STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES (HASBRO)
“A talented young Rebel pilot from Corellia, Wedge Antilles survived the attack on the first Death Star to become a respected veteran of Rogue Squadron.”
Though he may be on the short list of characters to appear in all three of the original Star Wars films, poor Wedge Antilles has always had to play the waiting game when it comes to action figures. He was completely absent from the vintage line, and while he’s subsequently gotten a decent selection, it took well over a hundred figures to finally get him in added to The Black Series. Better late than never, right? And, as luck would have it, his inclusion in the line just so happens to nicely coincide with the character’s long-awaited return to the franchise in The Rise of Skywalker. How about that?
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Wedge Antilles is figure 102 in the Black Series line-up, the last figure of this assortment numerically. He’s also the second of the two OT-based figures in the set. And, believe it or not, he’s only our second OT X-Wing pilot in the line, which seems almost baffling. The figure stands just under 6 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation. In contrast to the rest of the line-up from this assortment, Wedge is predominantly built out of re-used parts, namely the body of the X-Wing Pilot Luke figure from way back in the very first assortment. The two wore the same uniform in the movie, and the actors are within an inch of each other in height and pretty similar in build, so it’s hard to blame them for going for the re-use. That said, I think some collectors were hoping they might take this opportunity to finally give us someone in the padded pilot gear from Empire, thereby keeping Wedge as a totally unique figure. Of course, then he wouldn’t match the Luke we have, or the inevitable Biggs figure, and wouldn’t have the added benefit of giving Hasbro an easy way of filling out the line-up with some easy re-use. Plus, it’s not like Wedge figures have a history of getting new parts, so it’s really not much of a shock. On the plus side, the X-Wing Luke body is honestly one of the best of the earliest entries in the line, and while some of the articulation isn’t quite as well worked in as more recent figures, it still holds up. Wedge definitely doesn’t look out of place with the rest of his assortment at all. He does get a new head, of course, which sports a pretty decent likeness of Dennis Lawson. The hair’s a little weird, because it doesn’t match any of the un-helmeted shots of Wedge we get in the movies. It’s not totally off base, though, and honestly I imagine a lot of people will be keeping the helmet on him anyway. With the helmet on, the likeness is pretty much dead on. The paintwork on Wedge is essentially the same as on the X-Wing Luke figures, but it’s worth noting that there are a few small, easy to miss changes between the two figures, which really don’t amount to much. Beyond that, he’s got the expected changes to the head, which is again using the face print tech. Wedge is packed with his helmet, which is a re-decoed version of the one included with Luke, as well as a DH-17 blaster rifle, which is something we don’t see Wedge carrying in the film, but is standard issue for the Rebels, so it makes sense.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Wedge is a prominent figure for me because Wedge is honestly my favorite Star Wars character. He was at the top of my wishlist for this line from the very start of it, ever since I got that first X-Wing Pilot Luke back in 2013. It’s been a long wait for him, and he’s a pretty straight forward figure, but he was never the less worth the long wait. He’s not overly flashy or anything, and perhaps doesn’t have the flair of the others in this assortment, but he’s still my personal favorite. Now, how about that Empire variant. And maybe a Rise version as well. And a TIE pilot version. Heck, let’s just reinstate the Evolutions packs, and get them all at once. It’s the only way to be sure.