character isn’t incredibly agile during his appearance on the show, so he’s certainly capable of doing pretty much whatever he needs to.  The only real downside to it all is that he can’t really lounge about the way he did in the show.  He-Who-Remains gets an all-new sculpt, based on his attire in the show.  His look definitely brings him closer to the Immortus side of things than the Kang side (and the initial concept even took it further by adding Immortus’s usual head gear), so he’s without anything particularly tactical.  He’s definitely far more for lounging about, which offsets pretty well with the TVA’s more bureaucratic design theming.  The sculpt does a pretty respectable job of capturing his look in plastic form.  His likeness is a good match for Jonathan Majors, and his expression is a bit lighter, which fits He-Who-Remains’ temperament in the show, and means that he’ll be different from the inevitable Kang figure.  The body sculpt captures his attire well, with decent hang and weight to all the drape-y stuff.  Some of the smaller details are a touch on the softer side, but I do really dig the embroidery on the shoulders.  The one area where the figure slightly falls is the paint.  It’s definitely not bad, just a bit lacking on the outfit.  He’s very bright, and there’s a lot of molded plastic without accenting, which looks a little too plasticky for his show look.  It really hits the robe hardest, since all that purple just ends up losing a lot of the sculpted detailing.  The other areas aren’t quite as bad, and the face in particular looks quite lifelike.  I also really dig the obsidian plate on his left hand, with its brightly colored veins.  He-Who-Remains is packed with his apple, which is a pretty distinctive item from his episode, and adds to our ever growing array of Legends foods.  He’s also got the head to the Khonshu Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ll be totally honest, I didn’t have the highest opinion of the Loki finale.  After building up a ton of momentum, we spent an hour in a room with three people talking.  It wasn’t *bad*…but it did feel a little anti-climactic.  That said, I liked getting a preview of Kang, as well as the little nods to Immortus and Kang’s other incarnations.  It’s also a pretty unique design, and I’ve got all the other Loki figures, so it’s hard to pass that up.  This guy’s decent.  Not breaking the mold, and not my favorite, but he does what he needs to, and he looks pretty cool on the shelf.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3273: Classic Loki

CLASSIC LOKI

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

The epitome of Loki potential! Powerful, carefree, and mischievous, this Loki’s decisions led to a long life, but that didn’t come without its own baggage.”

One of the coolest parts of Loki, which was admittedly a show with a lot of cool parts, was the introduction of “Variants”, or alternate timeline versions of characters we’ve seen before.  After introducing us to Sylvie, the main Loki’s distaff counterpart, the show took things even further as the season progressed, with a whole host of different Lokis.  Amongst them was “Classic Loki”, portrayed by Richard E. Grant, who is, for all intents and purposes, just a straight adaptation of Loki as he appeared in the comics in the ’60s.  He’s a rather glorious adaptation of the character, with a rather glorious focus and send-off, and now he’s also got an action figure.  Is it glorious?  Let’s find out!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Classic Loki is figure 2 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s one of two Loki figures in this line-up, joining up with the other three we’d gotten up to this point in the main line.  Classic Loki is the first of the secondary variants of Loki to get figure treatment, but hopefully some of the others aren’t too far behind.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  This figure’s articulation scheme is surprisingly rudimentary, especially given where the line’s been headed recently.  It’s not terrible, or anything, and he does get that nifty pinless construction on the elbows and knees, which is always fun.  That said, the other movement is a little awkward, and the joint construction is a little out of date.  The waist is really where it gets hit the worst, with the flat swivel waist looking rather odd, and the hips not being even remotely worked in.  All that being said, the articulation is still generally workable, once you get used to it.  Classic Loki’s sculpt is all-new for this figure, and apart from the awkward articulation layout I mentioned above, it’s honestly pretty strong.  It matches well with the design seen on the show, and I quite like the way they weave the comics elements in with their real world equivalents.  He gets two different head sculpts, one sullen, and the other grinning.  Both of them sport a spot-on likeness of Grant in the role, and grant the figure quite a bit of versatility for posing.  Classic Loki’s color work is quite nicely handled; while his costume in the show stuck to his comics counterpart’s stark green and yellow coloring, it was also rather grimy and worn-in.  The figure has some decent accenting on the yellow sections, which makes him look appropriately disheveled.  Classic Loki is packed with a spare set of hands with magic effects, as well as extra magic effects for the wrists.  He’s also packed with the right leg to the Khonshu Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Loki variants were such a fun concept, and really showcase the high point of the show for me.  Classic Loki in particular was just a treat to watch, especially given how satisfying an arc he was given, even just in his single episode of focus.  I wasn’t sure we’d be seeing a figure any time soon, since he’s so similar the classic comic Loki from the Retro line.  I was definitely happy about his inclusion here.  His articulation’s a little wonky, but beyond that, I actually do really like the figure a lot.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3272: Agent Jimmy Woo

AGENT JIMMY WOO

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Agent Jimmy Woo arrives in Westview to investigate the strange energy field surrounding the town.”

