Star Wars Carkoon Wave
Han, Leia, Chewie, Bib

Coheteboy joins us tonight with our third look at the recent Carkoon wave.  He added in the Chewbacca though, which hasn't been discussed before.  Take it away, CB!

Following the release of the Revenge of the Sith figures, Hasbro is going with a broader line for the entire saga called... Saga Collection. The first wave has started to hit in late December and features characters seen in and around Jabba's Palace in Episode VI. 

This first series contains six figures; three entirely new and three repainted. Of the repainted are: Chewbacca, Barada, and Boba Fett. Michael has already reviewed Barada from this series and I passed on Boba Fett, so I'm focusing this review mostly on the new sculpts: Bib Fortuna, Han Solo, Princess Leia in Boushh Disguise as well as the repainted Chewbacca.... all characters we have seen before. 

This new line also features the inclusion of mini-holo figures that are randomly packed with every figure, similar to the micro-figures packed in with G.I.Joe figures back in the day. Only back then, there was no price increase.

Packaging - ***1/2
Hasbro's packaging for the Original Trilogy Collection was extremely successful and they make a return trip to that style but with some added details, making this among my favorite Star Wars packaging of all time. Of course I like the vintage packaging best, but this comes in at a close second.

The bubble is large, allowing you to see the figure and its accessories clearly, also displaying the background photo of which the character is associated. Really nice touch. Also in the bubble is a cardboard insert with the name of the character and a photo from the movie. On the front of the blister card's top left corner is a nice little detail: The episode # and movie title. I love specific details like that!

The back of the blister card is also revamped, giving you a different photo from the film (nice touch!), the usual blurb and the inclusion of some other factoids, such as the character's species, and other trivia. 

The card also has a hole so you can see which mini-holo figure you get on the back. Also nicely done.

Sculpting - Princess Leia, Bib Fortuna***1/2; Han Solo, Chewbacca ***
I was considering giving each figure here a separate score, but in the end, they all have their good and the bad, so it evens out. They're all very close to what they need to be, so that's all that really matters.

Bib Fortuna is basically a salt-shaker type figure since his legs are immobile thanks to his hard plastic cloak, but it looks good. His new head is also sculpted with more detail than before which is great, but why did they have his mouth stuck open like that? I understand that his mouth is gaping open in several of his scenes, but seriously... why? A nod to the vintage figure perhaps? I would have preferred a sinister smile he's often seen with.

The Han Solo is the version right out of his Carbonite block, and is the third version of this costume since the line was re-launched in 1995. This is by far the best version we've seen, but it's still not perfect. The mouth is sculpted with a pathetic pout and looks a bit off, but at least the clothing details in his shirt and pants are rather well done. 

Princess Leia in Boushh Disguise is probably going to be the favorite of the new series. It's definitely mine at least. The scale of Leia is at last more accurate, including the slightly large size of her helmet. Leia's face is actually pretty nicely sculpted but I think it's the paint that hurts it most. More on that later.

Chewbacca is simply a repaint of the previous "Power of the Jedi" Millennium Falcon Mechanic and it looks decent enough. This is the second version of Chewie on a chain that we've seen and while this is a good update, it's not exactly what collectors want. In the film, Chewbacca is seen with a spiked collar attached to the chain. Here, Hasbro just glued a metal chain to his neck. This is a perfect time for Hasbro to use their magical rehashing powers to just give us a new head sculpt with the collar, but they went the lazy went out. It's a real shame too, especially since it's been almost ten years since the first version was released in the Power of the Force 2 line. 

Paint - ***
Above, I mention where the paint can hurt a decent sculpt. But I also mention where it can really help.

The paint on Leia's face, for example, is a bit on the sloppy side. I can clearly see areas that were sculpted as hair, but not completely painted. It makes it look like she has bad skin around her chin. Other than that, her outfit and helmet look just fine. I would have preferred some darker tones, but it works out overall. 

Bib Fortuna's robes are pretty straight forward and his face is given a rosier white skin tone. This is actually pretty close to how he looks in the film, but we often forget that detail.

Han Solo probably has the most boring paint applications because of all his solid colors, but it is enhanced by Hasbro's inclusion of SPLOOGE! Whatever the stains are on his shirt, it ain't pretty looking. 

This is one instance where the paint application confuses me. Is this the version right out of the carbonite block? Or is this the version where he fights on the skiff. According to his accessories, this is Han during the battle of Carkoon... so his shirt should actually be a clean white in order to be film accurate. If it's the version coming right out of the Carbonite block, then the sculpt is no longer accurate since he needs the wet hair look. Hmmm...

And last is Chewbacca, where a new paint job makes all the difference in the world. Forget the fact that the sculpt isn't film accurate, the new paint on this older figure is light years ahead. The first release is as if he his lower teeth are sticking out too far. That's all taken care of here, as Chewie looks like his good old self. For a repaint, this is among the best I've seen. Kudos!

Articulation - Princess Leia ***1/2; Han Solo, Chewbacca **1/2; Bib Fortuna **
You think that with brand new sculpts of main characters, Hasbro would pull out all the stops. They did on one Princess Leia, but got real lazy for the rest.

