#1550: Captain Poe Dameron

CAPTAIN POE DAMERON

STAR WARS: TITAN HEROES (HASBRO)

“It takes defiant courage to stare down the threat of the First Order, and while Captain Poe Dameron is eager to fight, he worries that some of the Resistance leadership don’t have what it takes.”

If that bio sounds familiar to you, it’s because you’re losing your mind!  Nah, it’s actually because it’s the exact same bio that was used on the Black Series Captain Poe Dameron figure.  He’s the same guy and all, so I guess it’s okay.  So, today I’m breaking from my trend of Black Series figures, and switching gears over to the line that’s sort of the exact opposite, at least from a collecting perspective, Titan Heroes.  Let’s have a look at the figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Poe was one of the first three The Last Jedi-themed Star Wars: Titan Heroes, released back in September for Force Friday II, alongside Rey and a Stormtrooper.  He was also available in the big Target-exclusive 6-pack with Rey, BB-8, Kylo, and two troopers.  The figure stands 12 inches tall and he has 7 points of articulation.  His construction is pretty much the same as the other two Titan Heroes I’ve looked at, with the main body being molded in a harder, hollowed out plastic, with softer pieces for his head and hands.  He’s also a little skinny like those two, but that’s really just the aesthetic of the line.  Poe’s sculpt is surprisingly good, given the line he’s from.  These figures tend to be more on the basic side, but Poe is quite detailed, and the head in particular is one of the nicer sculpts I’ve seen out of this line.  I can’t say it’s a spot-on recreation of Oscar Isaac, but it’s pretty decent, and it looks like a real human being, which is certainly a step-up.  The work on the body is also pretty decent, with lots of texture work.  The hands in particular impressed me.  His paint work is also pretty decent, again, given the style of the line.  What I found most impressive was the work on Poe’s face scruff.  It’s something that Hasbro’s been unable to handle with any sort of subtlety on any of their Poe figures, but they actually managed to do it really well here.  Hopefully, this will translate to future figures.  Poe is packed with his usual blaster pistol, sadly without any painted details, but well-sculpted nonetheless.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

After picking up Rey on my own and then getting a Finn for Christmas, I figured I might want to track down a Poe from this line, just to complete my power trio set.  I ended up finding him at the same time as the Black Series Finn and Kylo figures.  He was a bit of a spur of the moment purchase, since I had just seen the movie, and it was a Poe figure I didn’t have and he was relatively inexpensive.  That said, I’m happy I picked him up.  He’s a better figure than I’d expected.

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#1549: Resistance Tech Rose

RESISTANCE TECH ROSE

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)

“Part of the support crew that keeps the Resistance star fighters flying, Rose has hated the First Order since she was a child.  Now able to fight back against the enemy, Rose keeps her focus on her mission.”

Introducing a new main character to an established franchise is always tricky business.  Our new heroes from The Force Awakens sort of got away with it, thanks to the narrative effectively rebooting, and giving the new characters more of a clean slate to work with.  For The Last Jedi, things have been re-established, and become more rigid.  Nevertheless, our newest hero Rose Tico made herself feel right at home with the rest of the cast, and is one of my favorite parts of the movie.  I’ve looked at her basic figure back during the Force Friday reviews, but now I’ll be taking a look at her Black Series release!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Rose (who is officially called “Resistance Tech Rose” on the box.  Are we not supposed to know her last name?) is part of the third assortment of TLJ-themed Star Wars: The Black Series figures, numbered at 55.  She’s seen here in her Resistance Tech jumpsuit, which was her main look in the movie, and the one used for her smaller-scale figure as well.  The figure stands about 5 1/2 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Her sculpt is all-new to this figure, though it definitely shares some origins with the two smaller scale figures, as a lot of the details line up with each other.  Given it’s the same character and all, it’s kind of sensible, though.  As much as I liked the smaller Rose’s sculpt, I must admit, I find this figure to be a slight downgrade.  A lot of it’s changes that had to be made for the sake of adding in extra articulation, but there were also a few changes in proportions, so for instance her neck seems a bit longer than it should be.  There are also some areas where the details seem a little simpler than I’d expect for a figure of this scale, namely her hair, which looks almost animated in nature.  Still, there’s plenty of solid detail work on the jumpsuit, so it’s not a total downgrade.  Honestly, it’s really just the head that’s throwing things off.  Even the likeness to Kelly Tran seems a little off the mark, which is especially surprising, since the smaller figure was spot-on in that regard.  In terms of paint, Rose is generally pretty good.  The application is clean, and the small details, such as the information printed on her pocket, are all really sharp.  Her eyes seem to have been painted slightly wider than how they were sculpted, which I think is likely contributing to the likeness being a little bit off.  I do appreciate that she actually gets extra detailing on her belt that the smaller figure didn’t have, since it could have easily been left one solid color.  The larger Rose comes with the same accessory compliment as her smaller counterpart: a standard Resistance blaster rifle in gold, and her small taser device, which can once again be clipped onto her belt.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

