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The Power Of The Force “2” [FlashBack/CommTech]

Emperor Palpatine - POTF2 [FB/CT] - Basic

Name: Emperor Palpatine
Collection: The Power Of The Force "2" [FlashBack/CommTech]
Number: N/A
Source: Return Of The Jedi
Availability: November 1998
License: Hasbro

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A long time ago....
A new Star Wars movie will premier in movie theaters next Summer. It is Episode I of the Star Wars saga and the first movie in a new trilogy that goes back in time a full generation to tell the story of Luke Skywalker's father Anakin. We will see how Anakin became a great Jedi Knight but then turned to the dark side to become Darth Vader.

Appearances can be deceiving – a saying never more true than in the case of Emperor Palpatine. In his early days as a senator of the Galactic Republic, Palpatine seemed like an ordinary politician. However, as the Republic fell apart, the senator's hidden thirst for power grew and his true evil spirit became apparent. He declared himself Emperor of the galaxy, and used the dark side of the Force as a means to enforce his tyranny. He nearly succeeded in wiping out the Jedi Knights, who stood as the most potent threat to his reign of terror. As destiny would have it, Luke Skywalker, the son of Palpatine's loyal apprentice Darth Vader, would ultimately bring about the evil Emperor's downfall.

Well, Kenner/Hasbro is forging ahead and properly updating Emperor Palpatine in action figure format in a very steady motion. After a decent 1997 The Power Of The Force “2” release, they soon created a Power F/X version with glowing palms to recreate Force lightning. That figure was tweaked quite a bit and most re-sculpted for the Millennium Minted Coin Emperor Palpatine figure. Now Hasbro abandons the traditional way in which they have approached Mr. Palpatine in the past and sculpted an all-new version of him that will likely impress Star Wars collectors. For the first time in the modern basic figure line, Emperor Palpatine has articulated hips which really means he has two independently articulated legs. This may be moot for many because the robes prevent most of the movement in the hips. We’re just glad to see this articulation finally added. What’s more, Emperor Palpatine has a swivel waist which really helps with the posing of this figure. And we have to mention right away that we’re quite impressed with how Hasbro has updated how the Force lightning attachments affix themselves to the action figure. No more holes with lights can be found in the palms of the hands. Instead, Hasbro has sculpted a demure hole in the sleeves of the figure as to not affect the aesthetics of the character. Yet is still looks like the Force lighting is comic right from his fingers. We are thoroughly impressed with the results.

Let’s talk about why this figure is still far from perfect though. Correct us if we’re wrong, but it doesn’t appear that Hasbro ventured outside what has been already established for a likeness with Emperor Palpatine. Imagine the 1997 figure’s head if you will on a new body. That’s essentially what you’ve got here. Although this FlashBack Emperor Palpatine is only a year ahead of its predecessor, it seems that Hasbro could have taken some new risks and tooled a better likeness for the action figure, especially since they made aggressive adjustments in the way the body has been constructed this time. We still have a hard time faulting this update though because for the first time it feels like we actually have an Emperor Palpatine action figure in the modern line if you understand our meaning. He isn’t a salt shaker and he isn’t strewn with action features. He just is an articulated action figure on a basic card back. That’s all we wanted to see and now we have him. With the standard six points of articulation now, this version of him may quickly become your “go to” figure until Hasbro creates a better update. A very scene-specific version of Emperor Palpatine, don’t look for his signature cane accessory. This is all about him electrocuting Luke Skywalker for failing to turn to the dark side of the Force. Those types of accessories will have to wait until a future update as well.

So, as explained above, Emperor Palpatine comes with two Force lightning accessories that plug into the sleeves of his cloak. It may take some practice to balance him with them attached, but it certainly isn’t impossible. Once attached, we have to admit that Emperor Palpatine looks rather neat. Although he has more articulation than previous releases, the way his arms and legs are angled or encumbered truly makes the articulation a whole lot less useful that it might appear. But still, this version of Emperor Palpatine is a decent upgrade from past versions, and we appreciate the enhancements he received. Part of the Episode I FlashBack Photo series of The Power Of The Force “2” figures, Emperor Palpatine comes with a special interactive changing photo image which is the new pack-in premium for the tail end of 1998 and early 1999. Admittedly it is quite cool to see Emperor Palpatine before he became disfigured. The FlashBack Photo provides this image quite clearly. This line served really as a placeholder of sorts for the basic figure line. It provided collectors with a few new waves of action figures before the Episode I deluge. But it would not be a good thing if collectors overlooked these figures because many of them have turned out quite well. You may be wishing for a completely new approach for Emperor Palpatine, complete with soft-goods, but this version is pretty admirable. But if Hasbro could find a way to lose the “POTF2-ness” of the likenesses, things could only improve from there.

Collector Notes

Emperor Palpatine

Status: Emperor Palpatine is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 6 points (6 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: swivel head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1)

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: Force lightning left hand, Force lightning right hand

Date Stamp: 1998

Assortment Number: 69680/84042

UPC: 076281840420

Retail: $5.99 USD

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

The Power Of The Force "2" [FlashBack/CommTech]

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Added: January 13, 2015
Category: Power Of The Force "2" [FlashBack/CommTech], The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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