Star Wars Vintage Collection: C-3PO by Hasbro

I looked at the Vintage Collection Han and Leia figures together, but I wanted to save C-3PO because he deserves his own review. Yes, he is just that bad. In fact, there’s so much wrong with this figure, it’s hard to know where to start. This figure is poorly designed, poorly executed, and he has a gimmick that doesn’t belong anywhere near a “vintage style” 3PO mounted on an Empire Strikes Back card. In fairness, I knew this figure was going to be crap when I bought him. You can see it right through the bubble. But I figured I’d check him out anyway and at least I’d get a PoP for my Boba Fett mailaway.

One ridiculous thing about this release is that C-3PO was already released as part of the Vintage Original Trilogy Collection on this very same card and so for carded collectors he’s somewhat superfluous. It’s possible that Hasbro was trying to make a mends for the VOTC 3PO, which was also a terrible, terrible figure, but somehow swapping one crappy 3PO for another doesn’t seem like a good plan. Either way, the packaging is the best thing about this figure. The front is nearly identical to the VOTC version. The only real drawback of this figure’s packaging is that the choking hazard sticker is stuck directly on the card, whereas it was on the clamshell of the VOTC release. There’s also the mailaway Boba Fett sticker on the front.

I’ll start with one of the few things I like about this figure, and that’s the coloring. We’ve had plenty of shiny 3PO’s but not too many grubbier ones. This version’s duller coppery finish makes it pretty good for the Tatooine scenes from A New Hope, which begs the question, why put him on an Empire Strikes Back card? The other thing I like about this figure is the articulation. 3PO has a ball jointed head, and universal joints in the shoulders, elbows and knees. He also has swivels in the shoulders and ankles. 3PO has a ball joint in his waist, but unfortunately the back lip of his torso gets caught on the wirey midsection, which makes use of this joint tricky. He’s also pulled apart at the waist a few times while trying to make use of this joint.

This 3PO has some issues with proportions, a lot of which has to do with the gimmick that I’ll talk about in a minute. His upper torso looks a little too wide, but his pelvis looks absolutely huge, which gives his hip joints a weird extra wide stance. I’ll admit there’s some nice sculpting at work, especially the detail on his arms and the exposed wires of his midsection, but that doesn’t help a lot when the proportions look so wrong.

The dumbest thing about this 3PO is that he was designed with removable plates. It’s a gimmick that severely effects the aesthetics of the figure. Since 3PO never appeared like this in any of the Original Trilogy films, it’s obviously a nod to his appearance in Attack of the Clones, but if that was the intention, Hasbro should have saved this figure for an Attack of the Clones card, since they are doing some prequel figures in the vintage style too (don’t get me started on how stupid an idea I think that is!). The face plate, chest plate and right thigh plate are all removable to expose his inner workings. Unfortunately, the face plate and right thigh fall off almost every time I fiddle with him.

In the end, I think this figure is just a bit better than the awful VOTC 3PO, but mainly because that figure couldn’t even get the paint job right let alone the sculpt and there’s absolutely nothing that I like about it. Had Hasbro nixed the idea of the removable plates and improved the proportions, this could have been an excellent 3PO, but then it would have been an entirely new figure. Again, I like the coloring and the articulation at work here, but the rest of this figure is a damn shame.

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