Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Figure of the Day: Day 826: Hoth Rebel Soldier

Saga Target Exclusive Accessory Sets
Item No.:
Asst. 32532 No. 32537
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: n/a
Includes: Backpack, rifle, scanner, missiles, gas masks, sentry droid, power box
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $9.99
Availability: Fall 2002
Appearances: The Empire Strikes Back

Image: Adam Pawlus' toy shelves.

Bio: After going through Luke Skywalker's closet, this Rebel Soldier decided to hit on some of the snowbunnies on Hoth. (Taken from Adam's wacky "let's make up something" pile.)

Commentary: When an exclusive needs to be done in a hurry, sometimes creativity takes a back seat to practicality. This Hoth Rebel Soldier is made up of the body of the 1997 Luke Skywalker (Hoth) figure with the head of the 1997 Hoth Rebel Soldier figure. By his release in 2002, the sculpting already looked a little dated. Only six points of articulation and an iffy head sculpt aren't enough to get fans excited at times, but that's where all the accessories come in. The figure was really just bait on the hook-- Hasbro wanted to sell fans accessories, and after the Episode I line didn't do so well, this attempt allowed a figure to be packed in to sweeten the deal. If $5 or $6 for a figure with a gun proved successful, surely a $10 figure with a dozen guns would be a huge hit-- right?

Sadly, this wasn't the case. Accessories included a blaster rifle, a sentry droid (as far as I can tell, a Hasbro creation), gas masks, and a lot more. For diorama builders, it was pretty great, but there wasn't enough genuinely useful items to clinch the sale for most fans. As someone who typically loves extra gear, I opted to save my money and just got one of these. A new figure or something more than a simple head swap would have made the set, but as it was, it was just a figure nobody wanted with more gear they also didn't want. I wouldn't suggest you track this down unless such items appeal to you, or you're hard up for Hoth figures.

Collector's Notes: Another clearance rack victim, the figure was actually sort of part of a line fans wanted-- accessory sets have been highly requested items, but retail sales indicate that it's just a vocal minority that wants them. Today, extra accessories live on as part of the Saga Legends line and in select Battle Packs.

--Adam Pawlus

Day 826: August 13, 2008

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