#2815: Greef Karga

GREEF KARGA

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“An expeditor for the Bounty Hunters Guild, Greef Karga runs the trade on Nevarro. He’s a middle-man, a connector between clients and bounty hunters.”

Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.  Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.  Letting the days go by, same as it ever was.  Why the Talking Heads opener?  Didn’t I do that yesterday?  Yes.  But it’s the same as it ever was, you see?  Aren’t I clever?  But really, sometimes with Hasbro’s variety of scales and styles, I do feel a little bit like I’m just reviewing in circles, and that’s very true with the back half of this set.  Not that it’s a bad thing, mind you.  Anyway, let’s look at the wheel of a large automobile Greef Karga!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Greef Karga is the final figure in the seven-figure Mando-inspired assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection.  While Greef getting a figure isn’t weird at all, given how prominent he was in the first season, especially it’s closer, the fact that he’s actually the only explicitly Season 2 figure in the mix is a little interesting.  I guess it does at least change things up a bit from the Black Series figure I already reviewed, but then it also means he’s in the same attire as the also small-scale Vintage Collection figure.  And, on top of that, he’s very limited when it comes to who he fits in with.  But, of course, that’s part of the vintage game, now isn’t it?  The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  Greef’s sculpt is a decent match for the Kenner style.  Again, he doesn’t look much like Carl Weathers, but there’s enough of the character in there to make it work, at least as much as any of the others work.  The right leg has a sculpted holster, but, rather cleverly, it’s designed to actually work, in a sense.  It’s not a modern style design, but actually something that feels more in line with what Kenner might have done.  I like that.  Like Mando and Gideon, Greef’s sporting a vinyl robe.  And while it’s still not technically accurate, it winds up in effect being more accurate to the character than going for a time-period accurate cloth cape might be, since it means he’s got the actual robe he wore, rather than just a straight cape.  So, this one I don’t mind so much either.  Okay, I honestly don’t mid any of them.  The paint work here is about on par with the others.  It’s obviously an adaptation of the design’s proper coloring through the vintage lens.  I get a kick out of the parts of it that are purposefully not painted, since it seems so counter to modern sensibilities, but also so perfect for the style.  Greef is packed with his small blaster.  It makes him a little lighter than everyone bar Kuiil, but he can hold it well, and it’s got that cool holster set-up, so that distracts me.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Like Gideon, I don’t know that I felt an undying need for this figure, but I think that may again be linked to getting the Black Series release a bit closer, and also maybe preferring the season 1 design a little bit.  I think of the whole set, Greef is ultimately the one that does the least for me.  Not that he’s bad or anything.  Honestly, he does what he needs to.  He’s just a little more middling than the others.  But, he’s still certainly a nice addition to the line.  In general, I liked this set quite a bit, even more than I’d been expecting to.  And I’d been expecting to like it a lot already.  I would love to see them delve more into the Season 2 characters, and maybe even a few more Season 1 characters.  I’d also love to see them go back to some of the other properties, like the sequel trilogy, and do more with the retro style, because it really works.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2814: Moff Gideon

MOFF GIDEON

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“Imperial Moff Gideon is fiercely determined to capture a specific quarry. Clever and formidable, Gideon values power and knowledge.”

Much like Kuiil, I feel like I was just talking about Moff Gideon.  But, as I’ve established, it’s actually been over a month, because time isn’t holding up, time isn’t after us.  And you may ask yourself, where is my large Moff Gideon?  And I would say that he’s over on the shelf, having already been reviewed, you know, a month ago, as previously stated.  Today, I’m looking at the small one, not from Las Vegas, but from the Retro Collection.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Moff Gideon is part of the seven-figure Mando-themed assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection line, which as noted previously, marks the line’s first proper presence at full mass retail.  The figures up to this point have all been early first season figures, while Gideon signifies a move to the end of that season, and into the second.  He’s undoubtedly a major player in both seasons, though, and kind of a natural choice for early inclusion.  The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  His sculpt is another all-new piece, and it’s another well-executed one.  While he doesn’t look like the spitting image of Esposito in the role (which would be inaccurate, of course), he does still have enough of a likeness to be identifiable as the character, and the rest of the body has just enough detailing to suggest the important parts of his outfit, while also being dialed back to match the proper level for the era they’re going for.  There are some slightly changed up details, in the effort of again working in some of those proper Kenner era errors, so small details on the costume change, like the lack of fingerless gloves, or the slight reworking of his gauntlets.  Like the Mando, he’s got a vinyl robe.  Technically, this is again inaccurate, since he really should be aping a later run figure, and should therefore have the cloth cape instead.  However, it works in a sense of playing up those Vader similarities, and also in making him feel like he’s an earlier run character than he is, which does in a sense feel right for Gideon.  Gideon’s paint work is fairly nice.  Probably more involved than a true Kenner figure would be, but that’s hardly a point against him.  The red detailing on the arms and legs certainly does look cool.  Gideon is packed with a small blaster, which is a new piece, and the Dark Saber, which is a re-use of Bespin Luke’s saber from the vintage line, but molded in an appropriately darker color.  It’s a nice touch.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I like Gideon well enough, though I can’t really say he was high on my list for this particular assortment.  Not a knock on him, really, just more that I *just* got the Black Series figure, and unlike Kuiil, this one doesn’t really fill a different need for me.  That said, I still like this guy a fair bit, and he certainly accents the set quite nicely.  Also, not really small when compared to the rest of the line he’s meant to go with, which is always a plus when it comes to Gideon figures.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2811: The Child

