Clone Wars Wal-Mart Bonus Pack
Item No.: Asst. 85205 No. 84753
Includes: Blaster rifle, Anakin figure (with his gear)
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: September 2003
Appearances: Attack of the Clones, Clone Wars
Bio: Clone troopers were identical, genetically-modified soldiers bred and trained to serve in the Republic's army during the conflict that came to be known as the Clone Wars. (Stolen from Wookieepedia.)
Image: Adam Pawlus' toy shelves.
Commentary: Back in 2003, there weren't many Clone Trooper action figures to be had, so this one was a real treat. By taking the (at the time) most articulated Clone Trooper on the market, Hasbro whipped up a plan for surefire success. With this Lieutenant (and two others), Hasbro created Wal-Mart exclusive "double" packs that basically stuck together two basic carded figures for $4.96. So you got a Clone, and another figure, for dirt freaking cheap. Since we were all starved for Clones, this proved quite exciting, as the value was (and still is) unmatched making it the deal of the year. Two newly released and exclusive figures for five bucks? You'll never see that again.
This figure was the one of the first-ever blue Lieutenant figures, which made it quite exciting. Your white and blue friend here had articulation at the shoulders, wrists, elbows (swivel), waist, hips, neck, and knees. So 12 joints was pretty cool, but nothing compared to the super-articulated sculpt we'd get just months later. The figure's construction is nothing spectacular, although it's worth noting that the white plastic used in some figures during 2002 and 2003 was prone to discoloration via a weird film that would grow on the figure-- this can often be wiped off, but not always. It isn't "yellowing" but some other oddball process I've seen on clone figures, Padme, and at least one R2-D2. A little water and a paper towel can fix the discolored helmet and arms easily, but for fans of packaged figures, well, that's just the way it's going to be. Kudos to Hasbro for seemingly since having found a better grade of white plastic, as discolored troop builders makes the hobby seem like a bit of a waste. Still, it's unfortunate that the materials used had to suck. Oh, and the visor is nicely glossy. I really like that. Hopefully we'll see more glossy visors on Clones as I don't care for the matte ones so much.
Collector's Notes: This was one of the exclusives that I turned tracking down into a holy quest, and even then, I only saw them twice. (And yes, one time I bought the whole freaking case. Sue me. You'd have done it too.) Surprisingly, the figures never really shot up in value. I don't generally set expectations for the secondary market but the fact these often had times struggling to sell for $10 surprises me-- the set in and of itself is totally worth $10. You get two figures, that's a $10 value, right? Apparently not.
Day 511: September 29, 2007