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Episode I

Darth Sidious (Holograph) - EI - Basic

Name: Darth Sidious (Holograph)
Collection: Episode I
Number: N/A
Source: The Phantom Menace
Availability: December 1999
License: Hasbro

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The evil and mysterious power behind the Trade Federation's blockade of Naboo, Darth Sidious appears over vast distances as a holograph in order to communicate to his many subordinates.

As big as the excitement for the Episode I line was in May, that energy got whittled down to maybe about half of its original momentum by the end of the year. It was certainly a noteworthy line of action figures to collect, but the new generation of fans that were all in slowly trickled out of the fold. Besides, the original case assortments had been shipped so heavily that nearly all of the figures from the May 3, 1999 product launch were cluttering shelves. With so many of these early waves of figures making seemingly permanent homes of store pegs, a backlog was sadly created and it prevented new figures from arriving to stores as originally planned. One of these victims was the surprisingly beautiful Darth Sidious (Holograph) figure. While some panned it as a lazy “repaint” of the pretty remarkable regular Darth Sidious figure, many didn’t realize that so much of the Darth Sidious (Holograph) figure is all new. In fact, only the head sculpt and arms had been reused. The entire torso is all-new. It’s important to note right away that Darth Sidious (Holograph) comes with less articulation – its torso is just a blob of plastic – but the figure is beautiful and we’re impressed with it as a whole. It may not hold a gun and it may not do much but stand around, but it looks so good that we’ll be anyone would be hard pressed to just avoid it because it’s “boring”.

Now that Darth Sidious has one solid centerpiece for a body, the figure has an absolutely perfect center of gravity, something the original version does NOT have. This may be the single reason why we’re enamored of this figure compared to its predecessor. Another improvement we noticed is the weightiness of the sculpt. Perhaps it’s because of the new solid center, but it truly feels like you’re getting more substance for the dollar. Another detail that we can’ help but notice is that on top of the most translucent purple figure, Hasbro painted “flesh” tones to the figure’s face and hands. It does wonders for the sculpt and adds dimensions to the figure’s important features to provide depth and distinguishing characteristics to a figure where those would otherwise normally be lost in solid and clear plastic. We’re very happy Hasbro decided to add this revolutionary detail. The biggest issue with this “holograph” version of Darth Sidious is the scale. In the film he appeared to be smaller than full size (as seen on the mechno-chair), but then he appeared to be ever so slightly larger (or full scale) in other scenes like when communicating with the Neimoidians for example. Still, we understand why Hasbro kept this in the same scale as the rest of the figures.

Because of the glut of initially shipping product, Darth Sidious (Holograph) quickly became a hot commodity and collectors were soon paying double, triple and quadruple the MSRP of this figure. As with anything, hype often cools down until the figure is essentially worthless. (There are exceptions to this obviously.) But even towards the end of the Episode I run, Darth Sidious (Holograph) could still command higher than average prices on the aftermarket. In all honesty, Darth Sidious (Holograph) remains one of our most favorite figures in the entire Episode I run. It’s not a figure that we would expect to adore so strongly, but Hasbro really put together all the right elements to make this figure a complete and utter success. If you think about it, this retooled version of 1999’s EI Darth Sidious figure brings just enough new to the table to keep it interesting. But the clear purple plastic with the flesh-toned facial and hand accents all work together to bring “character” to this action figure. You can also clearly (pun intended) see the detail that went into tooling the robes. Hasbro was hard at work making sure every last detail was in place to make this figure look superb, even in holographic form (we’re sure unbeknownst to them). Anyway, Darth Sidious (Holograph) is a must-have action figure.

Collector Notes

Darth Sidious (Holograph)

Status: Darth Sidious (Holograph) is a retool of 1999's EI Darth Sidious figure. This time the figure has an all-new body and the entire figure has been recast in translucent plastic to mimic a holographic effect.

Articulation Count: 7 points (7 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: swivel head (1) (inhibited movement), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel left elbow (1), swivel right elbow (1), swivel left wrist (1), swivel right wrist (1)

Accessory Count: None

Accessory Details: None

Date Stamp: 1999

Collection: 2

CommTech Details: 73 • Name: Darth Sidious • Status: Sith Lord and Mastermind of Trade Federation Invasion

CommTech Phrases: "And Queen Amidala...has she signed the treaty?" • "This is my apprentice Darth Maul." • "He will find your lost ship."

Assortment Number: 84095/84081

UPC: 076281840819

Retail: $6.99 USD

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

Episode I
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Added: August 27, 2015
Category: Episode I
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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