THE CHILD

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“A mysterious alien pursued by bounty hunters on behalf of Imperial interests.”

Due to how close kept a secret he was, Baby Yoda, aka The Child, aka Grogu, was absent from the merchandising for the show early in the game.  However, once the dam broke, oh boy was it broken, and we’ve subsequently had so much product.  Not that it’s been enough for any of it to hang around, of course.  The first figure treatment was the Black Series release, but since then we’ve gotten him in just about every available style in Hasbro’s wheelhouse.  That includes today’s offering, the latest of the bunch, which puts him into that nice retro style.  Let’s have a look!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Child (which is still the name the tie-ins are sticking with) is part of the seven-figure line-up of Mando-themed figures that makes up the first mass release set of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection line.  The figure stands about 1 1/4 inches tall and has 3 points of articulation, moving at the had and shoulders.  This guy’s actually the largest of the Grogu figures we’ve gotten, standing 1/4 inch taller than even the Black Series version.  Of course, scaling up a bit wasn’t a terribly uncommon thing in the vintage days, since it was hard to justify such a small figure.  In Grogu’s case, there’s probably room to justify him as an unarticulated pack-in somewhere else, but then that would damage their ability to sell the show’s most profitable character as a figure on his own.  In terms of sculpt, Grogu is kind the opposite of Kuiil.  While Kuiil felt very authentic, Grogu simply feels like a slightly less detailed modern figure.  He wouldn’t look terribly out of place with one of the more recent 5-POA lines, and honestly, he doesn’t really have many tell-tale signs of being vintage-inspired.  In Hasbro’s defense, of course, with a much smaller canvas, it’s a lot harder to get those details to read the right way.  He’s certainly not a bad figure, mind you.  It looks enough like the in-show puppet to make it immediately clear who it’s supposed to be, and he’s got all the basic detail work he would need.  Also, he’s a little sturdier than the other versions, which I consider something of a plus.  His paint is very basic, with just the eyes and hands getting coverage.  That’s probably the most accurate thing about him, really.  In order to justify charging full price for this guy, he gets another version of his pram (it’s amusing how many of these we got in the last year, given how little use it saw in Season 2), complete with a base, a hovering stand, and removable lid.  He also gets the small frog creature, much like the Black Series.  Keeping with the Child’s own sizing, both are a bit larger here than they possibly should be, but that’s expected, and certainly helps you feel better about the price point.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Black Series release generally filled my need for a toy version of the Child, so I haven’t grabbed any others.  This one was a pretty easy snag, since I’d already decided I wanted the whole set.  Lest anyone reads the above review and gets the impression I don’t like this figure because of its relative lack of vintage-ness compared to the rest of the set, I do actually like him.  I like him quite a bit, and he may be my favorite version of the character.  Sure, he’s not quite as authentic, but he’s just generally harder to translate properly than some of the others.  He still makes for a good toy, though.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2810: Kuiil

KUIIL

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“A vapor farmer on Arvala-7, Kuiil came to seek peace in an out of the way world, which is now being trespassed upon by criminals and mercenaries.”

