Q&A: Solo, Clone Wars, and Vintage Formats

By Adam Pawlus — Sunday, August 5, 2018

This week in Q&A - The Clone Wars! No, Hasbro doesn't have plans for us yet. And More Solo - maybe, who knows. And what's worth bringing back from the Vintage era? Oh, have I got opinions.

Be sure you send in your questions for next week. Read on!

1. Do you think that Hasbro will make the figures for the Clone Wars in 3.75 inch as cartoons or realistic or both?

Hasbro described their plans as "a conversation," which I assume means they were as surprised as we were and they're going to start thinking about it. Given costs, I assume that we might see animated figures from existing molds in The Vintage Collection packaging - maybe even something inspired by the Droids or Ewoks templates - or everything is The Black Series 6-inch. With 12 episodes I don't have hopes that you will see an extensive line, particularly given that the attention span on any new TV show seems to stop about halfway through its run. If we get anything, I will be pleased.

My money is on reruns and 6-inch figures.



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2. I was wondering if Hasbro has plans to make a Dryden Vos 3.75 or 6-inch figure. I find it very odd that the main villain of Solo: A Star Wars Story has been omitted or forgotten. I'm glad to see Hasbro showcased the rest of Beckett's crew at SDCC.

Dryden Vos was recast during production, so I'm wondering if there was one based on the original actor and make-up that will never see the light of day. It would be most awesome to see as an artifact of a lost film, sort of, but odds are it won't be for a while. We know he was cast around September 2017, and it usually takes Hasbro about 12-18-months to make a figure once they have designs, and it wouldn't stun me at all if Disney and friends kept Hasbro in the dark since he might not have been seen as a toy priority. Long story short - yeah probably, eventually, if fans make a fuss. It seems the old adult collector fans are more interested in the Star Wars Story movies (if they actually went to see them) so there's likely to be some interest there, eventually, maybe. With that in mind, never forget it took is 20 years to get Grand Moff Tarkin.

You probably know what I'm about to say - make a fuss over it. Hasbro notices if a name keeps peeking up over and over. We're getting 6-inch Rebels and we got a Rathtarr. We got so many of them. Hasbro is still listening, but never forget there's a time delay on any response because manufacturing and approvals take a whole heck of a long time. I'd also like to get another Qi'ra or two - she had some awesome costumes. And some more Pykes. Whatever they got - but Dryden Vos would be a perfect place to go next.




3. Adam, which brought you the most added fun as a kid: accessory packs, mail away figures, vehicles, or play sets? As a kid who went through weapons quickly, I thought that accessory packs were a Godsend. Just wondered about you?
-- Derek

As a kid I had no accessory packs, only one of the mail-away figures, several vehicles, and one playset until after the line died. I got most of my stuff second-hand at garage sales, antique shops, and other piles of refuse because nobody gave a crap about Star Wars during many of my formative years.

So with that, I'd say vehicles. I did a lot with the one playset I had, but the vehicles were the most fun and the most mobile. They could store figures and weapons, they moved and did stuff, and they weren't too expensive. I love playsets, but vehicles are the way to go here. You can cheat - the Millennium Falcon had playset elements, for example.

Mail-away figures are for old people. (Sorry, old people.) At this point destroying 5-10 carded figures and writing a check is a waste of everybody's time when you could achieve pretty much the same level of hype and excitement by offering an item to Entertainment Earth, Amazon, BBTS, and so on. The last few figures were 5 stickers plus $7, and they could probably save us all a lot of grief just by giving an e-tailer a new figure as a single-carded exclusive for once. Weapons packs are nice as supplemental items sold through the manufacturer directly, but are poor items for retail. I love playsets, and I love what Hasbro is doing with Solo playsets like you wouldn't believe. It's a thrill to see these. I also think they're going to tank, not because Hasbro did a bad job, or even because the market doesn't want playsets, but because I suspect problems when you make scenes from a movie a lot of kids and collectors neglected to go see. I am giddy to get them both, though.



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New stuff! It's reset season, so stores are putting their latest and greatest out now. New Jurassic World toys, Solo stuff, and even Imaginext are slowly popping up in preparations for the Christmas season. (And oh, do check out Imaginext blind bags series 11, nostalgia fans.) I just got the new 6-inch Gamorrean Guard on Friday because Target wouldn't let me get Vandor-1 on Friday. How dare you. (I got it on Sunday.) The Gamorrean Guard is spectacular, just like the 3 3/4-inch Imperial Combat Assault Tank. (It is incredible.) When given the chance - and a little bit of hindsight - Hasbro still makes utterly spectacular toys. But you knew this - every time we got a figure based on a movie we all knew and saw, we were more excited for the products, and the products were generally better. Boss Nass got better. Yoda got better. The Cantina Aliens got increasingly more accurate. Having access to good resource materials and context makes it a lot more exciting, and I truly hope Disney, Hasbro, and Lucasfilm can conspire to keep more "old" stuff in the line. "Old" meaning "anything we've seen already." I'll happily buy new-to-me Disney-era characters, or ones that are more accurate if there was a need for some level of improvement.

I'm not going to dump on any particular scale, mostly because when Hasbro does something good I'm excited for it. (I'm more excited for the weird stuff.) I just cracked open the 6-inch Gamorrean Guard and it's really great - it costs more, but you get three different weapons and an opening mouth.


After five years, Hasbro has kept its figure selection pretty superficial - we've got a few heavy hitters and a lot of troopers, but the Gamorrean is our first 6-inch humanoid alien from Return of the Jedi - leaving plenty of Ewoks, Admiral Ackbar, the Emperor's throne, Jabba's Palace Luke, and a whole slate of characters from the first 40 minutes of the film (and the first couple of waves of toys from 1983 and 1984.)

When left without a directive of a new movie, Hasbro tends to come up with some of the most interesting toys when they just go rummage through the bins of history. We got our biggest and best vehicles after the movies went to bed. Hasbro digs out the coolest aliens after the edict to promote the new movie ends. Granted, I'm a lot less picky - the downsized, cheaper vehicles were a lot of fun and I got a lot of joy from the simplified (and $6) figures when that was a thing. Cost-cutting can lead to good times, if they stick with it and don't try to plus them up. I mean, we had $10 2-packs just a few years ago - I'd love to see that again. I don't necessarily need rocket launchers and voice chips if it makes the toys preposterously impulse-purchase-friendly.

So! As always I refuse to say any part of the line is a has-been. We're seeing a lot of really good stuff right now, and I hope that we'll see some more chances for Hasbro to flex its muscle without the demands of a marketing calendar. Most of us started as fans when we saw a new movie at some point, but we stuck around because we rewatched the movie 40 times and then bought toys based on it as new ones came out. It's a good business model. And hopefully I'll assemble Vandor-1 this week.

--Adam Pawlus

Got questions? Email me with Q&A in the subject line now! I'll answer your questions as soon as time (or facts) permit.