It seems like a while since I had some new 6-inch Black Series figures in hand. I think a part of the problem has been distribution problems in the last wave. I’ve still yet to see a General Hux or X-Wing Pilot Asty, and seeing as they go for $50+ on Amazon right now, I’m guessing that I’m not alone. I was only able to get the Flametrooper all by his lonesome. But now I finally received my case of 2016, Wave 2 figures and while the breakdown wasn’t what I was promised (I got two Lukes and no Ahsoka Tano and I’m still working on rectifying that) I’m happy to finally have some new figures in this line to look at. Let’s start with Luke…
Luke comes in the same style of package that was revamped for The Force Awakens. I like this presentation a lot. It augments the othewise dull black box by adding a red backdrop to the tray and a red side panel. On the downside the front features some of the worst character art I’ve seen in a while. I mean, holy shit, is that really supposed to be Luke? The figures are also numbered and Luke here is #21, which seems like a lot. I’m going to have to consult a checklist and see if I’m missing any that I don’t know about. Anyway, if I had one complaint about the Black Series is that I wish it had focused more on A New Hope way back when it first launched and it seems like “Farmboy” Luke here is a long overdue release.
Straightaway, the most noticeable thing here is the use of soft goods for Luke’s tunic. Fabric costuming seemed like a no-brainer for this larger scale line, and yet Hasbro has been avoiding it left and right. We got little bits of fabric to accentuate Boba Fett, Obi-Wan, and Slave Leia, but it’s been very little. They even omitted a fabric cloak for Jedi Knight Luke, which was something even Kenner gave us in the vintage 3 3/4-inch original. Well they went balls out with it here and I think that’s going to be a polarizing point for collectors.
Now, I get it, it’s hard to make fabric costumes work in this scale. The garments don’t have enough weight to sit properly on the figure so you need to do some really deft tailoring or use very special fabric. It succeeded brilliantly on the Kylo Ren figure and while I don’t think it’s that successful here, I’m still happy with the results. I was not a fan of the sculpted robes on the Prequel Obi-Wan figure in this line and I think this looks better. It’s a bit more billowy than it should be, particularly around the arms, but it’s a nicely tailored piece and with the right futzing, I was able to get some decent results.
The base figure is just bare from the waist up. The sculpting on the pants and boots is decent enough. Articulation is right about what we’ve been getting all along. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, and double hinged elbows. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, double hinged at the knees, and have swivels in the thighs. The ankles are hinged and have lateral rockers. There’s a ball joint in the torso and a hinge and ball joint in the neck.
The portrait is passable. I’ve been arguing that the Luke likenesses have been getting worse as this line moves on, but this might be the first one to buck that trend. Or at least it might if not for the waxy plastic that’s used, which doesn’t hold the details all that well. Mine also has a splotch of yellow paint on his cheek. Granted, I have to get in pretty close to find these things bothersome. The expression is a little too dour for me, but then Luke on Tatooine was a sulky little sot, so maybe it actually fits.
The belt clips pegs around the waist and is easily removable. It features some particularly nice paint hits on the buckle and the brass fixtures. You also get two accessories here: His binoculars and his lightsaber. We’ve seen this lightsaber over and over, so there’s nothing new to say about it. The blade is removable and the hilt can hang on the belt. The binoculars are a pretty nice sculpt and he can hold them fairly convincingly. They can also clip to the belt. I would have liked to see one more accessory in here, preferably his rifle.
While I’m happy with the soft goods, there’s certainly room for improvement, so I soaked the tunic and let it dry on the figure overnight. It’s a trick that sometimes works for iffy looking 1:6 scale outfits…
It’s still a little damp in the above picture and to be honest, there isn’t a dramatic improvement, other than it fits a little closer to the chest now.
All in all, I’m rather pleased with this figure, but I suppose I could understand if it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea… or in this case blue milk. I’m rather anxious for Hasbro to cover the original twelve from A New Hope and this brings us one step closer. We know Leia is coming, but I’m really excited to get a couple of Sandpeople for Luke to fight. It’s a fun figure and I’m in the camp that is very glad they went with the soft goods tunic over a sculpted one. I think the biggest room for improvement here would have been a few more accessories. Considering we got the desert hat and rifle in previous 3 3/4-inch releases, their absence here feels rather stingy.