this set of reviews is based on having seen these figs loose, (except the Imperial Officer, which was carded), up-close and personal. Here we go:
1) Rebel Fleet Trooper - like many of you here, the POTF2 version is regarded in my eyes as a total abomination - I pretend now that it doesn't exsist - thanks in part to this new figure. This is not the best fig of this wave, but that's ok because overall, this wave rocks! The RFT has articulation at the: neck, shoulders, wrists, legs, knees, and ankles...in total 11 points of articulation. The lack of waist articulation was a suprise to me, but the added and rather ingenious 21st Century toys-type leg articulation more than made up for it. On the fig that I have seen, the paint has been applied very carefully and I did not find it at all sloppy. I like the sculpted wrinkles in the outfit as well as the dings in the helmet. Speaking of which, the helmet is a little off in the paint area...the black area in the front comes down to low to the rim of the helmet as opposed to what is exactly seen in the movie, but hey, no biggie. I have no real problems with the non-removable helmet feature; it would have been nice, but it's not like I'd posed him without it.
I am a little dissappointed in the fact that the holster in non-functional. The gun is sure small enough (maybe a little to small), and leads me to believe that Hasbro had the original attention to have the gun/holster combo work, but changed their minds. The jacket is removable but made of a much harder plastic than previous figs and it is a bit difficult to slip on and off. The face sculpt is decent, nothing to write home about, but is not an issue with what I consider to be a very nice figure! This is definitely not the disaster of a figure that some on the 'Net are proclaiming. My grade: B +
2) Sabe (Black Gown): Wow! That pretty much somes it up for me when reviewing yet another fantastic Queen figure.
Sabe has articulation at the: shoulders, elbows and legs (they can turn side-to side, like the Red Amidala fig). In total 5 points, not a lot, but enough for this piece. This is not the action-oriented kind of piece that needs, say 40 points of articulation :happy: (more on that with the next review). This fig looks dead on to the movie, meticulously recreated by Hasbro. The gold trim and patterns throughout the gown are fantastic. The paint detail on the face and headpiece is perfect and I really do not know what else Hasbro could have done to improve on the paint deco or overall sculpt. This is probably my favorite Queen fig, even above the Red Amidala, if only because the black gown's base or gerth at the bottom is wider and more closely proportioned than the Red Amidala figure, which is still an excellent and exceptional piece to me.
I really want Hasbro to make all of the Queen Amidala and Sabe figures and my desire to have more is really a credit to Hasbro's excellent work with these pieces! Yet another POTJ figure finishing up the run which proves that Hasbro is still trying and I honestly feel that the quality is definitely still there. My grade: A
3) FX-7: I defy anyone to have even one negative thing to say about this piece! We're getting a deluxe-quality figure for the price of a standard one, IMO. FX-7 has articulation at it's: head/neck, middle point, as well as two points of articulation on each of its nineteen arms (assuming I counted right), for a total of 40 points. Not to shabby! This is also one huge figure. Compare this one to the vintage and you will have a nice laugh. They are so far off from one another. The head on this new Fx-7 does not telescope up and down like the vintage, but it does make a clicking sound when rotated, which is kinda cool. What is also extremely cool is the total bada$$ detail - from the sculpt to the many paint ops, this is one serious droid and by far one of the best Hasbro figures ever produced. The paint detail along the arms alone is excellent; not every one looks the same as far as the deco goes - eg, some have little red marks, just like on the actual prop. Almost every grove and switch can be seen and all of these points helped to make this figure exceed my already very high expectations. On the figure I saw, every one of the arms was very tight in the joints and definitely does not sport any added helicopter action. One thing to be careful of, on the one I played... er, inspected, one arm came off, but was easily reattached.
This figure is as excellent as the Luke Bacta deluxe set that it highly compliments; seeing the two combined along with the 2-1B I whipped out is like a fan's dream come true. How long have we all waited (well, most) for Luke in diaper? To be honest, until we finally heard this new deluxe line was coming, I kinda doubt Fx-7 was a priority for Hasbro. I'm glad we got this piece only now because the detail is undoubtly much higher than what we would have gotten even a year-and-a-half ago. One thing of possible interest to maybe five of you out there is the fact that, to my knowledge, Fx-7 sports the first visible screw on any modern day 3 3/4" scale figure! Don't worry, it's on the bottom. :happy: My grade: A+++
4) Imperial Officer: this review is based on having seen the fig up-close but carded, so because of this, I will also review the revised POTJ card design as well. The Imperial Officer, as most know, has a jumpsuit as opposed to the more formal outfit we are accustomed to. I have read on the 'Net that this is a real outfit, but I'm guessing we would have to search the original trilogy rather closey to spot it - not a big deal to me. The wrinkles and details on the outfit, as well as the above average face sculpt (gotta love the sideburns), makes this a very nice (not exceptional) piece. The fact that he can pose his arms behind his back is really cool. There is also and added control panel or some such on the figure's left arm, if I remember correctly and is one of the added details that prevents this piece from looking plain.
One thing that would have been nice here would have been a removable cap/hat. Why this is not a feature, I dunno. As a result of the decent details, but not overly shocking features (another reason why the Bespin Guard totally rocks!), this is the weakest entry on this latest wave; that is not to say I'm disappointed, quite the opposite. It's just that this figure doesn't blow me away, and after five or so years of collecting, I'm afraid my expectations may be a little to high. Not every piece Hasbro makes will have us howling at the moon, but the new Imperial Officer makes me want to bark (but just a little). My grade: B
4a) POTJ cards (revised): the cardbacks themselves harken back to just a couple of a years ago when the POTF2 line was underway. I have to say that I do kinda like the high quality pic of the newest wave as well as a little movie image in the left corner, but I prefer the smaller pics showing the varied figs out on the market. I'm a sap, but it reminds me more of the vintage approach. What I don't like to be sure, is the sucky image quality of the front of the cards. The RFT one was awful and even the Sabe one, from a 2 1/2 year old movie was bad. I don't know why these are of lower quality, but I hope Hasbro fixes it for the remaing POTJ figures to be released shortly. My grade: C +