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Star Wars [The Phantom Menace 3D]

Bespin Battle - SW [TPM 3D] - Battle Packs

Name: Bespin Battle
Collection: Star Wars [The Phantom Menace 3D]
Number: N/A (Battle Packs)
Source: The Empire Strikes Back
Availability: Yeah right!
License: Hasbro

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During his Jedi training, Luke has a vision that his friends are in danger. He rushes to Bespin to rescue Han and Leia, where he encounters Darth Vader and the bounty hunter Boba Fett. The Sith Lord's plan has worked: he has lured Skywalker to the planet and intends to deliver him to the Emperor. While Fett collects his long-sought quarry, Luke battles Vader in a menacing lightsaber duel.

Well, Hasbro has actually accomplished something that they probably had no intention of happening. They’ve inadvertently yet completely divided the collecting community in half with the release of the Bespin Battle and Duel On Naboo Battle Packs sets. These two controversial multipacks happen to make up the second wave of Battle Packs for 2012. Hasbro hasn’t been overloading the 2012 lineup with too many products, but it is nice to see two new sets that sport all-new action figures inside of them. But what if the figures that come in them are completely unexpected and under-articulated? Let’s step back for a minute however so we can be frank. The Star Wars [The Phantom Menace 3D] line has been lackluster at best. Hasbro’s position on the line is something we still don’t understand, but it’s a position that is even influencing the new toys they are creating for us. (But we want to know who the “us” is anymore quite honestly.) Brand new sculpts are coming with less articulation that even the figures that date back between 1995 and 2000 during The Power Of The Force era had. And while this is a travesty in some (most) lights to hardcore collectors, there is something seemingly favorable about some of these new action figures making it into the current new line. We are not promoting that Hasbro abandon super-articulation. No, we’re still upset by that. But we would however even go so far as to say that if we had received action figures like Luke Skywalker and Boba Fett (in the Bespin Battle Battle Packs set) during the POTF2 era instead of what we did get, we probably would have been very, very content collectors for the last half of the 90s decade. To be fair, the new figures aren’t without issues and you may be able to find just as many negatives and positives to these all-new action figures. We don’t have that critical of an eye here as we’ve quickly warmed up to it. No, these aren’t definitive action figures. But they are excellent for action figures that come with very limited articulation (no more than 5 points per figure), a modest number of accessories and slightly prepositioned stances.

Where do you stand with these figures? Are you happy? Are you angry? Are you sad? Whatever your feelings, we hope we are able to shed some light on why the Bespin Battle Battle Packs set should be a pure joy for you to own. It will be impossible for this review to find universal agreement in the collecting community. There are collectors who won’t even look at a figure without 14 points of articulation. To them we have to leave you with the fact that you are cutting your nose to spite your face. Then there are collectors who will think that these are the greatest action figures ever made. To them we’d ask if they have made an appointment to see their psychiatrist. We’re not judging either scenario, but sometimes we have to assess things by what/where they are, not by how/what/where we want them to be. Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker and Boba Fett are summarily an enigmatic pleasure. We still don’t understand why Hasbro has done what they have here, but we accept that while these aren’t ideal figures for articulation junkies, they are excellent based on their own merits. We’ll explain. Let’s start with Darth Vader. Darth Vader is certainly a little too short for a Sith Lord. In fact, even Boba Fett rivals his height. But his sculpt is excellent. He can still hold his lightsaber and he even has his left hand outstretched while gripping for “something” almost like how we saw him reaching out to Luke in Episode V. His details are proportionate (except for his height sadly) and the details are etched so well that even the most staunch critics of this new format of action figures should be impressed. Darth Vader also have a “free flowing” separately molded plastic cape and it's removable. We still would have preferred if Hasbro chose to make cape out of soft-goods instead. Otherwise you’re much more limited in posing options. Darth Vader comes with 100% swivel articulation, so in general you’re not going to have a great deal of flexibility. He looks great. While he does look good, he still may be the weakest of the set.

Luke Skywalker may just be the most controversial figure in this three-pack. We’ll just come out and say that we’re quite fond of him even though we know there are more hecklers out there than we care to acknowledge. It’s evident that Hasbro has every intention to pay homage to the classic vintage Kenner line from the eighties especially with Luke Skywalker. He has bright blonde hair which is exactly how the first vintage Kenner Luke Skywalker (Bespin Fatigues) came to kids in 1980. (How cool would it be if Hasbro makes a running change to brown hair in future releases of this?) Complete with a ball-jointed head, Luke Skywalker has very minor pre-posed arms so a believable pistol holding stance can be achieved. Hasbro has also molded a functioning holster to store his blaster pistol inside of it. His left arm and hand have been designed to accommodate his lightsaber as well. But there is a figure in this set that we like better than Luke. Boba Fett is the reason to purchase this set. He is a bit too big for his britches, but it’s one of the finest sculpts of Boba Fett our eyes have ever seen. The bonus we’re most excited about is the non-removable helmet, the only detractor from the Evolutions sculpt as far as we’re concerned. Boba Fett also only comes with five points of articulation, but Hasbro has really thought through the best way to sculpt his arms and legs to work with the accessories they’ve included with him. He has a great center of gravity and his paint job is just sterling. The jetpack fits snuggly into the hole on his back and we can’t emphasize how refreshing this firm attachment is. And let’s not forget that his blaster rifle and pistol fit perfectly into his hands and his pistol can be stored in his holster if you so choose. Boba Fett is the star of the set, but we really do enjoy this set as a whole. Like we’ve said, these figures are some of the best work Hasbro has done. Yes, it would have been sublime had these figure come with a lot more articulation. But there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to enjoy them the way they are. Do yourself a favor. Give this Battle Packs set a chance.

Collector Notes

Bespin Battle

Assortment Number: 37824/37822

UPC: 653569697350

Retail: $21.99 USD

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

Darth Vader

Status: Darth Vader is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 5 points

Articulation Details: swivel head, 2 swivel shoulders, 2 swivel hips

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: lightsaber, removable cape

Date Stamp: 2011

Luke Skywalker

Status: Luke Skywalker is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 5 points

Articulation Details: ball-socket head, 2 swivel shoulders, 2 swivel hips

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: lightsaber, blaster pistol

Date Stamp: 2011

Boba Fett

Status: Boba Fett is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 5 points

Articulation Details: ball-socket head, 2 swivel shoulders, 2 swivel hips

Accessory Count: 3

Accessory Details: blaster rifle, blaster pistol, removable jetpack

Date Stamp: 2011

Star Wars [The Phantom Menace 3D]
All Products

Added: June 6, 2012
Category: Star Wars [The Phantom Menace 3D]
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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