The poet Charles Baudelaire (or was it Verbal Kint?) once said that "the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn't exist." This new Darth Sidious figure is certainly a revelation. We were completely prepared to be underwhelmed by Hasbro's latest effort of "The Phantom Menace" himself mainly because he didn't look anything special in the package. The VC12 Darth Sidious, while certainly sporting a great face sculpt, fell short with the soft goods and fur coat giving him more of an evil "bag lady" look.
Technically speaking, this isn't a "Character Debut" for the Naboo Royal Guard since a version was released in 1999 for The Episode I Collection. Aesthetically speaking, this all new iteration is worlds and 12 years of sculpt and design evolution apart from that TPM figure. This Guard deserves a variant head sculpt/running change for troop/squad building purposes. You can head swap yourself with the ball jointed neck so pick a couple up for that Naboo Hangar diorama that will be immediately enhanced by this worthy upgrade.
Hasbro re-issues the Padawan Kenobi from 2009's The Legacy Collection and includes a commlink this time around. This figure could have been vastly improved by an updated head sculpt as the likeness to McGregor falls short. It's not as premium a Vintage Collection figure as we'd like it to be and one of the weaker releases of this assortment. If you're an opener and already have the '09 release, you're good with skipping this.
Hasbro expanded upon The Phantom Menace Celebration scene finale where we witness little Ani in full Padawan garb. The figure includes a lightsaber, training helmet, and training remote orb. This is a super articulated, with great likeness, vast improvement from the 1999 "Naboo" figure, which until now had been the only version of Padawan Anakin released. It's worth the wait as Hasbro packed in 14 points of articulation, incredible detail, and even a soft goods skirt to plus it up. Can I get a "Yipeee"?
Not every bounty hunter is an armored purveyor of badassery-- El-Les was a little weak compared to other similar characters from around the galaxy, but at least he got a nice action figure. Is it time to buy? Read on!
Hasbro has hardly disappointed with the various versions of Queen Amidala and her ornate dresses. We're glad they ditched the salt shaker bodies and went with sound design. While not super-articulated because it doesn't make much sense unless they can engineer appropriate soft goods, they do include swivel elbows and sculpted legs. The likeness is decent and the sculpt and paint app for the Foreign Residence Dress is superb.
We like our Jedis dark, brooding, conflicted, and dreadlocked with warpaint. Easily one of my favorite figures of this wave, the new Quinlan Vos is finely detailed and articulated to include ball jointed hips to be battle posed in many ways. Vos was a blink and you'll miss him Easter Egg in Episode I, but Hasbro made every effort to make sure this figure stands out as one of the better ones to kick off 2012.
It's time to get a whole lot less excited with Lemmet Tauk, a guardsman from Crimson Empire. The comics were fun, but these figures? Not so much. Should you look him up now that he's cheap on eBay? Read on!
Images of the upcoming Return of the Jedi Deleted Scenes wave including Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, General Cracken, Lando Calrissian, and the Mon Calamari Rebel Pilot have been posted at Sandtroopers.com. Due to a lack of good source photos, Hasbro had to rely on composite art and these turned out fantastically in our opinion.
The Hasbro Darth Maul Giveaway site is now live. The grand prize is a life sized Darth Maul signed by George Lucas himself. 100 Force FX Lightsabers will be given away as a first prize. Entry forms can be found inside 2012 Vintage assortment figures and vehicles.
Hasbro does a great job with an all new, nicely articulated Logray and even better having him in his original Kenner card. While the figure included in the POTF2 Ewok 2 pack wasn't bad for its time, this will be the definite version of the furry shaman for awhile.
What street date? Walmart continues to put out Star Wars 2012 merchandise while Target and ToysRUs stores remain barren. I'm not a market economist or a bean counter, but if I have product lingering in the back stock not selling, it's hurting the bottom line. It's not like it's going to spoil a 12 year old movie for us. But I digress.
Clone Wars Wave 1 consists of mostly re-issued figures with the new being Anakin Skywalker, Clone Trooper Phase II, and Commander Cody with Propulsion Pack. Chewbacca has been repainted lighter from his 2011 version to be more accurate to the series character. We present all of them except for CW3 Savage Opress, who continues to be the elusive one for hunters even with this re-issue.
A head swap for Rebel troop builders is always welcome. Hasbro essentially took the head from the TSC 2006 Rebel Trooper and popped it into the new TVC body and voila! "New figure". Both head variants are readily available on store pegs in both the "Return" and "Revenge" cardbacks.