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Update: For the addendum on the Deluxe version, please see Post 21 below.

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Introduction
The boys are back in town, and by "the boys" I mean the Imperial Stormtroopers from the Original Trilogy (or, as I like to think of them, "real Stormtroopers"). More specifically, the Imperial Stormtroopers as seen in Return of the Jedi. Excluding the "Sandtroopers" and "Space Troopers" (which are very similar and, especially in the second instance, differ mainly in sporting extra gear), the dubiously canonical "Shock Troopers" and "Shadow Troopers" (AKA "Blackhole Stormtroopers"), and the strange chrome and porcelain versions (what a waste!), Hot Toys has now produced three different versions of the basic, classic look of the Star Wars Original Trilogy-era Stormtroopers: those from Rogue One, those from A New Hope, and now those from Return of the Jedi, reviewed here. Hot Toys is releasing these in two versions, standard and deluxe. This review covers the standard version (MMS 514). I have a deluxe version on order and will post an addendum (Part II -- see Post 21 below) to cover the extra features after it arrives. While I will be making occasional reference to Hot Toys' other classic Stormtroopers (from Rogue One and A New Hope), I will reserve a detailed comparison for its own separate thread, coming shortly.

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Packaging: 3.5/4 stars
The Hot Toys Return of the Jedi Stormtrooper comes in the long familiar two-shades-of-black shoebox container with removable lid, featuring a fine image of the collectible on its top cover, credits and warning on the back/bottom, and decorated by a cigar band running along near the bottom edge of the lid. This cigar band seems to be more elaborate than ever, featuring color photography of a couple of cut out images of the Stormtrooper figure (one of them is out of view in the photo below) and of the Death Star II docking bay where numerous real and painted-in Stormtroopers had assembled to greet the arriving emperor. It is nicely done and more elaborate than before, although the basic concept is familiar and unexciting. Below the lid lies one of the now standard color cards with an image of the product among others, photoshopped to look like they are firing volleys of blaster bolts at the enemy. As I have written before, the card is a nice, though perfectly unnecessary item. Below that lies a mercifully single black plastic trey with its transparent plastic lid, in which you can find the figure and all of its accessories. Everything is safe and collector-friendly.

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Sculpting: 3/4 stars
We are treated to the usual excellence of Hot Toys sculpting, and they certainly have accumulated a great deal of expertise sculpting Stormtrooper armor over the years. While there is not human face or other biological features to get right and realistic here, there is plenty of detail on the armor and weaponry that needs to be right. As far as I can tell, Hot Toys succeeded in this, and spotted the differences specific to Return of the Jedi armor, like the trim (or lip) on the edges of the torso armor (the chest and upper back plates, the abdomen and lower back plates, the crotch and buttocks plates); the sculpt of the armor is also a little softer than before. These were changes introduced in the Mk II Stormtrooper sets designed but barely used for Empire Strikes Back and produced in large quantities for Return of the Jedi. Another obvious difference is the configuration of buttons on the central panel of the abdominal armor, which is rotated 180 degrees from its original look in A New Hope. The figure stands about 11.75 inches (29.8 cm) and looks to be just a little shorter than the one from Rogue One. Except perhaps for the height, so far, so good.

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The problem is that, like George Lucas himself, Hot Toys couldn't leave well enough alone. I refer to what they did with the helmet, which has been historically the most difficult part of the Stormtrooper's appearance to replicate correctly or convincingly. Like Marmit and Sideshow before it, Hot Toys got the proportions on their first Stormtrooper helmet (from A New Hope) wrong: the helmet protruded a bit too far down in the front (so to speak, it was too "snouty"), and the distance along the "nose" ridge between the lower edge of the sunken goggles and the upper edge of the toothed "frown" was smaller than the distance between the lower edge of the "frown" and the upper edge of the sunken "mouth" (it should have been the reverse). This error (which still allowed for an attractive, if inaccurate helmet sculpt) was then carried over to the Space Troopers, Shock Troopers, Shadow Troopers (Blackhole Stormtroopers), and the various other derivative products. Then Hot Toys fixed the problem, getting the Sandtrooper about right in 2015 (though unfortunately replicating an exceptional costume oversight with the twisted up brow), and getting the Rogue One Stromtrooper right in 2017: the distance between the sunken goggles and the "frown" was now correctly a little longer than the distance between the "frown" and the "mouth." But today, another two years later, we are treated to another Stormtrooper with a problematic helmet. This time Hot Toys has over-corrected their initial mistake (though they had already fixed it since then!) by making the distance between the sunken goggles and the "frown" just a little too long and the distance between the "frown" and the "mouth" a little too short, resulting once again a helmet that is not quite right in its facial proportions and is a bit too "snouty." It is not horrid looking, but you cannot unsee it once you have spotted it (it is more pronounced from some angles than others), and it is quite disappointing, especially as the hurdle seemed to have been surmounted. There are other, less obvious issues with all of these helmets, which are symmetrical, whereas the originals (apparently even the streamlined Rogue One originals) are famously asymmetrical; the molding process for Return of the Jedi produced a narrower and taller-looking helmet, something of which is in fact conveyed in the Hot Toys product. So we are left with a nice but ultimately inaccurate recreation of the characters' appearance in the film; at this price point we might expect better.

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Paint: 4/4 stars
The paint scheme of the set is fairly simple. Stormtroopers have glossy white, black, and grey armor, with a couple of blue buttons among the black ones on the abdomen armor. The paint correctly reflects differences between the characters' appearance in Return of the Jedi (and to some extent Empire Strikes Back) and in A New Hope; for example, the toothed "frown" is now painted black as opposed to grey. The paint application is very precise, and some light weathering has been applied. It is most obvious on the boots and the belt, with some finer or subtler touches on the rest of the armor, all the way to the helmet. The Stormtrooper's blaster rifle is given a very good amount of weathering, perhaps more so than usual with Hot Toys. The helmet is fitted with screen-accurate translucent green bubble lenses, and you can catch a glint of green more readily in this product than the previous iteration (see also the photo under "Value' below).

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Articulation: 3/4 stars
While the underlying body surely allows for virtually unlimited articulation, unrestricted poseability is hampered by a combination of factors. First, Hot Toys continues to supply its products with padding undergarments even where that is unnecessary, as here. Second, although the body armor ought to be virtually identical in shape and size to what was used for A New Hope (both on screen and in the action figures), it is often impeded from a fuller range of poseability when bending at the knees and hips, as different armor pieces run into each other. It would be exceedingly difficult or impossible to get this Stormtrooper figure to sit properly or take a knee; its A New Hope and certainly (with some minor modification) Rogue One predecessors were a bit more poseable, if memory serves me well. This is another disappointment, and I wonder whether the problem might have been mitigated or avoided if only the figure were designed a little taller (with longer limbs, especially legs); it is just a little on the short side anyway. Removing the padding helps, both by freeing up the joints and by maing the overlying pieces of armor more movable. Additionally, perhaps one could transfer the armor onto a taller body or at least remove the unnecessary padding. While I realize that Stormtrooper armor was pretty limiting even in 1:1 scale, a less restricted articulation (without necessitating any modifications) would have been welcome.

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Accessories: 3/4 stars
This is difficult category for evaluation, as the set technically contains everything you see a Stormtrooper wielding in Return of the Jedi (in other words, a blaster rifle), yet it contains so very little. The accessories (really everything that does not come already attached on the body) include: the nicely weathered E-11 blaster rifle, the thermal detonator that attached to the back of the belt, several spare or alternate parts (a couple of spare wrist pegs, a total of seven hands: pair of relaxed hands, pair of fist hands, pair of gun-grip hands, and a single left outstretched fingers hand), a little instruction booklet (telling you how to put the gun into its holster and how to attach the thermal detonator to the belt) mercifully unencumbered by messy tape, and an action figure stand with grey Death Star floor surface and the label "Sith Trooper" on the little sign. Yes, "Sith Trooper." Not that I really care about it, but Quality Control seems to be slipping. I'd be curious to know if anyone else encounters the same oversight. That's it for the standard version, whereas the deluxe version comes with a cool light-up function background (more on that in the forthcoming update).