In Chewbacca's defense, he's a mold used from several years ago so he has a very basic SEVEN points of articulation. The bonus point was in his right arm... to you know... weld. How hard would it be to give him more articulation?

Bib Fortuna is pretty much dead from the waist down, so let that be a warning to your ladies about that Twi'leck. He has a total of FIVE points of articulation: one for the neck, and the rest are in the elbow and wrists. That's the biggest mistake on poor Bib. I don't mind the lack of leg articulation so much but here's a guy that actually USES his arms on screen! Aiya, Hasbro. And since the robe is all hard plastic, it's a surprise why they couldn't give him some sort of layered articulation as seen with the Wampa. That way he could at least move his waist around and maybe bend over a bit to talk to R2-D2. 

Han Solo also suffers in the articulation department. This here character in this specific costume is in an ACTION SEQUENCE. So why.. WHY couldn't we see more points of articulation?! We get TEN, which sounds like a decent amount...until you think about it. Han has all the joints of a 1995 Star Wars figures but with cut elbow joints and wrists. No special shoulder articulation to hang onto Lando over the side of the skiff. No knee articulation to properly fall out of the carbonite block. It's as close to basic as you can possibly get. That's pretty disappointing.

Princess Leia on the other hand... Hasbro did some good with her, with FOURTEEN points of articulation. Leia has the standard ball-joint head that the new figures have, ball jointed shoulders and knees, waist, elbows & wrists. What would have made this almost perfect is if she had points in her heels but it's fine. 

Accessories - Princess Leia *** 1/2; Han Solo ***; Bib Fortuna **; Chewbacca *
Each figure comes with a special display base with their name on the front as well as the name of the film. Each figure also comes with a mini-holo figure that I'm not too excited about, so I'll talk about that first.

The inclusion of the mini-holo figures with each figure is a fantastic idea. Unfortunately, none of the holo figures are proper representations of what we'd see in the films or in our own imagination. I don't imagine seeing Yoda bouncing around with his lightsaber while having a conversation with Mace Windu. Nor would you see a Rebel Fleet trooper about to get shot at while talking to his superiors. Queen Amidala at least is in a neutral stance, and that's what I'd want from all the holo figures. Having mini-holographic figures is a fantastic idea though the execution is not. 

Back to the accessories, Chewbacca really has none. You can count his metal chain that is permanently attached to his neck... or not really. 

Bib is also pretty pathetic. He comes with a knife. At least he has a place in his robes to hold it! Actually stabbing someone would be difficult though with his poor articulation.

Han Solo comes with a... well... I don't know what it is. I suppose it's a staff. But it's THE staff that damages Boba Fett's rocket pack, so it's great that it's included. Also here is a brand new Carbonite block. Though this version is in the process of revealing Han Solo. The red area of the carbonite block is made using clear plastic so light that shines through will somewhat illuminate the red. It's a cool effect, though I'm unsure about the actual size/scale of the carbonite block. Looks really small compared to the previous releases but I'm sure it's probably more accurate. What would be nice is if Han also came with the blaster used to free Lando from the Sarlaac Pit. 

Princess Leia again is the winner here. She comes with everything you see her use in the film. Removable helmet, staff, thermal detonator.. it's all here. The cool thing about the thermal detonator is that it has a peg that can attach to the hole in her hand, or on her belt. 

Fun Factor - ***
Star Wars is fun. Action figures are great. But none of these guys have light sabers, so the kids might not enjoy them as much, but they are pretty darn cool recreations from Return of the Jedi. More articulation is needed across the board though. 

Value -  ***
Wal-Mart has the better value in the new year, selling these for $5.88. Target though, has them for a crazy $6.99... the same price as their Marvel Legends! When I bought these at Wal-Mart however, the peg stickers still remained $4.87 so I got lucky, but I'm pretty sure I won't be that fortunate when the Hoth wave comes out. 

You DO get an extra holographic figure out of the price increase. It's better than a commtech chip, but still not worth the trouble. Of course, I'm not quitting this line anytime soon so I'll just have to eat the price.

Things to watch out for - 
The holographic figures. Whether you collect them or not, it's always better to get one that you want. Also keep an eye out for theft, as some people have been taking the holo figures out of the packaging. 

Overall - ****
While I prefer Hasbro give us all new sculpts, it's a somewhat welcome break when I don't need to buy every single figure put on the shelves. And even though the new figures are resculpts, they're definitely worth picking up since they're far more film accurate than the previous attempts. 

Packaging - *** 1/2
Sculpt - ***1/2
Paint - ***
Articulation - Princess Leia *** 1/2; Han Solo, Chewbacca ** 1/2; Bib Fortuna **
Accessories - Princess Leia *** 1/2; Han Solo ***; Bib Fortuna **; Chewbacca *
Fun Factor - ***
Value - ***
Overall - ***

Where to buy
Check out the sponsor Andrew's Toyz for all your Star Wars needs!


Figure from the collection of Coheteboy.

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