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Star Wars [Saga - Phase I]

Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) - SW [S - P1] - Basic (’02 #30)

Name: Darth Vader (Bespin Duel)
Collection: Star Wars [Saga - Phase I]
Number: '02 #30
Source: The Empire Strikes Back
Availability: May 2002
License: Hasbro

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Three years after the destruction of the Death Star, the Rebel Alliance continues the fight against the Imperial forces and suffers a defeat on the ice planet Hoth. Luke Skywalker journeys to the planet Dagobah to train with Jedi Master Yoda, who has lived in hiding since the fall of the Republic. In an attempt to convert Luke to the dark side, the evil Sith Lord, Darth Vader, lures Luke into a trap in the Cloud City of Bespin. In the midst of a fierce lightsaber duel with Vader, Luke faces the startling revelation that the Sith Lord is in fact his father, Anakin Skywalker.

The evil and much feared military commander, Darth Vader seeks to bring young Luke Skywalker over to the dark side. As the two battle on a precarious outer walkway on Bespin, Vader reveals a shocking secret that shatters Luke's world.

There are a lot of issues with Hasbro’s 2002 Star Wars “Saga” Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) action figure. Its biggest issue is that this version of Darth Vader is based on his appearance from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope and not Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. What in the world happened here? Why did Hasbro make this error when they have successfully released Darth Vader action figures from the correct sources in the past? That answer is unknown, but you’ll still want to grab this figure for its accessories more than figure itself anyway. While Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) is posed in a manner that is clearly based on The Empire Strikes Back, the robes over his shoulder armor is the telltale sign that this version of him is erroneous. Besides being the wrong version of Darth Vader, the figure also lacks good articulation, and has a pose that makes him very difficult to stand up without assistance. That is a huge issue for us. The figure almost requires a display stand. That is just terrible.

Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) comes with a paltry six points of articulation. Complete with swivel articulation, all of the essential parts of his frame have been articulated to allow minimal movement. His molded robes are more of an annoyance than anything else. They actually prevent getting any useful movement out of his legs, and the removable cape doesn’t lay flatly against his back without falling off of the figure. Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) is really a mess of an action figure. We imagine most collectors will find more things disappointing with it than exciting about it, but of course your mileage may vary. A nice feature is that Hasbro created a metal lightsaber hilt and removable red blade to accompany this version of Darth Vader. With a magnet seamlessly imbedded into his left hand, he can “hold” it in his hand or “toss” it when used in tandem with the action feature. It’s gimmicky, but it works and if you just display him next to the awesome Cloud City walkway that comes with him.

Any Star Wars collector would be in denial to not rave about the amazing accessories that have come alongside so many figures in the Star Wars “Saga” line. Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) is no exception. The Cloud City walkway comes in three pieces: a walkway with “fence”, a base column, and the top half of the column from Darth Vader’s lightsaber. It assembles quite easily and works with Darth Vader’s action feature quite well. This little environmental display piece only makes us wish Hasbro would design a full Bespin gantry, but we’ll take what we can get and this is a wonderful micro “playset” to complement the action figure. What’s more, Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) and the included Cloud City portions look extra special when combined with Luke Skywalker (Bespin Duel) (‘02 #29) so you can create the climactic lightsaber duel between Luke and Vader and the revelation of truth that was uttered during this very powerful scene. All in all, it’s worth the money to purchase for your collection.

Collector Notes

Darth Vader (Bespin Duel)

Status: Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 6 points

Articulation Details: swivel head, 2 swivel shoulders, swivel waist (action feature), 2 swivel hips

Accessory Count: 5

Accessory Details: lightsaber hilt, lightsaber blade, Cloud City walkway (3 parts)

Date Stamp: 2001

Collection: 1

Assortment Number: 84580/84851

UPC: 076930845806

Retail: $4.99 USD

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

Star Wars [Saga - Phase I] Wave 6
Mace Windu (Geonosian Rescue) (’02 #28)

Luke Skywalker (Bespin Duel) (’02 #29)
Darth Vader (Bespin Duel) (’02 #30)
Jango Fett (Final Battle) (’02 #31)

Added: December 23, 2013
Category: Star Wars [Saga - Phase I]
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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