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The Black Series [Phase III]

Imperial Hovertank Pilot - TBS [P3] - Six Inch Figures (Exclusive)

Name: Imperial Hovertank Pilot
Collection: The Black Series [Phase III]
Number: N/A (Toys R Us Exclusive)
Scale: 6"
Source: Rogue One
Availability: September 2016
License: Hasbro

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Imperial combat drivers operate the Empire's arsenal of armored repulsor vehicles. Combat drivers are lightly armored, relying instead on the thick skin of their vehicles to protect them in battle.

Wow. We’re impressed. With one cursory look at the Toys R Us exclusive The Black Series [Phase III] 6” Imperial Hovertank Pilot figure, you’ll quickly see that Hasbro has risen up from the ashes and crafted a figure that will hopefully be the template for all future 6" figures. We hope they continue to abandon the things that makes us critcize them and just do things with more precision and excellence. For a premium collector line, we know how bad the deco has been of late. But we want you to think back to a time when collecting Hasbro toys was the best and most fun. During this time, paint operations were phenomenal and every last excellent figure was followed up with a wash that captured the details of skin, armor and every other last feature of the figure. That’s exactly where the Imperial Hovertank Pilot figure is. It's a top-ranking TBS6 figure of all time. Now, for many collectors, the issue may indeed be the paint jobs of these figures, but for many other it’s the scale that is a bigger problem. For us, we’ll always support Hasbro giving full attention to a 3.75” super-articulated line, but when we see a figure like the Imperial Hovertank Pilot, it shows us that the 6" line of figures may not be a line to ignore. Hasbro has been guilty of going really cheap on so many figures in The Black Series 6” line. In the beginning we understood that they needed time to work through a learning curve (or something), but figures were looking worse than better (barring exceptions of course). With an example like the Imperial Hovertank Pilot however, the paint job and quality has jettisoned so far ahead that we’re instantly sold on it. Let's hope this trend continues. This assertion is quite a powerful sentiment, but none of it is an exaggeration. The 6” line in general has made us irritated collectors. Fans of the 6" scale have seemingly overlooked the poor quality within the line.

But the Imperial Hovertank Pilot makes us happy and want to now partake in that collective joy. Hasbro has to keep this momentum going though, otherwise it's not going to last. It’s truly amazing when gorgeous toys come into existence because Hasbro goes all out. The Imperial Hovertank Pilot is case and point of this. As mentioned, the Imperial Hovertank Pilot is a Toys R Us exclusive. A few cases made it to a few stores on Rogue Friday, but many collectors walked away empty-handed. However, if history repeats itself, the Imperial Hovertank Pilot may become as plentiful as the Toys R Us exclusive 2015 TBS [P3] First Order Snowtrooper Officer 6” figure. But we certainly won’t predict the future for you. So far, we've focused on the outward appearnce of the figure. Perhaps we jumped into the overview of the Imperial Hovertank Pilot a little too shallowly. Let’s talk about the actual figure itself, not about the finishing touches. The Imperial Hovertank Pilot has an excellent sculpt. There is no doubt in our minds that some of the brightest modelers and artists are tooling these figures. They are indeed incredible sculpts. The Imperial Hovertank Pilot is no exception here either. A perfect mixture of both Prequel Trilogy clones and Original Trilogy stormtroopers, the Imperial Hovertank Pilot captures the spirit of a believable Star Wars trooper beautifully and perfectly. Think Kashyyyk Trooper meets AT-RT Driver meets Biker Scout. That’s pretty much what we have here. And for reasons unknown, we’re drawn to call him a “driver” instead of a “pilot”. We’re not too sure why we’re bringing that up, but it’s happened more times than we can count. The sculpt shows that the Imperial Hovertank Pilot has exquisitely tooled armor. The softer “fabrics” in his uniform like this pants bunch up in all the right places too. And he comes simply outfitted with a blaster. After all, he’s a pilot and as the back of the box explains, he relies on the vehicle to protect him.... and not a trusty blaster from the Galactic Empire.

A great sculpt and even better paint operations set the Imperial Hovertank Pilot apart from almost the entire 6" collection (our strong opinion). That's quite an accomplishment. What’s more, unlike other recent (and many) The Black Series 6” figures that have been released and have disappointed collectors because they’ve been so rubbery and pliable, the Imperial Hovertank Pilot has been cast in one of the strongest plastics we have seen in this line to date. Aesthetically, the plastic feels COMPLETELY different than anything they have used on these figure since the early days. There is no way this is an illusion or wishful thinking on our part either. The plastic is solid and crisper and makes the Imperial Hovertank Pilot feel like a well-made figure. It's fantastic. He can withstand gravity and can be placed in an array of configurations. You’re going to thoroughly enjoy him because of this. Imagine how any unsure Star Wars collectors of the 6” line would feel if they were handed a stunningly and perfectly painted solid action figure with a fantastic sculpt like this figure. It doesn’t get better than this. This figure is a perfect ten as far as we’re concerned. On the other hand, in all honesty, we’d be lying if we didn’t say that this 6” figures makes us ache for a 3.75” version done in the same exact way. This is action figure perfection at its finest. And we bow to and applaud Hasbro for the high level of effort and quality they executed here which has unequivocally made the Imperial Hovertank Pilot a complete success. As with all/most 6” figures, the Imperial Hovertank Pilot is going to feel a little left out in the cold (in the line). There will never be an accompanying vehicle. And there likely won’t be too many similar character to make him feel like he is a group. So many The Black Series 6” figures tend to be “one off” figures and then it sort of ends there. And with the Rogue One toy line being created to leave a smaller footprint at retail, it’s likely this line won’t delve too deeply into the Rogue One film. Hasbro can only do so much in their yearly product timeline. But this is the way to do it!

Collector Notes

Imperial Hovertank Pilot

Status: Imperial Hovertank Pilot is an all-new figure.

Articulation Count: 28 points (17 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: ball-socket head, (1), hinge-jointed neck (1), ball-jointed left shoulder (2), ball-jointed right shoulder (2), ball-jointed left elbow (2), ball-jointed right elbow (2), ball-jointed left wrist (2), ball-jointed right wrist (2), ball-jointed waist (2), ball-socket left hip (1), ball-socket right hip (1), swivel left thigh (1), swivel right thigh (1), double hinge-jointed left knee (2), double hinge-jointed right knee (2), ball-jointed/"rocker" left ankle (2), ball-jointed/"rocker" right ankle (2)

Accessory Count: 1

Accessory Details: blaster rifle

Date Stamp: N/A

Assortment Number: B9612

UPC: 630509498659

Retail: $19.99 USD

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

The Black Series [Phase III]

All Products

Added: October 2, 2016
Category: Black Series [Phase III], The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
Score:
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