It feels like just yesterday I was talking about the amazing turnaround The Mandalorian had done for Ugnaughts with the character of Kuiil, but apparently it was a whole month ago.  Time is truly an enigma, isn’t it?  Well, after two years of no Kuiils, Hasbro is giving us a year of three Kuiils, with the previously reviewed Black Series figure, the upcoming Mission Fleet release, and today’s offering, a Kuiil in vintage stylings!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kuiil is part of the seven-figure Mando-inspired first mass retail assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection line.  The figure stands 2 1/2 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  Kuiil’s another all-new sculpt.  He’s no doubt inspired by the vintage Ugnaught, them being of similar design struction and all, but there are no directly shared parts between them.  The sculpt is a good middle-ground between screen accuracy and that true Kenner feel.  He’s not technically accurate, of course, with the face being a little more alien, and the details of the costume are shifted around and adjusted a bit.  It’s a bit like an early animated equivalent to the live-action look.  The broad strokes are certainly, making him easily identifiable, but he at the same time feels very authentic to the older aliens.  He’s even got that mix of one gripping hand and one different pose, which also feels very true to the cantina aliens.  Kuiil’s paint work continues the Kenner style of slight inaccuracy.  The colors are certainly drawn from a similar palette as the proper ones, and at first glance they honestly don’t seem that far off, but as you double check them, you realize just how far off they become.  But again, this is the correct course for that truly authentic feel.  And, it’s honestly a pretty good look regardless of accuracy.  Kuiil is packed with his small blaster rifle, which he can hold in his right hand quite well.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I mentioned in the Black Series review, I’ve been waiting for Kuiil toys since episode 1 of the show.  When it came to the retro figures, he certainly felt like a natural fit, and, after IG-11, he was probably the one I wanted the most.  In hand, he’s really great, and is, up to this point, the figure in the set that best captures the feel that Hasbro’s going for with these figures.  He truly feels like a proper ’80s release, and is just a lot of fun.  Certainly a nice surprise of a figure.  Both this and the Black Series figure were nice surprises, both for entirely different reasons, and I really dig them both for those differing reasons.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2809: IG-11

IG-11

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“One of a series of dangerous assassin droids largely outlawed in the galaxy, IG-11 is a hired gun programmed to follow Bounty Hunters Gild protocols to the letter.”

Without a doubt, my very favorite part of The Mandalorian was IG-11.  It’s not a huge stretch, since I already really liked IG-88, and I also like Taika Waititi, and IG-11 is really just those two things put together.  Works for me.  IG-11 also helps with that retro feel of the show, so it only makes sense that he’d also be part of the Retro Collection set based on the show.  Let’s have a look at that one, shall we?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

IG-11 is part of the seven-figure Mando-themed assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection line, which kicks off the major retail release for the Collection.  The figure stands 4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  IG-11 is the least unique figure in this particular set, a trend amongst IG-11 figures from Hasbro.  Much like those other releases, this one is patterned on an IG-88, specifically the vintage release, even more specifically the second version of the vintage release’s mold, which had slightly modified details.  Given the overall similarities of the characters, it does make sense to re-use, although I’m not sure how true to classic Kenner it would be.  His torso has been modified, so as to include the proper dual bandoliers, of course, and other parts, notably his hands, are also slightly different from 88.  That said, though they may be different, the hands are still not accurate to the upgraded hands 11 was sporting.  I guess I just got spoiled by that Mission Fleet version.  IG-11’s main change-up is paint.  Rather than sticking purely to the show’s far closer to IG-88 color scheme of largely grey/silver, this guy’s more of a dark bronze, I guess to sort of simulate his sequences underground in the finale, and also maybe to look like the credits art?  Whatever the case, the color change is certainly something that feels more authentically Kenner, as they were known for changing up colors for the sake of a more visually unique figure.  IG-11 is packed with two blaster rifles, long and short.  They appear to be more or less the same as the ones included with IG-88, but in black instead of dark blue.  I can dig it.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

IG-11 is the only figure from this set I knew for certain I was getting from the start.  Which is kind of silly when you get down to it, since he’s also the only figure that’s a re-use, and it’s of a mold I already own three other ways.  What can I say, I’m not the most diverse collector on some things.  It’s a simple figure, but I do still love him, mostly because I still love the vintage IG-88, and I’m always happy to be reminded of that.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2808: Cara Dune

CARA DUNE

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“A veteran of the Galactic Civil War who fought under the banner of the Rebellion, Cara Dune is a seasoned warrior.”

