Packaging - ****
Are you surprised?
It's Sideshow, and it's Star Wars. Their box
designs for this line has been some of the best ever produced, even
with the relatively plain black and gray color scheme given to them by
There's the usual magnetic
closures on the fifth panel (which wraps around the box). The box has
the usual background text, as well as photos of the figure.
And as usual, it's completely collector friendly. You can
easily remove the figure from the box and put him back any time, no
twisties, no damage.
There is a thin piece of plastic
around the belt to protect it, but this is tied in back and can be put
back on if you're that anal.
The work here was done by the young and extremely talented Trevor
Grove. Trevor hasn't been working with Sideshow that long, but every
sculpt he does gets better than the previous. At this point, I don't
know how he'll be able to top this one.
The detail work in the hair and
beard is spooky good. THIS is how facial hair should be done. He's also
captured the nuances of Obi-wan's face, from the arched eyebrow to the
small moles. The detailing in the lips is subtle but noticable, and the
eyes have the right amount of serious determination in the squint. Is
it a perfect Ewan McGregor? I can certainly see him in there, although
it's a younger Ewan than what you'd expect for Clone Wars.
does it have to be an Ewan? We never say him in this armor, and to me
this is more of a concept of how the realistic version of the cartoon
design would look.
I'll get into greater detail on
the armor in the Outfit section, but suffice to say that it's very well
done. The sculpted edges are sharp and even, with a very
smooth feel to the plastic. There's very few visible mold
lines as well, a current pet peeve of mine.
The hands are all sculpted in
proportion and scale, and they are designed to work nicely with the
accessories and with a variety of poses.
Paint - ****
Out of all the categories, this is the only one that I waffled around a
bit, because the final product is so damn good...and yet I have a
couple fundamental issues.
The skin is not painted this
time around, but rather the head has been cast in the skin tone color.
This is a technique that other companies use that can work
extremely well, and as I've said in other cases, it doesn't matter to
me whether something is painted or whether it's cast in the color - all
that matters is how the final product looks.
The look here is a definite
improvement over some of the past skin paint jobs we've seen from
Sideshow. That's not to say that they have this new technique
down, however. It's close, but it still reminds me a little too much of
my old Best of the West figures. They've got to work on
getting the skin tone a little more realistic, a little less rubbery
looking. Like I said, it's close and it's a huge improvement over some
of the awful skin paint jobs, but they've got a kink or two to work out.
The rest of the paint work is
spot on. The hair and beard are as impressive from a paint aspect as
they are from a sculpt aspect. The subtle shading of the beard, the
clean eyebrows, and the nicely shaded lips all go a long way to
highlighting the excellent sculpt.
The eyes are fairly even,
although on mine one is slightly off center. It's only a
smidge, but I noticed. They have the catch lights painted in, something
I know bugs some folks quite a bit, but fortunately they aren't too
Even with the issues I
mentioned, I'm still giving this figure top marks in the category. This
is easily the best paint work we've gotten to date on a Sideshow Star
Wars non-alien character.
This is the first figure to sport the new Armored body, and in some
ways it's a little frustrating because of the armor. You can't strip
this particular figure down to see what's under there, so much of it is
still based on Sideshow's early prototype photos. You can check out a
comparison of the old Buck with the new Armored and Prometheus versions
After just a few minutes
working with this body, you can tell that it's a huge improvement over
the Buck. While olcer bodies like the Buck had all the joints they
really needed, those joints were not engineered and designed to flow
and hang as realistically as they could. This new body makes a huge
leap forward in that area.
I love the ball jointed neck,
and while I bet it's pretty long looking stripped down, on a figure
like this with a tall collar, it looks and works beautifully. All the
other joints hae a tremendous range of movement, and provide a very
human-like, relaxed look to any pose.
The hands AND feet are easily
swapped. They use a post system similar to Medicom, but the posts go
into the wrists in a specific way. Line up the notches in the
hole with the shape of the post, and you'll be fine. The feet also lay
flat on the floor, even in deep stances, as long as you position the
ball and peg properly. I shot one photo with him in such a
stance, with feet wide to the sides yet flat on the floor, to
The body is also quite light
weight, but it does not feel cheap, or easily damaged. All the
proportions are good, with no monkey arms or gangly legs, at least not
in this outfit.