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Outfit: 3.5/4 stars
Another difficult category to evaluate, as the set features little visible outfit besides the armor already covered above. Underneath the armor, the body is clothed in a stretchy black bodysuit with a back zipper; nothing fancy, but perfectly usable and articulation-friendly; the same cannot be said for the partial padding (like the padded shorts). The covering for the neck (which includes a ribbed collar) seems sloppier than before, although admittedly you are not very likely to see that part of the figure exposed, unless perhaps you took off the helmet to replace it with a head of your choice. Of course, Hot Toys does not really take customizing and kitbashing into account, and there are multiple warnings that the armor and outfit are not designed to be removable, and might be damaged if you do it. That is not entirely true, but proceed at your own risk. The belt and its holster come attached (the belt can be undone with velcro on the back) and the holster can close, even when the weapon is inside it, with a magnetic strap.

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Fun Factor: 3.5/4 stars
Alone or in groups, combined with others from their own line or earlier releases, classic Stormtroopers lend themselves to any Original Trilogy Star Wars environment (in the case of these, especially Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi) and so much beyond. While they could be better articulated (some of which can be fixed) and proportioned, they are still very good figures and offer plenty of possibilities. Of course, ideally, you would need a bunch, and there the price point becomes a serious issue.

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Value: 3/4 stars (standard); 2/4 stars (deluxe)
The standard version retails for about $190 (USD), the deluxe version for about $243 (USD), not including shipping. Even the lower price is an issue for an army builder character, an issue compounded by the fact that there are aspects to this nice set that ought to have been better (proportions, articulation). That said, I have to admit that at $190 the regular version costs about the same as the Rogue One version from a couple of years ago, and palpably less than a number of other trooper figures we have seen since; while it is not a low price for an army builder, that is something to be appreciated. I cannot quite fathom how what seems like a fairly simple light up display option (3 AAA batteries not included) for the deluxe version would merit a cost difference of $53, and that is all the more disappointing as these background panels are all but useless on their own; you would need two, three, or four next to each other to set up a nice backdrop to one or two figures.

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Things to watch out for
Not much. As always, be gentle with the relatively delicate wrist pegs, and ideally warm up the hands before swapping (that is why I own a hair dryer). The thermal detonator is of the type that can slip off and fall with annoying ease while handling, and since it is not big, it might be easy to misplace. I would keep an eye on the magnetic closure for the holster, just in case some magnet becomes unglued. Be careful with the foldable stock on the blaster rifle -- this is a delicate articulated part. The figure stands and balances pretty well, but take the appropriate precautions against it tumbling down.

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Overall: 3.3/4 stars
The Hot Toys Return of the Jedi Stormtrooper is a very nice set that could easily have been perfect, with but a little more attention to proportion (helmet, height) and articulation (less padding); then the only negative would have been the price, and even that was relatively decent, considering what it might have been. In other respects, like the painting and weathering, as well as most of the sculpting, the set is remarkably well done. If you love Stormtroopers and are looking to build up your ranks, the new product is a good addition to the bunch.

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Where to buy
As always, you can check out various offerings on eBay, or visit the online stores below, among others, but they seem to be selling out fast:

Alter Ego comics for $243 (deluxe)

Big Bad Toy Store for $190 (standard) or $243 (deluxe)

Cotswold Collectibles for $243 (deluxe)

Timewalker Toys all sold out

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Hope this has been useful. As always, what do you think?

Update: For the addendum on the Deluxe version, please see Post 21 below.

#hottoys #returnofthejedi #rotj #starwars #stormtrooper #male #scifi #military
“You're a jittery little thing, aren't you?” – Princess Leia

In the final chapter of the original Star Wars trilogy, the Rebel Alliance penetrates the forest moon of Endor in order to shut down the deflector shield generator that is protecting the second Death Star. During the mission, Princess Leia is separated from her team and befriends Wicket the Ewok who proves to be great ally for the Rebel Alliance in the dangerous battle of Endor.

Today, Hot Toys is delighted to present a special 1/6th scale collectible figures set featuring Princess Leia in her outfit on Endor and Wicket the Ewok for all Star Wars fanatics!

The highly-accurate Princess Leia collectible figure is specially crafted based on the appearance of Leia Organa in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. It features a stunning head sculpt with astonishing likeness and new hair sculpture, Leia’s Endor outfit, a camouflage pattern poncho, a helmet, a blaster, a watch, diorama accessories and an Endor themed figure base.

The Wicket collectible figure is finely crafted based on the appearance of Wicket featuring a highly detailed face sculpture, newly developed multiple layers of fabric hair with various shades of white and brown throughout whole body capturing Ewok’s unique appearance, a spear, drumsticks, a variety of hands, diorama accessory and an Endor themed figure base.

Furthermore, this collectible figures set will exclusively include a stormtrooper and Death Star Trooper helmet with weathering effects!

This amazing collectible figures set will surely be a great addition for Star Wars fans!
SPECIFICATIONS
PRODUCT CODEMMS551
PRODUCT NAMEPRINCESS LEIA AND WICKET
HEIGHTAPPRO. 27 CM TALL (PRINCESS LEIA); 15.5 (WICKET)
POINTS OF ARTICULATIONS0
SPECIAL FEATURESA STORMTOOPER HELMET WITH WEATHERING EFFECT, A DEATH STAR TROOPER HELMET WITH WEATHERING EFFECT
ARTISTSHEAD SCULPTED BY SO YOUNG LEE
HEAD PAINTED BY E-LEE & JC. HONG
HEAD ART DIRECTED BY JC. HONG

The 1/6th scale Princess Leia Collectible Figure specially features:
- Authentic and detailed likeness of Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- Newly painted head sculpt with movie-accurate facial expression, make up and detailed skin texture
- Highly detailed hair sculpture of Leia Organa with braided hair and bun
- Hair sculpture is removable from head sculpt
- Body with over 28 points of articulations
- Approximately 27 cm tall
- Six (6) pieces of interchangeable hands including:
- One (1) pair of relaxed hands
- One (1) pair of pistol holding hands
- One (1) pair of gesture hands
- Each piece of head sculpt is specially hand-painted

Costume:
- One (1) helmet as worn on Endor
- One (1) camouflage pattern poncho
- One (1) light-green colored vest
- One (1) yellow-colored middle sleeves top
- One (1) pair of pale blue-colored pants
- One (1) black-colored utility belt with pistol holster
- One (1) pair of black-colored leather-like boots

Weapons:
- One (1) blaster

Accessories:
- One (1) watch
- Two (2) bushes diorama accessories attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with character nameplate, movie logo and graphic card

Artists:
- Head Sculpted by So young Lee
- Head Painted by E-Lee & JC. Hong
- Head Art Directed by JC. Hong

The 1/6th scale Wicket Collectible Figure specially features:
- Authentic and detailed likeness of Wicket in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- Face sculpt with highly-accurate facial expression
- Newly developed multiple layers of weathered fabric hair with various shades of white and brown throughout whole body
- Newly developed body with over 23 points of articulations
- Approximately 15.5 cm tall
- Six (6) pieces of interchangeable hands including:
- One (1) pair of spear holding hands
- One (1) pair of relaxed hands
- One (1) gestured left hand with a snack
- One (1) gestured left hand

Costume :
- One (1) brown-colored hood with weathering effect

Weapons:
- One (1) spear

Accessory:
- One (1) Stormtooper helmet with weathering effect***
- One (1) Death Star Trooper helmet with weathering effect***
- Two (2) drumsticks
- One (1) diorama accessory attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with character nameplate, movie logo and graphic card

*** Exclusive to Collectible Figures Set Version

Release date: Approximately Q3 – Q4, 2020

**Prototype shown, final product may be slightly different
**Product details could be subjected to change without further notice

© & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.
© 2019 Hot Toys Limited. All Rights Reserved.


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#newproduct #HotToys #Leia #Wicket #StarWars #ReturnoftheJedi #2-pack #Sci-Fi #movie #female #male
Wicket W. Warrick was the brave young Ewok who willingly joined the Rebellion and aided in the battle against the Empire on the forest moon of Endor. Even before he encountered the Rebels, Wicket had devised methods for defeating the Imperial machines, plans which were implemented after the Ewok befriended Princess Leia and recruited his tribe to the Alliance's cause. During the Battle of Endor, Wicket fought valiantly alongside his new allies.

