Monday, June 12, 2006

Figure of the Day: Day 37: R4-A22

R4-A22 Astromech Droid
The Saga Collection Astromech Droid Pack Series 1
Item No.:
Asst. 87055 No. 87056
Number: n/a
Includes: n/a
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $39.99 (part of a 5-pack)
Availability: January 2006
Appearances: Primarily Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

Bio: Works at Dexter's Diner in the Coco Town section of Coruscant. (Taken from the figure's box.)

Image: The Droid Foundaries of Adam Pawlus.

Commentary: There aren't many figures that this can be said about, nor many collectors who can make this claim: this one is my fault. (I can point to a hair under maybe 30-some figures where I had a hand in them somehow.) R4-A22 was part of a pet project I started on in early 2005: to make a list of all the astromech molds available, and see what there is to repaint so I can lobby for their production, somehow. A few months later, I get hired by Entertainment Earth, and the rest, well, is plastic history. I picked this one because it was one of very, very few cone-head R4 units as of yet unmade as a toy and I like variety. While not as weathered as I might hope for, nor is it using the "current" astromech body favored by other droids, I still think it's great because it's orange, and one of very few droids made specifically from Episode II. He has articulation at the neck, shoulders, and all three ankles, plus his third leg is fully retractable.

For customizers, diorama builders, and those needing scenery, this is a great figure. For those looking for meaningful characters with lots of dialogue and/or a significant role in the Expanded Universe, move along. Or have Dark Horse write me to write a series of short stories about astromechs. (I'm available and I work cheap.)

Collector's Notes: As of today, there are four different droids that use this mold: these, R4-E1, R4-I9, and two different droids named R4-M9. One was teal and a Star Tours figure while the other was more of a dark green and part of the regular line. These droids, of course, will be reviewed in the future.

Ever wonder what would happen if a fan got to get a lot of say in an exclusive? This is pretty close to exactly what I originally proposed, and it's the exact mold and paint job I expected. In short, mission accomplished. As such, I'm overwhelmingly biased to love it, but as I'm a big fan of droids and repaints that make sense, this is a figure that a lot of fans can, I hope, get behind. It's still available, although the production numbers aren't exactly huge as I'm lead to believe. What's out on the market now is it, when they're gone, they're gone, and all that jazz. (And if you want to see more droids like this, well, you know the drill-- vote with your Lincolns.)

Day 37: June 12, 2006

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