You will note however that they
didn't get a perfect score in this category. That's because that the
joints, particularly the knees and ankles, are too loose. I didn't find
nearly the same level of trouble as the early days of Sideshow, where
the Buck body would topple over in any stance after a few minutes, but
the legs are still looser than they should be. Since this is the first
use of the body, I'm not surprised there's still a few kinks to work
Obi-wan in armor stands about 12
inches tall, making him fit in just fine with the older Sideshow
figures as well as the Medicom Clonetroopers.
- regular ***1/2; exclusive ****
Sideshow has done a nice job packing up the regular figure with some
critical extras, and this is one of those rare exclusives where the
extra accessory really is a great addition.
The regular figure has both the
lit and unlit sabers, as well as two extra sets of hands. The
sabers look great, with thin blades and very detailed hilts. The hands
are all sculpted to work with various accessories, both included and
I say 'not', because there are
two pistol grip hands that work great with either the Trooper blasters
included with the Medicom figures, or the blasters included with
various past Sideshow figures. I posed him with a blaster in a couple
of the shots, but I just wanted to point out explicitly that this is
NOT an accessory he comes with. However, with all the
blasters you've gotten to this point, it's nice that the hands were
included so he could be posed with any extra you might have.
The other pair of hands are
closed fists, and these look good and are sized properlly. In fact all
the hands, including the two he comes wearing (a saber holding right
and a gesturing left) are properly scaled and look terrific.
The hands swap easily, stay in place when posing, and I never
felt any risk of damaging the posts when removing or replacing them.
The exclusive has one additional
accessory in the form of the holograpic Captain Rex. When
Sideshow first showed this extra, it was just a little clear blue
figure, but the final version comes attached to a separate left
gauntlet. This piece of armor can be swapped on to his right arm, and
it looks fantastic. I suspect a lot of the exclusive owners will end up
posing him in a similar way to my first photo above, and that kind of
almost universal use of an exclusive accessory is pretty
For those afraid he might fall
over, there is the usual display stand, but you know me. I'll
be risking it, and I think that while the legs are loose, you can still
get him to stay standing in most poses for sufficiently long periods.
Outfit - ***1/2
I started out this review espousing my appreciation for the coolness of
the outfit design. Sideshow has done a fantastic job translating that
outfit into a sixth scale version.
The outfit is made up of three
main components. There's the underlying black body suit, the trooper
armor, and the Jedi style robes.
The trooper armor is excellent,
matching the source material well but having a distinct advantage over
the Medicom troopers we've seen - the figure has far more posing
ability. Stances and arm poses that are not possible with the
Medicon Clone Troopers are possible with Obi-Wan.
The armor is also much harder
plastic on Obi-wan than the Medis too, but very light weight. Whether
the harder or softer armor is better is probably something we won't
know for years, because I suspect at some point in the distant future
one of them will be more susceptible to yellowing and cracking.
Which won't be known for a very long time though, and isn't
worth worrying about too much now. With any of these figures
in white armor, it's all the more important to keep them out of direct
I do have a problem with the
white belt, however. The belt has a brown wash over it, and it looks to
me to be on purpose. I understand that in reality, it probably would be
dirtier than the rest of the armor, because the belt has all those
small grooves and corners to catch the dirt, whereas the larger armor
pieces would easily wipe clean. Still, the look doesn't work for me,
and I think I'll be trying what others have had some success with - a
Q-Tip dipped in rubbing alcohol.
The outer robes look excellent
as well, perfectly tailored and made from a similar material to the
past robes. The cape flowing out in back has been pleated just right at
the shoulders, allowing it to hang and flow naturally in just about any
pose. A wire running through the edge of the cape would have been nice,
but not having it doesn't bother me.
The only other issue I have with
the outfit is on the underlying black body suit. The suit
does not have sewn 'pleats' in it, like the Medicom version, but rather
printed ones. It's a minor nit for me though, because the suit is
almost entirely hidden by the robes and armor, and had Medicom not done
it properly with theirs, I never would have even noticed it was missing.
