you have a nice foam container, with very little wasted space. In fact,
the entire box is one of the smallest they've done, which is helpful to
both the environment and those who store the figures or keep the boxes.
Sculpting - ***1/2
I'm going to be
covering the sculpt of the exterior of this figure and base in this
section. I'll be saving all my comments on the interior body for the
Value section, where it's more relevant.
Sideshow selected a pose for this figure that's good - and *almost*
great. He's standing slightly relaxed, most of his weight shifted to
the left leg, holding the blaster in both hands. This is very similar
to the pose selected by Gentle Giant for their statue, but is still
superior. This is an excellent example of how one slight change can
make a huge difference. The GG statue almost has it right, but has
Fett's left hand out, sort of beckoning you to fight. Unfortunately, it
doesn't end up looking that way, and has been called 'proctologist
Fett' by more than one observer.
But GG did get the right hand in a great pose, and had Sideshow did
something that was just a little different as well, they could have
gone from good to great. The GG statue has the blaster stock resting on
his right hip. That's a pose that Sideshow should have used, along with
a more relaxed left hand draped at his side. For an example of how this
would have looked, check out the photo I've included (to the immediate
left) of the custom changes made to the Premium Format figure by
McHaleyArt. He was kind enough to allow me to include this photo for
reference, and I for one think this is the superior stance.
Still, the Sideshow version is a nice middle of the road approach. The
neck is articulated, so that you can pose it with your preferred tilt
or direction, and this is a big plus to helping the overall appearance
of the sculpt. When he's looking straight ahead, the pose isn't nearly
as interesting as when you give the head a little personality with just
the right tilt and angle.
There is no head under the helmet, but the helmet is certainly sized as
though there is. Some folks will probably have an issue with the size,
but it really is fairly reflective of reality, where helmeted heads
tend to be a bit large, even on armored bodies. I do have more of an
issue though with the sculpt itself, which is off in a number of ways.
This included the depth of the indentations at the 'cheeks' of the
helmet, the size of the visor, and even the amount that the silver
attachments on either side of the head stick out. I'm not super picky
about helmets - for example, the Vader PF helmet was fine by me - but
this one is off enough that even I can tell. At $325, this is the kind
of thing lots of folks will be picky about.
The rest of the proportions are decent, with some minor issues. The
chest is a little narrow, so that the breast plate tends to cover more
of the lighter colored shirt underneath than you'll see in movie
stills. The arms are a smidge thin, but this is definitely a very small
nit. The height is good at about 19 Inches (at the top of his helmet),
and the legs look good in the baggy pants.
The sculpting on the gauntlets, hands, jet pack, feet and gun are all
very good, with nice crisp details. There's not much in the way of
texturing though (with the obvious exception of the battle damage
dents), and the choice of plastic for all the sculpted pieces is an
issue in some areas. I can certainly understand the choice for the jet
pack, which would have been very heavy and unwieldy in polystone, and I
can live with the choice for areas that would be easily damaged like
the gauntlets and armor. But other areas, like the blaster, feet and
hands, should have been polystone. The reasoning from Sideshow was that
they all had to shrink at the same rate, and ABS and polystone don't.
Unfortunately, what this amounts to is an all plastic exterior wearing
clothes, and this will severely hurt the perception of value. More on
The jet pack is in scale with the rest of the figure, and attaches to
the back with two hooks that thread through two hangers on his back. It
looks terrific in place, but take care not to damage the plastic
Finally, there's the base. It's a very basic base, with a sandy
appearance. There's only the color it's cast in, plus some wash to
dirty it up a bit. While I cut NECA some slack on their recent ten
dollar action figures were some of the parts were cast in the color
instead of being painted, I'm far less inclined to feel the same at
this price point. Additionally, the majority of the base is actually
cast in a rubber material. Push on it with your fingers and it's
squishy, very much like those urethane floor mats that keep your
tootsies comfy when you stand on them for long periods. Now I realize
that Boba will be standing on this base for a long time - like forever
- but I'm not sure the comfort of his feet is a concern. I suspect that
this was done to make the base less susceptible to damage in terms of
breakage and paint rubs. It does appear (although I haven't cut it
open) that there's a hunk of polystone inside the base itself, under
the rubber, to give it weight and stability.
That does bring up one other point about Boba's ability to stand - he
has it. The ability to stand on his own, that is. Unlike most PF's, who
require the base to stay upright, Boba can stand on any flat surface.
Thankfully, they put the steel posts for his feet and legs in the base
this time, and his stance is wide enough to be stable on his own.
