#1792: Princess Leia Organa

PRINCESS LEIA ORGANA — HOTH

SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY (HASBRO)

With all of the stuff that’s been dropping in the last few months, it’s been more than a little difficult to keep up with all of the new releases, not only tracking them down in stores, but then also remembering to review them after I’ve gotten them.  In the spirit of clearing out my pile of new things to review, the next couple of days are going to be some figures I’ve had waiting in the wings for a couple of months now.  I’m kicking things off with another Star Wars offering, from the somewhat infrequently looked at basic line.  Let’s have a look at Princess Leia!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Princess Leia is from the second assortment of basic figures under the Solo product banner.  Obviously, Leia isn’t drawn from Solo; instead she’s based on her Hoth appearance from Empire.  She’s in good company, since her brother got a Hoth-based figure in the initial product wave.  Ironically, it’s only Han whose Hoth look is absent from the Solo line.  This figure stands 3 1/2 inches tall and she has 7 points of articulation.  Leia has, like an increasing number of figures in the basic line, some extra non-standard articulation.  Most figures have been getting wrist movement, but Leia instead gets cut joints at the tops of her boots.  I like having the extra movement there a lot; it helps make her more stable on her feet.  I do wish she’d also gotten the wrist movement, but perhaps that’s too much to ask for.  Leia is sporting an all-new scuplt.  It matches well with the previous Luke figure in terms of quality and detailing.  The head, though not the best Fisher likeness we’ve seen at this scale, is a respectable offering, and you can certainly see a lot of her in it.  Leia’s paintwork is mostly pretty reserved.  All of the important details are there, and application is clean and even.  Obviously, the face doesn’t possess the same lifelike quality we’ve been seeing in the 6-inch line, but it’s not a terrible offering at all, and is a step-up from the work we were seeing a few years ago.  Leia is packed with a standard issue rebel blaster rifle, which even has some painted detailing.  That’s always good to see.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When Leia was shown off towards the end of the Last Jedi branding-run, I was definitely interested in tracking her down.  This has always been my favorite Leia look, so I have a tendency to grab all the figures of it that I can.  I didn’t have much trouble at all finding this figure; when the second assortment started hitting stores, I was fortunate enough to find an untouched case of them at a Walmart.  I like this figure quite a bit.  I don’t know that she’s topped the Vintage Collection release as my favorite, but she’s certainly the best version at the lower articulation count.

Advertisements

#1781: Concept R2-D2 & C-3PO

CONCEPT R2-D2 & C-3PO

STAR WARS: 30TH ANNIVERSARY COLLECTION (HASBRO)

“Ralph McQuarrie was commissioned by George Lucas to create several paintings. This scene depicts R2-D2 and C-3PO in a desert landscape. Even in this early rendering, Threepio already has a somewhat startled look, and Artoo reveals traces of his spunky nature.”

Prior to the versions of the characters we’ve all come to know and love so well, the Star Wars characters were handed to illustrator Ralph McQuarrie.  McQuarrie created distinctive versions of the characters that have stuck with the fanbase all these years later, even though they were in some cases very largely changed for the final product.  McQuarrie’s best remembered image is the confrontation between Starkiller and Vader, but not far behind it was his desert landscape, featuring the characters that would become R2-D2 and C-3PO.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

R2 and 3PO were released as an exclusive two-pack at Celebration IV in 2007, where they helped launched the 30th Anniversary Collection.

R2-D2

Perhaps one of the least changed of the McQuarrie designs (barring perhaps Vader), R2 was still a tripodal little trash can droid.  His basic silhouette is more or less the same, though McQuarrie’s design was a little chunkier and had a few more attachments.  A lot of the specific elements of this design would later be worked into Rebels’ resident astromech, Chopper.  The figure is about 2 1/2 inches tall and he has 13 points of articulation.  He’s actually more compact than he initially appears.  He’s about 3/4 of the size of your usual R2 figure, but he’s certainly not short on detail work.  The steampunk nature of the design translates to a sculpt that Hasbro’s sculptors clearly had a lot of fun with.  I think my very favorite part is the pair of arms at the front, which nicely fold into his mid section, helping to recreate R2’s signature “face”.  Rather than his classic white and blue colors, the McQuarrie R2 design serves as a more natural counterpoint to 3PO’s golden finish, being a gunmetal grey and silver combo.  It actually makes for a pretty striking look, and the work on this figure is actually way better than you might expect from a straight silver figure.  There’s plenty of accenting, which helps to bring out all of the cool details in the sculpt.

