Thursday, June 6, 2024

Star Wars Figure of the Day: Day 3,140: Cad Bane (The Retro Collection)

CAD BANE For Some Reason
The Retro Collection 3 3/4-Inch Action Figure
Item No.:
Asst. F6874 No. F8569
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Number: n/a
Includes: Pair of Blasters
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $11.99
Availability: December 2023
Appearances: Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett

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: Distribution is everything. I hear fans complain that they don't love Cad Bane from The Retro Collection, but also, it hasn't hit stores after being available for a few months. Secondary market prices are on the higher side, which makes sense as Mr. Bane is a popular character who has appeared on a few series and has a distinctive western look. The figure seems to be digitally sculpted, and it shows - he's a little too symmetrical, a little too stiff, without a nice 'flow' to his body language. Both arms are basically the same, the legs are too straight, and his neck sits too straight. Older figures have the slightest hint of a curve to them, and that combined with a broadness of the shoulders may make you look at this figure and go "that doesn't look right." It's the opposite of the Fifth Brother, where I liked the figure more than the character. Here, I like the character more than the figure.

Old-school elements are all here, but this is one of the few figures that looks like it came from a modern digital fan sculptor more than a real Kenner artisan. The coat is a little chunky, the ammo belts are a little too perfect, the arms are too close to the same, but the colors are good. Hasbro didn't paint all the silver bits, and neither would Kenner on many of its older figures. He can hold both blasters, although they're a little loose given he has no trigger fingers. Kenner also avoided an extended trigger finger. His hat looks the slightest bit too squat, and the face just seems a little too wide. Maybe if they brought in the black around his head a bit closer to the nice red eyes, it would look more "right," but I am struggling to find the words to say why it seems just a tad bit "off."

Kenner did have its own "old west" figure line in Butch and Sundance in 1979, with slightly more dynamic poses and absolutely no dusters. The hats looked good too, and they look somewhat similar to some of Kenner's Adventures of Indiana Jones figures. These all serve as a touchstone for what to expect from that era, and this figure doesn't have the wider stance (nor should it) or the bent gunslinger elbows (which would have been nice.) Cad Bane holds his pistols well enough, and their design looks more or less like something Kenner would have done. And that's what you want.

It's a better toy than a collectible, and I think we all need to appreciate that. He stands with no fights. His legs swing forward fully and you can easily slide him in to a variety of old Kenner vehicles. The neck turns, but is a little constrained by his neck tubes. I assume if Kenner had actually made this figure in the 1980s, the neck wouldn't turn at all. Also, the duster would have been at least partially a vinyl cape like Obi-Wan Kenobi or Darth Vader. This is one of very few figures where I think those otherwise obnoxious vinyl capes would have been good for the look of the figure, but not the functionality. I'm more likely to want to play with this figure as a result, and I think that's a good thing.

When it comes to the look of the figure, I'm always curious who makes the stylistic calls. With the Inquisitors from Obi-Wan Kenobi, the vinyl capes with non-telescoping lightsabers seemed odd - like they were trying to evoke the 1978 figures, but only in part while Obi-Wan himself was more in line with a 1984-era Return of the Jedi design philosophy. Cad Bane seems to mimic some modern retro figures rather than a specific Kenner release - Super7's newer efforts like Vincent Price are a little stiffer and more symmetrical like Cad here - but he still has a feel that might take you back to an era of Saturday morning kid vid or getting a figure after a good report card. If you said the goal was to make him look like a figure with a level of detail no newer than 1979, but based on a pose borrowed from 2022, I'd believe you.

This one is good but lacks the details and hanging coat of previous releases - but he's less finicky and you can actually put him in ships. The light detailing doesn't really work for me with the stiff pose, and a little slouch in his back or some variety in the bends of his elbows would go a long way to making him feel like an authentic original toy. But that's neither here nor there - I would bet Hasbro will never make another retro-style Cad Bane figure ever again, and on its own merits the price point is low enough that I'd recommend it if you're interested in the character or are a junkie for the form factor. I wouldn't make this your first or only Retro purchase, but if you've got a collection going and need to blow some cash? This is a good one to add to the shelf. Or wall. Or storage unit. It may not be perfect, but enjoy this form factor while it still exits. Generation X kids aren't going to be a target market forever.

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

--Adam Pawlus

Day 3,140: June 6, 2024

1 comment:

Skeleton Astronaut said...

You pretty much nailed it. I want to like him more than I do, but overall I'm glad this figure exists.