Paint - ***1/2
Like the helmet
sculpt, there are nits you can pick with the overall paint job. Rather
than each area of damage matching a movie still exactly, they appear
more like a general artistic interpretation of the damage. In my
personal case, I have less issue with this, and I really think they did
an excellent job creating realistic armor with the amazing paint
There is a little slop along the edges of the visor, and I've heard
others complain of this same issue. I'm also not thrilled with the base
being cast in the too consistent sand color, and these two issues hold
him back from a perfect score. He really does have some fantastic
weathering effects though, especially in the jetpack. This is a figure
that needs to be displayed in front of a mirror, so that you can
appreciate just how cool the pack looks while still seeing him from the
front. Just to prove it, I've included a photo set up just that way.
Articulation - **1/2
Here's an odd category for a PF. Actually, I usually mention it anyway,
because I want folks to know that PF's are NOT articulated, but this
time it's the opposite - this guy has two joints!
Yep, I mentioned earlier that you can pose the neck in a number of
ways, and it's a nice ball joint with a great range of movement. It
sits up fairly high on the cloth wrapped neck, but the cloth can be
pushed around a bit to get just the right appearance.
The other point of articulation is the range finder. This can lowered
or raised, and I had no trouble with mine staying in any position. I've
heard reports of some folks having issues getting them to either go
entirely erect, or to stay that way. That's not an issue for me. And my
range finder is fine as well.
That's it for articulation though, and some folks may find that a bit
annoying. He does have an all plastic body under there - why not let us
repose at least the arms as well? However, even though he doesn't get a
high score in this category (one joint ain't going to get you four
stars), ANY score in this category is actually a plus to the overall.
Outfit - ***1/2
For me, the one
area that I have no real complaints about is the outfit. It's truly
stellar, and shows just how good the PF style can be when done right.
Yes, there is plastic used in the armor. And yes, I'm counting the
attached armor as part of the 'outfit'. But using plastic here makes
perfect sense, since these are pieces that could easily be damaged.
Companies have used plastic and materials like lead and pewter in
statues and busts for years in areas where damage was simply too likely
to occur with more brittle materials. The work they did with the armor
looks terrific, from the plates to the gauntlets, and I have no issues
with choice of material or paint work.
The clothing is also top notch. The cape is tightly attached at the
shoulder, with a nice weathering and dirt effect. It's about the right
size, and it hangs perfectly with very little futzing. The shirts and
pants are tailored perfectly, with just the right fit and excellent
quality stitching and material. The wookie braids are nice, although
the shiny nylon is pretty obvious in this scale, and they don't really
look any better than the braids we've seen with past, much less
expensive but smaller versions of Fett.
There's a couple minor issues that are worth mentioning though, and
they may effect you more than they did me. First, the belt (which is
removable with a high quality snap in back) has a series of pouches
across the front, made in softer plastic. I don't mind this, especially
since the gun rubs against them and could have easily damaged them if
they were resin. It is another example of why the pose with the arms at
the sides would have been preferable, but it's minor enough of an issue
for me that I'm not deducting for it. Your mileage may vary.
The other issue is that the various pockets and cloth bags are filled
with a soft foam material. This gives them the appearance of containing
'stuff', but since the foam is cut very regular in size and shape, it
looks a little unrealistic. Also, my right front pocket on his pants
came open (the small thread used to tack it shut came loose), so it
tends to flop about a bit. Again, for me these aren't major issues, but
The small hoses that attach to his right gauntlet have a tendency to
kink right at the attachment, and I found that one of the three had a
small kink right out of the package. These are very tiny hoses, and
kink quite easily, so you'll want to take some care. The kink isn't
particularly easy to notice, but it's existence, along with a couple of
the other minor nits, were enough in combination to pull this score
just down far enough to miss the four stars. In fact, had the hoses not
been kinked, this category would have gotten a perfect score from me.
If you do have kinks, you can probably correct them. If you try it
though, and screw it up, I will deny ever saying it might be possible.
The hoses can be pulled off the gauntlet with some work, or can be cut
just before the attachment, and the excess removed. You can then cut
off the kink, and force the tube back on the gauntlet. There's a couple
inches of tub running up inside the sleeve, so there's enough to work
with, but if you undertake the fix and screw it up, remember that I'm
Accessories - **1/2
This PF is somewhat unusual in the series, since he has more 'extras' than most.
Obviously, the exclusive version comes with the Mandalorian 'effect'.
What this amounts to is a very nice coaster or wall plaque. Don't get
me wrong - it's much bigger than a coaster at around 7" in diameter.
But that's still what a lot of folks will be reminded of. This is made
of polystone, with a terrific texture and beautiful paint job. It also
has four nice rubber feet on the back, along with a metal hanger
attached with screws. Hang it on the wall behind him, put it on a stand
next to him - whatever might float your bought. It's nice, but it's not
enough to compel anyone to buy the exclusive version, so it fails in
that regard. Oh, and the stand I'm using in the photo is NOT
included. That's actually one of the Action Mount stands I reviewed awhile back.
