Welcome to another entry in our The Vintage Collection: The Ninety Six column. Hasbro recently committed to collectors that they will be “focusing” on characters in The Vintage Collection that fall under “The Ninety Six” banner. If you’re new to this, it means that for every classic Kenner figure, there needs a modern counterpart. Between 2020 and 2021, Hasbro’s made an admirable effort by focusing on these characters. But there is more work to be done, and we’ll figure out where we are step by step.
We’re right in alignment with Hasbro in our vintage Kenner database. There are 21 figures under the STAR WARS banner, 29 figures under THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK banner, 31 figures under the RETURN OF THE JEDI banner, and 15 figures under THE POWER OF THE FORCE banner. (Sy Snootles, Max Rebo, Droopy McCool, and Blue Snaggletooth bring the number to an even 100 figures.)
Read our assessment, and then be sure to add your thoughts to the comments. Let us know if you agree or disagree. If you’re a customizer, show us your custom definitive figure in the comments as well! Who knows? It might give Hasbro some ideas.
In 1984, new packaging for Star Wars figures was introduced for the European market. A cost containment initiative, the new packaging sported three languages of the Return Of The Jedi logo for a “one size fits all” approach. Although a “three-logo” design was created for The Power Of The Force line (as evidenced on some ‘boxed’ toys), it wasn’t carried over to the basic figure line’s card design. They continued to use the three Return Of The Jedi logos instead. Although the word “Trilogo” is found nowhere on the packaging, the term is universally adopted by all Star Wars collectors to describe this line of figures.
Today we revisit the Death Squad Commander, which was known in the Trilogo collection as Star Destroyer Commander (Commandant de L’Etoile Noire). This figure, like the Jawa, is one of the rarest figures in the Trilogo line. A common misnomer, many believe that this figure wasn’t released in the Trilogo line, but this isn’t true. The figure only came mis-carded on the AT-ST Driver packaging. Interestingly, card art was designed for Star Destroyer Commander (Commandant de L’Etoile Noire) figure but was never released. We created a mock-up utilizing the original card art created, and then also added the AT-ST Driver packaging to show how the figure arrived at retail The review’s Collector Notes are updated with this information. See the full card art and additional notes by revisiting 1978’s STAR WARS Death Squad Commander figure HERE.
We have just completed our intense look at the first series of vintage Kenner Star Wars figures: the 12-Backs. Because May is typically a Star Wars month and 2018 is the 40th anniversary that vintage Kenner Star Wars figures arrived at retail, we felt it was the perfect time to start vintage Kenner reviews. (Oh, and let us not forget The Vintage Collection’s return is another huge motivator of this run too.) Each new month, we will focus on a new series of figures where we’ll finish the complete vintage Kenner run in December with the 1985 The Power Of The Force line. Already, they are receiving wonderful feedback and tons of you are checking them out. But we want more of your stories, so please leave them in our comments. Thanks for your participation thus far, and we hope more of you leave your vintage Kenner experiences with us in the comments going forward! Thank you for making this a success for us. We put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into them and we were hoping that they’d go over well with our readers. They seem to have. And for that we’re grateful.
We’ve finally reached the final figure from the Star Wars 12-Back series! Let’s check out the Death Squad Commander. He is a character that isn’t too screen-accurate, but not too many of us cared. He also experienced a significant name change before the end of the Kenner line. Check out this classic figure for which we STILL don’t have a modern Hasbro counterpart for and hope comes in The Vintage Collection soon! Enter our Research Droids Reviews and be sure to add your own experiences to the conversation! Reminisce your own childhood stories of this figure in our comments. Share your life-changing vintage Kenner adolescent experiences with us!
Let’s add the repacks from wave 16 of The Black Series [Phase III] 6-inch line to our Visual Guides, starting with the Death Star Trooper (60), featuring the all-new photorealistic face deco. Click below for a full look at this figure, and make sure to stop by and have a look at our review as well.
The Black Series [Phase III] Death Star Trooper 6″ figure with enhanced “photorealistic” deco is eerily lifelike. See why this is a must-have figure in our Research Droids Reviews today! Be sure to leave your thoughts in our comments section, vote in the poll or even comment about it on our Facebook page. Click the banner below for the direct link to the review! As always, you can also send your review requests via email if you’d like to see something that we didn’t cover yet.
If you followed all our posts awhile back where we dug around and found all the upcoming The Black Series 6″ Figures including Han (Solo), Lando (Solo), Range Trooper, Tarkin, Jawa, and Death Squad Commander, we told you to add them to your amazon list. If you did, you can now place a pre-order through your list on those figures for an April 12th arrival. All are $19.99 except for Han who is $17.99. The links to these pages do not work, so only having them on your list will allow for pre-orders. Also, be aware that although they show the 40th Anniversary Jawa and DSC, they ARE the boxed versions.
UPDATE: I was able to put together a shopping list so that I could share the links with everyone to purchase them (if they don’t show up, be sure to change the filter options to purchased & unpurchased). Enjoy!
After doing some further detective work, our research droids have pulled through once again and were able to find some UPC’s and Amazon pages for some upcoming The Black Series 6″ Figures! Click through to see the latest and to add them to your lists!
3 Chewbaccas, 16 Jawas, and 44 Death Squad Commanders! This isn’t a third grade math problem or the start of a joke, this is what JTA reader Agustín came across while on business in Monterrey, Mexico in a store called Julio Cepeda. We share in Agustín’s concern of how Monterrey has this many in stock, meanwhile tons of Walmarts and TRU’s have only received 1, 2, or even ZERO cases. ¡Ay Caramba! Thanks again to Agustín for this report!
UPDATE: DSC still in stock as of July 8th 11:20 AM
This is not something we as collectors are unfamiliar with. Walmart has done this before, but just look at the egregious prices Walmart is selling Wave 2 at. These have been coming in and out of stock at this price since the announcement came of the discontinuation. What’s worse, they sell out within minutes. This is who we had to rely on for our 3.75″ SA figures for awhile…thankfully that is ending. Click through to see more images.
Well, Target has the 40th Anniversary Death Squad Commander in stock online RIGHT NOW! If you need one, I suggest you grab it now!
UPDATE: Well, that went quick!
ToysRUs.ca has wave 2 in stock now, be quick and grab your 40th Anniversary figures while you can. Special thanks to JTA reader Chris B. for the news!
These have been going so very fast, so it doesn’t help for me to post in stock alerts. However, for the past few hours ALL of them have been coming in and out of stock frequently for $19.99. I got a Stormtrooper 2 hours ago and just now got Chewbacca. So I recommend keeping an eye out because these will get harder and harder to find.
For our Canadian readers, Walmart.ca has the all of wave 2 of the 40th Anniversary except for C-3PO in stock now. Thanks to JTA reader Elie for the alert!
Not only did I personally run to my local Walmart in East Brunswick, NJ at 10:43 PM to dig out a Wave 2 box from the stacks of toys, but we also got a report only 30 minutes later from JTA reader Aric who apparently did the exact same thing as me, but in Chicago. Keep an eye out folks! They seem to be coming around. I know many people haven’t even seen them yet, so don’t give up.
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