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Star Wars Collectible News, Photos, and Reviews

JTA Presents: Evolutions - C-3PO (Episode II)

Welcome to another one of our JTA Presents: Evolutions features! Let’s check out how close or far we are from having an ideal Hasbro 3.75″ C-3PO (Episode II) action figure. Have we arrived at definitive status yet? Weigh in and let us know what conclusion you’ll come to by clicking through and adding your two cents in the comments!

C-3PO (Episode II)

 

George Lucas didn’t prepare fans for how C-3PO would look in the Prequel Trilogy. The droid’s “nakedness” in Episode I was as bizarre as it was interesting, but perhaps the most jaunting appearance was in Episode II. Yet again without his gold plating, the C-piece-meal-O look of this Attack Of The Clones likeness show that he still wasn’t finished. Fans have expressed that they like the gray “unpainted” version of C-3PO very much, and for others, they can take it or leave it. Whatever your position, this version of the character makes for interesting conversations.

 

C-3PO (Protocol Droid) (’02 #04) from 2002’s Star Wars “Saga” [Phase I] line.

            

Hasbro released a clever in approach but dumb in execution version of an Episode II C-3PO for the Star Wars “Saga” [Phase I] lineup. Rumored to be inspired from a deleted scene (that we don’t believe anyone has seen to date) where C-3PO gets his panels, Hasbro essentially worked up a new version of C-3PO from Episode I and created removable panels complete with a trunk for storage. The figure offered a great deal of play value, but the figure has aesthetical issues. For example, his legs are too close together. And the panel to complete him are too large and clunky. Still, many collectors appreciated the opportunity to achieve those deleted scenes, or at least offer the chance to create your own stories of how completed C-3PO came to be!

 

C-3PO from 2002’s Star Wars “Saga” [Phase I] Deluxe line.

            

Very shortly after Kenner released the Star Wars “Saga” [Phase I] C-3PO (Protocol Droid) (’02 #04) figure, they prepped a new version of him for the Deluxe line in a completely different direction. Instead of removable plating, Hasbro tooled C-3PO the way they did with previous Original Trilogy version, but this time painted him in colors to match Episode II. The figure contained magnets to help with the play features of the Deluxe set, but overall collectors were impressed with this version of C-3PO and were glad to see gimmicks eliminated in favor of realism. By the time the Deluxe set made it to retail, interest in Attack Of The Clones waned, and it was hit or miss if you found this set at retail Soon, out of the blue, the final waves of Deluxe figures arrived on clearance, and most collectors were able to secure this set and others for pennies on the dollar.

 

C-3PO (With Battle Droid Head) (SAGA 017) from 2006’s The Saga Collection line.

            

The Saga Collection is a highlight for most collectors. Hasbro incorporated a perfect mix of repacks, retools, repaints and all-new figures into this lineup and C-3PO (With Battle Droid Head) (SAGA 017) was no exception. Hasbro took the popular Deluxe figure, removed the magnets, repainted the figure and released it for the first time as a basic figure along with other great characters to make a gorgeous wave of figures based on Attack Of The Clones. Collectors warmly welcomed the extra parts (to recreate the comic relief scenes during the Battle of Geonosis) while other collectors expressed joy that figures came with a monogrammed display stand. The figure holds up well even today, but its lack of articulation prevents it from claiming the definitive title. Hasbro added the same version of this figure with a few slight tweaks to the 30 (77-07) Saga Legends line.

 

C-3PO from 2010’s Legacy Collection R2-D2/C-3PO (With Battle Droid Head) (2010 Edition) (6 of 6) Geonosis Arena Showdown TARGET exclusive set.

            

In 2009, Hasbro offered TARGET an exclusive run of Geonosis Arena Showdown two-packs. The line went over well enough to warrant a second wave of them for 2010. In the second wave, Hasbro released updated versions of C-3PO and R2-D2 (which made up one of the two-packs) and received adulation from collectors for issuing them. They waited a long time to get upgraded versions of both characters in the action figure line. The set included our first super-articulated version of C-3PO. There were no removable panels/plating, but they still added the interchangeable Battle Droid head once gimmick once again for display variety. Sadly, this version of C-3PO is much too tall for his good and looks out of scale. And he’s missing some important deco like the gree right forearm (just to cite an example – there are others). Still, it’s the best version of C-3PO from Attack Of The Clones we have. We’re not sure if Hasbro will ever revisit this character in the basic figure line again. We know it would make a lovely addition to The Vintage Collection.

 

C-3PO (Episode II) Group Shot

C-3PO (Episode II)

 

Questions for discussion:

1. In your opinion, do we have a definitive version of this figure?

2. If we don’t have a definitive version of this figure, should Hasbro tool a new figure from the ground up again, or should they tweak a current sculpt to perfect it instead?

3. If the figure ranks as definitive for you, do you want to see it repackaged in vintage Kenner packaging (The Vintage Collection) if it isn’t already?

4. Add any other points of note or interest in the comments about any of these versions of C-3PO (Episode II) action figures.

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