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The Saga Collection

Darth Vader - TSC - Basic (SAGA 038)

Name: Darth Vader
Collection: The Saga Collection
Number: SAGA 038
Source: The Empire Strikes Back
Availability: June 2006
License: Hasbro

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Darth Vader

Bespin Confession

mission: lure Luke into carbon-freeze chamber

thinks Luke’s skills are: most impressive

tells Luke: "I am your father."

Darth Vader has sinister plans to use Cloud City’s carbon-freeze chamber. Reluctant to try this crude process on the Emperor’s prize, Luke Skywalker, Vader decides to test it first on Han Solo. The process works, and although Luke finds his way into the chamber, Vader’s plans fail as Luke escapes and confronts him in heated lightsaber combat. At the end of this dramatic battle, Vader confesses to Luke the secret that has burned within him: He is indeed Luke’s father!

When Hasbro developed the 2005 ROTS Darth Vader (Special Edition 500th Figure) they probably didn’t realize how useful it would be for future release of Darth Vader. Who are we kidding?! Of course they saw the future possibilities! Based on his appearance in The Empire Strikes Back, Hasbro needed to choose a great base figure for two specific Darth Vader figures from Episode V in The Saga Collection based on two unique scenes in Episode V. Although they brought in the same figure twice, each is different enough from each other thanks to the included accessories and slight differences in tooling. The Darth Vader (SAGA 013) figure simply came with a removable helmet dome, some snow accumulation on his boots and a lightsaber. On the other hand, the Darth Vader (SAGA 038) figure, although the same exact figure, is this time tooled in a way so that the removable helmet dome is glued in place (thank the Maker). What's more, he comes with his signature lightsaber and three utility cases he used to attack Luke Skywalker with during their duel on Bespin. We feel that this particular Darth Vader figure is the better of the two solely for the purpose that the helmet doesn’t come off of his head. The Battle Of Hoth version will drive you insane trying to futz with the helmet in order to keep it in place. (And you won't be successful.)

By now you know how impressed we are by how many accessories come with the figures from The Saga Collection. Darth Vader (SAGA 038) is really no different. Hasbro pulled previously utilized tooling from all over their parts catalogue and culled together one awesome set to complement the figure and even saved one from the "cancelled" pile as well. The large storage crate is a repaint of the accessory from 2002's SW [S - P1] Hoth Survival Accessory Set (With Hoth Rebel Soldier). The smaller utility box is a repaint of the accessory that originally came from 2003's SW [S - P2] Obi-Wan Kenobi (Kamino Showdown) Deluxe figure set. And lastly, the conduit spool is a repaint of the accessory that was planned for release in the 2003 Star Wars "Saga" Yavin Hangar Accessory Set TARGET exclusive. We think it's pretty neat to finally get another cancelled item into our collections via any method possible. So the conduit spool can be considered an all-new accessory since it has never been available until now. Sometimes it's little things like this that can excite collectors. And it's nice to know that Hasbro is committed to getting out all the tooling they can once it's been designed as not to waste the time and effort put into them. All have been repainted from their original intended colors to looks like the generic debris that Darth Vader bombarded Luke with using the dark side of the Force.

Despite how cool this version of Darth Vader is, we obviously aren’t going to be completely happy until we get a super-articulated version of him. (Editor’s Note: Obviously this came come to pass multiple times since. We have more super-articulated Darth Vader action figures than we know what to do with now.) But like so many other “less than perfect” action figures in The Saga Collection, the accessories totally steal the show and make the purchase more than worthwhile. They're the saving grace with so many figures in this basic figure line. And to be fair, this Darth Vader figure is cool because Hasbro painted some "lightsaber damage" on Vader's right shoulder blade to represent the one and only hit Luke got on him. So, there are some cool traits to this action figure. We always appreciate these screen accurate details translated onto our action figures. These little gestures go a very long way. If you’re into trivia, you may be interested in learning that Darth Vader (SAGA 038) came with the wrong action figure stand. The stand came with a generic “Star Wars” logo instead of the correct “The Empire Strikes Back” logo. But if you collected The Saga Collection, you know that these types of mistakes happened all of the time. Darth Vader is a great purchase for the accessories alone, but if you want to wait for something better, there is indeed better available.

Collector Notes

Darth Vader

Status: Darth Vader is a slight retool and repaint of 2006's TSC Darth Vader (SAGA 013) figure which is itself a rework of 2005's ROTS Darth Vader (Special Edition 500th Figure). This time the helmet has been glued down and lightsaber strike battke-damage has been added to Darth Vader's right shoulder.

Articulation Count: 14 points (12 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: swivel neck (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel left elbow (1), swivel right elbow (1), swivel left forearm (1), swivel right forearm (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1), ball-jointed left knee (2), ball-jointed right knee (2)

Accessory Count: 4

Accessory Details: conduit spool, large crate, small utility box, lightsaber (soft-goods cape isn't removable without damaging it)

Date Stamp: 2005

Assortment Number: 87167/85770

UPC: 653569171898

Retail: $6.99 USD

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

The Saga Collection Wave 5
Momaw Nadon (SAGA 031)
R5-D4 (SAGA 032)
Hem Dazon (SAGA 033)
Garindan (SAGA 034)
Han Solo (SAGA 035)
Luke Skywalker (SAGA 036)
Sandtrooper (SAGA 037)
Darth Vader (SAGA 038)

Added: September 29, 2011
Category: The Saga Collection
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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