GOVERNOR TARKIN Grand Moff
30th Anniversary Collection Comic Packs
Item No.: Asst. 87504 No. 87507
Includes: Blaster. reprint of Marvel's Star Wars #3
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: April 2007
Appearances: Star Wars
Bio: Governor Tarkin commands a personal contingent of elite stormtroopers aboard the Death Star, each one personally cleared and handpicked by the Governor himself. (Taken from the figure's cardback.)
Image: Adam's toy room.
Commentary: To kick-start the comic packs range, Hasbro wisely decided that some repaints would be a cheap way to see how they would go. With Governor Tarkin in green, of all colors, it turned out the experiment was a huge success. Even in wacky colors, fans would flock to $9.99 sets of two action figures with a full-size comic. And why not? It was a spectacular deal. The Tarkin figure isn't what one might call particularly authentic, but it's a new interpretation of the character. Hasbro took the 2005 Revenge of the Sith figure and painted it green, adding some extra color to his face in the process. Of all three figures based on this mold, I'd say this one seems the most lively. While he doesn't really match in the shelves with your movie figures, the Marvel-inspired green uniform really makes this figure stand out in an otherwise authentic collection. In many ways, it's like a lot of the vintage figures-- many of which were flawed in amusing ways-- just like a lot of licensed toys in the 1970s and earlier. (Have you seen some of the wacky colors the Hanna-Barberra licensees used? Holy cow.) If you're a collector that picks up action figures solely as totems of your favorite movie and comic characters in miniature, this isn't a good figure to buy. If you think repaints which border on the ridiculous and/or stupid qualifies as awesome, this is a must-buy. This collection also had a bright blue Darth Vader (later repainted as dark blue, party poopers) and a doofy recolor of Chewbacca. I'm pretty harsh on what I like as repaints go, but it's refreshing to see a figure where Hasbro no doubt said "to Hell with it" and just decided to do something so off the deep end that it couldn't do anything but succeed.
Tarkin has 10 points of articulation and very tiny hands. If you're one to improve your figures through parts-swapping and painting, I'd suggest you get this one to "improve" your 2005 Revenge of the Sith Tarkin or your 2007 A New Hope Tarkin from the Diamond exclusive boxed set of Death Star limeys. I just happen to like greenie here as is. While the "Marvel color" concept seems pretty thin to me, the fact that Hasbro actually manufactured a figure that looks a lot like a knock-off action figure produced as a result of a bad game of "telephone" really does work with me. Just because it's so weird, you have to get it. Oh, and the comic has the alternate Jabba the Hutt in it, so you should probably get it just to see the wacky book too. You can't miss with this one if you have a sense of humor about the hobby in its various forms.
Collector's Notes: Two versions of this comic pack have shipped so far, but both have the same version of Tarkin. Version one was packaged with a stormtrooper with blue shadows painted on his armor and red lenses. Version two loses the blue. Neither is more common as far as can be told, but the blue one has been phased out.
Day 683: March 19, 2008