You know the last three figures I looked at?  The ones I saw once and passed on at first before ultimately picking them up again after seeing the movie?  Yeah, I found all of them because I was actually looking for Rose, because I really wanted her in this scale.  I did actually find one that I passed on, because I found her two days before Christmas and had better things to do with my money.  By the time I went back, she was gone.  Not to worry, though, because I found her at the same Target where I ultimately ended up getting Rey.  Despite some of my complaining here, Rose is actually a really good figure.  I was just spoiled a bit by her exceptionally good basic figure, so the fact that this one doesn’t completely out place that one is slightly frustrating.  Still, I’m very happy to have found her.  She’s really great.

#1548: Finn – First Order Disguise

FINN – FIRST ORDER DISGUISE

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)

“To carry out a mission crucial to the Resistance, Finn adopts a First Order officer’s uniform, going undercover and doing his best to blend in among his former ranks.”

Toy companies seem to have a hard time making toys of Finn exciting.  When the product for The Force Awakens first hit, all of the Finns were in his jacketed civilian style look.  While that’s certainly his main design from the movie, it was perhaps not the most thrilling, especially to a customer base that wasn’t yet familiar with the character.  For The Last Jedi, where Finn is sporting a look very similar to the one from the last film, toy makers wisely chose to use Finn’s disguised look from later in the film as his initial go-to for the figures.  While Hasbro gave us the standard Finn for their smaller basic line, they did the Officer’s uniform for his Black Series release, which I’ll be looking at today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

First Order Disguise Finn is part of the second assortment of TLJ-themed Star Wars: The Black Series figures, hitting just after Force Friday II, alongside Leia, Poe, Maz, and the Guard.  He’s figure 51 in the line, placing him between the Guard and Leia numerically.  The figure stands about 6 inches tall and has 27 points of articulation.  His sculpt was technically new to him, but all but his head was almost immediately re-used for the First Order Officer included in a TRU-exclusive two-pack with Ackbar.  Given that it’s largely just a standard Officer’s uniform, that’s a rather sensible re-use, and I have no doubt it was part of what made this particular look appealing to Hasbro.  It’s a solid sculpt, and also makes for a very easy to pose, very playable figure.  The only truly unique piece is the head.  They could have just re-used the first Finn head, but they didn’t.  I’m not entirely sure why they didn’t, since that was a pretty solid sculpt and had a decent Boyega likeness.  While I certainly don’t dislike this sculpt, I do feel it’s resemblance isn’t quite as strong.  From a purely technical standpoint, though, it’s the better piece, with sharper detailing and better relative scaling to the body, though, so it’s not a total loss.  The paint on this guy is generally pretty decent work, with pretty clean detailing and a palette that’s a good match for what’s seen in the film.  I wish the pupils on my figure were a little better centered, but they aren’t as bad as some figures I’ve gotten.  Finn’s packed with a removable helmet, a pistol, and a riot-control baton.  The hat’s a good fit to the head, and isn’t overly bulky like some removable pieces, so that’s good.  The pistol’s pretty basic, but a good match for the material.  It’s a little hard for him to hold it, since his hands aren’t really designed for it, but it’s still a welcome addition.  The best piece is definitely the baton, which, rather than being a simple re-use of the one from TFA, has been totally re-tooled, so that it now can be properly extended into attack mode.  It’s a really fun piece, and I hope it sees re-use elsewhere.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As with Rey and Kylo, Finn is a figure I passed on when I first saw him (sensing a theme to this week’s reviews?), since I already had the TFA Finn and this was a non-standard variant.  I ended up grabbing him at the same time as Kylo, while I was actually on my way back from seeing the film for the second time.  Despite not being the standard version of the character, I really like this figure, and I think he’s an improvement on the standard Finn from TFA.  I’m hopeful that Hasbro will find a way to release his standard look from TLJ somewhere down the line, though, because I’d like to have it in this quality.