C-3PO

McQuarrie’s C-3PO is probably one of his most remembered designs.  I think it’s largely to do with the decidedly more feminine nature, and that it bears more than a passing resemblance to the robot Maria from Metropolis.  It’s a really cool throwback to one of sci-fi’s most classic designs, which definitely gives it a leg up in my book.  The figure stands 3 3/4 inches tall and has 16 points of articulation.  3PO exists in this kind of weird cross roads of articulation.  Hasbro was really just starting to learn how to articulate these guys, so you kind of get this weird mix, where the elbows, mid-torso, and ankles have a great range of motion, but then the shoulders and hips are just basic cut joints, and there aren’t any knees at all.  The knees in particular are odd, since the design has natural breaks for them and everything.  Odd choice.  Still, the figure’s not as limited as you might think.  The sculpt actually takes a little bit of a departure from McQuarrie’s illustration, and plays more into the Maria side of things.  I’m not opposed to this, though, and I think this ultimately makes for the better overall figure design.  3PO’s coloring is rather similar to the final film design, being gold, from head to toe.  It’s even more prominent on this design.  The figure’s molded in a goldish plastic, and sports some brown accent work, which generally pairs off well with R2’s paint.

Though neither figure in the pack includes any character-specific extras, but they do include one of the 30th Anniversary coins, which features some of McQuarrie’s artwork embossed on it.  I never got super into these, but they’re certainly nifty.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I noted in my review of the Concept Han Solo, I’ve always been intrigued by the McQuarrie Concept figures.  They’re a lot of fun, and some day, I’ll get around to putting together a whole set of them.  I think these two are nearer the top of my favorites, though I gotta say, I was expecting to like 3PO the most, but it was R2 that ended up being my favorite of the two.  Regardless, these are two very well put together figures.

This pair isn’t part of my personal collection (yet), and were instead loaned to me by my friends at All Time Toys.  These two are available through All Time’s eBay store front, should you be interested in owning them for yourself.  And, if you’re looking for other toys, both old and new, please also check out All Time’s full eBay store front, and take a look at their webstore at alltimetoys.com.

#1775: Hoth Rebel Soldier

HOTH REBEL SOLDIER (w/ ANTI-VEHICLE LASER CANNON)

STAR WARS: POWER OF THE FORCE II (KENNER)

“The Empire has located the Alliance’s secret headquarters on the Ice Planet Hoth. During the consequent invasion, Rebel Soldiers hold out bravely against an unbeatable ground assault until a retreat salvages their heroic effort.”

When it comes to Star Wars-related army building, the Stormtroopers and their ilk get the lionshare of the attention—wait, wait, hold up.  I already ran this review a month ago.  Ah, but you see, that was the Kenner Power of the Force II Hoth Rebel Soldier from 1997.  Today, I’m looking at the Kenner Power of the Force II Hoth Rebel Soldier from 1997…with Anti-Vehicle Laser cannon.  That’s very different, and it should most certainly be treated as such.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

So, as the intro touched on, the Deluxe Hoth Rebel Soldier was released in 1997 as part of Kenner’s Power of the Force II line, specifically of the Deluxe variety.  The initial Deluxe offerings were goofy non-canon variants on main characters, but by the time this guy came along, things had become more normalized.  He stands 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 6 points of articulation.  Not entirely surprisingly, this figure has a few parts in common with the standard Hoth Rebel Soldier I looked at last month.  Specifically, these two share the same legs and pelvis.  His upper torso and arms are also quite similar to the basic release, but the pose on the arms is a little less wide spread, and the torso lacks the goggles.  Given the uniformed nature of the characters, it’s a fairly sensible re-use/similarity.  The main change between the two figures is the head.  Where the last figure had his goggles pulled off his face and a beard, this one has his goggles on and a clean shaven face.  This aids him in being a little more generic than the other figure, and a bit more accurate to the Hoth Soldiers as a whole.  Given how much more suited to army building this particular figure is, it’s actually a bit of a surprise he was the one in the deluxe set, rather than the other guy.  The paintwork on this figure is another point of difference, which is actually a little bit surprising.  This one is a fair bit more subdued than the basic release.  It’s not quite as eye-catching, but the application is decent enough.  This Hoth Soldier included the same survival pack from the basic release (with a slightly tweaked paint to match the base figure), as well as the previously mentioned Anti-Vehicle Laser cannon.  The cannon is decent enough, and good for scenery, I suppose, though it’s got the “exploding” effect that Kenner was so keen on for this line.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

