Rabé (Queen's Chambers)
Released September 2005
Reviewed by Adam Pawlus
Photography by Michael Sullenger
Reviewed on December 6, 2004
The Fan's Choice figures offered through the Power of the Jedi and Saga collections lead to a ton of great figures being made, and a ton of great figures that weren't elected to the line-- but thankfully Hasbro realized they were all good choices and made a few more of them, like the Rabé, one of very few handmaiden figures to come out of Hasbro since the prequels started.
The handmaiden includes a base and a small blaster.
Like Senator Yarua, legend has it Rabé was a figure that's been on the backburner for quite some time and would have been a late 2000/early 2001 release in Episode I's action figure line if it continued. As such, the design looks a wee bit dated but is still plenty good.
While brand new, the figure looks like it might have been part of an older school of thought when it comes to design, most notably in the head.
Under the robes, the head of Rabé looks a little generic-- the sculpt is hard to make out under the painted makeup, so it's a little tough to say "oh, this is a great sculpt." It might be-- I'm not sure. I can say that it's pretty passable, though, and while it doesn't ooze with any lifelike features or give off any personality, the added makeup does make it look a little more female than it might otherwise look. Since the handmaidens were usually shrouded in their costumes, and since Hasbro probably won't issue multiple handmaidens in this costume with variant head sculpts, the slightly generic look is a good thing. For those wanting to make dioramas based on the prequels, you may be best served buying several Rabe figures.
On the whole, Rabé doesn't break a lot of ground in articulation. Her robes, exquisitely sculpted as they are, don't act as a garment that lends itself to much movement. There's some limited articulation in the arms and the waist, and that's really about it. With the lack of vehicles in the Star Wars range these days, the inability to sit isn't much of a drawback-- the ability to sit would probably require the use of oddly placed joints or inferior plastic, so as it is, it's good.
This set includes the traditional stand and a blaster.
The base is nothing new-- but it is welcome. This figure can stand just fine all by his lonesome, which means the base is just gravy.
The gun can be carried nicely and is painted well. As the figure wasn't seen shooting a lot in this costume, it's more or less an extra-- and as such, is welcome. Extra weapons are a good thing.
Since Hasbro decided to stick with what worked, we're getting more OTC-esque cardbacks. Hooray! It won't last so enjoy it while it does.
There's a lot to the packaging, surprisingly. The double-border is just like the original Kenner packaging, and the black background is also very similar to the old toys. Since it's a prequel figure, the OTC logo has been dropped but the remaining design elements have remained in place. Which is a good thing.
The background of the Queen's throne is pretty slick, as it's a fairly great design and iconic of all things Naboo. There's really no more appropriate background, so we're happy to see Hasbro picking out some excellent photos like this one for use on the figure packaging.
The nameplate for the figures is a sticker, and the plastic bubble is grooved so it fits snuggly in place and won't be off-center. Customizers will probably have a field day with this packaging, as there are a lot of generic elements you can easily change out andcreate a package that's very specific to your tastes.
As of today, this figure is just becoming available in the USA. It came out a few months ago but is still an emerging assortment.
For what's essentially a generic figure from several years ago, the design is pretty great. It's nice to see Episode I finally get some attention after the past few years, Power of the Jedi didn't offer much for that first prequel and Saga's selection from the primary prequel could be held in one hand. Hasbro hasn't really done much in the way of female figures lately, and with the first five figures from 2005, there are two aliens and three women-- that's a heck of a great start to a (in theory) new year!
Our review sample was obtained from Entertainment Earth in October 2004.