Thursday, January 11, 2007

Figure of the Day: Day 250: Darth Maul (Holographic)

DARTH MAUL Holographic
The Saga Collection
Item No.:
Asst. 85770 No. 87090
Number: 048
Includes: Lightsaber, stand
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $6.99
Availability: Fall 2006
Appearances: The Phantom Menace

Bio: Though his motivations and goals are a mystery to the Jedi, Darth Maul is kept on a tight leash by his master Darth Sidious. Seeming to be a rogue warrior bent only on chaos, he is actually a precision instrument used to make the first strike in a plan that will lead to the subjugation of the entire galaxy. In constant contact with his shadowy master, Darth Maul gladly kills or destroys any target he is given. (Taken from the figure's cardback.)

Image: Adam's 2006 prequel shelf.

Commentary: While a version of Holographic Darth Maul was released in 1999, apparently someone decided it wasn't good enough. Well, we disagree. This new release uses another mold from 1999, giving the Sith Lord a pose and a weapon never seen while he was communicating with everybody. Also, the mold and the plastic seem weak, the figure has toppled over once or twice while remaining on the stand and is, at worst, kinda crappy. With some futzing, he'll stay upright, but the 1999 Maul was much better despite having no articulation because he could actually stand up right and was a more appropriate design. The new blue coloring may excite some fans, and the clear blue lightsaber may be of some use to customizers. The figure's sculpt is still one of 1999's finest, but repeated pressings from the mold seems to have taken some of the sharpness out of the final product. It's still good, or at least OK, but it's hardly the finest Darth Maul being sold during the Q4 2006 period. If you have to have all things Maul, you'll love this. If not, well, save some money and skip this one. The unpainted face sculpt doesn't look a lot like Ray Park, as many of the first Maul figures relied on paint over sculpt to resemble the character. Not that it matters too much, but a little more attention to the likeness of the actor would be nice to have here.

Collector's Notes: Despite not being great, this figure may go down being hard to get. Available in one case assortment at one per box, there aren't that many to go around and the figure wasn't one I spotted on the pegs much here in Los Angeles. As such, if you're someone who will want every figure eventually, it would be to your advantage to pick this up on sight-- it may not be great, but it's going to hurt a lot worse if you have to pay above retail to finish your set down the road.

Day 250: January 11, 2007

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