Now, Hot Toys is pleased to officially introduce the new 1/6th scale collectible figure of Wicket the Ewok!

Skillfully crafted with great details, the Wicket collectible figure features a highly detailed face sculpture, newly developed multiple layers of fabric hair with various shades of white and brown throughout whole body capturing Ewok’s unique appearance, a spear, drumsticks, a variety of hands, diorama accessory and an Endor themed figure base.

This adorable and highly detailed Wicket the Ewok collectible figure will surely stand out in your treasured Star Wars display!
SPECIFICATIONS
PRODUCT CODEMMS550
PRODUCT NAMEWICKET
HEIGHTAPPROXIMATELY 15.5 CM TALL
POINTS OF ARTICULATIONS23
SPECIAL FEATURESMULTIPLE LAYERS OF WEATHERED FABRIC HAIR WITH VARIOUS SHADES OF WHITE AND BROWN THROUGHOUT WHOLE BODY
ARTISTSHEAD SCULPTED BY N/A.
HEAD PAINTED BY N/A.
HEAD ART DIRECTED BY N/A.

The 1/6th scale Wicket Collectible Figure specially features:
- Authentic and detailed likeness of Wicket in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- Face sculpt with highly-accurate facial expression
- Newly developed multiple layers of weathered fabric hair with various shades of white and brown throughout whole body
- Newly developed body with over 23 points of articulations
- Approximately 15.5 cm tall
- Six (6) pieces of interchangeable hands including:
- One (1) pair of spear holding hands
- One (1) pair of relaxed hands
- One (1) gestured left hand with a snack
- One (1) gestured left hand

Costume :
- One (1) brown-colored hood with weathering effect

Weapons:
- One (1) spear

Accessory:
- Two (2) drumsticks
- One (1) diorama accessory attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with character nameplate, movie logo and graphic card

Release date: Approximately Q3– Q4, 2020

**Prototype shown, final product may be slightly different
**Product details are subject to change without further notice

© & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.
© 2019 Hot Toys Limited. All Rights Reserved.


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#newproduct #HotToys #Wicket #StarWars #ReturnoftheJedi #male #movie #Sci-Fi
Princess Leia Organa was one of the Rebel Alliance’s greatest leaders, fearless on the battlefield and dedicated to ending the tyranny of the Empire. In Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, C-3PO and R2-D2 are on a mission to penetrate the deflector shield generator on the forest moon of Endor in order to deactivate the shield for the Rebel fleet to attack and take down the second Death Star.

Now, Hot Toys is pleased to officially introduce the new 1/6th scale collectible figure of Princess Leia in her outfit on Endor for Star Wars fans!

The highly-accurate collectible figure is specially crafted based on the appearance of Princess Leia in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. It features a stunning head sculpt with astonishing likeness and new hair sculpture, Leia’s Endor outfit, a camouflage pattern poncho, a helmet, a blaster, a watch, diorama accessories and an Endor themed figure base.

Welcome this new Princess Leia collectible figure in your Star Wars collection today!
SPECIFICATIONS
PRODUCT CODEMMS549
PRODUCT NAMEPRINCESS LEIA
HEIGHTAPPROXIMATELY 27 CM TALL
POINTS OF ARTICULATIONS28
SPECIAL FEATURESHIGHLY DETAILED HAIR SCULPTURE OF LEIA ORGANA WITH BRAIDED HAIR AND BUN, A CAMOUFLAGE PATTERN PONCHO
ARTISTSHEAD SCULPTED BY SO YOUNG LEE
HEAD PAINTED BY E-LEE & JC. HONG
HEAD ART DIRECTED BY JC. HONG

The 1/6th scale Princess Leia Collectible Figure specially features:

- Authentic and detailed likeness of Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- Newly painted head sculpt with movie-accurate facial expression, make up and detailed skin texture
- Highly detailed hair sculpture of Leia Organa with braided hair and bun
- Hair sculpture is removable from head sculpt
- Body with over 28 points of articulations
- Approximately 27 cm tall
- Six (6) pieces of interchangeable hands including:
- One (1) pair of relaxed hands
- One (1) pair of pistol holding hands
- One (1) pair of gesture hands
- Each piece of head sculpt is specially hand-painted

Costume:
- One (1) helmet as worn on Endor
- One (1) camouflage pattern poncho
- One (1) light-green colored vest
- One (1) yellow-colored middle sleeves top
- One (1) pair of pale blue-colored pants
- One (1) black-colored utility belt with pistol holster
- One (1) pair of black-colored leather-like boots

Weapons:
- One (1) blaster

Accessories:
- One (1) watch
- Two (2) bushes diorama accessories attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with character nameplate, movie logo and graphic card

Artists:
- Head Sculpted by So young Lee
- Head Painted by E-Lee & JC. Hong
- Head Art Directed by JC. Hong

Release date: Approximately Q3 – Q4, 2020

**Prototype shown, final product may be slightly different
**Product details could be subjected to change without further notice

© & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.
© 2019 Hot Toys Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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#newproduct #HotToys #PrincessLeia #StarWars #ReturnoftheJedi #female #Sci-Fi #movie
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The Jabba subplot is one of my favorite parts of Return of the Jedi, despite various weak elements and horrid changes/additions brought in by the Special Edition. Fortunately (or unfortunately), a large assortment of Jabba-related characters is only available in the "classic" scale produced by Kenner and then Hasbro (3.75-inch figures), and that allows for the production of vehicles and partial sets to go with said figures. In the past year, we have seen the release of a Jabba's Palace Adventure set (with Han Solo in Carbonite and Ree-Yees), the Khetanna (Jabba's sail barge -- exclusively by pre-order from HasLab -- with Jabba and Yak Face), and now the Tatooine Skiff (without any included action figures). This last was one of two apparently identical skiffs that accompanied Jabba's sail barge, and is intended to be the one carrying our protagonists to their intended place of execution. I think we all know how that panned out.

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The skiff (apparently given the model designation "Bantha-II" by some over-enthusiastic Lucasfilm associate) is an improved and expanded set compared to the earlier Kenner (or was it already Hasbro) skiff from years ago, which was both toyish and undersized. The new skiff appears to be nearly to scale (at any rate, much more so than the old one), features a more ambitious and aesthetically pleasing stand, has more sensible display options and alternatives, and far more detail. It is approximately 40 cm (15.8 in) long, 11 cm (4.3 in) wide, and 10 cm (3.9 in) tall in itself, or 18 cm (7.1 in) tall when mounted on the stand. It arrives in a rectangular box amply illustrated with photos of the product and a selection of appropriate Hasbro action figures (sold separately). Some basic assembly is required, namely attaching the four railings (the fifth one is an alternative), some of the flooring panels, the two-part pair of steering vanes, and control pedestal, as well as affixing the two transparent plastic supports to the sand dune base. There is a basic little assembly guide to help you out if something doesn't make sense immediately. A sharp X-acto knife would be helpful to slice through all the annoying rubbery elastic ties.

For a basic schematic of the skiff, you can compare HERE.

The skiff is perfectly sculpted (from what I remember and have seen in stills and photos), and very nicely weathered for a fairly mass-produced toy. Below is a look at the (I think unseen) stern (rear) of the skiff. Note the nicely detailed and painted shiny metal elements contrasting with the rusty greenish armored plating. You can also see some of the finely detailed controls, which include articulated handles on both sides (they revolve around their axis).

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I suspect that at least in some respects Hasbro had to improvise and imagine things that were not necessarily fully developed for the on-screen model. This was almost certainly the case with the details below the deck and under the storage area cover, seen below.

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Similarly, the details within the bow (front) of the skiff, and below the deck on that end.

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The starboard (right-side) railing can be exchanged with a damaged version of itself, from which hangs a torn cable, from which you could dangle Lando or any figure of your choice.

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For more interactive functionality, you could store various weapons (especially vibro axes) in specially provided compartments within the stern and the bow of the skiff, or inside the storage compartment running along the center of the deck. None of the ones illustrated below came included with the set.

