Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Star Wars Figure of the Day: Day 3,121: Morgan Elsbeth (The Retro Collection)

The Retro Collection 3 3/4-Inch Action Figure
Item No.:
Asst. F6874 No. F7303
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: n/a
Includes: n/a
Action Feature: n/s
Retail: $11.99
Availability: October 2023
Appearances: Star Wars: Ahsoka

Bio: The Star Wars Retro Collection features design and detailing inspired by the original 1970s Star Wars figures and features 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 Entertainment Earth now!

Click here to buy it at Amazon now!

Click here to buy it at eBay now!

Commentary: Good but a few rungs short of great - but still not something I see in the stores much. Morgan Elsbeth was a surprise choice for Ahsoka, given the rich slate of antagonists and her lack of nifty toyetic gear. I'm actually surprised we got her with Marok, and not Grand Admiral Thrawn or the two not-Jedi. It's not because she isn't an interesting character, but because Thrawn is a blank check for fan funds and the two Jedi have a specific play pattern. Hasbro opted to make this witch with no gear at all - no sword of Talzin, or "just because" Beskar Spear, or something. I assume the sword was considered a spoiler, and the spear wasn't even on this series, and I assume her accessory budget just got gobbled up by Sabine's retro arsenal of 3 weapons and a helmet. But I can't prove that.

So is what we got good? It's fine. I've heard some people say that Kenner's expertise was to boil down a figure to its most crucial elements while also making it the best sculpt they possibly could. Figures like 1983 Klaatu hold up quite well, and the level of detail on a lot of those later figures are particularly stunning for the time. Morgan Elsbeth is a bit simpler, and has one of the better poses for a modern Retro figure. She has a tiny hint of a slouch, which makes her look more human than 2023's impossibly stiff Mon Mothma figure. He elbows have a bit of a bend to them, and the arms stick out a tiny bit. Her pose shows more signs of personality than a lot of other new Kennery figures, which is great. Her hair looks like it was nicely-sculpted too, and her face looks more specific to the performer than a lot of the other figures. At some angles, it's obvious who she's supposed to be - I would wager the sculptor had better reference on this one. I love how the skirt flows, even as "pants," and the top looks sort of like a cross between Jedi robes and Asajj Ventress' Bride of Frankenstein-wrapped arms. Kudos to the sculptor.

 Articulation is typical - you get 5 Kenner joints, as always. The legs swing forward so she can fit in some vehicles, but as with some other "big pants" figures she may not be able to slide past the interior blockages of a MTV-7, or ships where the cockpit is too small. Also the area of her lower waist piece may get in the way of swinging the legs forward. The legs will move, but you may need to force it a bit.

The only place this figure falls short for me is the head deco. The body is colored precisely as it should be, with flesh-painted fingers, a belt, and a silver detail. Her face lacks the key make-up details from the show. Obviously you don't get her final appearance as that would be a spoiler, but leaving off the little forehead tattoo was an unfortunate choice. If someone sold a paint mask so I could apply it, I'd spring for it. The Funko figure has it, and that's the other line where I think you can point to simplified and missing details as a design choice, and they opted to do it. The Vintage Collection Morgan has it, and it looks great. There aren't a lot of Kenner-era face tats to compare to, but I think they would've made an exception and included one for Morgan.

I like this figure a lot - I wish she had some magic clip-on green bits for her hands, or any accessory, but such is life. Unless Hasbro cut the run on this wave, I assume a lot of fans may see her somewhere some day, at markdown. I have only seen a sprinkling of the wave pop up at Target stores since last October. This is one of the better overall retro figures, even if the detail is a little soft and she's missing a key painted detail. While arguably not as exciting as a droid or a blue Imperial guy, I can't deny the sculptors nailed it and this is one of those figures that I could just as easily see being rare and expensive in a few years. Assuming there are still Kenner kids left to want her, of course. If you can find her at a good price, and if you still love Kenner, I'd recommend this one.

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

--Adam Pawlus

Day 3,121: April 2, 2024

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