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The Black Series [Phase I]

Yoda - TBS [P1] - Basic (#22)

Name: Yoda
Collection: The Black Series
Number: #22
Scale: 3¾"
Source: The Empire Strikes Back
Availability: July 2014
License: Hasbro

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A wise and powerful Jedi Master, Yoda takes on the training of young Luke Skywalker, who comes to the planet Dagobah to learn the ways of the Force.

With The Black Series standard 3.75” line, collectors are unfortunately finding out that it’s a crapshoot as far as what you’re going to get with the final production figures in this line. While plans have been placed in motion so figures to turn out a certain way, the final products are frequently not turning out the way originally planned or intended. Take for instance Yoda. Based on this production concept presentation blueprint from Boss Fight Studios, Yoda was to be super-articulated and loaded with multiple points of premium articulation. But what collectors received was a Mission Series/Saga Legends quality figure with some decent accessories, including soft-goods and that's it. This five points of articulation figure honestly doesn’t look terrible when fully outfitted in all of the included gear, but what’s the point of continuing to carve out a premium collectors’ line for more than $10 a pop when we’re just getting the same garbage, just dressed up a little more to “fool” us? The net value of Yoda is a travesty. With a ball-socket head as well as two swivel shoulders and two swivel hips, it's hardly enough to excite anyone. And after the stunning 2011 TVC Yoda (VC20) figure (which is based on the Prequel Trilogy), desperate collectors who firstly wished to see this Yoda (and others) packaged in The Vintage Collection line look (which this figure and others were originally planned for until plans changed by the way) and secondly were praying Hasbro would outdo the TVC by leaps and bounds became enraged then quickly depressed that this is what the final figure ended up being.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, the salt on the wound was the the public reveal of the Boss Fight Studios “plan-o-gram” of Yoda that showcased blatantly to us all just what had slipped through our fingers. We bet Hasbro wanted none of us to see that image! No matter how you approach considering this Yoda figure, you’ll find that it’s devastating on all levels, simply based on what it could have been. We all patiently waited almost a decade to the day for Hasbro to update both 2004’s OTC Luke Skywalker (OTC #01) and 2004’s OTC Yoda (OTC #02) figures to definitive status, but we ended up receiving two figures that have ultimately just disappointed and to some even disgusted those collectors who decided that they would be better off if they held onto their 2004 figures until Hasbro can do these characters right. And only the Lord knows when that will be at this point. With all that being said, how does Yoda really fare now that we’ve had some time to digest him? Well, we can’t say our assessment is pretty. The sculpt could have been the most fantastic sculpt we have ever seen of Yoda. But it has devastatingly been dumbed down to the point of being laughable, and certainly not even close to be acceptable for articulation junkies. The minimal articulation is gut-wrenching. And while we’re sure some will find that choice of adjective dramatic, you have to understand that in an era where we’re lucky to get 25 new figures in a year, every release has to be up to par (or hopefully better). The days of hundreds of action figures in a calendar year are gone forever. So every release has to count.

Yoda’s accessories far outweigh the figure itself. Hasbro crafted a soft-goods robe. There is no doubt that it’s too bulky, but it's been woven out of a premium fabric which naturally creates stresses and tears (and fraying) in the fibers that give the beginnings of a realistic appearance. Perhaps Hasbro felt pressure to give us something after all they took away. Where it fails however is in its cleanliness. Yoda’s clothes were filthy. As such, his soft-goods should be filthy. They did it with great success on older figures, so we’re not sure why even the soft-goods have to be done with such cheapness too. He also comes with an all-new gimer stick (cane) which is gorgeous as well as a flute and removable belt. His last accessory is really meant for the interactive Luke Skywalker (#21) figure in the line to carry, but it has been packaged with Yoda. Yoda comes with the Jedi training blue backpack as see in Episode V. There are issues with the accessory however. It’s also much too bulky and has a HUGE buckle in the front. The prototype figure showed a much nicer backpack than what we were given. Admittedly, Yoda does look nice displayed to Luke Skywalker (#21). Had more time been given to each of them, the collecting community would have been treated to a powerful duo. If you’re extremely patient, Yoda will stand on the top of Luke’s feet when you position him in the handstand position. The balance is precarious and expect to blow a gasket in your temper making it work. But it is possible. We should also mention his skin looks too dark, but it's not the end of the world. All hope is not lost with Yoda, but it’s a far cry from what we should have received. And that is a very sad thing.

Collector Notes

Yoda

Status: Yoda is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 5 points (5 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1)

Accessory Count: 5

Accessory Details: removable soft-goods robe, removable belt, flute, gimer stick, soft-goods Force training backpack

Date Stamp: 2014

Assortment Number: A5632/A5077

UPC: 653569896944

Retail: $10.99 USD

Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on Click here to check the market value on eBay! listings.







Yoda

 

The Black Series (3¾") Wave 4
Bastila Shan (#20)
Luke Skywalker (#21)

Yoda (#22)
Toryn Farr (#23)
Snowtrooper Commander (#24)
Dak Ralter (#25)

 
Added: July 28, 2014
Category: Black Series [Phase I], The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
Score:
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