Star Wars: The Black Series Wave 19 & Red Squadron Review

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It’s that time on this site where I go through the newest wave of Star Wars Black Series figures!  I know, I know, some people don’t dig that I take them out and pose em for my reviews/thoughts.  Once again, I’m letting readers new and old that I hang them up because it’s the easiest option to display, not because I’m thinking I’m sitting on a gold mine.  Still with me? Good! There’s a video review embedded from my channel at the end, too!

 

Val (Vandor-1)

I was really impressed with the work done on the 3 3/4″ version (check out my look at those figures) but I wasn’t expecting how well done this figure was going to be.  Everything from the sculpt to the paint is insanely well done.  All the sculpting and belt pieces hanging really shows Hasbro and the designers aren’t holding back on characters some Star Wars fans may not even embrace.

I think the main wow factor is with the face sculpt and paint.  I mean, c’mon…isn’t this a gorgeous figure? While I would have preferred for the figure to not be looking upwards, there is no mistaking this is Thandie Newton.  The hair, the pain on the eyes and mouth, and the sculpt are all nailed.  I may sound like a broken record in this feature, but that’s what is really impressing me the most with this wave – the attention to detail and the face sculpt and paint.

 

Imperial Range Trooper

I’m so not against new Troopers.  I love the variants and the tweaks on previous figures.  The Imperial Patrol Trooper blends prequel Troopers with OT ones.

While the outfit isn’t as exciting as some of the other figures in this wave, it’s done well. The same can be said about the helmet and that’s where the fans are really particular with their Troopers.  I love how, to me anyway, it blends the regular Stormtrooper mask with aspects of the Range Trooper from Return of the Jedi.  Perhaps that’s why the pistol that’s included (and the look of the amour) is similar, too.  It’s a great figure and I’m looking forward to getting Hot Toys’ version.

 

L3-37

I was almost going to get into the drama about this figure and what it represents in my video but stopped myself.  I won’t do it here either.  I know this droid and her personality symbolizes a great divide in Star Wars fandom right now.  You know what? I don’t care.  I really don’t.  I’ll just state if this character and the direction of the franchise makes you that angry that you can’t stay off the Internet to spew your dissatisfaction,  your priorities in life are really f’d up.

I really like the sculpting and paint done on the 3 3/4″ figure so I was hoping this figure was going to be executed as well.  Thankfully it is! I’m kinda bummed the head isn’t turned more forward for the packaging for my figure, but that’s a minor gripe.

The wiring is sculpted well and the weathering effects are great, too.  It’s kinda a simplistic figure at first glance but take a look at the work on the neck area as an example. This part of the figure could have been just plain black cylinders but they didn’t go that route.  Once again, it’s attention to detail even with characters that are divisive.

 

 

Dengar

Here’s the hottest figure of the wave right here. No, I don’t mean the most attractive but the most sought after.  With his fellow bounty hunter, Zuckuss, still being in demand and a reissue of Boba Fett arriving next year, people are clamoring to complete their bounty hunters.  That makes a figure like Dengar, who was previously deemed as boring, hot like salsapicantedenanafunkenstein (thanks, Infectious Grooves!).

Hot damn, this guy this year! The sixth scale figure from Sideshow Collectibles I bought and reviewed back in January wowed me more than anticipated and the same can be said about this version.  It has a bit more weight than other figures due to the amount of extra amour and accessories that come with it.

The weathering effects are well done (once again) as well as the minute details on the chest piece.  My goodness…the labour of love shown here is impeccable.  Look at the face sculpt as well. The scaring, the work on the bandages and the paint all nail it.  If this isn’t one of the best top Black Series figures this year on many people’s list, regardless what you think of the character, I’ll be amazed.

 

Princess Leia Organa (Hoth)

I already gave my thoughts on the figure when I took a look at the UK exclusive Han & Leia Hoth figure set courtesy of Entertainment Earth, so there’s not much more to say here except it’s a well done figure.