While I counted the removable jet pack as part of the overall figure, I
put the removable tools as part of his accessories. He has three,
tucked into the ankle pockets on his pants. They all look good, and fit
fine in their respective spots. EDIT - there's actually a fourth,
that looks sort of like a double ended nail. Mine had fallen out,
and I was lucky enough to find it in the packaging.
Value - *1/2
Ah, yes - here be
the sticky wicket. Sideshow PF's generally have polystone bodies. And
yes, polystone is a form of 'plastic'. Of course, so is body armor,
used to stop bullets (ultra high molecular weight polyethylene), and
yet I don't think anyone wearing a vest made from fibers using UHMWP
would think swapping out another form of 'plastic' would be a good
idea. Hey, it's all plastic, right?
Wrong. Polystone is a heavy, dense material that exhibits many of the
physical characteristics of stone, hence the name. It's use in Premium
Format figures has always given them the heft and feel of high quality
materials. The idea that a 'premium format' figure was a statue on
steroids was originally based on the concept that the sculpted areas
were polystone, with other materials like cloth and metal included to
give the statue an even more realistic appearance.
With this PF, Sideshow stepped away from using polystone. As I said
earlier, I can understand the reasoning behind some of it, including
the armor and jet pack. But other areas, especially the base and the
interior body, should have remained polystone. The reasoning given by
Sideshow was that the plastic used for the armor would shrink in the
process of manufacture. If the body didn't shrink in a similar way, the
pieces wouldn't come together correctly. I'm sure there's some truth to
this, but the clothing for these figures is estimated correctly, and
there was no mistake in getting the correct fit for Fett's costume,
even with the shrinkage of the body and the armor. Then why would it be
difficult to get an accurate enough estimate of the shrinkage of the
armor and make the polystone body the correct smaller size?
Additionally, there's no 'rate of shrinkage' issue with the base, and
they still went with a cheaper, lighter material there as well.
Obviously, this was done to reduce breakage and wear issues. But
switching materials across the board on this PF does hurt it's overall
perceived value, and much greater consideration should have been given
to this issue - and the PR around communicating it - to avoid some of
the backlash they've since experienced.
What's important to note here is that this isn't about
how good the figure looks. It looks great. Oh, it's not a four star
figure for me, plastic or polystone, because there's still enough
nibbling minor issues to hold it back from the top spot. But it's
certainly one of the better Star Wars PF's, well ahead of others like
Luke, Luke/Yoda, or Han for me. But as I've told people in several
message threads in which this issue has been discussed, cubic zirconia
stones are quite beautiful. In fact, they have no flaws or color
imperfections, unlike diamonds. Diamonds aren't particularly 'rare',
even good quality ones (although the circulation of said diamonds is
tightly controlled to maintain the illusion). And yet, I'm betting that
if you give your girlfriend a CZ engagement ring, and tell her "It's
just as beautiful, so it's the same thing", she's going to slap you so
hard your father calls you long distance to ask why his face hurts.
This is also not only about how much it costs to make, although that does
factor in to some degree. If your customers think it costs you less to make
product A because of a change, whether it does or not means very little to
their willingness to pay as much as previously.
this particular instance, I can easily believe that the actual cost to
manufacture this figure is not all that different between the hollow
plastic version and the solid polystone one. While the injection molded
plastic parts could have a higher fixed cost than the polystone version
(steel molds versus softer material molds), the unit costs would be
much less for the plastic version. The cost of assembly is likely to be
cheaper (easier to put together the costume and accessories with the
detachable plastic parts), and the cost of the actual materials
themselves is lower, since ABS is generally cheaper than polystone and
there's a whole lot less of it here with a hollow body. And don't
discount the cost of freight for Sideshow to get these guys shipped
over from Asia. In the end, I have no trouble believing that it all
washed out, and that there really was no true cost savings for Sideshow
when you added it all up. But that's not actually relevant, and
believing it is got them into trouble.
What this IS about is the perception of value. People look at what they
get for their money, and compare it against what they know. What
collectors know is that in the past, Premium Format figures at their
base were polystone statues, not plastic statues. The concept of a
statue implies certain things to most people, including the materials
used. Mcfarlane makes what most folks consider 'plastic statues'
because of their limited articulation, and in a 7" size they run around
ten to twelve bucks. They look amazing. Kotobukiya makes 12" scale
plastic statues, and they run around $80, and look amazing (sometimes).
