Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Figure of the Day: Day 1,306: Luke Skywalker

LUKE SKYWALKER Bespin Duel
Saga Collection 1
Item No.:
Asst. 84851 No. 84525
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: #0229
Includes: Lightsaber, hand, blaster, bacta tourniquet, vane
Action Feature: Removable hand, dueling action activated by button
Retail: $4.99
Availability: May 2002
Appearances: The Empire Strikes Back

Bio: As Luke battles Darth Vader in Cloud City, he rebuffs Vader's attempts to mae him submit to the dark side. Wounded by Vader, Luke heroically chooses to plummet to almost certain death rather than to yield to the dark side. Managing to grab hold of a weathervane, he shrugs to hang on until his Rebel friends can rescue him. (Taken from the figure's packaging.)

Image: Adam Pawlus' yard.

Commentary: A figure can't be all things to all fans, but this Luke Skywalker was one of the most impressive released of 2002, and one of my favorites. Hasbro gave fans so much for $5, including an unheard of amount of extra gear and articulation for 2002. I personally see this as a high point of the Saga line, simply because you got so many things that Hasbro doesn't normally bother with. For starters, a removable hand, with three variations. (See below.) A slashing action was incorporated, but it doesn't get in the way of the figure's look and feel too much. The decision to make the head sculpt bruised and beaten, in a mid-"NOOOOOOO" scream of sorts, was a great idea-- I mean, he's quite colorful and abused for a hero figure. His clothes are torn, sweaty, and his pose is combat-ready but clearly weakened. Plus you can hang him on a windvane, which Hasbro had the courtesy to include on a basic $5 figure. It's simply remarkable.

As far as articulation goes, this figure has great knee joints, plus wrist and swivel elbow joints-- these were still fairly uncommon in 2002. He can stand, sit, or assume a number of poses-- and the Big Millennium Falcon of 2008 included a medical bed which seemed designed with this figure in mind, too. (See, even Hasbro knows this one was better than the Vintage release in 2007.) For fans of fun toys, this is one of Hasbro's best. The lightsaber has a removable blade, the hand can get chopped off, and he can hang around-- literally-- on a great accessory. Get one, dammit.

Collector's Notes: There were multiple severed hand variations here on the carded release. The first one had a very short magnet peg and a bloody stump on his wrist. The second had a longer peg, but no stump. The third had a plastic peg and no magnet of any kind.

The short magnet peg mold was used for the Jedi Training on Dagobah Battle Pack release in 2007 and the 2004 Original Trilogy Collection version. The 2002 Saga one is the only one with the windvane, so be sure to get that one first and maybe the others if you like the alternate paint jobs.

--Adam Pawlus


Day 1,306: June 16, 2010

3 comments:

r2witco said...

I'll have to check this one out. I have the Vintage collection one from a few years ago and love it. Personally I think that one was perfect and am stumped as to why Hasbro made a new one this year. I'll have to check out this Saga one for the accessories alone.

Thanks

Bravo said...

I got the plastic hand figure, which was fine by me, as I suspect the magnets don't stay on well or affect posing, as with the second Zam Wessel figure. And anyway, it's not like Luke magnetically reattached his hand using the force. So I'm not sure why they did that with Luke or Zam Wessel.

Jeff said...

One of the best figures Hasbro has ever made. Back when all my figures were displayed on tiered shelves, the weathervane was stuck to the bottom of the shelf above, with Luke hanging from it, above all the other Empire figures. It rocked!