In doing my usual background research for the basic Hoth Soldier, I was reminded of the existence of this figure, who I recalled always wanting to track down.  He doesn’t really crop up as frequently as some of the other figures in this line, so I wasn’t sure how quickly I’d be able to find him.  Fortunately, while I was visiting 2nd Chance Toys for my birthday, I found this guy in a stack of figures from a collection they’d just gotten in.  Of the two Soldiers, this one’s my favorite, and I’m quite happy to have found him.

#1770: Han Solo – Exogorth Escape

HAN SOLO — EXOGORTH ESCAPE

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

“Han Solo, captain of the Millennium Falcon, was one of the great leaders of the Rebel Alliance. In the wake of the of the battle of Hoth, Solo fled with the rest of the RebelForces and evaded the pursuit of Imperial TIE Fighters as he expertly maneuvered the Falcon towards the perceived safety of a crater in the Hoth asteroid belt. Infamous for his bold plans that seemed to always defy the odds, Solo soon discovered that the unstable crater upon which he had landed the Falcon – and its crew made up of co-pilot Chewbacca, Princess Leia Organa, and C-3PO – was in fact the cavernous mouth of a giant space slug known as an Exogorth. In the belly of the beast, Solo and crew discovered an inhospitable environment of noxious fumes and parasitic, swooping Mynocks – bat-like creatures who ate through power cables and drained the energy from even the most impressive ships. With the life of his comrades and beloved Millennium Falcon threatened, Solo was called again to emergency action, and steered the Falcon to safety, barely escaping into space through the rapidly collapsing jaws of the ravenous Exogorth.”

Remember the Solo Han Solo Black Series figure that I liked so much?  And remember how I said at the end of that review when I said I’d be sincerely disappointed if there wasn’t a Bespin Han of a similar quality released within the next year?  Well, looks like I don’t have to be sincerely disappointed!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Exogorth Escape Han Solo was released as a SDCC 2018-exclusive offering for Hasbro’s Star Wars: The Black Series.  Like Thrawn, Jyn, and the First Order Stormtrooper before him, he serves as a sort of a preview for a mass-retail released figure, specifically Bespin Han Solo, who is hitting stores in the latest round of Black Series figures.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation.  Han’s articulation scheme follows the trend established by the Solo versions of Han and Lando, which is to say he’s got some really great range on a lot of those joints, especially the neck joints.  I definitely appreciate this new style for the line, and it’s nice to have a Han can be more expressive than the rather stiff Smuggler version.  The sculpt for this Han is all-new, and overall one of the line’s strongest offerings.  The head sculpt is the main selling point, based largely on its improved Harrison Ford likeness.  While we got a pretty good older Ford likeness from the TFA version, the younger Han has always been a tough mark.  This figure has one of the best takes we’ve seen to date.  It’s still not 100% there.  The hair seems a little off, and the face goes a little bit more for caricature, but the overall appearance is very, very close.  The body is a fairly balanced sculpt, proportion-wise.  The shoulder’s could probably stand to be a little broader, but that’s a decidedly a minor issue.  The detail work, especially on his jacket, is clean and sharp, and there’s some solid texture work all throughout.  I’m also quite happy that they’ve changed up how they do the non-dominant hands, so that it’s a more sensible grip, rather than the weird claw grip we got with the last two Han releases.  Han’s sculpt is aided by some absolutely top-notch paint work.  He uses the printed face technique, which really further sells the likeness on the head.  The SDCC release gets a little extra shading on the face than the regular release, but it’s definitely a minor change.  The body paint is more basic, but he does get some nice weathering on his belt and holster.  Aside from the minor paint difference on the face, the main thing that separates this release from the regular retail offering is his accessory complement.  Both figures include Han’s blaster, which is mostly accurate to the Empire model of the blaster, apart from lacking silver paint on the barrel.  In an effort to make this figure live more appropriately up to his “Exogorth Escape” subtitle, this Han also includes one of the Mynock creatures that had affixed itself to the hull of the Falcon, as well as his breathing apparatus he wears while walking around the Exogorth’s innards, a hydrospanner, and an extra left hand.  The Mynock is a fun piece, and I really like the slightly transparent wings.  I do sort of wish it had a flight stand of some sort, though.  The rebreather fits nicely over Han’s face, though I would be careful about taking it off; those seams on the strap don’t look too durable.  The hydrospanner is a nice scene-specific piece, which looks good in his off-hand.  The left hand might actually be my favorite accessory in the whole set; there’s just so much Harrison Ford in how the hand is posed.  I can practically hear him telling off Threepio!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was unable to attend SDCC this year (or any year, really; living on the other side of the country has that affect on you), so I didn’t have the opportunity to pick this set up in-person.  Honestly, I wasn’t even sure I was going to get it, since the base figure’s getting a standard release and everything.  But, Super Awesome Fiancee wanted the Doctor Aphra set, so I had to log onto Hasbro Toy Shop anyway, and this guy was just sitting there in-stock.  I’m glad I splurged for the deluxe version.  Bespin Han is hands down my favorite look for the character, and I truly love the extras they’ve packed in with him.  By far, the very best version of Han in this line.  Or any line, really.

