SEARCH REVIEWS    LIVING WITH LATE FEES    FEATURES    LINKS    BIO    MISSION    EMAIL    MAIN PAGE >


Star Wars Darth Talon
Mini-bust and Exclusive Premium Format Statue

Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles


It's pretty rare to get two collectibles of the same character within a couple weeks. Even more so when that character is practically unknown.

But Darth Talon must have somebody on her side, because there is both a mini-bust from Gentle Giant and a Premium Format statue from Sideshow Collectibles both hitting doorsteps at the same time.

So who exactly is Darth Talon? She's a Sith Lord from the comic book Legacy series, so it's not surprising that many fans won't immediately know her. She has three things going for her: she's Twi'lek, and God knows us Star Wars geeks love Twi'leks; she's a Sith Lord, which means she's a bad ass; and, of course, she's hotter than Texas asphalt. What more could you want?

The exclusive PF (with extra removable cape) is limited to just 650 pieces, and was originally $290 at Sideshow's site. The regular, limited to 1500, was $280. They are both on wait list now, but you can buy the regular for at least 10% off at several sponsors - check the Where to Buy section at the end.

The mini-bust is limited to 3850, and is likely to run you any where from $45 - $65, depending on the retailer. SRP was $60, but many places have these for closer to $50.
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles
Darth Talon mini-bust by Gentle Giant
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon mini-bust by Gentle Giant
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon mini-bust by Gentle Giant
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon mini-bust by Gentle Giant
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles and mini-bust by Gentle Giant

Packaging - PF ***; Bust ***1/2
Both come in the standard colors with the usual text and design, with solid foam holding the precious cargo safe.  The bust edges out the PF because it has a window to show the head sculpt (always a plus for the window shopper), and it has the cool little baseball card style Certificate of Authenticity. The edition number for the PF is printed on the bottom of the box, but it's tough to beat the cool COA's from Gentle Giant.

Sculpting - Bust ***1/2; PF ****
Here are two interpretations of the same character, both slightly different. Is either 'right'?

Interestingly enough, most of the real differences line in the next category, Paint. They've done some things differently there, while keeping the same basic sculpt.

The face, as well as the tentacles, are slightly longer on the GG version. Generally, the armor is a very close match with the exception of the triceps coverings, which sport a slightly different design. Other scale issues are similar, including the rather large breasts. The Sideshow pose tends to accentuate them a bit more, but she'd be a definite D cup either way.

Neither expression is extreme, but neither is completely dead either. I'd call the GG look 'thoughtful', while the SS version is a bit more on the 'determined' side. Both are very beautiful female sculpts, and match the screen cap version well enough.

The bust isn't in a very dynamic pose, simply holding her lighted saber in front. My biggest overall issue with the bust sculpt is the saber blade itself, which is very thick and has little taper. In face, the quarter scaled PF version has a thinner, more realistic blade than the smaller sixth scale bust.

The PF is a much more dynamic pose, with Talon in half stride, looking over her right shoulder, preparing to strike. The musculature is well defined, the proportions are excellent, and the armor itself has some beautiful detail work.

Both the bust and PF have sculpted edges to the myriad of tattoos, giving them extra definition and sharpness. These tattoos represent the biggest differences between the two versions - while they might look similar at first, a basic comparison will show how very different the patterns are. I'm not sure that either one is necessarily right or wrong, since I can find all kinds of screen caps to support these designs and more, but I found that I preferred the tighter, sharper look of the designs around her face on the PF version.

I've included quite a few photos to give you an idea of the all around appearance of both collectibles. The first close up to your left is the bust, and from there down to the photo of the two together I alternate bust/PF. However, the large first photo and final photo are both of the PF. And no, the saber in the final photo was not photoshopped in any way.

Paint - Bust ***; PF ***1/2
They've gone in different ways on the paint, but both sport good quality work.

The bust has some sloppy edges on the various tattoos, but some of this is due to its smaller size and scale.The eyes are a tad straighter and cleaner on the bust, but the PF has a more interesting expression.

The ears and head band are also very different. The sculpt is similar, but they went in two different directions in the Paint category.

Both have the funky ear cones, but on the bust they are the red skin tone, while on the PF they have a coppery armored appearance. The head band that wraps around the back of the skull also has this copper armor color on the PF, but is painted the same black as the tattoos on the bust. Again, I can't say with authority that either one is completely right or wrong, but I can say that I personally like the Sideshow interpretation slightly better.

It's the little things that can make such a difference. Notice the lips on both - which do you prefer? Both are red of course, but the PF has a darker color with a high gloss finish, while the lighter lips on the bust have a more matte appearance. For me, it's easy - I much prefer the look on the PF because it brings the lips out more, highlighting that feature on the lower face.

The bust paint ops aren't poor, but when held side by side with the PF, the overall quality of the latter becomes much more apparent.

Articulation - N/A
Neither piece has any form of articulation.

Accessories - Bust, PF (exclusive) ***
While it might seem like the Bust comes with no accessories, I'm going to count the light saber blade. It's removable, allowing you to display her without the blade lit.

That's not true with the PF, where the blade is permanently attached to the hilt. However, the exclusive PF includes the removable cape, which is very well made and fits great.

Since the head on the PF is held in place with a strong magnet, you can easily remove it to tie the cape around the shoulders just right, then pop the head back on. This allows you to get it just right without the 'tentacles' getting in the way.

The cape is made from a very thin material, and hangs perfectly. The thin material also allows the hood to be less bulky and cumbersome.

Outfit - PF ***1/2, mini-bust N/A
Obviously, the bust doesn't have an outfit, per se, so doesn't get a score for this category.

