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The Power Of The Force “2” [Freeze Frame/The Kenner Collection]

Emperor’s Royal Guard - POTF2 [FF/TKC] - Basic

Name: Emperor’s Royal Guard
Collection: The Power Of The Force "2" [Freeze Frame/The Kenner Collection]
Number: N/A
Source: Return Of The Jedi
Availability: March 1998
License: Hasbro

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Only the most promising soldiers are chosen to serve as Emperor Palpatine's personal guards. Experts in many forms of combat, both armed and unarmed, they are conditioned to automatically react to the Emperor's will.

1997 and 1998 was a whirlwind for collectors. We received so many new first time offered action figures as well as a ton of modern updates to the Kenner figures that were part of our childhood. They came to us at a brisk rate and for the most part it was a joy being an adult Star Wars collector again (whether it was your first or second time doing so). Sometimes the new action figures didn’t meet collectors’ expectations. We think it’s safe to say the Emperor’s Royal Guard was one action figure that didn’t meet expectations. Sure, it was wonderful to see this Imperial once again at retail with an all-new sculpt, but Kenner/Hasbro decided that a “salt or pepper shaker” mold was the best way to approach this character for the modern line. Sadly, Emperor’s Royal Guard is essentially one blob of plastic covered in a molded robe shell. The sculpt actually looks pretty good despite this, but if you’re looking for a significant upgrade to 1983’s ROTJ Emperor’s Royal Guard figure, well, let’s just say you’re going to be disappointed. Let’s ponder why Kenner/Hasbro would proceed in this fashion because it’s really quite a conundrum.

Emperor’s Royal Guard has two points of articulation. Some feel that this alone is nearly unforgiveable. He comes only with two swivel shoulder and even they possess inhibited movement thanks to the separately sculpted robe shell that covers the center of his body. Despite these limitations, we are impressed with how his right hand is sculpted. Emperor’s Royal Guard comes with a nice modern (and much more accurate than the vintage Kenner figure) force pike that fits flawless in his left hand in an upright position, just like how these characters held them in the film. It sometimes doesn’t take much to impress collectors, but this is something that really impresses us. When you pose the figure with the force pike it looks straight out of the film. At first glace the figure looks a little too rotund, but when you compare it to stills in the film, it actually doesn’t look that far off from the characters we see on the big or small screen thus pretty darn accurate. Where the figure obviously lacks however is with its pose-ability. You get one bite at the posing apple here and for collectors like us is very frustrating. It’s hard to believe a figure from 1983 has double the articulation as its modern day counterpart. It just doesn’t see moral.

If there wasn’t enough injustice with this figure, Kenner/Hasbro found the Emperor’s Royal Guard to be a viable carry forward figure in the Freeze Frame phase of The Power Of The Force “2” line as well. Admittedly, the Emperor’s Royal Guard ranks highly in the eyes of collectors, so we understand why he was on the list for them to re-release again. In all honesty, we love the Freeze Frame action slide pack-in and we’re happy to get one of the Emperor’s Royal Guard. There is something special about capturing a still single frame of our beloved Star Wars films to forever be displayed in our collections. If you’re looking to secure this figure, we suggest purchasing the one that comes with the extra premium. It’s just makes the most sense. Hopefully in the future Kenner/Hasbro will be a little more doting to fans and create an all-new version of the Emperor’s Royal Guard with less constraints and a lot more articulation. (Editor’s Note: Hasbro released the definitive 2012 TVC Emperor’s Royal Guard (VC105) figure which met this demand from collectors very nicely.) In the end, this is a core Imperial and their mystery and magnificent appearance in Return Of The Jedi makes them an unforgettable character and a must-have in any collectible format.

Collector Notes

Emperor’s Royal Guard

Status: Emperor’s Royal Guard is a straight repack of 1997's POTF2 [R/G] Emperor’s Royal Guard figure.

Articulation Count: 2 points (2 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1)

Accessory Count: 1

Accessory Details: force pike

Date Stamp: 1997

Collection: 3

Freeze Frame Details: Emperor Palpatine's elite personal guards.

Assortment Number: 69705/69717

UPC: 076281697178

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.

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