#1760: Endor Rebel Commando Infantryman

ENDOR REBEL COMMANDO INFANTRYMAN

MILITARIES OF STAR WARS (SIDESHOW)

“The men and women of the Rebel Alliance were fiercely dedicated to the principle of freedom, and would lay down their lives to win their objectives. Some were Imperials disillusioned with their government’s tyranny. Some were from worlds subjugated by the Empire. In stark contrast to the faceless anonymity of the stormtrooper ranks or the precision drilling of Imperial Academy training, Alliance troops were aggressively individualistic and much more rag-tag.”

Back in the day, Sideshow Toys was a much smaller company, whose primary focus was largely horror.  Their first big break came along in the form of Star Wars, a property that had previously been confined pretty much exclusively to mass retail.  They were granted a special license (no small feat when you take all of Hasbro’s exclusivity deals), and got right to work producing characters from all throughout the saga.  The line’s still running (though they’ve started partnering with Hot Toys for a lot of releases), but today I’ll be jumping back to the line’s earliest days, and having a look at one of my favorite “characters” from Star Wars, the Endor Rebel Commando!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Endor Rebel Commando was released by Sideshow in 2007, as the debut offering in their Militaries of Star Wars line.  The Rebel was no doubt chosen for the relative ease of creation, especially when compared to the likes of the Stormtroopers.  There were three versions of the Commando available: the Infantryman, the Pathfinder, and the Sergeant.  The figure seen here is the Infantryman, the most widely available of the three, and the one meant to represent the most basic “army builder.”  It’s the same basic design as the Endor Rebel Soldier I looked at from the PotF2 line, though he’s obviously aiming for a more screen accurate appearance.  The figure stands 12 inches tall and has over 30 points of articulation.

The headsculpt was a slight change of pace for Sideshow’s Star Wars stuff, since he’s not meant to be based on one particular actor or character.  However, he’d look kind of odd if he were too generic. So, what Sideshow did was create a sculpt that was realistic, and clearly one individual, but still generic enough that if you have a few of them standing around, it’s not going to look too odd.  While I don’t know that the sculpt they gave us is my ideal head for a Rebel Soldier, there’s no denying it’s a very well crafted sculpt, which looks quite lifelike given the period of time in which it was released.  He’s perhaps a little cartoonish by modern 1/6 standards, but he’s right on par with the rest of Sideshow’s stuff at the time, and a marked improvement over the types of sculpts we were getting from Hasbro just a few years prior.  The paint work is somewhat thickly applied and a little basic by modern sculpts, but once again was very good for the time, and, admittedly, not bad even by modern standards.   The eyes in particular showcase some incredibly lifelike work.

