Friday, February 3, 2012

Star Wars Figure of the Day: Day 1,733: Saesee Tiin

SAESEE TIIN Commemorative DVD Collection
Clone Wars Cartoon Network / Tartakovsky Animated Series Action Figures
Item No.:
Asst. 34542 No. 34576
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: n/a
Includes: Lightsaber, display stand, Anakin Skywalker, Clone Trooper figures
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $14.99
Availability: Spring 2005
Appearances: Clone Wars 2003 series

Bio: Through the creative vision of Lucasfilm Ltd. and the Cartoon Network, the Clone Wars are brought to life in an exciting new series of short animated chapters. A unique animation style captures the drama of this epic period in galactic history along with its outstanding heroes and adversaries. Noble Jedi warriors lead Clone Troopers into battle against the evil Separatist forces and their droid armies. Anakin, Obi-Wan, Yoda and their comrades struggle against the rising power of the dark side and confront personal challenges against a backdrop of war-torn planets. (Yes, this press release was taken from the figure's packaging.)

Image: Adam Pawlus' desk.

Commentary: I did not pass on, but missed Saesee Tiin as part of the Wal-Mart exclusive, supposedly-had-a-street-date, DVD-companion figure sets. I was livid-- I checked several stores for days before, during, and after the release and there was no real sign that they had ever been there, which is the kind of thing that toughens you up real quick when it comes to having to search for stuff. Since the sets were basically repaints or retools, I waited and I'm more or less glad I did. Secondary market prices spiked quickly, and the figure, while good, isn't really worth the insane attention that it got for a while.

Based on the animated version of Obi-Wan Kenobi, the figure has the same articulation (and body) as the other Jedi. A new head was created, new deco was applied, and presto-- new figure. Even the same ribbing sculpted on the forearms is present, giving-- at first glance-- the illusion of this being a new figure. The package art shows Saesee's amazing armored outfit, which sadly did not get an animated figure, but at least this nifty design retained the broken horn and did a bang-up job capturing his scowl. The articulation is particularly strange, given the figure's statue-like appearance. His waist and neck joints are perfectly normal, but his left arm swings from the left to the right, as opposed to rotating up and down like most figures. He can hold a saber with both hands, and the squared-off, stylized sculpt does a great job of replicating the look and feel of the animated series. I like this collection of figures as a subset, and while it's a terrible toy it makes for a nice display piece.

The head is the neatest thing about the figure, with his distinctive head markings and horns giving him the bulk of his personality. I wish it was in his clone armor, but well, sometimes Hasbro's desire to release something quick and on the cheap trumps something being superbly cool. As it is, it's just OK-- a nice piece of a good set.

Collector's Notes: Today, this set sells for about $15-$25. I got mine at a comic shop for $13, which was about as good as I could hope for. As a subset, the animated Clone Wars line is one I'd suggest new collectors jump on-- not only is it gorgeous, but it's small and relatively cheap. Roughly 17 figures, including Grievous and Clone variations, should set you back about $100 if not much less. There are various packaging variations and multipacks, but just getting a set of the figures to crack open is fairly cheap and, most importantly, this is a dead line. You can get 'em all and rest easy that, according to Hasbro, they will not be making any more in this style.

--Adam Pawlus

Day 1,733: February 3, 2012

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