I know some folks have
complained that the calf armor is too loose, but I didn't find that to
be a major issue. If you do think it needs to be tighter on
his leg, you can always tuck a little tissue in there.
you'll notice that in most of the photos, I have the bicep armor
technically backwards. The front of the bicep is supposed to be smooth,
but in all the reference material I've found, the back is smooth as
well. While it might technically be backwards, I found that
having it turned with the sculpted edge forward gave the elbow more
mobility, and looked better to my eye. YMMV, and they are easy enough
to turn either way.
Fun Factor - ***1/2
I doubt too many kids will ever get to play with this figure, but
Obi-Wan is just as sturdy as any $20 Hasbro Star Wars figure. Could
they break the lightsaber? Sure, but I've broken the Hasbro sabers just
posing them. The underlying body construction feels able to take rough
handling, and I didn't have any fears of breaking the wrist joints.
This might be a 'collectible' action figure, but it hasn't forgotten
that it's an action figure.
Value - ***
You can get the regular version of this figure for about $80.
The armor is better than Medicom's troop armor because it
allows a greater range of mobility, the quality of the head sculpt and
paint is very similar to Hot Toys, and the underlying body is a huge
improvement over the old Buck. Considering that you'll pay 50
- 100% more for Hot Toys and Medicom figures, you can't say
you're not getting a solid value here. I'm not quite ready to go that
extra half star with the slightly loose body, but if the Stormtrooper
turns out this good (and he's selling about the same price with a
tighter body) you'll see that extra half star in this category.
Things To Watch Out For
I've heard (and seen) some good results where folks used a q-tip and
rubbing alcohol (I'd stay away from acetone) to clean up the belt. If
you try it
though and screw the pooch, don't come blaming me.
The hands go on and off nicely,
but you do need to turn the post the right way to get them on. Pay
attention to the alignment and you'll have no trouble.
Overall - ****
There's a few minor issues here, and Sideshow needs to get those joints
tightened up a bit. But the new body is a huge improvement, the head
sculpt is outstanding, the armor works far better than any we've gotten
from other manufacturers, and overall this is one of (if not THE)
nicest figure in their Star Wars line they've released so far.
I have HUGE hopes now for Vader and the Stormtroopers, and I
can't wait to get my hands on their Indiana Jones.
Sideshow started out the year
extremely strong with the Emperor/Senator two pack, as well as their
Episode IV Obi-wan. They went in to a bit of a slump on the Star Wars
license during the middle of the year though, but it looks like they'll
finish it out strong, with a very bright outlook for all their sixth
scale lines in '09.
Packaging - ****
Sculpting - ****
Paint - ****
Articulation - ***1/2
Outfit - ***1/2
Fun Factor - ***1/2
Value - **1/2
Overall - ****
Where to Buy -
Obviously, Sideshow was the place, but you'll have to get on the
waitlist for the exclusive or the regular version. You can check out
one of these fine sponsors for the regular version:
has him for $81.
- Alter Ego has
the regular version for $81.
- Things From Another World
has him for $90.
- Dark Shadow
Collectibles actually has a few of the exclusive available at
- in the UK, Forbidden
Planet has him on sale for 50 GBP.
- you can search ebay using
the sponsor MyAuctionLinks.com.
I've covered a ton of Star
Wars sixth scale product, both from Sideshow and Medicom. From Sideshow:
- the recent Aayla Secura, Tatooine Luke and Han Solo.
- Sideshow has had a strong year
so far with Commander Praji,
the exceptional Palpatine/Sidous
and ANH Obi-Wan,
and the not quite so exceptional Ilum
- also in the sixth scale line,
I've reviewed Leia and
Bespin Luke, the Holo-chess
Asajj, a terrific figure, Yavin
Luke, the Endor
Troops, Jabba the
Hutt and his
throne, Bib Fortuna,
Luke, Darth Maul,
Han Solo, regular Anakin
Skywalker and Kit
- I also have guest reviews of
the SDCC Anakin Skywalker,
Windu, and Qui-Gon
- in the premium format line,
I've reviewed Darth Vader,
Leia, Boba Fett,
Kenobi, and Han
there's a guest review of the Shocktrooper,
as well as ROTS
Vader, Jedi Luke,
Yoda, Boba Fett,
and the Trooper.
I've looked at Wicket,
Maul, the 501st
Clone Trooper, Jango
Fett, the Sandtrooper,
Vader, the regular
Stormtrooper, and Clonetrooper
and Blackhole Trooper.