The PF has an outfit, but there's not a lot here - thank goodness. Most of the outfit - bra, boots, low slung 'belt', gauntlets and upper arm armor - is sculpted. But this is a PF, which means mixed media, and there is some cloth bits. The strap on the back of the armored bra and the bikini bottoms with the long flowing strands are cloth, and the strands include wires in each that allow you to pose them properly.

Light up Feature - PF ***1/2; Bust N/A
The bust doesn't light up, making this another Not Applicable category for her.

However, the PF does, and therefore has the stronger electronic connections on the one foot and the right arm. The light is powered by two AA batteries, not included, and like the recent Jedi Luke PF, there is also no option to use an AC adapter. That's a big loss as far as I'm concerned, but I won't cry in my Corn Pops for too long.

The red sabers always work better, which is somehow related to the color and not the evil nature of the dark side, I'm sure. That being said, don't expect to be blinded by the light, particularly in a well lit room, but it's a nice effect with the lights down low. In fact, Big Bang Theory needs to do a scene were Leonard romantically lights the room for Penny with just the glow of the Sideshow PF lightsabers...

It's also worth noting that the small button to turn the saber on and off is hidden as a rock on the back top of the base. That makes it easy to get to, and inconspicuous.

Value - Bust, PF **1/2
There is certainly a big difference in price between these two collectibles, but both are on the plus side of Value when compared to some of the other releases in this format.

A lot of Sideshow's PF's these days, especially those that light up, are running $300. You can pick this lovely lady up for 15% - 20% lower, making her a solid value. Of course, that's the regular version, but while the cape is cool, I think most fans can learn to live without.

The bust is running around $50 - $60, again about the going rate for Gentle Giant Star Wars busts. In fact, you may be able to snag this guy for under $50, which is a solid value. You're not going to feel like you got a steal with either one of these, but you will feel you got your money's worth.

Things to Watch Out For -
When you assemble the PF, you'll want to attach the arms - held in place with strong magnets at the top of the gauntlets - before putting the PF on the base. This is because the long lightsaber blade has little room to maneuver when she's standing on the rocky platform.

Overall - Bust ***; PF ***1/2
Gentle Giant played it very safe with the design choice for their bust. Nothing extreme in the pose, nothing extreme in the expression. She's very pretty, and the overall quality of the paint work is very good, but the only thing that makes her pop is the red skin and black tattoos.

On the other hand, the PF has a much more dynamic pose. Doing that is always dangerous, but Sideshow pulled it off pretty well here. I'm not sure if I'm completely sold on the walking stance on the legs, but through the cape on her back and that becomes a moot point.

For those with the cash and a thing for Talon, the Premium Format statue is the way to go. For some folks, the obscurity of the character may be off putting, but for me that actually adds to her appeal. Rather than another Han, another Luke, or another Leia, here's a character that's obviously Star Wars to even the most uninitiated, but isn't someone most will recognize. That sparks conversation, and collectibles that spark conversation provide the opportunity to initiate the uninitiated.

For those fans of Talon with fewer dollars (or perhaps more sense, depending on how you look at it), it's nice to know that the Gentle Giant mini-bust is a decent alternative. While it lacks the bells and whistles, it also costs less than a quarter of the price. Of course, that savings can be a bit misleading, because I think the PF can work as a stand alone piece, but the bust really needs other GG Star Wars busts around it to shine.

I also think this is one of those cases where the exclusive PF is a better option than the regular. The extra cape looks terrific, and adds more of the mixed media feel to the statue.

Score Recap:
Packaging - PF ***; Bust ***1/2
Sculpting - Bust ***1/2; PF ****
Paint - Bust ***; PF ***1/2
Articulation - N/A
Accessories - Bust, PF (exclusive) ***
Outfit - PF ***1/2, mini-bust N/A
Light up Feature - PF ***1/2; Bust N/A
Value - Bust, PF **1/2
Overall - Bust ***; PF ***1/2

Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Sideshow was the place to get the exclusive PF, but it's on wait list now. Even the regular is wait listed!

- Urban Collector has the bust for $47, but the PF is sold out.

- Alter Ego Comics has the bust for $54, and the PF for $253.

- Fanboy Collectibles has the bust for $50 and the PF for $260.

- Big Bad Toy Store also has the bust for $50, and the PF for $260.

- Things From Another World has the bust for $54.

- Andrew's Toyz has the bust for $58.

- Entertainment Earth has the bust for $60.

- or you can search ebay.

Related Links -
Other Sideshow Star Wars PF's I've covered include Jedi LukeYoda with the Clone TrooperSlave LeiaBoba Fett, Darth Vader, ANH Leia, ANH Obi-Wan, and Han Solo.

Other GG Star Wars mini-busts I've covered include Shaak-Ti and Aayla Secura, the Tusken Raider, the pair of Jawas, Dengar, ZuckussChewbacca and Darth Maul, Jedi Luke, Qui-Gon Jinn, Palpatine and Skiff Lando.

Discussion:
Want to chat about this review?  Try out one of these terrific forums where I'll be discussing it!

Enjoyed this review? Be sure to head back to the main page to find thousands more just like it!

KEEP SCROLLING DOWN FOR LOTS MORE PHOTOS!



Share this review with others! 
  Digg it!    StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!      Reddit

Darth Talon Premium Format statue by Sideshow Collectibles and mini-bust by Gentle Giant


These products were purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

This page copyright 2000 - 2010, Michael Crawford. All rights reserved. Click here for copyright permissions! Hosted by 1 Hour Hosting.com