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

Darth Vader - POTF2 [FB/CT] - Basic

Name: Darth Vader
Collection: The Power Of The Force "2" [FlashBack/CommTech]
Number: N/A
Source: A New Hope
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.

Darth Vader was known and feared throughout the galaxy as incredibly ruthless and evil, one who used the awesome powers of the dark side of the Force to carry out Emperor Palpatine's horrific plans. But deep inside Lord Vader lay vestiges of the person he once was: young Anakin Skywalker, discovered on the planet Tatooine by a Jedi Knight who recognized the boy's special Force talents. Anakin showed much promise and grew to be a great Jedi. Finally, the dark side beckoned him – and Anakin became Darth Vader.

In a slowly evolving line of basic action figures, you will probably have to ask yourself what the heck went wrong with Darth Vader after Kenner/Hasbro had many times to revisit this character. Abandoning large bulky frames and accentuated features seemed to be a no-brainer for us, but the FlashBack Darth Vader figure feels like a slightly retooled version of the 1995 The Power Of The Force “2” [Red] release. And this is not a good thing at all! This steroid version of Darth Vader didn’t fare well in 1995, so it definitely doesn’t fare much better in 1998, even if Hasbro added a little bit more articulation than normally. The good thing here is that this Darth Vader figure is meant to complement the Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi figure included in the same wave. And if you’re able to overlook his bulky proportions, we have to admit that they interact with each other rather nicely, albeit not perfectly. Darth Vader is another Episode IV based version of the character, but Kenner/Hasbro frustratingly has not broken much new ground here at all. You may feel like you have been taken for a ride buying this figure again, but we need to emphasize that the newly added articulation makes this version of Darth Vader accomplish things previous versions just could not.

Darth Vader comes with ten points of articulation with the greatest enhancements made in the upper body. The addition of swivel biceps and swivel wrists make holding and wielding the lightsaber so much easier and more believable. For example, Darth Vader can hold his signature lightsaber with two hands at varying degrees, or you can have him swing the lightsaber with one arm just as he did in the film. His cape is completely removable, but his skirt is not. Actually, the molded skirt was the big “update” to this figure. This Darth Vader was even billed as “double cape” Darth Vader in early solicitations. This of course makes for a strange version of Darth Vader should you decide to remove the cape. But it adds some dimension and layering to the figure and this tends to always make collectors happy. The paint operations are very basic, but they’re done well for the most part. We still are frustrated at the archaic sculpting. Although black, ominous and threatening, this doesn’t really look like Darth Vader despite you clearly knowing this is Darth Vader. Does that make sense? In other words, this figure’s sculpting is in need of a great deal of retooling before we fins it satisfactory. The good news however is that he is taller than most of the other action figures in this range and looks like the correct height next to Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi.

Darth Vader has been sculpted in a slight “leaning forward” position, but it doesn’t affect his center of gravity. He can stand unassisted quite well and although he doesn’t offer a vast array of display options, he holds his own as nice statuesque action figure for your collection. It seems like we have been discounting this Darth Vader figure, but there have been other enhancements made to this figure as well. The figure has also been giving red lenses in his face mask. This is actually a big deal because this characteristic was very pronounced in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. It’s nice to see it translated into an action figure as well. Although not officially considered this, the FlashBack and CommTech waves of The Power Of The Force “2” line really bridged the modern era of collecting with the very first modern Star Wars film: Episode I. It can almost be considered that both of these groups of figures served more like transitional waves then a finale to POTF2. Your opinions on this deisgnation may vary of course. Like all the other FlashBack figures of the time, Darth Vader comes with an Episode I FlashBack Photo gimmick. It’s not really a collector’s dream pack-in premium, but it did give us glimpses of insight on characters we would see in Episode I.

Collector Notes

Darth Vader

Status: Darth Vader is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 10 points (10 areas of articulation)

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

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: lightsaber, removable cape

Date Stamp: 1998

Assortment Number: 69680/84046

UPC: 076281840468

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 22, 2015
Category: Power Of The Force "2" [FlashBack/CommTech], The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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