Hey, cool, a Cara Dune figure.  Weren’t those all sure to be cancelled, as confirmed by all those people on the internet with no actual ties to anyone involved with the production of this figures?  No, it would seem that weren’t.  And this one wasn’t.  And now I’m gonna review it. And that’s all I got to say about that…

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Cara Dune is part of the seven-figure line-up of Mando-themed figures that makes up the first mass release set of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection.  The figure stands 3 3/4 inches tall and she has 5 points of articulation.  Cara is another all-new sculpt, and is another first season-inspired figure, although in this case, it’s at least the whole season, rather than just a single episode.  She doesn’t really have any direct inspiration in the vintage line, but she’s still designed to fit well within it.  Much like a proper vintage release, she’s got no real likeness to speak of, instead going for a more generic appearance, which I suppose kind of worked out for them, now didn’t it.  But I’m not getting into that.  That way lies madness.  I do like the way that they’ve sculpted the hair, so as to keep it clear of the neck joint, allowing for full range of motion.  The body gets a respectable amount of detailing as well, while still keeping that slightly dialed back look of the vintage line.  In terms of paint work, Cara is honestly a bit advanced for the proper Kenner style.  Not only does she get all of the appropriate color work, but she also gets her tattoo and her lipstick, both of which would have more than likely been left off of an authentic Kenner release.  But, she still feels very true to the line and the character, making this a rather happy medium.  Cara is packed with two guns, one a large rifle with a strap, and the other a smaller pistol.  She holds both of them nicely in her hands.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was never really worried about this Cara making it out, since it was in production before there was reason for it not to, and it doesn’t really have much of likeness anyway.  My faith was well-placed, I suppose.  This figure’s pretty fun.  Not a ton going on, but she gets the execution down pretty well, and even does things a little bit better, while still evoking the feel of the earlier figures.

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 and their eBay storefront.

#2807: The Mandalorian

THE MANDALORIAN

STAR WARS RETRO COLLECTION (HASBRO)

NOTE: This review was written before June 6th.

“The Mandalorian is battle-worn and tight-lipped, a formidable bounty hunter in an increasingly dangerous galaxy.”

A week and a half ago, I took a look at one of Hasbro’s latest ventures into reviving some Kenner nostalgia, courtesy of their oddly-placed Retro Marvel line.  Marvel’s not the most natural fit for such a thing, but Star Wars, on the other hand, is pretty much perfect.  Hasbro tested the waters the last two years with some re-issues of the Star Wars and Empire Strikes Back lines, but they’re finally making their way into something newer, albeit still fitting that Retro feel, with a whole assortment of new figures based on The Mandalorian.  I’m kicking off my look at them with the show’s titular character today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Mandalorian is the first of the seven figure line-up that is the Mando-themed series of Hasbro’s Star Wars Retro Collection, which is technically the third series under the Retro Collection banner, but the first to be offered up to retailers at large, rather than just being an exclusive.  The figure stands 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  His design is based on his first episode appearance, which is on one hand kinda weird, but on the other rather befitting the style, since any vintage figures would have undoubtedly been based on the early look seen in promotional images and the like.  It’s an all-new sculpt, patterned a little bit after Boba Fett, I suppose, mostly by virtue of them both having that distinctive helmet.  Through the lens of vintage Kenner, it’s a good sculpt.  It fits the general style, but certainly has that slightly higher level of detailing that came with 1980 and later figures.  The articulation has clear range of motion, and the hands are clearly designed for holding the guns, so he’s very well-utilized in that way.  The one slightly odd bit is the “cape.”  He’s got a vinyl cape patterned after the ones seen on the ones seen with the early line figures.  While it’s certainly well-recreated, technically, a character like the Mando, coming from a post Jedi-era, would have a cloth cape, as the vinyl ones had been phased out on new figures by the time of Jedi.  So, technically, it’s inaccurate.  Of course, the vinyl reads as more obviously retro, I suppose, which has its own benefits.  Mando’s paint work is actually surprisingly involved, which I guess again makes it *technically* inaccurate, but it looks good, and it still has that proper feel, so I can’t really complain too much.  The Mando is packed with his long rifle and his blaster pistol, both of which he can hold pretty nicely.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was a sucker for the 5-POA Star Wars lines, and was quite upset when they were phased out for Rise and Mandalorian, because they’re kind of my main jam for the toys.  I was hoping we might get something later down the line.  This isn’t exactly what I had in mind, but I can’t say I’m unhappy about it.  Hasbro did a very good job of capturing that retro feel here, and they’ve made a figure that’s just good clean fun, and generally more functional than the more detailed counterparts.  I look foraward to getting the inevitable beskar re-deco, and whatever else Hasbro wants to throw at us with this mold.

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 and their eBay storefront.