#1547: Kylo Ren

KYLO REN

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

“Growing more powerful in the dark side of the Force, Kylo Ren pursues his enemies with sinister determination.  He will prove to Supreme Leader Snoke that he is truly capable and will hunt down those who caused his defeat at Starkiller Base.”

There was a lot I liked in The Last Jedi, but I think perhaps my favorite character arc contained there-in was that of Kylo Ren.  He goes from a character that could have been a rather one-note retread of Darth Vader, to something much more fully formed and unique.  Certainly the similarities still persist, but I don’t find his arc quite as predictable as it was at the end of TFA.  Just like the last movie, he was a prominent fixture of the associated toys, including the fan-favorite Black Series.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kylo is figure 45 in Star Wars: The Black Series.  He was originally released with the seven-figure assortment that hit on Force Friday II, and was then immediately re-released with the next assortment, alongside Leia, Poe, the Guard, and Maz.  This had the unintended side-effect of making Kylo look like a particularly slow seller for a little while, but it appears things have mostly evened out now.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  As with yesterday’s Rey figure, this is a figure that shares more than a few design elements with its TFA predecessor (and even more with the unmasked variant of that from the Rogue One product), but there are no shared pieces between them.  This Kylo is an entirely unique sculpt, and it’s quite a good one at that.  The likeness is definitely one of Hasbro’s best attempts at Adam Driver, and is closer than the last unmasked Black Series Kylo.  The rest of the body does a pretty great job of capturing all of the texturing and patterns of Kylo’s costume from the movie, thankfully unencumbered by ill-fitting cloth pieces this time around.  He’s perhaps a little scrawnier than I’d like, but beyond that, this sculpt is a pretty fantastic translation of his look from the film.  This Ren figure marks the third time we’ve gotten a sculpted plastic cape in the larger Black Series line.  It’s a much better look, especially when you’re doing the over the shoulders draped look as seen here.  It’s actually a little odd that they did Kylo this way, but still went with the cloth set-up for Luke, who was released in the very same series.  I definitely prefer how it was handed here.  In terms of paint work, Ren is admittedly pretty straight forward, mostly being a lot of flat black.  They did put some effort into making his pants a slightly different temperature of black, as well as adding a gloss finish to the boots, which certainly makes for a nice look.  Unlike the smaller figure, Ren’s scar goes unpainted here.  I’m actually not sure which way I prefer it.  While it was a little too obvious on the smaller figure, here the scar gets rather lost.  Maybe a slightly less jarring paint app?  Beyond that, the paint on the face is pretty great, and I’m happy to see he has a healthier skin-tone when compared to the very pale unmasked Kylo from TFA.  Kylo is packed with his distinctive cross-guarded lightsaber in both ignited and non-ignited forms, which, combined with the removable cape, makes for a pretty solid selection of extras.  For those that are so inclined, there’s also a deluxe version of Kylo, just released in the last few weeks, which adds a die cast helmet and a display stand based on Snoke’s throne room to the mix, though that one does swap out the nice plastic cape for a rather standard cloth one.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Kylo was certainly the easiest to find of the initial TLJ Black Series figures, but, as with Rey, I passed on him due to how similar he was to the previous figure.  And, just like with Rey, I regretted having passed on him as soon as I saw the movie.  Whilst on vacation the week after Christmas, I found this guy at a nearby Walmart, marked down to $15 no less.  I guess it was a good thing I waited.  This is definitely Hasbro’s best Kylo so far, and I’m glad I finally grabbed him.

#1546: Rey – Jedi Training

REY – JEDI TRAINING

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

“At long last, Rey has found Luke Skywalker, the last Jedi Master in the galaxy.  Hoping to find a hero of legend, she must unlearn what she has learned as Skywalker challenges her expectations.”