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In terms of articulation, the whole skiff can be made to lean left or right because it is attached to the stand by rotating elements that can turn accordingly. The two-part vanes are also fully articulated. You can rotate them completely around their axis and also at an angle to it, and the fans of the vanes can be moved at an angle to their heads (if that is the term). The skiff can fit all the appropriate figures (in this instance with two substitutes) easily enough, but since it does not have pegs for the feet, you would have a hard time keeping them aboard if you tilt the skiff.

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Hasbro has produced action figures for all but one (the bandit-scarved human) of the characters that belong on the "hero" or "prisoner" skiff, and I am yet to get the pilot, a Nikto called Vedain. I figured that another Nikto, a skiff guard from the other skiff, would make do as a substitute.

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If specieist fans and executives could be ignored (apparently the dogma is that human characters are inherently worthless compared to "cool" or "lame" aliens alike), it would have made sense to add the missing figure to the skiff set -- if Hasbro felt that it would not sell well on its own.

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And don't worry, the gangplank is extendable, ready to serve for cargo loading and impromptu executions alike. Or at least they could try. Note that this (starboard = right) side of the skiff has all the sculpted damage, while both sides have weathering -- this is apparently because it is this side of the skiff that gets fired upon from the sail barge in the film. Speaking of which, perhaps to simplify filming this, in some of the earlier shots in the film the image was mirrored (look at Chewbacca's bandolier and Han's shirt lapel) and I reproduced this trick in my photos (compare the one above to the one below).

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I could not justify spending the money on the Khetanna HasLab set, but this one was a no-brainer to get. I am very pleased with it, with its capacity, and with its details. It is convincing, realistic, interactive, and useful all at once. If Hasbro had come closer to filling out the ranks of the skiff guards on the other skiff (it has made two or three of them, depending how you count), I would have gotten a second set.

Hope this has been useful. What do you think?

Where to buy? Try Walmart, Amazon, or eBay (though that last option might be overpriced). The skiff sells for about $40 USD, at least on Amazon, from where I got mine.

Big Bad Toy Store has it for $42

Entertainment Earth has it for $40

#starwars #hasbro #rotj #returnofthejedi #jabba #tatooine #skiff #set
I've been one of those sorely disappointed with the initial in-hand photos of this guy since they first started appearing a few weeks ago. Like many figures out there, however, in-hand he doesn't appear nearly as bad as some photos have made him seem. Is he great. No. Is he even good --- Mhmm, maybe. But, this is Sideshow -- and if there is one thing Sideshow struggles with, it's getting an actual person's likeness right. That being said, I think this one, for all it's flaws, (and if it had a much better paint job), would actually be a better sculpt than the all-too cute and glorified one that we were given by Hot Toys for Mark Hamill as he appeared in the film. Mark had had a few (what look to me like botched) plastic surgeries after some car accidents (one or more, don't remember) that turned him from the cute, pretty-boy he was in the first Star Wars film, to a much more rough-looking individual by the third.
The problem with the Sideshow version is they took those flaws, and instead of smoothing them over and making Mark's face TOO clean and symmetrical like HT, they magnified them to the point of a bit of distraction. Those of us who were alive and old enough to remember Corvette Summer, and the resulting incidents could see the damage that had been done, but it wasn't so blatantly obvious to us while watching the film. Here, they seem to draw your eye to the very spots that had been effected. I think if we had gotten a sculpt halfway between the Hot Toys version and this version, we would have had a near perfect Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker as played by Mark Hamill. As it is I'm not fully convinced on either.

The figure itself comes with plenty of good features, though. Not least of which is the three different looks you can give the character. Two head sculpts -- one inside the Endor helmet, and one without. I've seen people have managed to get the head out of the Endor helmet, but not without serious effort (something I have no intention of doing, as I don't honestly think I'll ever use the Endor look myself -- so I'd rather get rid of those parts if possible).
The heads have an okay paint job, but it could be better. There is only the slightest hint of color variation in the hair, even though the overall sculpting of it is there, a better paint app would have made the hair more believable. There's a hint of cast flashing in part of the hair on helmetless head, but at normal viewing distance it really isn't all that noticeable.

One of the cool things about his black Jedi shirt with the flap is that it has  magnets inside the flap and the shirt, so if you want the flap down it stays perfectly in place, if you want it closed -- same thing. Overall the outfits looks really good, I especially like the Jabba scene over-tunic (he comes wearing that), and the straight-up Jedi look with all black for the final light-saber duel with dear-old Dad. He also comes with an assortment of hands, including one ungloved right hand with robotic battle damage. The boots are a nice two-piece design giving a fairly decent amount of ankle articulation.

The one gripe I have about the costume pieces is the Jedi belt -- for some unknown reason the tongue of the belt goes UNDER the backside of the belt into the loop place holder -- I guess to hide the excess belt -- but it's an absolute pain in the butt to slide in there and pull the belt enough to attach the prong into the hole to make it tight (I had to use two self-holding tweezers in order to get it to work). They could have just made the belt the appropriate length and had it clasp closed on the back of the buckle, but I guess that would take someone pulling their head out of their you-know-what...

Other than that, my pictures (as usual) don't really do the figure any justice. But I took a few anyway. Overall, my impressions: it's a good, but not great figure, that comes with some nice accessories -- but for the price, it should have been a home-run. Let me know what you think.

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#review #Sideshow #LukeSkywalker #ReturnoftheJedi
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NOTE: A few extra goofing around photos added to posts 11 and 15 below.

Introduction

Following upon its recent releases of Luke Skywalker and the Imperial Royal Guard (see HERE) from Return of the Jedi, Hot Toys has now provided Emperor Palpatine to go with them. The galactic emperor comes in two versions, regular (MMS467) and deluxe (MMS468); it is the latter version that I am reviewing here. The difference consists of the larger box and two accessories: the emperor's throne and Luke's un-ignited lightsaber, which come exclusively with the deluxe version.

If you are a hardcore Star Wars fan, it is likely enough that the supreme antagonist of the Original Trilogy would be on your shopping list. Sideshow produced what was a very respectable version at the time, but improved standards and the superior detail and quality of Hot Toys made me break my usual rule of not upgrading and go for this; besides, I did not have Sideshow's throne, which had become rare and expensive, as well as cumbersome and brittle (polystone). So I gave my Sideshow emperor to a friend and lightened my wallet.

I am divided on the character, although he was played masterfully by Ian McDiarmid (all the more so in the otherwise fairly abysmal Prequel Trilogy, which I cannot bring myself to consider canonical). The emperor's character, importance, and even name changed over time as drafts of what became Star Wars progressed. At one time he was the puppet of corrupt politicians instead of a force user; early versions of his name included "Ford Xerxes XII" (1973), "Alexander Xerxes XII, Emperor of Decarte," "Cos Das-hit (sic!), Lord of Alderaan, Consul to the Supreme Tribunal, ruler of the Galactic Empire" (Rough Draft, May 1974), "Son Hhat, a Hhut (Hutt!), Lord of Granicus, Consul to the Supreme Tribunal, ruler of the Galactic Kingdom" (First Draft, July 1974), and was given the name Palpatine, sounding palpably Palatine or palatial or portentiously pulsating only in the first novelization of Star Wars from 1976. You can find more on his evolution into the emperor we know from the Original Trilogy (and beyond -- I will not address the Sidious or, worse, Sheev silliness) HERE.

Lucas did plenty right (at first), dropping overly obvious parallels to ancient or modern leaders, making him a mysterious mastermind, keeping the emperor out of the original film, confining him to a short conversation via hologram in the second installment (until he revisited this and pointlessly extended said conversation later), and presenting him as a relatively diminutive and understated ascetic old man in the third. But then he was also portrayed as a cartoonishly simplistic villain who demanded needless sacrifices for an artsy and ultimately unsuccessful strategy, cackled fiendishly, and thought it a good idea to win their hearts and minds by pitting father and son against each other and demanding that they fight to the death (not to mention that arguably these were, at least in a sense, his own son and grandson). How do you reconcile that with the apparent ability to take over the known universe and bring peace and prosperity with the minor exception of a determined small band of hypocritical and dogmatic terrorists? Perhaps one needs to make recourse to senility... One of the tragedies of the Star Wars saga is that its sophisticated visual appearance does not match its childish simplicity and that if fans grow up and choose to analyze it at any depth, they find it wanting; if they don't, perhaps the stylized and misleading dichotomy of the Star Wars universe has sunk too deep. But we love it anyway and at any rate let's not diverge too far; let's focus on the product at hand.

