The vivid imagination of conceptual artis Ralph McQuarrie brought to life the characters and worlds envisioned by George Lucas. McQuarrie's paintings and drawings were instrumental in the push to bring Lucas's Saga to the big screen, giving shape and form to a multitude of fantastic individuals, creatures, planets and technology encompassed in this epic tale. developed in collaboration with McQuarrie himself, this remarkable action figure series pays tribute to the man whose art defined some of the most memorable characters in film history.
Ralph McQuarrie was commissioned by George Lucas to create several paintings. This scene depicts R2-D2 and C-3PO in a desert landscape. Even in this early rendering, Threepio already has a somewhat startled look, and Artoo reveals traces of his spunky nature.
Two figures for…. $20!? The exclusives in the 30 (77-07) were pretty much all well received, but one set made collectors cringe, but not because of the characters included in it, but for the price. The Concept R2-D2 & C-3PO Celebration IV/Celebration Europe exclusive proved to be successful despite its price, but left many collectors with buyer’s remorse because of the exuberant price tag. Then again, it should have been considered a steal since the Concept Luke Skywalker figure rang up for $14.99! We digress. Hasbro saved some of the most popular concept Star Wars figures for exclusive release, much to the chagrin of collectors. The concept figures were a little difficult to find to begin with and then to have some become convention exclusives put a little more salt in collectors’ wounds. Thankfully, many had widespread availability and for the most part were easy to attain. Being able to find the figures is the most important aspect of being a collector, so it’s important for them to be “available” to all. The Concept R2-D2 & C-3PO two-pack initially was a burden to locate but quickly made its way via online retailers and soon Star Wars collectors everywhere were adding this duo to their collections. We have to admit that Hasbro knocked the Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series figurers out of the park. Some could have been perfected a little bit further, but we don’t think anyone ever expected such a high concentration of these figures to ever grace the market like they did.
A few of the basic figures in the 30 (77-07) line were two-packs, so it made sense for Hasbro to release a few exclusive two-packs as well. What could be more perfect than a duo of the saga’s most popular droids? The Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series knocked out a ton of concept action figures for collectors in a very short time period. And the pace didn’t slow up at all when they added in all of the exclusives from conventions and the like. It was admittedly hard to keep track of them all. The Concept R2-D2 & C-3PO is a very awesome set and for the first time, R2-D2 comes with more articulation than C-3PO! Ripped right out of the amazing concept artwork of Ralph McQuarrie, both R2-D2 and C-3PO were expertly brought to life as action figures based on the painting which shows them walking away from the escape pod from fleeing the Galactic Empire. R2-D2 is probably the gem of this two-pack. The detail Hasbro etched into his rotund frame is quite astounding. He’s loaded with 14 points of articulation, basically unheard of for an astromech droid, and the extra arms on the dome include multiple points of articulation and the paint job is beautiful. Although he is nothing more than silver, there is some collection of weathering on his body and his eye port has been colored baby blue. R2-D2 perfectly matches the sketches of Ralph McQuarrie and you couldn’t ask for a better 3D rendering than what’s been applied to this sculpt.
C-3PO is also an excellent 3D rendering of the character we see in Ralph McQuarrie’s paintings. George Lucas wanted C-3PO originally to be an oily car salesman type and that “expression” is perfectly captured in the action figure as well. C-3PO has a very interesting final wash. It appears gray in some parts of the droid and bronze in others and from the samples we have come across, no two are alike. They’re apparently almost like snowflakes. He has a weird mix of articulation. Ball-joints are in the elbows, ankles, torso and head are mixed with awkward swivel joints in the shoulders and hips. You do get some decent movement with this figure, but we bet you’ll be wishing there was more. One ankle seems to have been installed incorrectly and is at an eternally bad angle. But thankfully you’re able to acquire a pose that prevents him from toppling over from balancing issues. Both droids come without any accessories, but you’ll have so much to enjoy with the figures themselves that you won’t be looking for anything to interact with them. By the time the 2007 convention season was over, online retail had to blow out these sets for pennies on the dollar. We were able to purchase a few extra for less than $5 a set. A ton of these can be found on eBay today. It just goes tot show that collectors for the most part are done being gouged with convention prices. Unless the items is under-produced, high prices won’t guarantee thorough sell through of exclusives anymore.
Concept R2-D2 & C-3PO (Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series)
Assortment Number: 87385
Retail: $19.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.
Status: Concept R2-D2 is an all new-figure.
Articulation Count: 14 points (14 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: swivel antenna (1), swivel dome (1), hinge-jointed left "shoulder" (1), swivel right "shoulder" (1), hinge-jointed left "elbow" (1), hinge-jointed right "elbow" (1), front panel hinge-jointed upper utility arm (1), front panel hinge-jointed lower utility arm (1), swivel left leg (1), swivel right leg (1), slide-out third leg (1) (inhibited movement), hinge-jointed left foot (1), hinge-jointed right foot (1), hinge-jointed third foot (1)
Accessory Count: None
Accessory Details: None
Date Stamp: 2007
Status: Concept C-3PO is an all-new figure.
Articulation Count: 17 points (12 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), ball-jointed left elbow (2), ball-jointed right elbow (2), swivel left wrist (1), swivel right wrist (1), ball-jointed torso (2), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1), ball-jointed left ankle (2), ball-jointed right ankle (2)
Accessory Count: None
Accessory Details: None
Date Stamp: 2007