STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)
“Specialized Stormtroopers of the First Order, Jet Troopers soar into battle equipped with agile rocket packs”
Alright, let’s keep this Black Series ball rolling. Heck, let’s trek down that Rise of Skywalker path again while we’re at it. Rise added the usual bank of new troopers, as each film tends to do. While the Sith Troopers got a lot of the marketing focus, the coolest new additions for me were the Jet Trooper. A Jet-equipped Stormtrooper isn’t a new concept by any means, but it’s a cool one nevertheless, and I was quite a fan of the new design they were sporting. Lucky for me, that design is one of the earlier Rise of Skywalker designs to get covered by The Black Series.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
The Jet Trooper is figure 99 in the Black Series line-up, the second of the two Rise figures in this second post-Triple Force Friday assortment. He was also one of the figures to receive a “Carbonized” variant on the Force Friday launch, which is the same mold, but with a different finish. Also, a little fun fact: aside from Rey, the Jet Trooper is the only design to be available across the three styles Hasbro is producing. Not even Kylo gets that honor. The figure stands 6 inches tall and has 29 points of articulation. The Jet Trooper is probably the most impressed I’ve been with a Trooper’s articulation at this scale, with a respectable range of elbow motion right out of the gate, hips that aren’t terribly restricted, and an amazingly improved range of motion on the neck joints, especially when compared to the Sith Trooper from the last assortment. He’s not quite as stable on his feet as his GoA counterpart, but he’s better than the Vintage Collection version, and I only had one fall during photos. Like both of his smaller-scale counterparts, the details on his armor are nice and crisp, and his design means that the sculpt is largely unimpeded by the articulation. Unlike both smaller Jet Troopers, he’s got a little bit of extra posability on the jet pack itself, which adds movement to the two thrusters. It’s a nice little touch to be sure. And, though real-world inspired, this figure maintains a lot of that same sleekness that I enjoyed so much in the GoA figure. Perhaps the only moderately baffling element to this figure’s sculpt for me is the presence of a holster spot on his right thigh, despite the fact that his included gun doesn’t include a matching tab. I can only guess this was in order to facilitate a straight re-use of the mold for the upcoming Sith Jet Trooper, who will presumably be including the same armaments as the standard Sith Trooper. The paint work on this figure more or less matches the GoA figure. It’s basic, but that’s what you expect from one of these troopers. He does get a few more black spots, but curiously loses the outlining of his faceplate from the prior figure, despite that outline being present on other versions of the design. There’s still a sculpted element to it, so it’s not totally gone, but it’s much easier to miss. The Jet Trooper is on the lighter side for accessories, including only his unique blaster rifle. The regular troopers don’t have anything else in the movie, but it’s still a little light.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I liked the Jet Trooper design as soon as I saw it, but I was admittedly unsure I’d need him in every style, and wasn’t sure what role, if any, he’d play in the final film. After seeing the movie, and finding the Jet Trooper to actually be the best utilized of the new troopers, I was very happy to have picked him up across the board. In a similar fashion to Jannah, I opened him up after the movie, already with heightened expectations, only to discover that he was even better than I’d been anticipating. I’d go so far as to say that the Jet Trooper is the best designed and implemented trooper of the sequel trilogy Black Series offerings, if not possibly the best Black Series trooper as a whole.