STAR WARS: POWER OF THE FORCE II (KENNER)
Hey, remember yesterday, when I was talking about a mid-90s line’s use of light-up features in order to re-introduce some of the core characters into the market place again? Well, as it turns out, Toy Biz’s X-Men wasn’t the only line to try that. Kenner’s Power of the Force did it too! Everything’s better with lights, right? Well, Kenner certainly felt so. While I’ve looked at the line’s one outlier, R2, already, they also covered the original trilogy’s four most action-oriented force users. I’m kicking my dive into the line-up off with our hero, Luke Skywalker!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Luke was released in 1997 as part of Power of the Force‘s “Electronic Power F/X” sub-line. Luke gets more to the actual point of the line-up than R2 did, actually focusing on one of the OT’s cool fight scenes, in his case the battle between Luke and Vader on the second Death Star in Return of the Jedi….well, sort of, anyway. The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he’s got 5 points of articulation. He loses the usual waist joint, and also gets severe limitations on the right shoulder, both due to the electric feature. Beyond that, none of the other joints really give him much actual range, due to the somewhat pre-posed nature of the figure’s sculpt. He’s…sort of, like, mid-lunge, I guess? Like, for stabbing? I don’t know. The actual sculpt’s not exactly Kenner’s finest work. The head’s distinctly different from the original PotF2 Luke head that looked nothing like Mark Hamill, but still looks nothing like Mark Hamill, so it’s a lateral move. The light-up features have a direct impact on the quality of the sculpt on the right arm and the torso, since that’s how the feature works. The torso’s rather bulked up, especially at the back, in order to house the batteries, which give him sort of a hump back. Not the most flattering thing, which is why he also gets the cape, which Luke doesn’t actually wear in the scene this is replicating, in order to hide the hump a bit. The arm has been designed with the lightsaber built into it, with his hand kind of folded around it. It’s kind of crude, and not really hand shaped, and the hilt is really wide, short, and basic in its detailing. It’s definitely goofy looking. There’s also this sort of cap piece that goes over the the actual blade. I think it’s really just meant to be part of the packaging, but it’s not coming off of mine. The actual light-up feature’s okay, I guess. Not terribly bright, and barely noticeable in the photos here. It’s also a little hard to activate, due to it being behind the cape. The paint work is all pretty basic work. It’s not bad, but the right arm’s definitely a bit fuzzy. Otherwise, pretty standard for the line. Luke’s packed with a large base piece, meant to look like one of the halls from the Death Star. Like R2, there’s an arm for moving him around, though this one doesn’t do the whole magnet thing; it’s just a basic peg set-up instead.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
As a kid, this was actually the only of the “Power F/X” figures I had, because I was all about Luke, and I was all about a good gimmick. Unfortunately, these figures, more than others from the line, don’t really stand up to play so well. As such, my original Luke is in pretty rough these days. Fortunately for me, All Time had four of the five figures in the set right as I was ramping up on filling in my PotF collection, and that gave me the opportunity to pick up this guy again, alongside the rest of the set. This guy’s hella gimmicky, and hella goofy, but I can get behind it.