While the oppression of the cruel Empire hangs like a dark shroud over the galaxy, the few remaining Jedi have gone into hiding to protect their knowledge and ways. Darth Vader, charged with hunting down and eliminating the last Jedi for his master, has scoured the galaxy in search of the stragglers, but, even two decades after the great purge began, a precious few have eluded him. On the arid world of Tatooine, baking under the rays of two Suns, Vader's former friend and master, Obi-Wan Kenobi, watches over the Dark Lord's son in secret from his humble desert hermitage. Half a galaxy away, on a world even less hospitable, the serene and gentle master Yoda, bides his time amid the swamp-life of the soggy planet Dagobah. Once among the greatest of all Jedi, Yoda has chosen this exile to preserve the hope of redemption and freedom for the galaxy.
Under the boughs of dripping gnarl trees and between their twisted roots, the old master has built himself a cozy home of mud and clay. Here he sits in meditation and quiet contemplation of the Force, his consciousness attuned to the shifting tides of the great energy field that surrounds and binds all living things, awaiting the day when a new hope will emerge to free the galaxy from Sith tyranny.
That hope lies in the secret offspring of the Dark Lord, young Luke Skywalker, and his sister Leia. Separated and hidden by Yoda when they were born, the twins share an affinity for the Force and a destiny that he aspires to help them fulfill. When Luke comes to Dagobah in search of guidance, Yoda undertakes to train him in the ancient ways of the Jedi, which he has protected all these long years. Though their time is short, Yoda unlocks in Luke his innate Force affinity and seeks to enlighten him in understanding of the subtle ways in which it works. Only through the children of Anakin Skywalker can Yoda hope to bring about an end to the Emperor's rule and undo his own failure with Anakin himself, now hopelessly lost to the Dark Side.
They say that third time is the charm, but maybe that doesn’t apply so much to Sideshow Collectibles’ Life-Size Bust high-end collectibles line. After a spectacular Darth Maul and an even better Greedo (and even that’s debatable), Sideshow Collectibles sadly takes a few steps backwards with their eagerly anticipated Yoda Life-Size Bust, an interpretation of Yoda based on his look from Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. What’s most disappointing is that the prototype shown at 2006’s San Diego Comic Con looked spectacular. The sculpting, the paint job, and the overall presentation overshadows the final production piece significantly. It seemed like a slam dunk hit. That was until the pieces started arriving at collectors’ homes. Maybe we shouldn’t be so sensational with our disappointment. The Yoda Life-Size Bust is certainly better than good, but it doesn’t match the wonder that was captured in the gorgeous prototype that was showcased at Comic Con. Changes were made (not for the better) and it has deeply affected the aesthetics negatively. We’ll go into detail for you.
Instead of casting Yoda in 100% polystone, Sideshow Collectibles utilized a vinyl material and “stuffed” it with a filler (which feels like foam) so that they could add real hair to the head and ears. Yoda’s head and ears are soft to the touch but easily maintain their respective shapes. What this new direction has done however is it has compromised the natural shape of Yoda’s head. Yoda, the production piece, has a very different shape and appearance than its prototype. The eyes are most affected, but even many of the wrinkles that were present in the prototype have disappeared as the vinyl allows for a much smoother contour that permanently sculpted polystone details. It also seems if some shortcuts were made to the paint operations. The sparkle in Yoda’s eyes is gone as are many of the details around the mouth, chin, and neck. Admittedly, we do like how Sideshow Collectibles added the hair. It looks completely realistic, and it has been meticulously placed to look like real hair growth and not just randomly plotted obligatorily.
Yoda comes with soft-goods clothing. The costume isn’t screen-accurate, but Sideshow Collectibles did utilize a linen type of fabric and it doesn’t look half bad. But his outfit seems incomplete in more ways than one. Firstly, Yoda’s unique necklace with his attached flute has not been included. This little detail is a necessity for purists, so we’re saddened to see that overlooked. Also, Yoda has no right hand. Sideshow Collectibles has instead “hidden” his left hand under his robe (since his right hand is on top of it in the resting position. But not even a portion of a cane has been added to help out this allusion or whatever you call it. It looks like something is missing here. Yoda is atop of the standard Star Wars Life-Size Bust stand and while it’s not Original Trilogy accurate, we think it’s appropriate to keep the base of this line uniform throughout all of the characters brought forth into this very expensive collectible lineup. Yoda’s name appears in a gorgeous shiny nameplate in a light teal/seafoam green color. Overall, Yoda isn’t another knockout release in the Life-Size Bust line, just like Sideshow Collectible’s first two efforts. They took a risk with the vinyl skin, and it didn't pay off. We hope they get back on track for future releases.
Summary: The life-size Yoda bust captures the wise Jedi Master in a serene moment, resting one hand atop the other as he contemplates the Force. Sculptor Howard Senft has invested all of the spirit and magic of the original Empire Strikes Back puppet into this life-size bust, expertly reproducing every wrinkle in his brow, every crease around his eyes, and ears so real that you'll expect them to twitch at any moment. The Yoda bust features a fabric reproduction of the original costume, and real hair. The Yoda bust is mounted on a Star Wars inspired display base, including a 'Yoda' nameplate. The hand crafted, hand painted life-size Yoda bust is sure to become the centerpiece of your Star Wars collection.
Announcement: The Yoda Life-Size Bust was announced on July 21, 2006.
Pre-order Information: The Yoda Life-Size Bust went up for pre-order on July 28, 2006.
Date Stamp: 2007
Retail: $549.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.