Thursday, May 14, 2009

Figure of the Day: Day 1,022: Amanin Warrior

AMANIN with Janek "Tank" Sunber
The Legacy Collection Wal-Mart Exclusive Comic Packs
Item No.:
Asst. 12974 No. 87883
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: n/a
Includes: Belt, spear, helmet, additional Ewoks, comic book
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $11.99
Availability: March 2009
Appearances: Star Wars: Empire comic books

Bio: Lieutenant Janek Sunber faces jealous Imperial officers and fierce Amanin aliens on the jungle world of Maridun. Determined to make something of himself, Sunber joins the infantry, where his tactical skills draw everyone's notice. His commander rewards him with promotions and the Amanin honor his courage, but others respond with resentment and betrayal. There's no shortage of battles, bloodshed and bravery as everyone fights "To the Last Man." (Taken from the figure's cardback.)

Image: Adam's Kashyyyk insert from a Galactic Heroes set.

Commentary: If you were to ask me to write you up a short list of Dark Horse characters which I figured WOULD be made, but NOT using a new mold, this Amanin would be at the top of the list. The 2001 Amanaman mold was pretty swell, and really, they could just take the existing figure and give him new gear and call it a day. Hasbro went the extra mile and totally retooled this figure to be sturdier than its ancestor, and significantly larger. Significantly. There's supposed to be 2-3 meters tall, and obviously, the one in ROTJ was some sort of dwarf.

The thing about this figure that I don't necessarily get is what it means as the species is concerned-- comic book artists take licenses with characters and design all the time, and generally Hasbro tries to make a "realistic" interpretation of their designs. In this case, it seems very much like Hasbro was gunning for a literal recreation of the comic version of the alien, with longer neck, meaner face, bigger forehead, and an overall more muscular build. Despite carrying around skulls, the 2001 Amanaman is Urkel to the 2009 Amanin figure. This new version has a bendable tail (a first), ball-jointed shoulders, swivel wrists, swivel hips, and that's about it-- thus making him the most articulated member of his species in toy form. His coloring is a little less garish than the original, although I still do prefer the original figure's overall look. But not his limp staff accessory, which will droop with gravity and heat.

Collector's Notes: A new release (and totally worth the price of admission), this nifty figure is something you totally gotta get. If not for him, get it for Janek Sunber. The combined pairing is quite a steal, and who can't use more preposterously-sized vegetable-like alien warriors? The comic series he came from is also pretty swell, it's "To The Last Man" and was originally printed in Star Wars: Empire #16, #17, and #18. It's rare you get to see a story in which the Empire are not portrayed as 100% evil big bad mofos... that's what the Amanin were for.

Day 1,022: May 14, 2009


A T T S said...

Wow, with that jungle backdrop I knew this was going to be thumbs up. His mean face resonated, but didn't realize he's so big and so different. In this economy, purchases are fewer, but this 2 pack wave rocks. I passed on this only because there were so many on the pegs, but knew I'd cave eventually. This guy's theme song is "Bamboo Banga (Jungle Banga)" by M.I.A.

Bravo said...

Nice figure from a decent looking pack that was asininely given to Wal-Mart, who despite being the biggest toy retailer, doesn't even ship its exclusives to all its stores. I'll never see one of these in stores unless I drive out of state.

JGS said...

I too was pleasantly surprised how sturdy this new one was - the original just does not want to stand up, and his skull staff is no help, as you say.

Here in MA it's just the opposite, Bravo - tons of these guys and no Ewoks. Have I mentioned I'm getting sick of going to WalMarts?? Ebay here I come....

Reverend Strone said...

While I'm not real crazy about the puffy forehead on this guy, overall he's pretty cool and a welcome surprise. One really, really cool detail that you might want to take a closer look at - one of the skulls around his neck is a rodian. Check it out!