Medicom makes 12" highly articulated clothed figures, and they run
around $150 (and usually look amazing). It should be no real surprise
then that when many people look at this PF, they see an 18" scale
plastic statue with highly detailed clothing, sort of a combination of
the Medicom and Koto product, but in a bigger scale. And taken in that
context, it seems that $200, or maybe $225 is a reasonable price. But
Fett clocks in at $325, and is one of the most expensive PF's Sideshow
has produced. And at that price, the perceived value for many folks is
going to be very low.
This is a $200 - $225 figure, at least to me. I won't pre-order another
quarter scale figure from Sideshow that uses the all plastic body
unless they offer up something amazing in terms of an exclusive item to
go with it. Any future PF's that use this format that I like the look
of will be regular edition ebay buys for me.
And with that, I just wrote a record length Value section!
Things to Watch Out For -
People are having issues with crimped hoses, and it's actually pretty
easy to crimp them accidentally yourself once you have it out of the
package, so take extra care when handling them. Some folks have also
had issues with the range finder, but mine was fine. They've reported
that it won't go all the way straight up, or once it does, tends to
wilt. Hey, even Ditka had that problem, so Boba shouldn't feel too bad.
Overall - ***
write rambling, unorganized reviews for a very simple reason, and this
figure is a perfect example. If I were to simply ramble along, pointing
out highlights and lowlights as I went without any organization or
consistency, by the end of this review you would have simply gotten the
idea that the figure was bad, and I didn't like it. You'd know it was
because of the price perhaps, but if the price didn't matter to you, my
review would be pretty useless, since pulling out the other relevant
details would be tough.
That's why I break them up the way I do. My overall score was heavily
influenced by the lack of value I think this figure represents. But
that does not mean that the sculpt, paint and outfit all aren't
exemplary. If you feel the $325 is easily justified (or you simply
don't see that particular issue as being relevant), then you can ignore
that section entirely, and see that the other key areas that may matter
to you - Sculpt, Paint and Outfit - were all ***1/2 star scores. And
yes, if this figure cost a hundred bucks less, he would have been a
***1/2 star figure overall for me as well.
In the end, this figure *almost* came in at **1/2 stars for me. But
it's important to be fair to the overall situation and not allow one glaring
error to override the positive points, unless that glaring error is ultimately
critical. For me, the price on this figure is like getting to slow dance
with Kristen Bell, but I've got a pebble in my shoe. Now, I could focus
on nothing but that damn annoying pebble, but I'd be missing out on all that
is Ms. Bell. Had the costume, sculpt and paint not been ***1/2 star
quality, then it would have been more like having that same pebble, but now
I'm dancing with Kristen Bell's stunt double, and he's not nearly as
attractive as you might think.
Ignoring the Value section, Fett still isn't quite a four star home
run. There's enough minor nits to keep that out of reach, and I think
that the Vader, Obi-Wan and Leia are all superior in appearance
(although the latter two are obviously not as complex). Still, he's an
exceptional version of Fett, perhaps the best we've seen to date,
although the Medicom RAH version might give him a run for his money. If
you're a big fan of the character, and don't have issues with the
price, then you won't want to pass him up. If you're like me, and
do have an issue with the high cost, you might want to keep an eye on
the ebay trend for the regular edition.
Packaging - ***
Sculpt - ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - **1/2
Outfit - ***1/2
Accessories - **1/2
Value - *1/2
Overall - ***
Where to Buy -
You'll have to waitlist at Sideshow for the exclusive, or turn to Ebay. The regular can be had at several places:
- Alter Ego Comics has him for $292.49.
- CornerStoreComics still has him at the pre-order price of $276.
- Dark Figures has him at $315.
- and for the U.K. folks, Forbidden Planet has him listed at 195 pounds.
Related Links -
If you like the PF style, check out:
- in the Universal Monsters line, I've reviewed the Mummy,
Phantom of the Opera, Dracula,
Frankenstein and Vampyre.
- in the Star Wars line, I've done Vader, Leia,
Obi-wan and Han.
- and in general, I've also covered John Wayne,
Jason, and Lurtz.
And if you're a Fett fan, check out:
- My favorite Fett in my collection is the one from Marmit, reviewed
here by DanB.
- a close second is the Kotobukiya version, that I reviewed
- here's a guest review of the VOTC
- if you're looking for something bigger but still VOTC, here's a guest
review of the 12"
- I reviewed the Karkoon
version of Boba as well, and if you're looking for something silly and
cute, why not pick up the Palm
Talker Fett? And of course, there's the Unleashed
- another one of the best Fett's produced is the 300th
- and let's not forget the Titanium edition,
with the first removable mask.
- and finally, here's a guest review of the Medicom