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Star Wars
Bacara and Battle Damaged Anakin

The College Bum, Sean Teeter, is back with another Star Wars review tonight - it's Bacara and crispy Anakin.  Take it away, Sean!

It’s been a little while since I’ve picked up any new Star Wars stuff.

Distribution-wise, it’s been pretty uneven. Every time I hit the local Targets, K-Marts, and K.B.’s the racks are loaded with Wookie and Neimoidian warriors. Things are finally looking up however, as I managed to snag the Vader Evolutions, Vader 500th figure, Commander Bacara, and Battle Damaged Anakin Sywalker. Tonight I’ll look at the two basic figures. We’ve had several versions of both Anakin and the clones, but these two are unique enough to garner a second look. This is probably the only crispy version of Anakin you’re going to see on the pegs. For those of you who don’t remember Bacara he was the commander under Ki-Adi-Mundi.

For the most part, I’ve been pretty positive with the Revenge of the Sith line –although there have been a few losers. How do two of Hasbro’s latest measure up? 







Packaging - ***
I’ve covered this area before. I like the vibrant colors and unique card design, but those darn corners are easy to damage and frustrating for the MOC’ers out there.. 

Sculpting - ***
Both of these figures look good, but not great. While they are certainly serviceable, they’re not the knock-outs that Count Dooku and the Evolutions Vader are, but there’re nowhere near the dismal depths of the pregnant Padme or goofy-grinning Lightsaber Palpatine.
Anakin is about as crispy as he can be while still technically being a kids’ toy. The clothing damage works better in some places than others. The burn holes in the legs look nice, but the torso robe damage is a bit messy. The robotic arm also seems a bit soft on the details. I do have to give Hasbro kudos for the ragged sleeve hanging off of the left arm stump. I’m glad they went with this look instead of doing a full arm that popped apart with a peg.
The head is actually pretty good and captures enough of Anakin’s haggard appearance to work effectively.

Bacara’s body design comes off as a bit of a kit-bashed figure. He has quite a bit in common with the previous quick draw clone including the wide hips and flatter back. However, the design’s been retooled a bit to accommodate the dual-arm action feature. 

The helmet makes him stand out from all the other clone troopers though. The unique wide rim and front flaps look pretty good. Especially from the back, this guy looks a bit like the Snowtrooper’s predecessor. 

Paint - **1/2
The paint on Bacara is pretty simple: it’s the same basic black and white spread on other clones. His helmet has some nice little detailing to it with the blue lines and red dots, but they seem a bit shaky in some areas.

Anakin just comes off as a bit drab. Obviously, since Hasbro’s selling this in a “3 years of age & up” toy line, there was a limit to how gruesome this guy could be. The skin shown through the clothes just seems a bit dirty as opposed to burnt. The stump of his left arm is also skin colored as opposed to charred. 

The gold arm really needs some black highlights just like in the movie and looks way too clean. The head is the bright spot here though. The damage is only lightly painted with a dirty wash, but works pretty well. However it’s the eyes that get you. Hasbro tried the raccoon eyes on an earlier Anakin figure to make him look evil, but failed –making him look Goth glam instead. This time those eyes, with the light blue patching and lack of irises, look downright hateful. It’s an excellent capture on Hasbro’s part. 

Articulation - Anakin: **; Bacara: ** ˝ 
Neither of these guys will be holding any kung-fu poses in the future.

Anakin has a basic seven points of articulation: a ball-jointed head and pegs at the shoulders, hips, and knees. I didn’t expect super-articulation on this guy, but no waist cut? A cut above the robotic limb would have gone a long way too, since most of the time this crispy critter is going to be posed crawling up the volcanic sand banks. 

I bumped him up to a full two stars because of the removable limbs. I like the transitional idea between the two figures, and this also makes for some interesting customizing for other figures.

Bacara fares a bit better at eleven points: ball joints at the head, right shoulder, the right elbow, ankles, and cuts at the left shoulder, left elbow, wrists, and hips.
In the end this guy just doesn’t make much sense. Why fully articulate the right arm then screw the left arm up so badly? Even though both arms rise up, this figure has essentially the same action as the regular quick draw trooper. So why isn’t there any knee articulation? That one really confuses me, especially since he has ball jointed ankles!