Jimmy Woo is a character with quite a backstory in the comics.  He predates Marvel’s boom in the Silver Age, first appearing as the hero of the antagonist-titled espionage series Yellow Claw, which saw him facing off against a yellow peril villain who was, surprisingly, neither the Fu Manchu, nor the Mandarin.  Yellow Claw ran only four issues in 1956-1957, but was remembered for being a surprisingly positive portrayal of an Asian-American hero.  Jimmy would resurface in the ’60s when he was made an Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., a spot he’d stay in for most of his comics career.  He got a starring role again in Agents of Atlas, which reunited the ’50s Avengers, a team of heroes from Marvel’s pre-Silver Age days, with Jimmy as the team’s leader.  Jimmy’s introduction to the MCU came not as a S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent, or leading the Agents of Atlas, but instead as the FBI Agent assigned to Scott Lang in Ant-Man and the Wasp, before he was given a rather sizable (and quite redeemable) role in WandaVision.  He’s poised to do even more in the MCU, which is definitely fun, but the most important thing is that he’s got an action figure, which I’m taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Agent Jimmy Woo is figure 1 in the Khonshu Series of Marvel Legends, which is the fourth Disney+ centric assortment of Legends.  It’s sort of an oddball mix of everything.  Jimmy is the only WandaVision figure in the mix, and the first one since the Wanda and Vision we got back in the first D+ series.  The figure stands just over 6 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  He uses the Coulson body as his starting point, with a new head, arms, and an add-on for the jacket piece.  The old and new mesh pretty well, making for a figure that’s pretty cohesive, and a good match for Jimmy’s WandaVision appearance.  The head sculpt sports a rather spot-on likeness of actor Randall Park, complete with his slightly goofy smile that he’s always sporting as Jimmy.  The new jacket and arms give him a slightly more informal field jacket, which is a nice change of pace for the suited bodies.  The arms get the updated construction without the pins on the elbows, which is certainly a plus, and they lack the weird, oddly balanced split with the elbow movement that the other arms for this body had.  Jimmy’s color scheme is rather on the subdued side, as is accurate to the source material.  It’s largely molded plastic, but there’s some nice accent detailing on the jacket, as well as a quite nicely executed printing for the face.  Jimmy includes his FBI badge on a sculpted chain, as well as an alternate left hand holding his business card, which he has presumably just close-up-magicked out of his sleeve, like in the show.  It’s a small, but incredibly cool touch.  He also includes the left arm and staff to the Khonshu Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Jimmy’s one of those characters that, even going back to his comic appearances, I never expected to get an action figure of.  Given his MCU incarnation is even less classically toyetic, I really wasn’t expecting to see him.  I was pleasantly surprised by his announcement for this assortment.  He’s an unexpectedly well-done figure, thanks to the commitment to detail.  The likeness is really strong, and the extra hand with the business card really sells it.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3271: Clone Pilot Odd Ball

CLONE PILOT ODD BALL

STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS (HASBRO)

“Clone Pilot Odd Ball, who received his nickname during advanced training, has participated in many significant missions in the Clone Wars. Odd Ball is a starfighter pilot trained in flying V-19 Torrent starfighters, ARC-170 fighters and other standard Republic fighters.”