Oh boy, this might offend some people, but you know what?  I really liked The Last Jedi.  It was a solid, thoroughly enjoyable film.  Most importantly for any entry in the Star Wars franchise, it made me want to go out and buy some toys.  And buy some toys I did.  So, I’m gonna do a bit of a Star Wars week, because why not?  Let’s start this whole thing off with a look at the new trilogy’s central figure, Rey!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Rey is figure 44 in the latest iteration of Hasbro’s Star Wars: The Black Series.  There are actually a few different releases of the figure.  The first was in the SDCC 2017 two-pack with Luke. She was then released solo during the Force Friday II product launch.  All of the initial TLJ Black Series figures were rather scarce, so she was given another release as part of the latest assortment (the one that includes Rose and Snoke).  While the first two are identical, the last release (which is the one I have) has one minor detail that differentiates her: the small cut on her right shoulder, which she earned during her battle in Snoke’s throne room.  The figure stands about 5 3/4 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Though there are some slight design similarities between this figure and the Force Awakens release, this figure is a wholly unique sculpt.  I was actually a pretty big fan of the last Rey when she was released, but in the two years since then, there’s no denying that The Black Series has definitely made some leaps and bounds in quality.  So, that older figure was looking a little out of date.  This one, on the other hand, is an incredibly strong sculpt.  The proportions on the body feel more realistic, her outfit now consists of several overlays to convey the proper depth, and there’s just a tremendous amount of detail and texture work all throughout.  The likeness on the head still isn’t quite as spot-on as the Titan Heroes figure (my favorite Rey head sculpt to date), but it’s certainly a marked improvement over the TFA release, and there’s still a lot of Daisy Ridley in there.  This figure is also an improvement when it comes to paint.  The painted skin is gone, replaced by molded plastic, but unlike some of the later TFA Black Series offerings, the sheen isn’t too shiny or lifeless.  The application is all pretty clean, and the colors match well with the source material.  There’s still some room for improvement, of course.  There’s some slop on the hairline and on the wrapping around her waist.  I also feel like the eyebrows are a bit too which, which is likely contributing to the slightly off likeness.  But, for a mass-produced figure, she’s not bad.  Rey is packed with her staff (which is a brand-new mold, and a definite upgrade to the last one), the blaster she got from Han, and Luke’s lightsaber.  I miss BB-8, but it’s still a nice assortment of extras.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Black Series offerings for Force Friday II were amongst the most difficult to find, so I didn’t come across any of them in my first week or so of hunting back in September.  I did eventually find a Rey, but ultimately passed on her, feeling she was rather similar to the one I already had.  After seeing the movie, I somewhat regretted this decision.  Fortunately, Hasbro did the re-pack, and I was able to score that one just last week.  While I’m sort of kicking myself for waiting so long on this figure (given how big an improvement she is over the last one), it’s one of those times where I’m ultimately grateful I waited, since I do kind of prefer the running change with the scar on her arm.  This is probably my favorite Rey in my collection.  Of course, there’s that Island Journey Rey looming on the horizon which may unseat her, but we’ll see.

#1544: Luke Skywalker in Imperial Guard Disguise

LUKE SKYAWALKER IN IMPERIAL GUARD DISGUISE

STAR WARS: SHADOWS OF THE EMPIRE (KENNER)

“The Empire’s victory in the Battle of Hoth has brought hard times for the Rebel Alliance. Han Solo has been frozen in carbonite by Darth Vader, and two huge bounties have been placed on the head of Luke Skywalker. The Emperor wants him alive, but Prince Xizor , underlord of the most powerful criminal organization in the galaxy, wants him dead. Worse still is that the diabolical Xizor is holding Princess Leia Organa prisoner in his castle on the Imperial Center of Coruscant. this is a tactical maneuver, part of a larger master plan to lure Luke Skywalker into his castle where he can be easily eliminated — the key step in Xizor’s plan to replace Darth Vader at the Emperor’s side. unaware of this danger, the young Jedi and Lando Calrissian sneak into Imperial City hoping to rescue Leia. Simplylaying foot on Coruscant is a dangerous act for these two: high on the Empire’s list of most-wanted outlaws, they could easily be recognized and captured — or assassinated. Disguising themselves as beggars, they “borrow” the armored uniforms from a pair of elite Coruscant stormtroopers. These troopers are some of the Empire’s finest, selected as home guards for the wealthiest and most cultured city in the galaxy. Joining forces with Chewbacca and Dash Rendar, Skywalker and Calrissian attempt to infiltrate Xizor’s nearly impenetrable stronghold and rescue the princess.”