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Packaging: 4/4 stars

The emperor arrives in a large box measuring approximately 8 by 14 by 16 inches. There is a slip on cover with a frontal image of the enthroned emperor, the Star Wars logo, and the product name and number on the front, and credits on the back. Within lies the box proper, with a large see-through cover on the front and the emperor risen from his throne and about to unleash his force lighting, seemingly in the process of saying "So be it, Jedi..." on the back. Inside the box there are two plastic treys, each with its own see-through plastic lid. The top one holds the action figure, the extra hands, and the hand-held accessories, while the bottom one contains the two-part throne, action figure stand, and a couple more accessories. Nothing terribly exciting in the design and decoration of the box, but it is done perfectly well, and everything within it is perfectly safe and perfectly collector-friendly.

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Sculpting: 3.5/4 stars

I think Hot Toys did an excellent job reproducing one of the facial expressions of the emperor from the film. When I saw the toothy grin on the prototype advertised what seems like many years ago, I was dubious; but the product looks great. The look they chose is one of a sinister grin, looking amused, yet creepy and threatening at the same time. Do keep in mind that it is difficult to capture the quality of the sculpt with justice in photographs, and even more difficult to recreate the exact look from the screen, which has benefited from professional lighting and manipulation in post-production (most infamously the "emperor's slug(s)," though I just spotted a rectangular band of light on the face, produced either by an actual spot light or mirror or in editing); even with two poseable spot lights I was often unable to replicate the right shadows.

If there is any decline in quality from the prototype used for the promotional images, I do not know whether it is owing to a slightly softer sculpt or to a lighter wash used in the paint (I am going to assume the former, but could be wrong -- I am taking off the relevant half point here). The sculpt of the hairs on the head (which we do not see in the film) is perhaps just a little softer than it could have been, given Hot Toys' achievements in that respect. At any rate, the detail is there, and while it is difficult to give it justice in the photos (and angle and lighting play a role), this is certainly the best sixth-scale iteration of the emperor so far. If it leaves anything to be desired, that goes beyond the scope of any figure sporting a single head sculpt: the emperor made a great many different facial expressions in the film, and we get only one: the toothy grin. It would have been nice to see at least a dissatisfied expres​sion(if not a furious one) and a sarcastic mock-commiseration expression. If anything, a neutral head would have been advisable. Generally, that might be too much to ask for, but this is a deluxe product after all. Despite being a short guy who spent a lot of his time seated, the emperor did manage to look down on people (especially Luke) in a number of scenes; looking down in particular is rather difficult to convey with the present head sculpt, no matter how good it looks otherwise.

The tiny details are carried over to the hand sculpts, and the elaborate clasp on the front of the emperor's cloak, while the non-organic pieces (the lightsaber and throne) look machine-like and ever-so-slightly used. The emperor stands almost 11 inches (28 cm) tall.

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Paint: 4/4 stars

Hot Toys is known for its excellent quality paint application, and the present figure is no exception. There are no oversight problems here. It is possible that the promotional prototype had a more delicate wash that intensified the numerous wrinkles on the skin (but I have assumed it is a question of the sculpt above); this seems more subtle and less effective here, although the detail is still minute and impressive. I also wonder if perhaps the color chosen for the eyes is not a tad dark (but I realize it would have been very difficult to reproduce the almost glowing eyes we see in the film). As in the film, one of the eyes appears to be ever so slightly "lazy." The area around the eyes is painted a little darker, which works great for some scenes; in others, they appear to have been artificially lightened in the film's post production, and you cannot replicate that with the figure, except perhaps by editing the photos. The paint application is consistent with whatever is appropriate: glossy eyes and clasp, slightly less glossy teeth, matte metal for the throne, dull pale skin, etc. The crooked wooden cane is perhaps too shiny, although I do not know it for a fact that this is wrong.

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Articulation: 3.5/4 stars

Generally speaking, the articulation of the figure is excellent. It is possible that the typical Hot Toys undersuit (padding) gets a little bit in the way, but not much. The one really disappointing thing about the articulation is the one-piece neck and head. I understand why they went this way (and there seems to be a pattern in this to their recent figures, including Luke), especially given the emperor's wrinkled neck, but it keeps the figure from replicating the character's head gestures to a more significant degree than I expected. I believe a less restrictive design might have allowed even a one-piece neck and head to work better. Apart from this the figure can perform the other movements of the character from the film.

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Accessories: 3/4 stars

By far and away the most impressive accessory is the throne exclusive to the deluxe version of the figure. The throne is constructed of two pieces, the base and the seat proper. The latter fits onto the former, and can rotate around its axis. For its light feature, see below. The overall look and size of the throne appears great, but unless I am missing something, either the throne is not exactly right in terms of size or proportion (is the seat too high and the ceiling too low?) or the figure is just a little too tall or inflexible to comfortably fit on it with sufficient overhead room to match the appearance in the film. If you try to have the emperor sit up to lecture Luke, he will have to either hit or clear the throne's ceiling; also, if you have him lean back into the seat (as he does in the film), it is pretty difficult to have his feet reach the floor. Nevertheless, I should stress that if there is anything off here, it is very minor; additional futzing and patience may yield even better results.

Apart from the throne, the accessories include additional hand sculpts (for a total of six), the twisted cane, Luke's un-ignited lightsaber, and two sculpted bolts of force lighting. There are also a couple of spare wrist pegs (not shown) and an instruction leaflet (likewise). Finally, there is an action figure stand with interchangeable Death Star flooring: the sculpted top of the stand and a removable sand-paper-like sheet with imprinted floor pattern at an angle; the figure stands quite well without the stand. The selection of accessories is comprehensive for the character. If there is any room for improvement, it would have been to add an extra hand sculpt or two. The ones we get on the figure in the box are the semi-relaxed/semi-closed hands that the character has while seated on the throne or walking around the throne room; the right one is also recommended to be used with the cane, but does not work very well for that purpose. There are left and right hands with fairly outstretched fingers to attach the sculpted force lighting, and there are two variably semi-closed right hands with partly extended index finger. It would have been nice to get a left pointing hand (the emperor uses that at least twice on screen) and a proper right hand to hold the cane (though one of the extended index-finger hands works better for that than the hand recommended in the instructions). The sculpted force lighting looks and works remarkably well. It attaches better to the left hand than the right, but if the light hits it (and especially in front of a darker background) it captures it and looks just right, shining and translucent at once.

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Light Feature: 4/4 stars

The actual light feature that comes with this product is confined to the emperor's throne. It is simple but relatively user-friendly and perfectly effective. The underside of the seat features a compartment for the insertion of two AAA batteries (not included), and a tiny switch to turn the electrical feature on and off. For once this is very easily accessible. When it is switched on, the throne's control buttons on both sides of both arm rests become illuminated in the appropriate colors. The buttons are made of colored translucent plastic and look that way even when the light is not turned on. There is also a rectangular white light on the underside of the throne's ceiling. All lights are controlled simultaneously by the single switch on the bottom.

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Outfit: 4/4 stars

The emperor's outfit from the film, however basic, is reproduced in exact and loving detail. It is, on the outside, simple enough: a flowing waffle cotton hooded robe with long draping sleeves. The texture is designed to replicate the look from the film, although I suspect it does not drape quite as readily in this scale. The bottom edge of the robe, the bottom edges of the sleeves, and the edges of the hood have thin wires allowing you to position them for a desired look. The inside of the hood is sown up in such a way that the head would not go too far in (with my figure, I actually wish they had left a little more room inside the hood so I can cast deeper shadows over the face). The shiny molded clasp has been discussed above and can be opened. Looking at the official Star Wars costume book (B. Alinger, Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy, San Francisco 2014: 162) I thought the clasp had been placed wrongly (rotated by 180 degrees), but a look at on-set photos revealed that Hot Toys did it right.

