LANDO CALRISSIAN — SKIFF GUARD
STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)
“Once a smooth-talking smuggler, Lando Calrissian changed from a get-rich-quick schemer to a selfless leader in the fight against the Empire. When his old friend Han was held captive in the palace of Jabba the Hutt, Lando joined Princess Leia in a mission to rescue him from certain demise.”
Lando Calrissian may not have joined our heroes until their second outing, but he has maintained a notoriety amongst the fanbase, no doubt due to his suave scoundrel-y nature. Despite this, he didn’t actually join the Black Series line-up until four years into its run, and with a figure that only saw moderate release at that. Fortunately, his presence in 2018’s Solo brought him more into the spotlight, with two separate Black Series releases. The first was based on his Solo appearance, but the follow-up gives us Lando’s Palace Guard disguise from Return of the Jedi‘s opening moments.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Skiff Guard Lando is figure 76 in the Black Series line-up. He’s the second to last figure in the newest assortment, as well as the final of the OT figures this time around. The costume is from Jedi, which makes it slightly out of place in a Solo/Empire split assortment, but it’s actually pretty well chosen, given the costume’s cameo appearance as Beckett’s heist disguise in Solo. The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation. This Lando is head-to-toe a new sculpt. While prior Skiff Landos have been known to reuse previous heads, that is thankfully not the case here. While the prior Black Series head wasn’t *bad*, the likeness definitely could have been better, as this one deftly illustrates. It’s hands down the best Billy Dee Williams likeness we’ve ever gotten from Hasbro. The rest of the sculpt is pretty strong in its own right, with nice balanced proportions and a ton of detail worked all throughout. There’s no shortage of texturing on this guy, meaning he’ll fit right in with the other denizens of Jabba’s palace. The paint work on this figure is in line with the current improved standards of the line. The base work is all clean, and there’s some pretty substantial accent work, showcasing that Jabba’s palace really isn’t the cleanest place to hang out. He also uses the face-print tech, which builds on the figure’s already very strong head sculpt to give us a very realistic looking Lando. Lando is packed with his Skiff Guard helmet, as well as the standard guard armament, the vibro-axe. He doesn’t include the blaster we usually see with Skiff variants of Lando, but his hand is molded with a trigger finger, should you wish to arm Lando yourself.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
The first Lando hit at a time when I wasn’t really able to buy many figures, so the one time I saw him, I had to pass on him. While the Solo variant was certainly a strong offering, I was really hoping for a proper OT version. While the Skiff Guard set-up isn’t necessarily my go-to look for Lando, there’s no denying that this is the best version of the character available. I’m hopeful that Hasbro may give us a slightly udpated Bespin Lando down the line, maybe as part of the Archive line. Until then, this guy will hold me over just fine.