The work done on the outfit (and accessories) make the figure seem more life-like.  While the face is acceptable, I find it’s a bit more cartoony than the last release we got of Leia.  Perhaps it’s the eyes being a tad too large, making it look slightly animated.  That’s just my two cents, of course.

 

Lando Calrissian (Skiff Guard)

Colt-45 in disguise! Seriously, though, this figure is awesome.  I don’t think we could have enough smooth Billy Dee Williams in plastic form.  Lando in his Bespin garbs was a hit and this figure continues the excellence.  It actually hypes me up to see what Hasbro will do for the General outfit release.

I’m a fan of the skiff guard outfit and the various paint used to make the armor piece pop.  The work on the helmet is pretty damn good, too, especially with the paint at the chin area.

The head sculpt of this figure nails Billy Dee Williams’ look and I like it better than the initial figure’s sculpt.  When taking the up-close pictures, though, I found there to be some weird blotches and lines that are not clean on the face.  I’m sure this is just an error on my figure as the rest of this line is superb.  I’ll just have to replace it when another one finally is available online.

 

Rio Durant

I’m sorry…I can’t help but have Duran Duran in my head when I see this figure now.  Fun note aside, it’s wild that they didn’t put the number of this figure close to the first three of this wave.  Perhaps that’s why people could find the first three on the pegs and online sooner than ol’ Rio here.

While the figure seems smaller at first glance, the additional arms and thickness of the character make up for the height.  Like Val, there’s a lot going on in the outfit sculpt and paint-wise and that really makes the figure pop.

The head sculpt and paint are another hit in my books.  Yeah, he’s not going to be on many people’s “must have” lists, but he’s a unique character that brings even more diversity to the line and the Star Wars universe.  That’s always a good thing.

The counter argument would be “where are more OT figures?!?!?” Seriously! We need more Cantina aliens and denizens of Jabba’s lair and barge.  Let’s make 2019 the year of the aliens, creatures, and monsters, Hasbro!

 

BONUS!! Droid 3 Pack!

I got this set just as I was wrapping up my writing and photos for this piece (and added it just as I was finishing filming).  This piece is quite a bit of dough, still, in Canada on Amazon.ca but I scored it with 15% off the regular price and used $15 Amazon gave my account as an apology for so many delays and mistakes with recent orders (awww, shucks).

Call me ignorant, which I can be at times, because I thought when I first saw this set I thought it was a droid pack featuring a newly weathered R2-D2, R5-D4 and an Imperial R2 unit.  Turns out it wasn’t.  I didn’t even realize it until I finally got it in that this is a pack dedicated to the droids that helped in the Red Squadron during the Battle of Yavin.  (Slaps head).

This set features the familiar R2-D2 who has an amazing fried paint job on him.  It’s not until you really see this figure in hand (or close-ups or in my video) that you realize how well it’s done.  I think more people would really clamor for this set if they had any idea how cool this R2-D2 looks (well, that and lower the price a bit).

Along side of R2-D2, we have R5-D8 who is none other than Jek Porkins’ (PORKINS!) droid that went down in battle.  Don’t you all think it’s time we start demanding a Porkins Black Series figure?

Finally there is R2-X2 who served alongside Theron Nett.  I had to actually look up the name while typing it because I couldn’t remember the X-Wing pilot’s face who is tied to this name.  You may have to as well.

All in all, this is a cool set but the price, especially in Canada, is a bit too much for three droids.  That’s why I don’t have the initial Black Series droids 3-pack.  I just couldn’t justify the price for three droids at the time.

This was one huge hitting and large wave along with two exclusives being released around the same time. It’s a lot of money but us Star Wars collectors pay it when we like what we like.  Hasbro knows it! From what I’ve seen, every figure in this wave is being sought after except Val who is already going for $12 less than retail on Amazon.ca as of the time of writing this.  The others? They’re still kinda hard to snag besides K3-37.

Enjoy the video!

 

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