Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Star Wars Figure of the Day: Day 3,027: Cassian Andor (Aldahani Mission, The Vintage Collection)

(Aldahani Mission)

The Vintage Collection 3 3/4-Inch Action Figure
Item No.:
Asst. E7763 No. F7329
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: #267
Includes: Hat, blaster
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $16.99
Availability: April 2023
Appearances: Andor
Bio: In an era filled with danger, deception, and intrigue, Cassian Andor embarks on a path that will turn him into the rebel hero who will challenge the evil Galactic Empire. (Stolen from Hasbro Pulse. There is no bio.)

Image: Adam's photo lab.

Availability: Click here to buy it at Entertainment Earth now!

Click here to buy it at Amazon now!

Hasbro really phoned in Cassian Andor (Aldahani Mission). The Black Series one - which I skipped - is a bit better. The Vintage Collection release is a retool of a retool. You can see the mold marking on his foot for The Black Series 3 3/4-inch Shoretrooper C0665, so you can immediately tell that they reused those boots - and they're the wrong boots. The arms and torso are reused from The Mandalorian Morak figures Migs Mayfeld [FOTD #2,972] and Din Djarin [FOTD #2,971] from last year. Only Cassian's head, "skirt," and hat are new - he even lacks the blaster he had on the show. I know cost cutting is a thing, but this is ridiculous and somewhat insulting. (And I didn't even enjoy Andor all that much.)

Let's start with the good - if you're forced to reuse parts, other than the legs, they made sensible choices. You don't get the over-the-shoulder strap seen on the show, but the chest and shoulder armor are repuposed from previous series - it's good enough. It's just that without the strap, and the colors seeming off, it starts to be a problem. The older, not-as-good hip joints are annoying as getting them to move at all requires a lot of effort and makes this toy much less fun than newer releases since last year... or the old ones from the 1970s. The boots are completely wrong, but I guess they're counting on you not shoegazing during the murky, dour, shouty and sad episodes of the show. It reeks of "good enough," which is acceptable for a repaint wave. It's acceptable when figures were under $10. But this is $17, and if you're telling me Hasbro can't make a new figure when necessary for $17, perhaps they shouldn't be making collector lines. Even if the reason was to get this figure out the door quicker, it's important to remember that mediocrity is forever and there's a lot of forever mediocrity showing up lately, and what's so infuriating is the brand new figures are all excellent. Given how much money we're putting into collecting these things (and their repaints) I don't think asking for screen-accurate action figures is a lot to ask.

The face looks good. Cassian shaved during this part of the series, so he has a lot less scruff which is more or less picked up well by this figure. The new skirt pieces more or less matches the show, with the holster on the correct side of his body - they did a good job there. Also notable, his hat fits extremely well. That's a big plus. Over the years, helmets or hats that are too big, or heads that are too small, were frequently an issue. Hasbro's sculptors got it right here - it looks good and while it's a smidgen big, it fits well and it's not a hassle to get it to stay on. They did a good job here.

He has a short blaster which fits in the holster, but lacks the distinctive rifle which was called out on the show. There was even a whole scene on this slow-paced slog of a story making a fuss of how to hold these rifles. Given how important it was to the show, and that it appears on the cardback, its absence is a problem for me. I'd be more willing to overlook the wrong boots if he had the right blaster, and if he had the right accoutrements hanging over his torso.

When it comes to clones and droids, repaints and recycling parts are a sensible thing to do. In this case, they cut corners a lot and it shows. Just because you have existing tooling you can use, you shouldn't necessarily use it. The first two Andor figures are lingering on pegs off and on here as of early April 2023 when I write this. My hope is they'll all sell, as will this one, but I'm not going to lie to you - this is a half-assed figure. If you don't care that the colors don't quite match, that the armor isn't quite right, that the boots are wrong, and that he's missing a key accessory, you should happily buy this figure. So if you are a carded collector that never watched the show in the first place, go ahead and buy this figure, because clearly you are not a discriminating buyer. If it were 2006 or 2007, I'd say "wait a few years, they'll make a better one." Now? I doubt it. It's this or nothing, and given how much other, better things you can buy from Hasbro in this scale? Consider going with nothing.

Collector's Notes: I got mine from Entertainment Earth.

--Adam Pawlus

Day 3,027: May 9, 2023

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