Galactic Hunter.com's Star Wars Q&A with Adam Pawlus
February 2, 2009
1. after collecting clones for some time now, I thought it would be fun
to aquire a small collection of the core characters from the
Original Trilogy (the only Han Solo figure I have is from 1995...) I
don't know if you have answered this question before - if so, please
link me to that edition of Q&A. If not, could you please tell me the
(in your opinion) best version of Han, Leia, Luke, Chewie, C-3PO, R2D2,
Obi-Wan, Yoda, Lando and the Emperor (I already own the Vader from the Order
66 pack, which, if I remember correctly, is your favorite).
I get this question a lot. A lot. To the point where I actually started thinking one or two people used various names to keep asking it. (As far as I can tell, they aren't, and I'm just crazy.) As such, I'll give my standard answer-- I write a column that focuses on this called Figure of the Day. In it, I review a figure every work day-- and most of them have comments on how the figure rates relative to other characters. Given that a reader's definition of core character differs greatly from another's, I don't really want to run down a list of every character that had a line of dialogue in the film in an effort to satisfy everyone, but rather, I think you might be best served searching FOTD by character keyword to see if you missed anything good. Otherwise I could probably spend a week or more on just this very question, only to get a lot of hate mail in return as I didn't select someone's favorite.
A good rule of thumb is to start by checking out the vintage editions from 2004-2007, and go from there. For example, Vintage Lando is presently as good as he gets, but I'd say it's debatable if that Yoda is truly the best one, and the new 2009 Obi-Wan Kenobi is so much better than the 2004 "Vintage" release it isn't funny. Photo galleries and FOTD should be a big help here, as you may not (heck, you won't) agree with me all the time.
2. What is the probability that Hasbro will make an R6 astromech in its build-a-droid series? The R6s, along with the previously released R7s, are EU but the R6s look far more "slightly off-camera" than the R7s, which lets the R6s blend in more with R2-R5 astromechs.
There's one answer fans seem to hate more than others-- and that's "anything is possible." When it comes to upcoming releases, especially in this pre-Toy Fair period, that's really what you're going to find unless you missed something, and I don't think we did. It's my understanding that Hasbro has said something to the effect that they plan on exploring multiple styles of astromech droid over its build-a-droid line, in addition to the anti-Yuuzahn Vong bots, HK-47, U-3PO, and many others. So I'd expect it, but if what you're gunning for are any specifics, well, those I can't help you with until Hasbro decides to tell us what they are or aren't doing here. The thing with the build-a-droids is that they're all generally obscure enough that one isn't any more known than another-- to anyone who doesn't carry an encyclopedic knowledge of the saga or figures in general, it just boils down to "I like the green one" and its origins are pretty much inconsequential.
3. You mentioned in [the January 19] Q and A question #2 that there was some poorly executed digital C3PO work done for the OT DVD release. I don't ever remember reading this or noticing it. Any ideas where this can be seen in the films?
In the VHS release (and the theatrical prints), there's a really awful digital C-3PO in the enhanced shots of the Landspeeder cruising around Mos Eisley. It tends to zip by pretty quickly so you don't always notice, but if you check out the trading cards from the Special Edition era you can't miss it. The DVD has what appears to be a slightly improved model, but it still looks like a fairly rough digital figure as far as I can tell. This is only in the very first shot of (I believe) Chapter 19, in the first few cuts.
4. regarding your answer to question #2 on your Jan. 19 Q&A: There's an "in universe" answer from the Republic Commando game and Karen Traviss' books would be that the clones don't all sound exactly like Jango. The thought is that many of the clones were trained by Jango himself, especially the ARC's and so they picked up his accent, then they in turn trained other troopers and they also picked up the same accent. We only hear commanders talk really in the movies so we don't know how the large majority of troopers talk... So the thought would be that the clones in the OT wouldn't talk like Jango because they have never heard the way he talks...
Well, this is where it all starts to fall apart. If the original Clones and ARCs picked up their voice from Jango, like Boba, wouldn't subsequent generations also pick up the accent after exposure to the previous generation? Given their exposure to training in what I presume is a fairly closed system with the same people speaking the same way, I don't get why the accent would necessarily change.
It's one of those areas where odds are nobody is going to get George to give an in-universe explanation because there's so much conflicting data. I mean, there are official books that do explicitly state the Empire's forces are a mix of clones and enlisted men. We're dealing with a continuity that's filled with conflicting information, and that's basically just how it's going to be because of various out-of-the-universe reasons. For example, there's a Talz Jedi Knight, Foul Moudama, in the original Clone Wars series. And there's a whole tribe of the buggers on last week's The Clone Wars. How do you reconcile a potential situation in which there's a member of a mysterious species with advanced training guarding the most important man in the galaxy mere weeks after the species' discovery, for example?
My guess is the real reason for keeping the voices distinct is so the Fetts sound one way and the Trilogy troopers sound another. Keeping them separate isn't a terrible idea, and I think even the filmmakers realize how jarring it is to change some of these voices throughout the saga. Odds are the issue wouldn't have even come up were it not for the Hasbro figures.
5. Do you think there might be an Outrider coming out [in Titanium Series]? since Xizor's ship is being released, I would love to have a YT-2600.
I see no reason why Hasbro wouldn't, but like I said above, it's difficult to respond to these unless I have information that you simply missed. If you look at the die-cast line, it seems to be doing well (for now) and I presume as long as it continues to be produced, you'll see more non-movie vehicles like this simply because there aren't that many movie vehicles left to do. What the real concern here is if the line will survive any reshaping Hasbro may be doing of its product lines this year-- there might be stronger financial opportunities with cartoon toys for kids, or even in the larger vehicle size, as the year goes on.
Right now it seems lightsabers, action figures (and things made of multiple action figures), Transformers, unleashed, and the $20something vehicles are doing really well. Mighty Muggs seem to be doing OK save for the odd pegwarmer (although some are really beginning to back up at retail), and Titanium seems to turn over so quickly it's hard to tell what you may have missed. I'd expect it to keep being produced, given it's one of the cheaper things Hasbro makes and it seems to sell, but it's going to be up to retail support, fan demand, and Hasbro's inability to find a similarly priced and more profitable SKU that fills a similar need.
I wrote most of this in advance due to my being away from the home office last weekend-- so yeah, there you go! Have a good week, send in your questions, and I'll be here next time. My backlog is getting a little dry, so if you've got a burning question, fire away.
Also, I got Legacy Wave 5 last week. I'm largely very, very happy with it. (One of them is going up later today in FOTD, and another one will go up in a few weeks.) The three Stormtroopers are probably the least interesting of the bunch, but I love the aliens, Obi-Wan, and the awesome build-a-droids. (For the record, the R5 will be the more common as his parts are packed with the 4 reshipping figures.) The Jawa is basically a repaint with a new ammo belt, but still great. Obi-Wan Kenobi is so good Hasbro should be ashamed of the 2004 Vintage release. And Dice Ibegon... uh... kinda creepy if you look at it with the right mindset. But hey, there it is, now you can have one and she can make out with Lak Sivrak or whatever depraved stuff those former Trek writers put in that short story 15 years ago...
Got questions? I bet you do. Email me with "Q&A" somewhere in the subject line and hopefully I'll get to yours in the next column!
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