Kotobukiya Boba Fett

If you're a Star Wars collector, one problem you don't have is finding something to buy. From bed sheets to dog food bags, there's plenty of product out there. Even if you decide to specialize a bit, and only buy, oh, say action figures, you're still going to be swamped with the variety and quantity of goodies available.

One of the newer companies to pick up the license is Kotobukiya. Makers of all kinds of models and vinyl kits in Japan, they had quite a display this year at SDCC of their Star Wars 1/7th scale kits.

I was intrigued enough by what I saw in San Diego, that I started to keep an eye out for deals. Retail on these guys is often around $100, but you can find them much cheaper if you spend a little time. The Boba Fett I had seen was one of my favorites, so when I found him on ebay for $55, I snatched him up.

They are producing a ton of different characters, and of course when it came to the Stormtroopers and Clonetroopers, they took a page from the Gentle Giant handbook for driving collector's nuts, and produced some of the color schemes in limited quantities. *sigh*

Packaging - ***
These are technically 'vinyl kits', not figures or statues, so they come packaged in pieces that you snap together. Don't get too nervous though - that takes all of about 30 seconds. The huge box has an inner tray with the handful of pieces, and shows things off nicely. It's a damn big box, but it's fairly collector friendly, and holds up to shipping and shelf wear well.

Sculpting - ***1/2
This has suddenly become my favorite Fett in my collection. Yep, the Marmit version is nice, but this is a terrific sculpt for the price. The level of detail is excellent, and the pose has really been growing on me. He looks particularly good from one or two angles, and the level of quality has convinced me to buy more. What better recommendation can you give?

The pants are a little less textured than I might have expected, and the rocket pack could also use some additional texture to make it a tad more realistic and less 'plastic' appearing. In general, I think the texturing is the only real overall issue, and the armor - chest plate, helmet, shoulder and knee armor - looks great with the smooth finish.

One of the more impressive details is the 'dimples' in the armor where Fett has taken blasts. There's a very realistic irregularity to them, and combining that with the bright silver color, they look exactly like dimples in metal. And I bet that one to his crotch took him by surprise.

Scale is kind of weird here, because the line is called "1/7th" scale, which would imply that a six foot character would be slightly over 10". However, Fett stands a full 12" from the bottom of his boots to the top of his helmet. However, the body proportions are much closer to 'real', since this is a statue and not a clothed figure. There's no overt bulkiness of the body and clothes, so the scale between torso, limbs and head looks much more appropriate.

However, that means he'll look skinny next to a 12" action figure in a cloth uniform. Unfortunately, I don't have too many figures available right now (remember, I'm moving, and it's all in storage, baby) for comparison shots, but he's too small to hang out with the Hasbro or Marmit sixth scale figures, but really too big to hang with the new 12" Medicom stuff.  I shot him with the Mattel 12" Batman (comic book version), and he is just about the same scale.  You an see the larger 13" Action Cape Batman in the background.  Notice that neither Batman is standing on a base like Fett is.

Paint - ***1/2
The paint ops are similar to the sculpt - damn fine, but just slightly missing perfect.

The work on the dimples I already mentioned, but the other weathering and damage on the armor and helmet is also excellent. This battle damage is probably what raises this figure above the ordinary, and gives it a ton of personality.

However, some of the small details are a little sloppier than you might expect, especially on the cuffs, belts and tools. There's a little bleed here, and some weak definition between colors. However, none of it is glaring, and certainly not enough to damage the overall appearance.

Articulation - Bupkis
These aren't action figures, they're vinyl statues. No articulation here.

Kit Construction/Quality - ****
Since they can't get kudos for articulation, they ought to get kudos for the quality of the materials and ease to at which you can put them together.

When you say 'vinyl', people think rotocast or urban vinyl type materials. I say nay nay! These parts are all solid construction, nothing hollow here. That means the detail on the sculpt is excellent, and there's quite a bit of heft to them. These are sort of the best of both worlds - you get the size and quality of paint/sculpt that you do with a resin statue, but don't have to worry about something snapping or breaking if you breathe on it.

The various pieces snap together with solid posts, and nothing is going to fall off on its own. However, if you want to remove a limb later for some reason (I forgot to put my wookie braids on the first time), it's not a problem, and you won't feel like you're about to break something as you do it. The part will snap back in as well, with no damage or looseness.

Accessories - **1/2
Since this is a statue, it doesn't have accessories in the traditional sense. But the display base, while basic, is appropriate and holds the statue up nicely, and Boba also has a pair of wookie braids that can be worn around his arm.

Fun Factor - **
Believe it or not, this is one of the few statues your kids could actually play with. There's not much to break, other than his little visor doohickey, but because the feet have pegs designed for the base, they won't be able to do much with him when he's separated from it. And you probably don't want them banging up that nice paint job too much, but at least he won't break into a million pieces if they drop him on the floor.

Value - ***
That depends these days. At suggested retail of $100, I'd cut a star off of here. These are sweet, but not a hundred bucks sweet. However, I paid only $55 for this one, and I see them routinely going for less than $60 on ebay right now, depending on the figure. At that price, these are a steal. I'm grading them with *** stars someplace in between $50 and $100.

Things to Watch Out for - 
Not a single thing. Man, that's always nice to say. Okay, maybe one thing - take your time when putting the viewer into the slot on the helmet. You can snap it if you're not paying attention to what you're doing.

Overall -  ***1/2
Jango's son was *this* close to a four star rating. Had he been given a little more texture to his clothing, and had the paint ops been just *slightly* better, it would have been an easy call. Also, remember that I'm grading him on the assumption that he's costing you in the $70 - $80 range, but if you snag him for $55 like I did, he's an easy four stars.

I'm disappointed that I caught on to this line late, missing some of the harder to find Troopers. As it is, I'm going to go back and pick up a Jango Fett, Darth Vader, Chewbacca, and at least a couple of the different Troopers. These guys will look great together, even if the scale makes them slightly off with everything else.

Packaging - ***
Sculpt - ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - Bupkis
Accessories - ***
Kit Quality - ****
Fun Factor - **
Value - **1/2
Overall -  ***1/2

Where to Buy -
I got a great deal on ebay, but you have to keep your eyes peeled to pull it off. Online options include:

- Dark Shadow doesn't have Boba, but they have quite a few of the others for just $75.

- Alter Ego Comics has this guy for $85.

- All Movie Replicas has Boba for $95.

- Fireside Collectibles doesn't have this particular one, but they have many of the others for the $85 price range.

- Killer Toys also has some of the others in the $85 range.

Related Links -
I haven't picked up any of the other Kotobukiya stuff yet, but let's talk about Mr. Fett...

- here's a guest review of the VOTC version.

- if you're looking for something bigger but still VOTC, here's a guest review of the 12" version

- 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?

- still one of the best Fett's produced is the 300th Edition, and another of my favs is the 12" Marmit version.

- and here's a really helpful site for all things Kotobukiya.

Now, how about a Medicom Fett, or a Sideshow quarter scale Fett? C'mon guys, it would be like printing money!

Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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