1996’s Shadows of the Empire was important, in that it was the first time the public at large had been introduced to the Star Wars Expanded Universe.  It’s also an interesting experiment in marketing, essentially being a movie merchandising campaign that lacked a movie.  There were a handful of figures, mixed in with Kenner’s then running Power of the Force II.  Newcomers Dash Rendar and Prince Xizor got figures, of course, but there were also new variants of out heroes Luke, Leia, and Chewbacca, all of whom had to take on disguises during this new story.  I’ve looked at both Leia and Chewbacca, which just leaves Luke, who I’ll be reviewing today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Luke Skywalker in Imperial Guard Disguise was released in the basic figure assortment of Kenner’s Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire line.  The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 6 points of articulation.  This Luke uses the same head as all of the other early PotF2 Lukes.  It’s not the best likeness, but hey, here’s to consistency, right? The rest of the figure is brand new.  The packaging dubs his look as “Imperial Guard Disguise,” a name that tends to conjure up the red guards from Return of the Jedi, who look quite a bit different than the look Luke is sporting here.  However, the bio fills us in that this armor is actually from one of the elite Stormtroopers on Coruscant, making it a separate look entirely.  As with so much of the design work seen in Shadows, the armor is undeniably a product of mid-90s comic book design, meaning it’s a little divorced from the original trilogy designs.  His armor’s bulky and ultra padded, and seems to lack that used look we’re so accustomed to.  It’s a little hard to reconcile this as a design that would appear in between Empire and Jedi.  That being said, it’s hardly a terrible look.  In fact, it manages to be rather unique and helps this Luke to stand out a bit from the crowd of other Lukes from over the years.  The paint work on this figure is fairly decent, and, like the rest of his design, fairly unique.  The red’s a nice shade, and all of the application is pretty clean.  He’s packed with a removable helmet and half-cape to help complete his full disguise.  Since Luke lost his father’s lightsaber in Empire and didn’t build a new one until the beginning of Jedi, he of course needed a new weapon, so this figure included a taser staff weapon.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This figure was, I believe, my first Shadows of the Empire figure.  My cousin Noah had saved up to buy the PotF2 Millennium Falcon, and was along for the trip to go buy it.  Noah’s mother, who took us on the trip, agreed to get me one figure.  Luke was my favorite character, and this figure appealed to my 5-year-old self, so he was the one I picked.  I’d say having this guy in my collection already was probably what pushed me to pick up the Bounty Hunter Chewbacca instead of the normal one, and owning these two is certainly not a decision I regret in the slightest.

#1537: Finn – FN-2187

FINN — FN-2187

STAR WARS: TITAN HEROES (HASBRO)

“After his first taste of combat during a brutal First Order night assault on a Jakku village, Stormtrooper FN-2187 defects from Kylo Ren’s forces, becoming a fugitive.”

For my sixth post-Christmas review, I’m ducking back into the world of Star Wars, with another figure from the sequel trilogy.  This one specifically comes from The Force Awakens, which feels so long ago now, doesn’t it?  Prior to the movie’s release, we got a whole slew of Finn figures wearing his more civilian get-up, which, while accurate to the film and certainly the look he was sporting for the majority of its runtime, was perhaps a little less than exciting.  Slightly more exciting was his Stormtrooper-armored look from the opening of the film, which we had to wait until after the film’s release to get.  Thanks to weird distribution, I never actually picked up a single figure of Stormtrooper Finn, but now I have one, and I’m reviewing him today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Finn, or FN-2187 as he’s known when he’s still a Stormtrooper, is from the third main assortment of Force Awakens-themed Star Wars: Titan Heroes.  He hit around May of 2016 and was released alongside the Fifth Brother from Rebels.  The figure stands about 12 inches tall and has 7 points of articulation.  He’s built very much like one of the smaller basic-line figures, but, like the previously reviewed Titan Heroes Rey, he’s molded in a much harder plastic, and he’s largely hollow.  This figure is largely a re-use of pieces from the First Order Stormtrooper, which is sensible enough, I suppose.  It’s rather on the skinny side, given how bulky these particular troopers tend to be, but the overall detail work is generally pretty decent.  It’s not any worse than the smaller figures in that regard, though compared to Rey, the only other Titan Heroes figure I own, he seems a little lower in quality.  On the plus side, his head sculpt was an all-new piece to this figure, and it was certainly one of Hasbro’s best Boyega sculpts, certainly on par with the Ridley likeness on Rey.  The paintwork on Finn is okay, but noting to really write home about.  The head gets the cleanest work, and manages to look pretty lifelike.  The body’s a bit on the sloppy side, especially on the hands, but it’s not atrocious.  Finn is packed with a standard Stormtrooper blaster, which is a decent replica of the real pos and can be stowed on his thigh when he’s not holding it.  It’s a shame he does’t get a helmet or anything, but at this scale and price-point, it’s not a huge shock.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Finn was a gift from Super Awesome Girlfriend’s parents.  He’s more of a companion piece to a larger gift they got for the two of us (a Sphero BB-8 was the main gift, with a Finn figure for me and a Rey for Jess).  I’ve never really devoted much of my time to this particular line, but I did really like the Rey figure I picked up a while back, and Finn makes for a decent enough companion piece to her.  He’s not the most thrilling figure in the world, but he’s still a pretty solid toy.

