Shadows of the Empire Collection
Item No.: Asst. 69605 No. 69562
Includes: Axe, cape, gun
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: July 1996
Appearances: Primarily Shadows of the Empire comics and novel
Bio: The fall of the base on Hoth signaled dangerous times for the Rebellion. In an attempt to gain information about recent assassination attempts on Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa and Chewbacca followed a lead to the Imperial Base in Coruscant. There they hoped to confront Prince Xizor, Underlord of the Black Sun, who was rumored to have information regarding these attempts. Imperial City was not a safe place for wanted Rebel Alliance figures such as Chewbacca and Leia, so to avoid arrest the two disguised themselves as intergalactically known bounty hunters. Chewbacca dyed large patches of black in his hair and adopted the weaponry of Snoova, a well-known Wookiee bounty hunter. To further authenticate the disguise, he reluctantly shaved the fur on his head to a short crew cut.
While on Coruscant, Chewbacca discovered that the charismatic Xizor was responsible for the attempts on Skywalker's life. After a narrow escape from the labyrinth of Black Sun's hideout, Chewie was able to contact Luke Skywalker and Lando Calrissian and inform them that Leia was being held prisoner on Coruscant by Xizor. The band knew then that they had only one option: go to Coruscant and rescue Leia. (Taken from the figure's cardback.)
Image: Adam Pawlus' computer, left monitor.
Commentary: In the 1990s, Hasbro actually had some degree of difficulty getting the word out about new stuff, and the first word of Chewbacca in Bounty Hunter Disguise came from a Lucasfilm Licensing publication that indicated a "Chewbacca in Snoova Suit" was coming out. Nobody knew who or what a Snoova was at the time, but we eventually found out it was an armored Wookiee bounty hunter, and Chewie would assume his identity. The figure itself is essentially a heavily retooled version of the 1995 Chewbacca figure, with dyed fur, added armor, and basically everything you see in the photo that's very un-Chewie-like. With the typical 6 points of articulation, the neck is basically stiff reducing it to a 5-joint figure. He can sit quite well and has places to plug in some accessories. There's two holes in his back, one for his cape and one for his vibro-axe, and overall, he's pretty cool-- as a toy. He's a little goofy but as the first non-movie take on Chewbacca, and as one of the first-ever Expanded Universe figures, this one is a real keeper.
Collector's Notes: Due to its unusual look, this figure was not the most popular at the time but nowhere near the weak seller that his case mate, Prince Xizor, was. Today, he's dirt cheap and well worth snagging as flat-top cyborg armored Wookiees are hard to find, and as you may have noticed he's also my mascot for Q&A. Well worth getting, as he's fun.
Day 74: July 19, 2006