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Below the black waffle cotton cloak is a suede robe tied at the waist with a sash from the same material. Some of this was visible on screen in the film. Under that there are black pants and soft dull reddish-brown boots. Insofar as this can be verified, everything appears to be correct or appropriate.

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Fun Factor: 4/4 stars

With so many sixth-scale (or similar) action figures from (or applicable to) Return of the Jedi already out there from Hot Toys and other brands, one should have no problems having fun reenacting the film or creating new scenes and situations with the present product, all the more so because of the throne and other appropriate accessories. Here is a little reenactment sequence from the film...

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Value: 3/4 stars

Between them, Hot Toys and Lucasfilm are among the main culprits for the skyrocketing costs of sixth-scale action figures and accessories, and others have been quick to follow their lead. That said, this extensive and deluxe set is not horribly overpriced, especially by the standards they have already set. The regular version (without throne or Luke's lightsaber) retails at around $220, which is around and near the low end of other protagonist figures from this and other franchises produced by Hot Toys today. This means that if you buy the deluxe version at $315, you pay an extra $95 for the extra accessories, most notably the fully-functional light-up throne. This is certainly not exactly a bargain, but also not as horrendously expensive as it might have been, or as it might become soon enough on the secondary market. For a deluxe set by Hot Toys and licensed by Lucasfilm, the price appears fairly decent, and seemingly more so than many other recent offerings. Still, it hurts...

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Things to watch out for

Darth Vader falling on his face during photography and breaking off one of the tusks on his helmet; failing to find said tusk; detaching a tusk from another ruined helmet and losing that one; having to cannibalize a third... but wait, none of that has anything to do with the product reviewed here. There really isn't much to worry about, and there aren't many small, dangerous, or easily misplaceable parts, so basic precautions should be enough. While the throne is not as brittle and delicate as polystone, I would not drop it. The hands were a bit difficult to swap, but a hair dryer should have helped and despite some impatient pulling, I still did not manage to break the wrist pegs (just in case, they included a couple of spares).

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Overall: 3.67/4 stars

I am very pleased with this figure, and believe it is a better representation of the character than any that has been available in the past -- certainly in this scale. Admittedly, we are stuck with one expression for a very expressive character, but that is the worst that can be said about it. The appearance and articulation are excellent and the choice of accessories extensive and appropriate. We could have used an extra hand sculpt, and a slightly more comfortable fit on the throne, but all in all these are fairly minor disadvantages. But you can draw your own conclusions from the photos and details above (and below). What do you think?

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Where to Buy:

Big Bad Toy Store $315
Or $220 (regular version)

Cotswold Collectibles $314

Timewalker Toys $220 (regular version)

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#starwars #returnofthejedi #rotj #hottoys #emperor #palpatine #review #productreview #scifi #male
Search in: General Talk  Topic: Hot Toys Star Wars Emperor Palpatine (Deluxe) Review  Replies: 89  Views: 1159
Hoping to crush the Rebellion once and for all, the Empire began construction of a second dreaded Death Star near Endor in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. In order to stop this terrible fate and destroy the second Death Star, the Rebel Alliance developed a two-pronged strategy: Han Solo and his strike team consist of Luke, Leia, and Chewbacca would destroy the superweapon’s shield generator on Endor, while Lando Calrissian, piloting the Millennium Falcon, would lead an aerial assault.

Today Hot Toys is delighted to officially introduce the new 1/6th scale Luke Skywalker (Endor) collectible figure from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi!

Beautifully crafted based on the appearance of Luke Skywalker on Endor in the final installment of the original trilogy, the new Luke Skywalker collectible figure features a newly developed head sculpt, greatly detailed costume with refined tailoring, the helmet and camouflage cloak Luke wore on Endor, a LED light-up lightsaber, an interchangeable lightsaber blade emulating the weapon in motion, a blaster, and a themed figure stand.

This new Luke Skywalker collectible figure will surely be a great addition for all Star Wars fans who choose to confront their destiny!
SPECIFICATIONS
PRODUCT CODEMMS516
PRODUCT NAMELUKE SKYWALKER (ENDOR)
HEIGHTAPPROXIMATELY 28 CM TALL
POINTS OF ARTICULATIONS30
SPECIAL FEATURESONE HELMET AS WORN ON ENDOR, ONE CAMOUFLAGE CLOAK WITH BLACK-COLORED BELT, TWO BUSHES DIORAMAS ATTACHABLE TO THE FIGURE BASE
ARTISTSHEAD SCULPTED BY KOJUN
HEAD PAINTED BY E-LEE & JC. HONG
HEAD ART DIRECTED BY JC. HONG

The 1/6th scale Luke Skywalker Collectible Figure (Endor) specially features:
- Newly developed head sculpt with authentic and detailed likeness of Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- Movie-accurate facial expression with detailed skin texture
- Hair sculpture is equipped with magnetic features
- Body with over 30 points of articulations
- Approximately 28 cm tall
- Five (5) pieces of interchangeable left hands including:
- One (1) fist
- One (1) gesturing hand
- Two (2) open hands
- One (1) hand for holding lightsaber
- Three (3) pieces of interchangeable black-colored gloved right hands including:
- One (1) fist
- One (1) gesturing hand
- One (1) hand for holding pistol
- Each piece of head sculpt is specially hand-painted

Costume:
- One (1) helmet as worn on Endor (with magnetic feature)
- One (1) camouflage cloak with black-colored belt
- One (1) black-colored top
- One (1) pair of black-colored pants
- One (1) black-colored leather-like belt with a pouch, a hook and a D-ring with silver-colored button clips
- One (1) pair of black-colored leather-like boots

Weapons:
- One (1) LED-lighted green lightsaber (white light, battery operated)
- One (1) lightsaber hilt
- One (1) green lightsaber blade in motion (attachable to the hilt)
- One (1) blaster pistol

Accessories:
- Two (2) bushes dioramas attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with Luke Skywalker nameplate and movie logo

Artists:
- Head Sculpted by Kojun
- Head Painted by E-Lee & JC. Hong
- Head Art Directed by JC. Hong

Release date: Approximately Q3 – Q4, 2019

**Prototype shown, final product may be slightly different
**Battery included for collectible figure, button cells are required
**Product details could be subjected to change without further notice

©️ & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.
©️ 2018 Hot Toys Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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#newproduct #HotToys #LukeSkywalker #StarWars #ReturnoftheJedi #Endor #Sci-Fi #movie #male
"I will never turn to the dark side." - Luke Skywalker

In the epic conclusion of the classic Star Wars saga, after Luke Skywalker has returned to his home planet of Tatooine to rescue his friend Han Solo from the clutches of the vile gangster Jabba the Hutt. The young Skywalker along with his friends and the Rebellion fleet must take down the second Death Star in order to stop the evil Empire from wiping out the last hope to restore freedom to the galaxy...

Hot Toys is very excited to officially present today, the new Deluxe Version 1/6th scale Luke Skywalker collectible figure from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi featuring his iconic attire as seen on Tatooine, Endor, and the second Death Star.

Masterfully crafted based on the appearance of Luke Skywalker in the final chapter of the original trilogy, the new collectible figure features a newly developed head sculpt with remarkable likeness, finely tailored costumes, the helmet and camouflage cloak Luke wore on Endor, a LED light-up lightsaber, an interchangeable lightsaber blade emulating the weapon in motion, a blaster, and a themed figure stand.

This Deluxe Version will exclusively include an additional head sculpt with an interchangeable all-new hair sculpture, an extra piece of interchangeable battle damaged right hand, dark grey tunic with belt, and the Tatooine sandstorm goggles and cloak as seen in the deleted scenes.