The figure’s outfit showcases another area where the industry really changed following this figure’s release.  It’s a mixed media affair, as you’d expect.  He’s got a vest, jacket, undershirt, and pants that are all tailored pieces.  Though by today’s standards, they may be somewhat bulky, loose-fitting, and sport some rather sizable seems, they were decent work for the time, and again an improvement over similar figures from other companies.  With a little bit of careful posing, you can get them to look pretty great.  He also gets a belt with number of sculpted pouches (and one cloth one) and a bandolier, which both match the other offerings in style, and replicate the gear the Rebels were carrying in the movie.  His boots and gloves are sculpted.  The gloves are actually just hands, and they’re very nicely detailed, and quite well scaled to the body.  Sideshow at this time was always very good with the gloves.  The boots are, unlike with later figures, actually boots that slip over the figure’s feet.  Due to being made from a softer material, their detailing isn’t quite as sharp, but they’re still very good.  Lastly, and most importantly, the Infantryman has his helmet.  The Endor helmets are my favorite aspect of this design, and while this one isn’t a 100% match for the ones from the movie (it’s a little flat at the top, and sits a little high on his head), it’s still a very nice piece, and really pulls the whole figure together.

The primary failing of this, and really all of the early Sideshow Star Wars offerings, is the base body he’s built on.  He uses Sideshow’s Buck body, which was decent when they first started using it, but was almost a decade old by the time of this figure’s release.  It’s a rather stiff body, and clothes have trouble hanging the right way on it.  It’s also very skinny and suffers from some very odd internal proportions.  It’s this body that makes the uniform look a bit more off than it should, despite how it looks when not on this body.

The Infantryman’s uniform was more involved than some of the line’s other figures, so by comparison, he’s a little lighter on accessories.  He includes a Blastech A-295 blaster rifle, his hard-pack survival pack, and a display stand with the Star Wars logo on it.  He doesn’t get some of the more interesting smaller extras, but what he gets all of the basics.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

It took me quite a while to actually break into the Sideshow Star Wars line, and it was a ways after this figure’s release.  I remember being very interested in possibly getting this figure, but I just never did.  He’s not a bad figure at all, especially when you look at when he was released.  What’s more, this is still the only time that the Endor Rebels have been released in this scale.

The item reviewed here is not from my personal collection, but was instead loaned to me for review by my friends over at All Time Toys.  If you are interested in owning the figure from this review, he’s available through All Time’s eBay page.  And, if you’re looking for other toys, both old and new, please also check out All Time’s full eBay store front, and take a look at their webstore at alltimetoys.com.

#1755: Luke Skywalker – Bespin Gear

LUKE SKYWALKER — BESPIN GEAR

STAR WARS: POWER OF THE FORCE II (KENNER)

“Sensing his friends are in critical danger, Luke Skywalker ventures to Cloud City before finishing his Jedi training. Unbeknownst to him, Darth Vader has prepared an elaborate trap with the darkest of intentions.”

