Original Trilogy Collection Toys "R" Us Exclusive Vehicle
Item No.: No. 34517
Includes: Red Y-Wing Fighter
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: Fall 2004
Bio: Y-wings are durable, reliable starfighters that excel in close-quarters combat. During the battle of avin, Y-wing squadrons were influential in helping to defeat the Death Star threat. Designated attack fighters, Y-wings went one-to-one with imperial fighters as the Rebels attempted to reach the battle station's vulnerable exhaust port. Jon "Dutch" Vander was Gold Leader of the Y-wing Gold Squadron during the Battle of Yavin, fighting bravely against the powerful Imperial forces. (Taken from the figure's packaging.)
Image: Adam's desk.
Commentary: It may be hard to remember this, but there was a time where Hasbro used an ultra-generic head on its Rebel pilots to give us some fairly dull figures like this Y-Wing Pilot. At the time, I assumed they were trying to make people who didn't buy the vehicles feel good, giving them a sense of not having missed anything if they didn't buy the "expensive" vehicle repaints. (This Y-Wing was $30 in 2004, and was $20 in 1999.) The figure is fundamentally the same as the 1999 release with some minor deco changes, notably the boots are a different kind of black, and the head and helmet look different. Since it's lacking Rebel logos, it's the less-interesting of the two.
While the 1998 Biggs Darklighter body was a step forward at the time, by this figure's release in 2004 we've seen other, better Rebel pilot bodies. While the Dutch Vander and smaller X-Wing Luke sculpts may not have been ideal for this particular release, they do seem like they may have at least looked a little better than this already aging sculpt. On the bright side, he had no problems sitting in the cockpit, and fit in just perfectly. While it's sort of boring in terms of aesthetics, Hasbro couldn't have picked a better mold as actually-sitting-in-the-ship goes.
Collector's Notes: Loose samples of the figure don't show up, but the fully boxed vehicle could be anywhere from $40-$60. For vehicles on the secondary market, that's actually quite good as some shoot up a lot more. I don't think the figure is good enough to warrant high prices, but the vehicle is certainly neat enough to justify $40. The same body was used to make Biggs Darklighter, Jorg Sacul, another Y-Wing Pilot, and it wouldn't stun me if we saw it again some day.
Day 1,543: May 13, 2011