This is a Luke Skywalker collectible figure that will be a treasured addition for all Star Wars fans who choose to confront their destiny!
SPECIFICATIONS
PRODUCT CODEMMS517
PRODUCT NAMELUKE SKYWALKER (DELUXE VERSION)
HEIGHTAPPROXIMATELY 28 CM TALL
POINTS OF ARTICULATIONS30
SPECIAL FEATURESONE NEWLY PAINTED HEAD SCULPT WITH INTERCHANGEABLE ALL-NEW HAIR SCULPTURE, ONE LIGHT BROWN-COLORED SANDSTORM CLOAK, ONE BATTLE DAMAGED RIGHT HAND FOR HOLDING LIGHTSABER
ARTISTSHEAD SCULPTED BY KOJUN
HEAD PAINTED BY E-LEE & JC. HONG
HEAD ART DIRECTED BY JC. HONG

The 1/6th scale Luke Skywalker Collectible Figure (Deluxe Version) specially features:

- One (1) newly developed head sculpt with authentic and detailed likeness of Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
- One (1) newly painted head sculpt with interchangeable all-new hair sculpture (hair sculpture contains magnetic feature)***
- Movie-accurate facial expression with detailed skin texture
- Hair sculpture is equipped with magnetic feature
- Body with over 30 points of articulations
- Approximately 28 cm tall
- Five (5) pieces of interchangeable left hands including:
- One (1) fist
- One (1) gesturing hand
- Two (2) open hands
- One (1) hand for holding lightsaber
- Three (3) pieces of interchangeable black-colored gloved right hands including:
- One (1) fist
- One (1) gesturing hand
- One (1) hand for holding pistol
- One (1) battle damaged right hand for holding lightsaber***
- Each piece of head sculpt is specially hand-painted

Costume:
- One (1) helmet as worn on Endor (with magnetic feature)
- One (1) camouflage cloak with black-colored belt
- One (1) black-colored top
- One (1) pair of black-colored pants
- One (1) black-colored leather-like belt with a pouch, a hook and a D-ring with silver-colored button clips
- One (1) pair of black-colored leather-like boots
- One (1) dark grey-colored tunic with belt***
- One (1) light brown-colored sandstorm cloak***

Weapons:
- One (1) LED-lighted green lightsaber (white light, battery operated)
- One (1) lightsaber hilt
- One (1) green lightsaber blade in motion (attachable to the hilt)
- One (1) blaster pistol
- One (1) lightsaber hilt with weathering effect***

Accessories:
- One (1) pair of wearable sandstorm goggles***
- Two (2) bushes dioramas attachable to the figure base
- Specially designed rectangular figure stand with Luke Skywalker nameplate and movie logo

Artists:
- Head Sculpted by Kojun
- Head Painted by E-Lee & JC. Hong
- Head Art Directed by JC. Hong

*** Exclusive to Deluxe Version

Release date: Approximately Q3 – Q4, 2019

**Prototype shown is not final, pending licensor approval
**Battery included for collectible figure, button cells are required
**Product details could be subjected to change without further notice

©️ & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.
©️ 2018 Hot Toys Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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#newproduct #HotToys #LukeSkywalker #StarWars #ReturnoftheJedi #Sci-Fi #movie #male #Deluxe

Star Wars Darth Vader Customs - Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:27 pm

Update: some additional (mostly old) photos in Post 6 below.

The only sixth-scale Darth Vader boxed set that I've ever purchased as such was Sideshow's Return of the Jedi Vader from 2014 (and not the deluxe version you can see HERE). That was a great set, and at the time seemed quite perfect. Sure, there were some minor areas where it could have been improved, and some of these have been addressed by Hot Toys' relentless string of Vader releases (two A New Hope versions, a Rogue One version, and now an Empire Strikes Back version). I wasn't about to spend the increasingly excessive sums to purchase more Vader boxed sets, but I put together a kitbash ANH Vader from Sideshow and HT elements and did some modifications to the body and the helmet/mask, including lining the inside of the translucent lenses with bare metal foil so that you can see the amber color when you focus strong light directly on them.

Now that they have released their ESB Vader, I picked up some of the parted out parts to kitbash one on the basis of a damaged ANH Vader figure I had stumbled upon for a remarkably low price some time ago, plus some more Sideshow pieces. By far the most important parts to achieve the different look were the helmet/mask and the chest box, although I did get another couple of pieces too, and several gloved hands (the patterns on the ANH and ESB/ROTJ gloves are different). Once again I modified the inside of the lenses so that you could get a reddish glint with the right light (although for some reason it is less obvious -- which is not a big problem, but somewhat disappointing). Most of this was done weeks ago, but I only got the illuminated chest box yesterday, so snapped a couple more photos before boxing things up. So here they are, side by side. Except for an additional part or two (unless I use the Sideshow ones), I feel that my ESB kitbash would work for ROTJ, too. (And please forgive the quality of the images -- black does not photograph very well, besides every speck of dust showing up.)

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As you can see, the ESB Vader's armor is darker and shinier, as it should be based on the onscreen appearance. The helmet is redesigned not only to be removed from the mask so that you can see the damaged scalp underneath (sorry, I forgot to take photos of that), but also to sit a little differently, slightly tilted back. I noticed they altered the sculpt on the mask, making the "nose" shorter. I could have sworn they made a mistake, but I did manage to see what looks the same in at least one ESB scene, so I am guessing they got it right. (Of course, they could very well have used different helmets and masks in different shots in the film.)

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The transparency and/or tint of the lenses appears to be different, and it is much harder for me to detect and photograph the reddish glint on the ESB Vader than the ANH one, even though I used the same process and materials. I am particularly proud of getting the figure to kneel -- sorta (keep in mind that is an older ANH 2 Vader body and outfit in there, not the one that comes with the ESB boxed set). I will be looking at ways of enhancing the articulation at some point in the future.

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Unlike the ANH Vader, the ESB Vader's chest box is illuminated, and alternatively lights up different combinations of the little horizontal red lights. In both cases, this is film-accurate. The little container for the batteries is probably supposed to be attached to the chest box strap around the back of the figure, but I found it more convenient to let it hang loose in the back, so that I don't need to undo the belt to turn it on or off every time.

The last two photos show the mask before the modification, with backlighting to show the translucent amber lenses, and also the patterned inside of the mask (although it is not designed for you to see it). Speaking of which, removing and especially replacing the scalp was incredibly difficult. And yes, that is a Swiss Army Knife corkscrew drilled deep into Vader's scalp to assist in the process (no harm done, as that part is not visible when you put the top cap of the mask in place).

Hope you liked them.

#darthvader #starwars #anewhope #empirestrikesback #returnofthejedi #hottoys #sideshow #kitbash #custom
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Hot Toys Star Wars Royal Guard Review - Thu Sep 20, 2018 9:04 am

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Introduction

Over the last several months, Hot Toys has released several new Original Trilogy figures, including Luke Skywalker from Return of the Jedi, Darth Vader from Empire Strikes Back, and now the emperor's Royal Guard from Return of the Jedi. I have my issues with what I consider the last fully canonical Star Wars film (particularly the cartoonish villains and the idiotically easy and speedy resolution, but I will save my bile for the review of the emperor figure), but it was difficult to resist another high-end sixth-scale rendition of iconic characters from the film/trilogy. The emperor's Royal Guards were not particularly fun or exciting, but they were as cool as bad guys could possibly be, and that just standing there; I suppose since they were dismissed ahead of the decisive action, they alone of the bad guys have not been shown defeated by the protagonists.

This is the second iteration of the iconic characters in high-end sixth-scale; the first was part of Medicom's Real Action Heroes series (unless we also count the much less sophisticated Kenner or Hasbro 12" figures -- which can still easily make do in a pinch).

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Standing about 11.75 inches (about 29.8 cm), the Medicom Royal Guards were a decent addition in scenes with Hot Toys and Sideshow figures (which is unusual, as Medicom's figures tended to be relatively underscaled compared to other sixth scale figures). However, the new Hot Toys Royal Guards tower over the others, with a height of about 12.25 inches (about 31.1 cm). Moreover, they appear to capture the appearance (and proportions) of the film characters even more convincingly.

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Packaging - 4/4 stars

I should start out by saying there is absolutely nothing wrong with the packaging. It is just what we are so very used to, without any particular complexity or originality. I do realize they are constrained by both tradition and the Star Wars license where the outside design is concerned.

It is a traditional shoebox-type container, with the usual stylish Star Wars two shades of black design, including an image of the figure, the Star Wars logo and product label on the front, and more information and warnings on the bottom. A color card showing two Royal Guards brandishing their weapons is inserted atop the box's contents under the box lid. The figure and its accessories is held in single transparent plastic trey with its own transparent plastic lid. Everything is safe and collector-friendly.