Star Wars being one of the earliest franchises to cater specifically to merchandising, it’s also one of the ones to first introduce a commonplace concept: built-in variants. Not only were we privy to all sorts of situation-specific gear sets for the main characters, they were even given unique default looks for each film.  That Luke Skywalker from the first movie’s not going to do at all after Empire hits; you have to have his fancy new Bespin look!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Luke Skywalker in Bespin Gear was released in the 1998 assortment of Power of the Force II.  He was actually one of the last prominent Luke variants to be issued in this line, and the last of the Empire looks, following the Dagobah and Hoth gear.  The figure stands 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 7 points of articulation.  Yes, he gets an extra point of movement at his right wrist, since it was designed to be removable.  This Luke made use of the second standard PotF2 Luke head, which, while still not sporting a spot-on likeness, was certainly the superior of the two.  The rest of the sculpt was new to this figure, and it’s one of the best Lukes that this line produced.  Gone were the insane steroid-influenced proportions, and he’s only got a subtle bit of pre-posing.  The details on the uniform are nice and crisp, and even got the slight damage to his pockets that he received during his duel with Vader.  And, as mentioned above, the figure’s right hand can be removed, allowing for the replication of his injury from the film; this was a first for a Luke Skywalker figure.  This Luke also marked some innovation in the area of paint.  A lot of the PotF2 figures possessed only basic work, but in order to capture Luke’s mid-battle appearance, this figure’s been given a lot of accenting, especially on his jumpsuit.  This helps bring out a lot of the smaller sculpted details, and just makes for a slightly better looking figure.  Luke was packed with his lightsaber and his blaster pistol.  Luke was also one of the figures to be offered during the “Freeze Frame” era of the line, so he came with one of those little projector slides, showing off a still of Luke as he traverses through the corridors of Cloud City.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Have I mentioned Ageless Heroes yet on this site?  <checks backlog> Looks like I’ve touched on it.  Well, to elaborate, it was a comic book store that went out of business when I was 7 or 8.  They had a huge stock of ’90s toys (not a huge shock, what with it still being the ’90s and all), and they were clearing them out at really low prices.  My dad took me there I don’t know how many times, and I picked up quite the collection.  A lot of it was Marvel, but this guy was, I think, the one Star Wars figure I got.  He was actually still relatively new at the time.  The Bespin look has long been a favorite of mine, and this particular figure is definitely my favorite PotF2 Luke.

#1752: Chewbacca

CHEWBACCA

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

“A mighty Wookiee nearly two centuries old, Chewbacca has fallen upon hard times during this age of the expanding Empire.”

Let’s keep this extraneous Star Wars love going, I suppose…wait, that doesn’t sound quite right.  Never mind.

I broke my rule about the clones, but I also had this other rule with the Black Series, where I was going to avoid minor variations of the same characters.  Now, technically Vader was the first one I broke the rule for, but that was a slightly special case.  I stayed true with Chewbacca and didn’t buy the Force Awakens variant.  Well, Solo broke me, what can I say.  Was he worth it?  Let’s find out!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Chewbacca was released right around the same time as the rest of the Solo product launch, but the comparatively soft roll-out of the Solo product compared to prior movies meant that he just started showing up in some places very recently.  He’s not part of the main line-up, but is instead a Target exclusive.  Chewbacca stands 8 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation. Unsurprisingly, given his generally consistent look over the course of the film’s, this Chewbacca figure shares a lot of parts with the original Black Series release, namely everything but the head, upper torso, and bandolier. I was rather critical of the sculpt back when it was new, and I still stand by those critiques.  There are just some issues that are inherent to the process of adapting a design like Chewbacca’s into a highly articulated plastic figure.  There are going to have to be some compromises, and they do have negative impact on this sculpt.  With all that said, I think this figure does a lot to salvage the sculpt.  The new head is really strong.  While it’s been reworked to allow for the goggles to sit better on his face, he actually still looks pretty good without the goggles in-place.  In fact, he makes a for a decent approximation of Chewbacca’s messier hair style from Empire and Jedi, which I’m definitely okay with.  The new torso’s really just a slight change, mostly done to help the new double-strapped bandolier sit better on his shoulders.  But it definitely helps, and as a result, this Chewbacca’s bandolier sits a lot flusher to the body than the first one’s did.  It’s a minor change, but one that does a lot to help the figure.  Minor changes to the sculpt aside, I think the biggest thing that helps this new release is the paintwork.  The first Chewbacca was released during the line’s worst period paint-wise.  While his paint wasn’t *bad*, it was definitely very basic, and lacking in any form of subtlety, which hit that figure pretty hard.  By contrast, this figure’s hitting while the line is at a very high point, and he definitely shows it.  The transitions between shades on the fur are less jarring, and work has been done to keep these changes from being right on the joints.  In addition, he’s far less glossy overall, which only helps in making him look a lot less goofy.  In Solo, Chewbacca hasn’t yet gotten his distinctive bowcaster, so he’s instead carrying a different heavy blaster rifle entirely.  This one’s patterned on the M-60 machine gun (thanks Tim!), which is certainly a fun one.  The piece is very well sculpted and an accurate recreation of the design from the movie.  And, not only does it avoid the usual lack of paint issue, but it’s even got moving parts!  A very impressive piece.  In addition, Chewbacca also includes his goggles from the train heist, which go on and off pretty easily.  Not as impressive as the gun, but fun nonetheless.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I saw Chewbacca fairly early on, back in May, but decided to pass on him at that time.  Of course, then I didn’t see him for a couple of months, so when I came across him again (after having seen and quite enjoyed the movie), I didn’t feel like I could pass him up.  I’m glad I opted to get him the second time around, as he’s a pretty sizable improvement on the last one, and definitely my favorite Chewbacca to date.

