Joining Sideshow's acclaimed Star Wars Sixth Scale Collection is the R5-J2 Imperial Astromech Droid.
Making a brief appearance in the opening of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, this sleek black and copper colored repair droid was stationed on the second Death Star during the battle of Endor. Built slightly larger than the Imperial R2-Q5 unit, the R5-J2 Sixth Scale Figure measures roughly 8.6 inches tall and features hinged panels, retractable treads, and a unique swiveling trapezoid-shaped head. Not even a memory inhibitor could keep this droid from bringing personality and charm to your Star Wars collection.
Sideshow Collectibles has been moderately consistent releasing astromech droids in their 1:6 Scale Figures line after the release of the R2-D2 (Deluxe). They haven’t been banging them out one after another. By no means have they been overwhelming us. But was perhaps is overwhelming is the character selections they’re choosing. After the R2-D2 (Deluxe) 1:6 Scale Figure, it made sense to get to R5-D4 afterwards. But now Sideshow Collectibles is focusing on Imperial astromech droids. First was R2-Q5 (Imperial Astromech Droid) and now R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) is up next. While we appreciate out of the box thinking when it comes to releasing 1:6 Scale Figures, we’re not so sure if R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) is the next best choice. What about all of the astromech droids on Mos Eisley? What about from the Battle of Yavin? Surely those characters have a whole bunch more notoriety than a couple of background black droids from Star Wars Episode VI: Return Of The Jedi, right? Apparently this isn’t how Sideshow Collectibles feels. Also, when it comes to R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid), would you believe Sideshow Collectibles blindly followed Hasbro’s mistake and make the same error in 1:6 Scale? At the end of 2006, Hasbro released The Saga Collection’s R5-J2 (SAGA 058) action figure. They used 2006’s TSC R5-D4 (SAGA 032) figure to make it.
Well, Sideshow Collectibles did the same exact thing in their own line. They took the R5-D4 1:6 Scale Figure and repainted it to make R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid). The problem is that the design of R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) is DIFFERENT than R5-D4. R5-D4 has three photoreceptors on the front of its dome. But R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) has two protruding photoreceptors instead, sort of like what we have seen on the Disney STAR TOURS R5-D2 figure. This was a terribly lazy mistake and Sideshow Collectibles was given plenty of advanced notice by hardcore fans and collectors and did nothing to remedy it. The crazy thing is that there were plenty of other R5 units that Sideshow Collectibles could have produced instead that are mirrored after R5-D4. When a collectible costs $139.99, collectors are expecting screen accurate authenticity. We don’t get that here with R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid). It doesn’t mean the figure is without merit. It is still a nice looking astromech droid. It just isn’t screen accurate. This is a line that some collectors just won’t cross. It will be interesting to see if collectors will pass on this 1:6 Scale Figure thanks to its major inaccurate detail. If we can forget about the error for a moment, let’s talk about how the rest of the figure fares. Because in all honesty, we’re still quite fond of R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) despite its major flaw.
Different panels open up. The two front utility arms no longer open up. If you already own R5-D4 you already know this. The legs have tighter joints now and the droid is able to stand unassisted much more easily. The R5 dome is beautiful, albeit inaccurate, but looks great. Sideshow Collectibles chose a beautiful shiny plastic in which they cast this figure. It picks up light beautifully and accepts color even better. Still, it disappoints us to see the photoreceptor detail go unfixed when they have taken major strides in the past to ensure older characters were done correctly. R5-D4’s back panels come readily to mind. If we’re honest, the plastic used to cast the figure is still uncomfortably thin and brittle. Even so, the doors/panels open and close nicely (for the most part). In all honesty we cannot wait for more astromechs to come forth from Sideshow Collectibles, but we hope they concentrate on more popular characters. Hopefully they’ll always be bettering them with each successive release. When it comes to R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid , Sideshow Collectibles is showing collectors that they’re willing to make any astromech droid under the sun, regardless of its designation, color or affiliation. From the spring-loaded third leg to the metallic peach colored decorative panels, R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid will no doubt highlight many collectors’ collections. It’s just a shame they goofed this one up.
R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid)
Announcement Date: February 18, 2016
Pre-order Date: February 25, 2016
Status: R5-J2 (Imperial Astromech Droid) is a rework of 2016's R5-D4 1:6 Scale Figure.
Articulation Count: 18 points (18 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: swivel dome, swivel left leg, swivel right leg, hinge-jointed left foot, hinge-jointed right foot, spring-loaded third leg, hinge-jointed third foot, ball-socket projector A, ball-socket projector B, ball-socket projector C, hinge-jointed left side panel, hinge-jointed right side panel, 6 rolling wheels
Accessory Count: 1
Accessory Details: antenna
Sideshow Exclusive: N/A
Retail: $139.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.