Galactic Hunter.com's Star Wars Q&A with Adam Pawlus
October 15, 2009
1. Based on one of Hasbro's recent replies, it seems that ESB will be the first movie completely rendered in plastic. Do you agree? With ICMG forthcoming and the highest ranking remaining fan request is Toryn Farr, I think we are just about done. Anybody else of any trivial significance missing from ESB? I am not talking about repaints, reissues, super-articulated resculpts, just new characters. If ESB is first to be finished, which movie will be next? ROTS? Not much missing from ROTS, other than the forthcoming Utai?
Depending on where you want to take this argument, I can take you there. I was flipping through a behind-the-scenes book of Star Wars pictures the other night and saw multiple characters that simply have not been done or updated in the modern line from numerous films. The real question is, are they worth doing? The hobby has mutated from a fun collecting diversion to a sort of a weird 14-year-long funeral procession for many of our childhoods-- we returned or never let go, and we're still here dwelling in it for one reason or another. While there are fun and desirable characters to do, we're beyond the point where it's easy to say "wow, that's a fun idea!" and more in the "well, I guess they could do that one now." Do we really want this stuff? Some of it, sure, but a lot of it seems to be less an issue of Hasbro bringing something fun to the table and more of a game of "Where's Waldo?" where both fans and the Hasbro development team struggles to find new or interesting characters to do. That's one way to look at it.
The other is that most of the good stuff has been done and redone, with some good options left to do. I look at Toryn Farr as less a good choice and more an obligation, when Hasbro would probably be better served fixing up Hoth Luke or Bespin Han over a background Rebel that really won't make a big splash-- if anything, I think she'd be a liability in a wave. (However, she'd be a wonderful centerpiece in a nice Battle Pack.) With the many extras and background designs, these lines could go on forever if Hasbro wanted. There are some nifty background aliens on Cloud City, like a Snivvian, plus Hasbro hasn't done an update of the proper 1980s-style Hoth Rebel Soldier yet. Between concept figures, background characters, troopers, and resculpts, Hasbro could easily put out a wave of 6 Empire Strikes Back figures every year or two if they so desired. I mean, who doesn't want a new Captain Piett, or a spiffy ESB-specific Carbonite block?
Revenge of the Sith does have opportunities, but it wasn't much of a new character movie in the first place. There's room for a ton of retooled figures, like a Royal Guard with a pike, or an improved Grievous Bodyguard. New characters exist too, like background senators, Mon Calamari dancers/swimmers, perhaps some younglings. It drops off rather quickly simply because Hasbro has covered a lot of ground, and it's really up to them (and us) if it's worth continuing. There's always going to be another figure to make, because so many designs exist. From all the Episode I behind-the-scenes articles, there are numerous aliens and background people unmade as toys, odds are there are dozens we've never had a good look at from the various films, and it's not like we need to see them all made either.
The big question now isn't "what's left to do?" but rather "what do you want?" A lot of fans don't seem to have an answer for this, which leads me to believe Hasbro has pretty much milked this one for what it's worth in some sense, but truth is these lines could probably continue another four or five years without too much difficulty. Just expect a parade of resculpts in there.
2. Hasbro has spoken about how they have made almost every figure in the last "Fans Choice Poll" that was run by ToyFare magazine. They have also said in a past Hasbro Q&A that Ben Quadrinaros is at the "bottom of the barrel" of their list of figures to do. Given that they are so happy to have completed almost all the candidates for that poll and that there are still a few characters remaining from the previous polls, namely Ben Quadrinaros , Bom Vimdim, and Ann + Tann the Twileks, why is it that they havent been made into figures yet ?? All 3 have done very well in the individual fan sites polls and are sure to be in the next ToyFare poll, Ben maybe because of what they said about him What are the chances that they will get made?? I enjoyed the "Fan's Choice Metrics" that you did in the past and hopefully these old polls can be closed and finished with too.
I absolutely will be doing an update to the old Fan's Choice Metrics again, but I might not touch on the one from the ToyFare poll as it's quite extensively covered.
It's true that a few haven't been done yet, and some-- like Nym-- was an odd choice in the first place. Ben Quadrinaros I tend to find quite dull, but I also see a decent fan outpouring for him every year. I honestly don't know why Hasbro didn't do him yet unless it's out of spite. I think he sucks but hey, that's me. Bom Vimdim I fully expect in the next 2-3 years. Ann & Tann, who knows.
Ultimately we'll probably see all of these figures unless Lucasfilm puts the skids on it, simply because, as we've been exploring, there's only so much stuff you can make. There's a finite number of new characters to produce, so Hasbro will probably be borrowing from these lists simply because there aren't a ton of other options.
3. What is the width I need to put the [big 2008 Millennium Falcon toy vehicle] on a shelf? I know the width from amazon.com, but that is the shell of the ship, and not the landing blocks. I am looking at a 45 cm shelf right now...but will that be wide enough for the BMF to stand on?
...probably not. It's about 22-inches wide at its widest, but due to the positioning of the landing skids, you won't necessarily need that much shelf space. So if my metric conversion application is right, that's about 55.88cm, which probably is too big for your shelves. If it's just the skids you're worried about, it should fit in your parameters, but that's assuming there's no wall to get in the way over the parts that hang over the sides of the flat surface on which it stands.
I display mine on the floor underneath a large shelving rack, as it puts it in a position where it can't fall off of anything. I also found you can display it on most decent size TV trays (like the things you eat off of), a small card table may be a better display solution. Plus you can store boxes of stuff under the table.
4. Obviously, there is a wealth of online information and resource material for every aspect of the Star Wars universe. I prefer Wookieepeida to the official Star Wars site, but I have a friend who feels the opposite way. What are some of your favorite sites for Star Wars research? Also, specifically geared towards the collecting community, where do you like to go for picture resources, etc? For example, you always seem to know which cantina denizens sit next to each other. What websites do you recommend for budding diorama builders, etc?
I use a lot of books-- I still buy print stuff to use to flip through when looking for data to research stuff. Wookieepedia is handy because it often links to the official site, but the main problem I have comes from knowing what it is I need to know. If someone writes in saying "I saw a picture of a costume that kinda looks like this, what is it?" it's almost impossible to answer that unless I already knew what it was because I saw it in a book. Which, thankfully, I often do.
For layouts and such, Wookieepedia is good, but that's because they replicate some blueprints or layouts from magazines and books over the years. Also, when it comes to dioramas, authenticity isn't everything-- the exact blueprints from a set might not yield the best results, when what you want is something to best show off your toys and/or talents. Freeze framing the DVD can get you a lot, but the reference photos you find in your local bookstore may yield some of the best results.
I suggest you kick off your library with the two Star Wars Chronicles books, which tend to go cheap used. Trust me, great resources, lots of photos, plus a number of scale comparison charts of characters and vehicles so you get an idea of how big everything should be.
5. I've been watching the Legacy cases on EE and have only seen one case for each of the next two waves (TPM and ROTJ). Are there going to be any revision cases or has Hasbro decided that the best way is to ship only one case of each wave?
It seems that other than the one ROTJ revision case, that's it-- each mix seems to be just one case for some reason. This may change, but it's shocking how light it is compared to previous years.
So yeah, bonus Q&A! I used to write 3 columns a week, 10 questions a time, when I was at Rebelscum. Thankfully there aren't as many questions, but I got to a point of overflow so now you're getting this bonus column.
Not much else to add just now. Come back next Monday for more!
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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