#1751: Clone Commander Wolffe

CLONE COMMANDER WOLFFE

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)

“Clone Commander Wolffe (clone designation CC-3636) served in the Clne Wars as commander of the tight-knit unit known as the Wolfpack. A seasoned and battered combatant, Wolffe has witnessed some of the worst the war has to offer. Despite tragedy, he fights on bravely, proudly brandishing his battle scars and instilling loyalty among his men.”

I swore to myself I wasn’t going to do this.  I swore I wasn’t going to get roped into all these 6-inch clone troopers.  I stood there, Commander Cody in my hand and said “no.”  I broke the rule for Commander Gree, but come on, he’s Gree.  I can’t not buy Gree.  Except now, I’ve got this thing, where every time the subject of another Clone Commander comes up, there’s this little voice in the back of my head that says “he’d look pretty cool standing next to that Gree figure you have.”  Guess I’m just admitting defeat on this one.  Well, here’s Clone Commander Wolffe.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Clone Commander Wolffe is an exclusive item from Hasbro’s The Black Series, who sort of stretches the whole “exclusive” label, being available at GameStop, Barnes & Noble, EB Games, and Disney Parks locations.  Feels a bit like they decided his exclusive status by throwing darts at the wall there.  At least this way, he should be pretty easy to track down.  Wolffe had quite a few designs over the course of Clone Wars, beginning his journey as just a uniformed officer, before eventually armoring up.  This figure represents him from nearer the end of the show, after the clones had switched over to their Phase II armor like we saw in RotS.  It’s Wolffe’s most unique look, and it also means he matches the other Clone Commanders we’ve gotten so far.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  As with Gree, Wolffe shares a lot of his pieces with the Clone Sergeant I reviewed a ways back.  It’s certainly a serviceable body, but just the tiniest bit frustrating, since an improved version was introduced with Captain Rex.  This one is beginning to show it’s age, especially when it comes to posablility; those shoulders are quite restricted.  In addition, it means he’s still using the exact same hands as the other Clones, which are configured for holding a rifle two-handed.  As such, he lacks a proper trigger finger on his left hand, preventing him from holding both of his pistols correctly.  It’s a quick modification to separate the index finger, of course, but it’s still the sort of thing Hasbro probably wants to invest in going forward.  Wolffe gets a new head, and left shoulder pad, as well as borrowing the belt from Rex.  The head gives us a look at Wolffe’s scarred unmasked face, which is a pretty fun sculpt, though I’m not sure I’m seeing much Temuera Morrison in the sculpt.  Still, that scar over his eye is quite impressive.  He gets helmet to go over the head, of course; Wolffe’s helmet is a more unique one, with a different visor set up, as well as the common rangefinder addition.  It goes pretty well over the head, and you probably wouldn’t guess it was removable if you didn’t already know.  The belt piece is a simple variation on the basic clone belt, but with two holsters and a cloth kama attached to it.  I do wish the kama were just a touch longer, but that’s a fairly minor complaint.  Wolffe’s paintwork is pretty decent.  All of his character-specific armor detailing has been gotten down, especially on the helmet.  He’s got a few bits of weathering, though they aren’t quite as convincing as some of the other troopers.  His head gets the face printing, which helps him look more lifelike.  In addition to the removable helmet, Wolffe also gets the previously mentioned blaster pistols.  It’s a shame he couldn’t also get one of the rifles, but the helmet and two guns are enough to keep him from feeling too light.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Having missed out on Rex, I was as bit more committed to getting this guy.  Fortunately for me, Super Awesome Fiancee works at GameStop, so I was able to enlist her help in getting one.  He’s not Rex or Gree, but Wolffe is still a pretty darn cool looking guy, and minor flaws aside, he translated well into this Black Series release.

