Friday, June 11, 2010

Figure of the Day: Day 1,303: Whistler

WHISTLER Wal-Mart Exclusive Droid Factory Packs
The Legacy Collection Droid Factory
Item No.:
Asst. 91939 No. 14860
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: 5 of 5
Includes: Corran Horn, third leg, Darktrooper torso
Action Feature: Twist dome for retractable sensorscope
Retail: $17.00
Availability: July 2009
Appearances: I, Jedi

Bio: Whistler, also called Xeno, was the astromech droid of Corran Horn. It was the same R-series model as the legendary R2-D2. Just like almost every standard astromech droid, Whistler's metal body was silver and white. Whistler had green details—the color of CorSec and Corran's X-wing. (Stolen from Wookieepedia.)

Image: Adam Pawlus' TV tray.

Commentary: Hasbro doesn't use the R2-D2 "vintage" mold for other droids all that much, but Whistler is one of the proud few. From the few illustrations of the Expanded Universe droid, Hasbro's figure is likely the wrong color-- he's portrayed as having a greenish body, and his dome has been seen with differing color schemes. It almost seems like he's a bit of a patchwork appliance, but given the inconsistencies with Corran Horn, it's a safe bet Hasbro just didn't quite make it as perfect as they could given time or budget constraints. It's still a distinctive design and with his bright green markings, a clear change from being simply R2-A6 with a few added dome stripes.

If you're a big fan of the droids, obviously, you need to get this one. Why wouldn't you? It's different enough and pretty slick. Expanded Universe fans may be upset with the coloring issues, but really, will Hasbro ever go back and redo this one? Probably not. As such, if the price is right, go ahead and get one. It arguably isn't worth premium pricing, but the entire wave of "Droid Factory" 2009 is a really neat set once you get it together and can get past the fact that Hasbro punked out and included a couple of repacks.

Collector's Notes: Since the figure bowed at $17 in a set, many fans considered that high. The market of supply and demand has dictated that it was, in fact, too expensive and the going rate on eBay is closer to $10 before shipping at press time. After shipping, it's still cheaper than retail price plus tax was at Wal-Mart.

--Adam Pawlus

Day 1,303: June 11, 2010

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