Preview: MACE WINDU'S JEDI STARFIGHTER
The Saga Collection Vehicles
Item No.: Asst. 85196 No. 87159
Includes: Two rockets
Action Feature: Pop-open wings, retractable landing gear, opening canopy, firing rockets
Appearances: Primarily Clone Wars
Bio: A Jedi master and a man of peace by nature, Mace Windu was nonetheless a fearsome warrior, slow to engage in violence, but unstoppable in battle. As skilled a pilot as any in the Jedi order, Mace flew this customized Jedi Starfighter into many successful skirmishes against the droid legions of the Separatists. (Taken from the vehicle's box.)
Images: Behold, the living room of Adam Pawlus and the treats within.
Commentary: Sometimes a recolor is most welcome, and other times, not so much. This is one that seems to have fans split, but it's welcome for one very good reason: it's the second Clone Wars vehicle of 2006. Actually, so far, every "new" vehicle in 2006 is from Clone Wars, meaning that as a storyline it really has legs.
The vehicle itself has a really unique paint pattern. While many-- myself included-- expected a simple, straight repaint it turns out that wasn't at all the case. Hasbro's first images showed a solid purple color, but it turns out they had a two-tone purple paint job in mind. Slick!
It may look like the canopy is a wee bit discolored-- that's because it is. For whatever reason, it doesn't match the rest of the ship. It's not a huge sore point, but it is something to keep in mind when making a purchase-- yes, it looks different. Get used to it.
In person, it's pretty apparent that Hasbro decided that a simple repaint wasn't going to be good enough. The metallic purple contrasts nicely with the plain regular matte finish, which was shown in some magazines and in my corporate overlords' catalog over at Entertainment Earth. The image shown on the site and the catalog did indeed come from Hasbro, and also appears to be a photoshopped version of a previously released ship. Hasbro recently revealed updated photography with the two-tone purple paint.
Also, the vehicle itself seems to be based on the red Obi-Wan Kenobi's Jedi Starfighter, right down to the label sheet. Except it's purple instead of red. The grey color is very similar (if not identical) to Kenobi's ship.
The most exciting new component of this set is the little purple droid who, at press time, does not seem to have a name. This would be a marvelous stand-alone figure and I'm crossing my fingers that we someday see one, but for now you can enjoy Mace Windu's little purple friend as he resides in the droid socket.
Collector's Notes: And purple makes five. To date, Hasbro has released five versions of this Jedi Starfighter: red, yellow, blue, green, and now purple. After we get orange, black, and yellow, we'll be able to populate the basic eight-pack of Crayolas. Black has been confirmed for 2006. Two additional Starfighters are rumored for later this year, but it is not known if Kit Fisto and Saesee Tiin will actually get vehicles this year, or from which movie they will take their designs.
The back of the box shows a pilot figure which may confuse some fans. The figure is the Revenge of the Sith (and Heroes & Villains Collection) Mace Windu figure, but with the Clone Wars Anakin Skywalker headgear. At this time, Mace Windu has never been packaged with a... well, I guess it's some sort of flight halo, isn't it?
The only things they could do to make this more of a special piece would be to add a little more chrome. Mace Windu's lightsaber in the second two prequels was a shiny silver and gold, making the cannons in some super-bright colors would make this really stand out. Of course, toy collectors like black and grey pretty much exclusively, so it will be quite interesting to see what the reaction is to a purple vehicle. As it has ties to the one of the most respected men alive today, though, I expect it will do well and be popular. Plus it was from Clone Wars, despite Hasbro having goofed on the box where it identified the vehicle as being from Revenge of the Sith.
This sample was obtained from Entertainment Earth on July 8.