#1743: Rey

REY

STAR WARS MIGHTY MUGGS

Remember how I was talking about having some Mighty Muggs piled up to review yesterday?  Well, yeah, let’s have a little bit more of that, shall we?  In fact, let’s have some more of the same subline from yesterday!  Yes, it’s time for some more Star Wars, specifically the franchise new lead character Rey!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Rey is figure 02 in the Star Wars Mighty Muggs line, placing her second in the first assortment of figures.  Rey’s design here is taken from The Force Awakens, specifically her appearance from the Starkiller Base sequences.  It’s a little bit surprising given the general leaning towards the Last Jedi designs for the new trilogy characters, but it’s kind of a persistent look.  The figure stands 3 1/2 inches tall and she has three-ish points of articulation, if we’re counting the slight mobility at the neck joint.  Since she’s from TFA‘s final battle sequence, Rey uses the same lightsaber-weilding body that was used for Luke, with a unique hairpiece.  The hairpiece is a nice, stylized summation of her look from the movie, which fits in very well with the piece we saw on Luke.  For Rey’s three facial expressions, she goes for a similar selection to Luke.  She’s got a serious expression, a happy expression, and an angry expression.  Of the three, my definite favorite is the happy one, but the angry one works well, too.  Her stern expression is alright, but the mouth seems oddly small when compared to the other Muggs I’ve looked at.  It just throws her whole look off, and ends up making her look a bit more childish than the others.  But hey, 2 out of 3 ain’t bad, right?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I saw Rey a few times before actually picking her up.  I think I was holding out that I might be just grabbing the whole set of the first series, but I never did get around to that.  I eventually got around to picking up Rey from GameStop while visiting Super Awesome Girlfriend Fiancé there one day.  She’s a nice companion piece to Poe and a pretty fun little figure all around.

#1742: Poe Dameron

POE DAMERON

STAR WARS MIGHTY MUGGS

Man, I got a little side-tracked in my reviewing habits, and somehow, I’ve got this whole pile of “new” figures that have now gone months without being reviewed.  So, I guess I gotta make my way through some of that piles.  One of the lines that’s been the most neglected has been Hasbro’s relaunch of Mighty Muggs, which they’ve been trying to set-up as a competitor to Funko’s Pop! line.  Their primary focuses have been Marvel and Star Wars.  Today’s figure is Poe Dameron, from the latter license.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Poe Dameron is figure 9, part of the second assortment of Star Wars Mighty Muggs, which hit shelves a couple months back, right around the time Last Jedi was released on home media, in fact.  Poe’s got a few different designs to go with, so this one goes with his pilot gear.  It’s the one that crosses over from Force Awakens and Last Jedi, so I guess that makes it a reasonable choice.  The figure stands 3 1/2 inches tall and has articulated shoulders, just like the other two I’ve looked at.  Also, since reviewing the last two Muggs, I’ve discovered that the head *can* turn; it’s just really tight, and only ratchets into one of four positions.  Still, it’s better than nothing.  Poe uses the same body as Luke and Black Panther, but with a unique helmet piece, patterned after the helmet he wears in the movie.  It’s pretty well-rendered and captures the look from the movie quite nicely.  Poe, like the other new Muggs, features three different facial expressions.  He’s got serious side-eyed, cocky smile, and intense and teeth-gritty.  They’re all pretty decent, and actually have a solid likeness of Oscar Isaac.  The slightly odd thing is that the cocky smile face doesn’t have the lenses like the other two.  Not really sure why, but it makes giving him an unhelmeted look even easier, provided you can find a proper hair piece.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I grabbed Poe from Target when he was first release.  I was pretty happy when he was announced, and kept an eye out for him as soon as the line started to hit.  He’s not my preferred look for Poe, so I’d definitely like to see another one, but he’s a fun addition to my quickly growing Mighty Muggs collection nonetheless.