Star Tours Jedi Training Academy Set
Item No.: Asst. 94737 No. 94826
Includes: Lightsaber, Bike, hood, projectile, display stand
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: July 2010
Appearances: The Clone Wars
Bio: Plo Koon rides a speeder bike into battle against the forces of the Separatist Droid Army. This stern and imposing Jedi sits on the High Council and comes from a long line of Jedi who have all been strong in the Force. His customized speeder has additional weapons to create a swift, maneuverable and heavily armed vehicle for intense combat situations. (Taken from the figure's page on Hasbro.com.)
Image: Adam's kitchen.
Commentary: The third time is the charm! After two different versions of Plo Koon sold elsewhere, Hasbro upgrades the figure to this pretty cool design. Unlike the earlier releases, the figure now has jointed knees and ankles, plus a cloth lower robe so that he can sit or stand or, you know, ride the bike. The head sculpt is pretty much the same, and the same hoods are included from the previous releases. (In other words, there's a hood that lays down, and another that covers the head.) The lightsaber is the same as the earlier release, however this one dropped the double-bladed lightsaber wrist gauntlet. I always thought that thing was super-cool, so its absence is something of a bummer. (Granted, I have it, but you might not dear reader!) As the actual figure goes, this is the one to get. Hasbro hasn't done a better one yet and probably won't, there are places to improve the sculpt and soft goods but the figure certainly seems "good enough," as the kids say. (Well, OK, they don't.)
The bike is nice, but nothing special. It's a repaint of the bike sold (and repainted) during the 2002-2003 lines, complete with the oversized rocket launcher which was introduced in the 2003 Clone Wars Speeder Bike. If you don't have any bikes, and have at least one Republic Gunship, I'd change my tune and say you must buy this one-- there's a storage bay in the back of the ship for this very model, so it's kind of cool to have Plo's bike stored in there. As a kid, this sort of thing delighted because the idea of vehicles storing other vehicles means that you've arrived. How can you not love buying a big toy to carry around your other toys?
Collector's Notes: This set is still available, and the price has been in flux. If you can get a deal, grab it. And if you can't? Well, I think it's worth tracking down anyway. It's a worthwhile upgrade, but if Hasbro some day releases it on an individual card, you'd probably be just fine getting that one.
Day 1,545: May 17, 2011