Friday, March 30, 2007

Figure of the Day: Day 328: Saelt-Marae (Yak Face)

Power of the Force Collection 2
Item No.:
Asst. 69605 No. 69721
Number: n/a
Includes: Staff, some have a Freeze Frame
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $4.99
Availability: September 1997- Early 1999
Appearances: Return of the Jedi

Bio: One of Jabba the Hutt's top agents, very little is known about the mysterious Saelt-Marae or his specific connection to the crime lord. He could often be found hanging out in Jabba's desert palace. (Taken from the figure's Freeze Frame cardback from 1998.)

Image: Adam Pawlus' toy shelves.

Commentary: Within the first three years of the modern Star Wars line, Kenner remade virtually the entire vintage line in those early days, including obscure aliens like Saelt-Marae, better known to you and me as Yak Face. He's been described as a Muppet, as Joe Camel, and as a part of the male anatomy. No matter how you see him, he's a very tall figure with six points of articulation, very good (for its time) decoration, and a vague similarity to the vintage figure. This new version has a bright orange coat, a nice big staff, colorful pants, and big white whiskers. With big hands that can grip the included accessory, this figure does basically everything you'd want it to do-- as in, stand in a diorama and look pretty. He can't sit in any vehicles, but he's sure to make any display just a little bit more visually exciting.

There have been no rumors of a rerelease and next to no fan requests for a reissue or a resculpt, which is a little unusual as new collectors often express a strong desire for older figures to be made widely available once more. It's possible that Revenge of the Sith has shifted the focus of many newcomers away from what a lot of fans loved a decade ago-- seedy aliens, worn-out droids, and various Imperials-- to more of a focus on Clone Troopers and Jedi Knights. As such, I have no expectations that this figure will see another release in the near future.

Collector's Notes: There weren't a lot of variants on this one-- he could come with a Freeze Frame, or not. As such, this figure has been rather unremarkable in the modern line unlike the basically legendary vintage figure made of Yak Face. This figure was a brisk seller in the markets I had the ability to monitor, outselling a number of figures that he shipped with like EV-9D9. Today, there is absolutely no problem getting this figure for its original price, or for even less if you're lucky that day.

Day 328: March 30, 2007

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