#1535: Inferno Squad Agent

INFERNO SQUAD AGENT

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

“In the wake of the Death Star’s destruction, the Empire created the Inferno Squad to ensure that Imperial secrets would remain safe.  Their fierce loyalty to the Empire and exceptional skills in both aerial and ground combat set this squad apart from the rank and file troopers.”

It’s Day 4 of my post-Christmas reviews.  Today, I’ll be turning my sites on that galaxy far, far away, and looking at a figure based on the *other* highly divisive Star Wars sequel released this year, Star Wars: Battlefront II.  I myself haven’t yet played Battlefront II, but that certainly doesn’t mean I can’t partake in any of the cool figures that have come out of it, right?  The game has reintroduced an actual campaign to the gameplay, but rather than playing as the 501st (like in the original Battlefront II), you now play as members of the Inferno Squad.  Which apparently translates to TIE Fighter pilots with a little bit of extra detailing.  Cool by me.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Inferno Squad Agent is one of three GameStop-exclusive Star Wars: The Black Series offerings from 2017.  This one was released to somewhat coincide with the release of the game he’s based on, which seems sensible enough.  This figure stands 6 inches tall and has 28 points of articulation.  There’s not actually anything new to his sculpt.  For the most part, he’s a pretty straight re-hash of the first Black Series TIE Pilot.  That was an incredibly strong sculpt the first time around, and it still holds up very well three years later.  In place of the original belt, this figure has the spare Stormtrooper belt from Han.  It’s a nice, yet simple, way of differentiating him a little bit more from the original release, and matches up with at least a few of the Agents from the game.  Paint marks where most of the changes are from the original TIE Pilot.  He’s still not crazy different or anything, but different enough to matter.  He’s got the same basic detail work as his predecessor, but now he’s also got some extra red accent work to help denote his Inferno Squad status.  I found the edges of said accenting to be a little fuzzy on my figure, but I was otherwise pretty happy with them.  The bright red contrasts well with the rest of the figure, and helps him stand out when placed next to the original.  The Inferno Squad Agent is packed with the standard E-11 blaster.  Thankfully, this one continues Hasbro’s trend of including accent work on the accessories, which is a pleasant change from the last TIE Pilot’s straight black blaster.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This guy came to me courtesy of Super Awesome Girlfriend.  She’s been working at GameStop for the last couple of months, and was able to score this exclusive for me for Christmas.  He’s not wildly different from the standard TIE Pilot, but I dig the red accents a lot, and I was enough of a fan of the first one that I don’t mind getting a lot of that figure again.  A good toy is a good toy.

#1529: Rey – Island Journey

REY – ISLAND JOURNEY

STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI (HASBRO)

There she is!  I found her!  I found Rey! 