The action feature is a bit klutzy at best. It’s a bit hard to operate through his skirt, but if you squeeze his legs, Bacara raises both his arms up, preferable while holding his rifle. The range is limited by his shoulder armor. He can still hold a few good poses, but looks pretty stiff next to the legions of my variously posed clones.

Durability - ***
Bacara’s pretty solid, so I don’t think you have to worry too much about him falling apart. Anakin’s meant to be pulled apart at the limbs, so those slightly loose joints are to be expected. Other than that, there’s no problem.

Accessories - **1/2
Bacara comes with the same long and short rifles packed with the quick-draw clones. They look fine and seem to be made of a slightly stiffer plastic. His shoulder-strapped armor can also be removed. His skirt can be removed, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are customizing. Unlike the Clone Commander, the peg holding the skirt together actually goes into a hole drilled into the waistline. There is also a small streak of glue under the belt to hold it in place.

It’s a little hard to judge Anakin because of the nature of the figure, so I’ll count one set of arms, one head, his lightsaber, and cloak as his accessories. The alternate ‘regular’ Anakin arms are sculpted in static poses, and not very good ones at that. Some basic wrist or elbow cuts could have gone a long way. The head is also a little wonky. While nowhere near as plump as the preview shots, he looks a little more like Frodo than Anakin. The skin’s also pretty pale, but it doesn’t bother me that much. The eyes were slightly off on every figure I saw. The plastic insert that holds the extra head and arms when not in use is worth holding onto since you can “fake” a second figure by inserting the piece of packaging into the cloak.

The cloak works better than I though it would but you can still see the “damaged” figure body easily through the slits up the sides. The lightsaber has some excellent detailing, but is a repack. A nice Mustafar base would have gone a long way here as well. 

Value - ***
$5.29 is a decent price each on these figures. I feel that I’ve gotten my money’s worth most of the time in the ROTS line, and these two aren’t going to change my mind about that. You can find most basic ROTS figure for under $6.00 at TRU’s, Targets, and Walmarts. K.B. Toys and K-Mart will cost you a buck or two extra, so be sure to shop around. 
They’ll be a tad higher online as always.

Overall - Commander Bacara: ***; Crispy Anakin: ** ˝
I have to say I was kind of let down by Commander Bacara. As much as I hate action features, I had no real problems with the quick-draw feature on the first clones released under the ROTS line because it didn’t interfere with the articulation in an excellent figure. Here, not only does it screw-up the arms, but for some reason Hasbro felt the need to take out the knees joints as well. What? In the end, it was his unique looks that save him from a lower rating.

Anakin is a scene specific figure, and in that capacity he works pretty well. He’s no homerun by any means though since there’re a few points of articulation that still could have been included to help the finished look. Also the paint scheme seems really bland and dumbed down –but as I said earlier, Hasbro probably had to watch how messed up they made this figure. I am happy about the face sculpt and paintjob though –and since that look is so important to the figure, I can’t fully drop him down to two stars.

So what’s in store for us in the future? I know we’ll be getting a few other clones commanders (as well as some groovy repaints) along the way. I just hope they’re fully articulated unlike Bacara.

Anakin-wise, I have no idea how many more variations we’re going to see. I should think after seeing the Vader Evolutions figures that we really don’t need any more, unless they want to rework the head sculpts a bit. I think it’s time for a break from Anakin, and even Vader now that we have a ton of figure variations out there. (Except for a Sideshow Vader that is . . . bring it on!) I think it’s time for a few Padme figures. Let me rephrase –a few good Padme figures. We could also use a few others such as a super-articulated Mace Windu and Qui-Gon Jinn. Maybe next year . . . 

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***
Sculpt - ***
Paint - **1/2
Articulation - Anakin: **; Bacara: ** ˝ 
Durability - ***
Accessories - **1/2
Value - ***
Overall - Commander Bacara: ***; Crispy Anakin: ** ˝

Where to Buy - 
Check out Andrew's Toyz for all your Star Wars needs!



Figure from the collection of Sean Teeter.

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