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Sculpting - 4/4 stars

The sculpting is up to its usual level of Hot Toys excellence. The sculpted parts of the product are actually relatively few, including the signature helmet, the hand sculpts, and the force pike weapon. Everything is done cleanly and precisely, which is of course critical when it comes to weapons technology and the sleek, clean, shiny helmet. The helmet is the most striking piece, and it looks just as it should, with the right proportions, just barely plausible (which is how it was designed by Lucasfilm's costume department). The hand sculpts are supposed to convey tight leather gloves, and they appear pretty successful in that.

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Paint - 3.5/4 stars

The paint work is not particularly complex (the most complicated parts are the dark visor on the helmet and the black parts of the otherwise silverish force pike weapon), but it is clean and consistent as we have come to expect from Hot Toys. Then there is the question of accuracy. I compared the product in hand with what we see in the films and with the relevant entry in the Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy book by B. Alinger (San Francisco, 2014). The color of the helmet appears to be spot on, a perfect or virtually perfect match for the "candy apple red" used in Return of the Jedi. The color of the outer cloak is a close but not perfect match. Some of this may well be due to the difference in materials, but the film cloak matched with the helmet. Even allowing for differences in screen color settings and in the color fidelity of printed photographs, this is a clear and unfortunate inconsistency. The garments underneath the outer cloak are in a darker, maroon color. This is film-accurate, at least in principle, as the published photographs seem to show a slightly lighter and warmer shade of color, a little less different from the cloak than the one we get with this product; but again, I cannot be sure of the color fidelity of the publication. Generally, the paint work on the sculpted elements is perfect or near perfect, while the coloring on the garments is a little off in terms of accuracy. There is no weathering on the painted or dyed materials, but this makes sense given the elite and dress uniform character of the Royal Guards.

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Articulation - 4/4 stars

This actually came as something of a surprise to me. Hot Toys' figures have appeared to prioritize appearance over range of articulation lately, with restrictive padding under clothing, restrictive footwear, and tight pants. Considering that the emperor's Royal Guards just stand there, or glide to or from a position, if there were ever an action figure that arguably (arguably!) didn't need much articulation, it would be this one. And yet, here Hot Toys has reminded us of how they came to be considered the best (super-realistic head sculpts aside). Despite padding and some layers of clothing, the Royal Guard can achieve pretty much all the articulation you might possibly want: the cloth boots do not impede the ankles (if anything, they could have been a tad stiffer), the pants allow the legs to bend to assume a natural sitting position, the arms can flex at the biceps naturally, there is a moderate ab crunch, and with some effort, the arm can go up above the body fairly successfully. The hands swap easily enough, and Hot Toys provided a couple of extra wrist pegs. The one area where the articulation is super-limited is the neck. You can adjust it up and down and sideways only slightly; any more than that and the helmet pops off. This should not be held against the product, however, as it matches the restrictions of the actual costume in the film.

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Accessories - 3/4 stars

I am divided on this category. Technically speaking, given what we see in Return of the Jedi, the accessories we get with this product are perfectly adequate. On the other hand, given the price of the figure, they are quite underwhelming. What we get are four extra hands (weapon-grip right and left, thumb-out weapon-grip right, spread-finger left, besides the ball-grip right and relaxed left that come on the figure in the box), the action figure stand (featuring a Death Star-like ground surface), and the force pike weapon (which is arguably the only true accessory). The weapon is realistically scaled and screen-accurate. (I am not counting the instruction sheet as an accessory; the force pike weapon was omitted in this particular photo, but you see plenty of it elsewhere.)

So, if this is all we see with the Royal Guards in the film, why do I not give this category a full four stars? Because it falls short of what Hot Toys has been providing with recent releases (compare the bases on the Luke and Vader figures), and we still pay a high price for the product (even if not as high as for the others). The least they could have done is provide some sort of appropriate printed background (for example, of the throne room window or elevator). Or they could have done what they did with their excellent Snowtroopers (see my review HERE), and incorporate some external material. With the Snowtroopers they added items and equipment from Star Wars Battlefront video game. With the Royal Guards they could have what Hasbro did with their 3.75" royal guard figure (Vintage Collection #105, 2012) and add the extra elements associated with them in the Crimson Empire comic book series (see HERE for that figure). Admittedly, the comic book series probably had much less impact than the video game and may have been relegated to "legends" status, but it certainly would have made a cool figure far more exciting.

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Outfit - 4/4 stars

The outfit seems done very well, although only the outer cloak is easy to check against the film. The cloak drapes and hangs naturally enough, much more so than on the Medicom version, which had a bothersome wire along the side and bottom edges. I should note that this appears to be the only sixth-scale version of the character in which the cloak reproduces the characteristic concave-shaped folds below the bottom edge of the helmet. The cloak does come a bit wrinkled out of the box, but even without any special treatment it looks pretty good. Below the cloak is a suede long-sleeved tunic, belted with a broad belt made of the same material. The tunic has long slits on the sides, which allow for the legs to assume broad stances. Unlike the Medicom version, the tunic does not include a bothersome wire and hangs naturally. Below the tunic there are pants made of the same suede material, and you can feel a padded top. There is a pair of pointy tall boots on the feet, which do not restrict the ankle articulation, as their upper portion is made of a type of fabric. I can only verify the sleeves as accurate from the film and costume book. As mentioned above, I have my suspicion that the color on the cloth goods is a little bit off, but I have already taken this into account in the Paint category.

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Fun Factor - 3.5/4 stars

That's always difficult to judge, because it is so subjective. In this instance, there is also a divide between an excellent figure and a very static film character. Admittedly, we get a hint of action in a deleted scene from Return of the Jedi, in which Vader force chokes the Death Star commander who refuses to admit him into the throne room, and two Royal Guards threaten Vader with their weapons (HERE, starting at 7:05). As much as I would have loved to see more of the imperials on the screen, the scene is quite silly and I am glad it was deleted (like the Snowtroopers and Wampa deleted scene from Empire Strikes Back). I have reproduced it in a couple of the photos (the last two in this review), which look just as silly as the deleted scene.

Had they gone creative and given this product the Snowtrooper treatment by imitating Hasbro's 2012 Royal Guard (for example), I would have easily given this a full four stars. Although the Royal Guard(s) will just stand there, it helps that we have the matching Luke figure, and the Emperor (with or without the throne) and Vader are supposed to follow soon. This is not something you should give to a child, but I feel a child is likely to have more fun with it. That said, with the excellent articulation, you can get pretty creative.

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Value - 2/4 stars

This is another difficult score to determine. The product is excellent in quality and appearance, apart from my concern about possible minor color mismatching compared to the film version. But there is very little in the way of accessories included in the box, and while the look demanded a precise and clean work, it did not involve the complexities of an actor-accurate head sculpt. The figure retails for about $205 (USD) or more (not counting shipping). This is not as high as some other recent Hot Toy releases (Luke was $240 or more), but it is not exactly a low price either, especially as many diehard collectors might want to pick up two Royal Guards (I doubt many would be ambitious enough to get a full set of six). While it is relatively low for Hot Toys, the price affects this score negatively.

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Things to watch out for

Nothing really. This is not a child's toy, but any reasonable handling should not cause any problems. Although the hands swap easily enough, you can never go wrong heating them up a bit to soften the plastic before doing so. Make sure you have posed the figure securely, as the ankles can sometimes move too easily.

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Overall - 3.5 stars

Despite my misgivings over the price (especially considering the limited accessories), I consider this an excellent product. It should be a welcome addition to the collection of anyone who appreciates the Star Wars Original Trilogy as a whole, or more particularly its military, and the Galactic Empire. I am surprised that Sideshow did not beat Hot Toys in producing this figure (or the Imperial Gunner, for that matter), which they might have done quite well and at a somewhat lower price. All the same, Hot Toys did a beautiful job and I very much doubt I will ever feel the need to buy another sixth-scale Royal Guard from Return of the Jedi.

I hope this review has been helpful. What do you think?

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Where to Buy

Big Bad Toy Store - $205

Cotswold Collectibles - $205

Timewalker Toys - $205 (wait list)

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#hottoys #starwars #returnofthejedi #royalguard #male #scifi
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