When they first appeared in Attack of the Clones, the Clone Troopers were completely interchangeable and devoid of any distinct traits or personalities.  Tartakovsky’s Clone Wars expanded on them a little bit, but only a little.  Revenge of the Sith went further by giving a few of them names, but it was really just commanders, and, again, any personality or the like was largely absent.  When the second Clone Wars launched, its creators much more quickly went to work making the clones into actual characters.  In many cases, they were working with all-new characters, but they also went back and filled in a little more with the small handful of named clones we’d gotten in Sith as well.  Today’s focus, Clone Pilot Odd Ball began as little more than a cameo in RotS’s opening dogfight.  He didn’t get a *ton* to do in Clone Wars, but it was certainly more than he’d had previously.  And he also got a figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Clone Pilot Odd Ball was figure 11 in Hasbro’s Clone Wars tie-in line.  He was one of the four new figures in the line’s second assortment.  While he sports the name “Odd Ball”, his design is also just a fairly basic Clone Pilot, which allowed Hasbro the opportunity to do one of those, while still providing another named character for the line.  The figure stands 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 24 points of articulation.  Odd Ball was largely a re-use of the standard Clone Trooper body.  It makes sense, since they would have the same build and armor, and Odd Ball has minimal unique pieces on the armor.  It’s still a really good base as well, so it’s hard to really go wrong with a figure on this set-up.  His head is a modified version of the standard helmet sculpt, now with the extra pilot gear.  It wasn’t quite as show accurate as later helmet sculpts, but I think it still made for a nice translation.  In contrast to the prior standard clone, Odd Ball’s armor is without the heavy wash, making it look far cleaner.  It makes a good degree of sense, since you wouldn’t imagine that the guy in the ship would get nearly as dirty as the trooper on the ground.  The rest of the paint is basic, but covers all the bases, and he looks pretty sharp.  Odd Ball was packed with the smaller blaster rifle, as well as a rocket launcher and missile.  They were the same ones from the standard Clone, but without the silver detailing.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I don’t remember anything special about Odd Ball’s acquisition.  I remember seeing him a few times before actually getting him, and finally breaking when there were a few other Clones to go along.  He’s never really been one of my favorites from the line or anything, but he’s a solid by the numbers release, and he had a lot of appeal being a pretty basic pilot and all.

#3269: Ahsoka Tano

AHSOKA TANO

STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS (HASBRO)

“Anakin’s padawan Ahsoka both amuses and exasperates her master with her plucky attitude and impertinent comments. She is tasked with keeping Jabba’s son safe as she and Anakin try to escape their attackers. She affectionately nicknames the child “stinky” because of his odor, the characteristic stench given off by the Hutt species.”

Before she was the glue that holds the non-film Star Wars canon together, Ahsoka Tano was the obnoxious tag-along kid sidekick added to The Clone Wars purely for kid appeal.  Also, she was the worst thing ever to happen to the franchise.  Worse than Jar Jar.  Worse than the Ewoks.  Worse than Bea Arthur.  But, it’s okay, because she’s had like 30 other things replace her as the “worst thing in the franchise.”  Also, her writing improved by leaps and bounds very quickly, and by the end of Clone Wars, she and the other all-new central character for the show, Captain Rex, had firmly become the heart of the series.  Today, I’m jumping back to her very first figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ahsoka Tano was figure 9 in the 2008 Clone Wars line-up.  She headed up the second assortment of the line, which hit a little bit after the movie and series had dropped, and added not only Ahsoka, but also the previously reviewed Commander Cody, Clone Pilot Oddball, and the Super Battle Droid, as well as mixing in the cleaned up variants of Rex and the standard Clone Trooper.  She was based on Ahsoka’s initial look on the show, since that was all they had to go by at this point.  The figure stands 3 1/4 inches tall and she has 18 points of articulation.  While Ahsoka looses out on the elbow joints that the other Jedi got early in the line (largely due to her arms simply not being large enough to sustain the joint construction), she gets a quite literal leg up on the other early Jedi by gettin full knee and ankle movement, which made her surprisingly posable for this point in the line.  Her sculpt was an all-new one, as expected.  It wound up getting re-used a few times for boxed sets and deluxe releases while this was still her main look on the show.  It’s a pretty solid offering, and does a respectable job of capturing her younger animation model.  As with all of the early line releases, she’s a little more rounded and “real world” in her proportions, but the general feel of the character is still very much there.  This marked the line’s first venture into mixed media, as she gets a cloth skirt in order to maximize posability on the hips.  Ahsoka’s paint work is pretty decently handled.  I especially like how the markings on the face look.  There was a variant to the paint as well on this figure.  Early versions were without the eyelashes, while the later releases added them.  Mine is the later one, and it’s for the better; the eyes are just framed much better.  Ahsoka is packed with her lightsaber, Jabba’s son Rotta, and a backpack for carrying Rotta around.  The Rotta figure is pretty fun; he’s got posable arms, and he sits really nicely in the pack.  It’s a very inventive accessory.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I will admit, I wasn’t sold on Ahsoka early in the show’s run, but she grew on me fairly quickly, and I liked her well enough to want a figure of her by the end of the first season’s run.  Of course, her figure was pretty scarce at the beginning, so it was probably until about the end of 2009 or so that I finally was able to get her.  Towards the end of my senior of high school, I used most of my spare cash for Clone Wars figures, and she was one of those figures.  She’s pretty solid for an early offering for the line, and I think she still holds up really well.