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The Vintage Collection: The Ninety Six - STAR WARS Darth Vader

Welcome to another entry in our The Vintage Collection: The Ninety Six column. Hasbro recently committed to collectors that they will be “focusing” on characters in The Vintage Collection that fall under “The Ninety Six” banner. If you’re new to this, it means that for every classic Kenner figure, there needs a modern counterpart. Between 2020 and 2021, Hasbro’s made an admirable effort by focusing on these characters. But there is more work to be done, and we’ll figure out where we are step by step.

We’re right in alignment with Hasbro in our vintage Kenner database. There are 21 figures under the STAR WARS banner, 29 figures under THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK banner, 31 figures under the RETURN OF THE JEDI banner, and 15 figures under THE POWER OF THE FORCE banner. (Sy Snootles, Max Rebo, Droopy McCool, and Blue Snaggletooth brings the number to an even 100 figures.)

Read our assessment, and then be sure to add your thoughts into the comments. Let us know if you agree or disagree. If you’re a customizer, show us your custom definitive figure in the comments as well! Who knows? It might give Hasbro some ideas.

Darth Vader

  

STAR WARS Darth Vader

Is there a definitive modern counterpart to 1978’s SW Darth Vader figure?

2012’s THE VINTAGE COLLECTION Darth Vader (VC93) figure.

 

Has Hasbro added this character’s card art and action figure into THE VINTAGE COLLECTION? And is it definitive?

Yes. A nearly perfect release, Hasbro treated collectors to 2012’s THE VINTAGE COLLECTION Darth Vader (VC93) figure. Both card and figure are definitive updates to 1978’s SW Darth Vader figure.

 

Does THE VINTAGE COLLECTION release completely satisfy the modern counterpart to 1978’s STAR WARS Darth Vader figure?

Yes.

 

If Hasbro didn’t release the figure yet, do we have a near-definitive or definitive release of this character that can be added to THE VINTAGE COLLECTION as a straight repack, repaint, or with little retooling to update it?

There are MULTIPLE versions of Darth Vader in THE VINTAGE COLLECTION now, and in all fairness, most satisfy definitive modern updates to their vintage counterparts. 2010’s TVC Darth Vader (VC08) satisfies THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK of Darth Vader. And 2012’s TVC Darth Vader (VC115) satisfies the RETURN OF THE JEDI version of the character (including alternate card art). Hasbro also released the RETURN OF THE JEDI and the REVENGE OF THE JEDI version of Darth Vader (VC08) with original card art in THE VINTAGE COLLECTION.

 

What does Hasbro have to do so we can check off “Darth Vader” from our Vintage Vs. Modern checklists?

Hasbro produced all of the versions of Darth Vader we need. They’ve also gone beyond the call of duty. They recently released 2020’s TVC Darth Vader (VC178) based on ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY. There isn’t much more they need to do.

 

The year and years elapsed (through 2021) since we last had this character in classic Kenner-styled packaging (vintage or modern)?

2012’s TVC Darth Vader (VC115). (Return Of The Jedi variant). 9 years ago.

2012’s TVC Darth Vader (VC93). 9 years ago.

2011’s TVC Darth Vader (VC08). (Return Of The Jedi/Revenge Of The Jedi variant). 10 years ago.

2010’s/2019’s TVC Darth Vader (VC08). 11 years/2 years ago.

2004’s VOTC Darth Vader. (The Empire Strikes Back variant). 17 years ago.

1978’s SW Darth Vader. 43 years ago.

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