The Retro Collection 3 3/4-Inch Action Figure Shop Disney / Hasbro Pulse Exclusive Set
Item No.: Asst. F7649 No. F7649
Includes: Blaster with R2-D2, Tusken Raider, C-3PO, Jawa, Obi-Wan Kenobi
Action Feature: n/a
Availability: May 2023
Appearances: Star Wars
Bio: The Star Wars Retro Collection features design and detailing inspired by the original 1970s Star Wars figures and eatures original figure design and detailing! Continue your collection from a galaxy far, far away. (Stolen from the marketing copy. Packaging has no bio.)
Image: Adam's photo lab.
Availability: Click here to buy it at Amazon now!
Toys like this are what it's all about. It may not have been your favorite, but maybe you got it at a garage sale, or as a birthday present. He probably went on a lot of adventures and never as anybody's favorite figure, but a trusty stooge to hang out with Darth Vader and the Stormtrooper as Imperials were pretty limited at first. He's on my desk now next to the Grand Inqisitor and an original Kenner Death Squad Commander... I just wish I had a little playset with a cardboard backdrop here for them to enjoy. Or a Mini-Rig based on the Inquisitorius Scythe shuttle. I feel like that's something lost in this era of action figure collecting. The old school was never about hoarding piles of the things - they were toys you got to put with your ships and monsters and playsets. They're better in groups, but exquisite when they can sit in some Imperial hardware.
While C-3PO was a pretty gosh darn good remake of a tough-to-replicate figure, this one is not quite as impressive. He's smaller. His legs are squeezed together. At first glance it's a good replica with some improvements, like a cleaner rank badge and nicer silver paint on the belt and the gloves. The boots and helmets aren't glossy, and the mold lines are cleaned up a bit. Some of you may like it, some of you may not. If you look at this figure as a "what might a figure look like if it were cranked out for 40 years and parts were replaced as they wore out the molds," I'd say this would hit that mark.
The plastic colors are different. The body suit is a lighter gray, and I think looks pretty great. The face is cast in a slightly more translucent plastic which does it no favors - the beat-up originals have a bit more personality. The eye paint is just different enough to look off, but again, you'd have to have an original handy to realize it. The 2023 figure looks legit until you compare it and notice the wrinkles on the shirt are all in the right spots, but not precisely the same level of detail. The circle on the belt buckle isn't quite right either. It's still pretty good, and it's not all bad. I like the sharp detail on the circles on the helmet, and the silver buttons on the glove may have never looked better. The trade-off is that the subtle texture on the body is all but gone, now giving you a very smooth figure. You're getting how people perceive these figures, rather than how they were. It's also worth noting the right hand isn't as open, and grips much more tightly as a result.
It's not as good as the original, the cuts on the hips and the silver squares on the belt are all just altered a bit. It isn't bad - it's just different. As nobody seems to be talking about designing these guys, we don't know if it's intentional or a result of the factory not quite getting the tooling 100% right and people just shrugging and saying "good enough." And "good enough" is what I'd say here. It would be nice to see a meticulous remake of the original, but I can live with some softer detail and slight changes to colors. Goodness knows it happened in the old days. While I don't love the fact that he's shorter or has his legs pinched together, at least he looks and stands differently from the genuine article so you've got a solid excuse to buy an updated version of an old figure you probably only bought out of completism. If this figure were sold individually for about $12, I'd recommend it. At this point I think it may be difficult or impossible (or undesirable) for Hasbro to do a perfect remake, so as "good enough" and "different enough to be interesting," I'm having a good time. The only problem is the more of the Retro guys Hasbro does, the less interest I have in anything else they do. I just want more to play with. Throw me a Rey, crank out a Sabine, or just grab the Super7 Maria figure because she looks like she belongs.
Collector's Notes: I got mine from Hasbro Pulse.
Day 3,038: June 15, 2023