Thursday, August 7, 2008

Figure of the Day: Day 822: Mustafar Panning Droid

30th Anniversary Collection Basic Figures
Item No.:
Asst. 87500 No. 87753
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: #0808
Includes: Lava base, bukkit, display stand, platform
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $6.99
Availability: February 2008
Appearances: Revenge of the Sith

Image: Adam Pawlus' TV Tray.

Bio: Obi-Wan and Anakin engage in their penultimate battle on Mustafar. During the lightsaber duel, they must quickly avoid falling into the burning lava when the collection arms collapse. Obi-Wan jumps onto a replusorlift platform, while Anakin leaps onto a panning droid. (Taken from the figure's cardback.)

Commentary: Hasbro revealed that the original plan for the Mustafar Panning Droid was for him to be an accessory, and not an actual carded figure. Part of him would come with Obi-Wan, the other part, Anakin/Vader. Both of these elements would be used to make the Mustafar duel figures a little more enticing, but it appears cost issues resulted in this figure being carded separately-- which seems to have worked out just fine. The resulting robot is a little flimsy, but that's mostly due to the design from Lucasfilm and not Hasbro's own sculpting efforts. With such tiny limbs, it's pretty much impossible to create really sturdy parts. The bucket plugs into his hands, and a set of his hands plugs into the base. It works fairly well, but it could be sturdier-- especially given that both the droid and the base were meant to act as display stands for two other action figures.

As this figure has an unusual shape, I can't help but like it. New kinds of droids are always good to see, and this little guy is about as different as they come. If you think he looks neat, don't hesitate to add him to your collection. It's a nicely designed robot, there's a lot of detail here, and it was designed to function as a toy in addition to being an authentic collectible figure. You can't lose with this one... except that for $7, there's not a lot of figure here. Still, if you're reading this column after 822 entries and likely own several hundred figures, it's hard to come up with a compelling reason to pass on something as unique as this.

Collector's Notes: Available in smaller quantities than the other wave 1 2008 figures, this particular release doesn't seem to be in particularly high demand. As such, I'd advise against paying too much for it. As Hasbro now seems intent on rereleasing every figure they make, it's also pretty likely this will, someday, be in a battle pack.

--Adam Pawlus

Day 822: August 7, 2008

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