Ah, remember the good old days when not being able to find a toy of the main character was the most polarizing issue surrounding the new Star Wars movie?  Back when the birds still sung and the sun still shined and Disney hadn’t “killed teh franchise”?  I miss those days.  On that oh so positive note, let’s look at this here Rey action figure.  That won’t piss anyone off, right?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Rey (Island Journey) is the fourth of the six figures in the second Orange assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi line.  Also included in the set were R2-D2 and Jyn Erso, but they were similar enough to prior releases that I opted not to grab them, meaning Rey’s the last figure I’ll be looking at from the set.  Rey has two distinct looks over the course of The Last Jedi.  Today’s figure uses the Resistance look that carried forward from the end of The Force Awakens.  The figure stands about 3 1/2 inches tall and has 7 points of articulation (she gets some sweet mid-arm motion, which proves very useful).  Given the fact that this figure is replicating a look that is mostly identical to the one seen on the Resistance Rey figure, I was admittedly expecting for there to be at least some parts re-use between the two figures.  That being the case, I was a bit surprised to find that this figure was an all-new sculpt.  It is, in many ways, quite similar to the old one, but everything’s a little bit different.  There’s the added articulation, of course, as well as an improved likeness on the head, and a holster that is now a separate add-on piece, rather than a sculpted part of the leg.  Rey features two removable add-on pieces for her vest and her poncho.  She’s wearing both when you take her out of the package, and that’s admittedly not the best look for the figure.  To quote Tim “she looks like she’s wearing football pads.”  It’s mostly due to all that thick plastic taking up way more space than actual clothes.  I found that if you remove the vest when putting on the poncho it looks a lot better (that’s how I configured it for the shot at the top).  Her paint work is fairly decently done overall.  The application’s mostly pretty clean.  There’s a small touch of slop on her chin, but that’s about it.  The coloring of the vest and such has been tweaked from the last figure, making it more grey than tan, in order to reflect how the costume was lit in the film.  Rey is packed with her blaster and the Skywalker lightsaber.  She does *not* come with her staff, which was a little surprising, since she uses it quite a bit in this get-up.  It’s also a little weird, because the last Resistance Rey didn’t have her standard staff either.  Don’t know why that is.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Rey, like Luke, is another impulse buy.  I was content with Resistance Rey and didn’t really like how bulky the poncho was.  But then I saw her in person, and she looked a bit better, and there was a sale, and I’d just seen the movie, and I caved.  I know.  Bad Ethan.  That said, I’m sort of glad I did.  She’s an improvement on the last version in just about every facet.  And, after realizing how much better she looks without the vest under the poncho, I can now create one what is probably my favorite Rey look.  This is the sort of figure I can see a lot pf people skipping, but she was certainly a pleasant surprise to me!

#1528: DJ – Canto Bight

DJ – CANTO BIGHT

STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI (HASBRO)

Star Wars: The Last Jedi saw the return of a lot of old favorites, but, like it’s predecessor, The Force Awakens, it saw a handful of new character introductions as well.  The biggest standout by far was definitely Kelly Tran’s Rose Tico, but I also quite enjoyed Benicio Del Toro’s turn as the roguish hacker commonly referred to as “DJ” (which isn’t actually a name; it’s merely a shortening of his credo “Don’t Join”).  But then, again, I generally enjoy in Benico Del Toro in just about any role.  Except maybe Sicario… Getting side-tracked.  Here’s this figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

DJ is part of the second Orange assortment of Hasbro’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi line.  He’s the only unique character this time around, but I feel like we’ll at least be seeing a Holdo at some point down the line.  The figure stands 4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  I was a little bummed that his hands don’t move at the wrists, especially since they’re already separate pieces, and Luke got those joints.  I like consistency.  DJ is sporting an all-new sculpt, which is a pretty solid piece of work.  The likeness on the head is perhaps not a spot-on likeness of Del Toro, but it’s close enough that you can tell who it’s supposed to be.  I think it’s the nose that throws it off; it’s a bit too up-turned, like one of the Whos from the live-action Grinch movie.  The body sculpt has nicely balance proportions, and there’s some really amazing texturing on his jacket.  If I had one complaint, it’d be the collar.  In the movie, DJ tended to have it somewhat popped and disheveled, but here it’s flat against the rest of the jacket.  He does have it like that occasionally in the film, but it’s not what I’d pick as my ideal look for him.  The paint on DJ is decent enough.  The colors are rather dull, but that’s accurate, and the application’s all pretty clean where it needs to be.  For the first time…well, pretty much ever, actually, Hasbro’s done a halfway decent job of giving DJ that appropriately scruffy facial hair.  It certainly looks better than any of their attempts at Poe’s, that’s for sure.  DJ is packed with a blaster pistol, which is rather involved and probably one of my favorite blasters from this line.  He’s also Force Link compatible.  The line’s I got were “I can get you out of here if the price is right,” “I’m a thief by trade,” and “Let’s get this over with,” all in a voice that is undoubtedly not Benicio Del Toro at all.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While Luke was an impulse buy, DJ was one I was definitely planning to grab, though he was most certainly helped by the fact that I found him the day after seeing the movie.  There are some slight issues with the likeness, but beyond that he’s a pretty fantastic figure of an intriguing character.  Also, I think this might actually be the first Benico Del Toro figure, so that’s pretty cool, right?