This OTC Bespin Luke figure is a repaint of the Saga Bespin Luke, this time with a cleaner outfit and non-bloodied face. This review assumes you've experienced the original Saga figure and will use a lot of comparisons to that one, so if you haven't messed with that one yet... you must have been living under a rock or something. Anyway, this OTC set also varies from the Saga one in that it doesn't come with the Cloud City antenna pieces since it is representing Luke from an earlier scene in the film. This new version also surprisingly has a few small design changes, which I'll mention in the Sculpt section.
The OTC packaging looks darn good, very much a piece of the Star Wars universe... well, the front does anyway. The mini-diorama image behind the figure is of the Cloud City window where Vader battered Luke until he flew right out of it, this image couples with the figure's pose and paint job to suggest that this figure is representing Luke defending himself from Vader's Force attacks as boxes are thrown at the young Skywalker. Nothing on the packaging makes mention of the figure's slashing gimmick or removable hand though.
The bubble tray hides the tourniquet and blaster accessories behind the bubble insert since they wouldn't make sense in that diorama. The figure is holding his lightsaber in a normal stance, his left foot goes through a hole in the tray. The saber blade is taped to the tray in such a way that it might cause bending if the figure wasn't placed in properly, so watch for this just in case. Since you still have to mangle the card to free the toy and I don't dig the cardback graphics, it gets a 4 out of 5 (the Saga cards always got lower from me though). I think this will be a great piece for carded collectors, the pose in front of the image is neat and the saber blade seems especially vibrant.
This is the same sculpt as the previous version except for 2 things... The action gimmick peg which stuck out of the Saga figure's behind is now half as long, a major improvement in aesthetics (if not functionality, the gimmick doesn't have full travel now, but so what!). The other change is the removable hand, which Hasbro had already made a running change with in the Saga line by switching from magnet to plastic peg - this OTC version brings back magnetism, but now the magnet is in the forearm instead of the hand, so neither have a peg sticking out and the forearm has no unrealistic hole in the front. This change is strong enough to hold the saber in just that hand, but is easy to knock off by accident or on purpose.
I still don't love the long face, open mouth, wet hair look, funky holster, or permanently-bent elbows, but the outfit still has a well-travelled sculpt and that accurate shape such as at the shoulders and the torn shirt pockets. And of course, I can't hate the action gimmick waist enough, but at least they did something about the look.
This figure has exactly the same articulation: neck, shoulders, lower biceps, wrists, waist, hips, and universal-jointed knees. The waist ratchets around either way just as it did before so you get 6 different stops as it turns. On this OTC version, the bicep articulation is a little gappy but it's not a major deal. It all works for the figure's specific look, but as there's no ball-jointed shoulders or straightening arms, I have to take off a point. Whatever your opinion was before, it shouldn't change much here.
This figure is designed for a specific set of poses, 2-handed saber wielding, hanging onto the Cloud City antenna, and nursing the missing hand; because the figure doesn't have the antenna in this set, that pose makes less sense but the articulation is still nice to have. The saber wielding pose has those preposed feet and a wide-ish stance (it's not too bad really), yet the figure gets by with quite nicely with other poses thanks to the articulation.
The facial expression and permanently-bent elbows are the biggest things holding this figure's pose score back, and it's not a disaster or anything, just a little too dynamic for perfection.
This is really what the figure is about, Hasbro's biggest mistake on the Saga version was a painfully over-the-top weathering paint wash which looked more like Luke jumped into a mud puddle and rolled around for a few hours, that mistake has been corrected with this OTC figure and it's a very welcome change.
The original had a bloodied face, sweat-soaked brown hair, and black paint in his mouth - this new version removes the bloodied look, wisely avoids the black mouth interior, and makes the hair a hint more tan than before which goes a lot further in the look than I anticipated. The eyes on my OTC figure are a little bigger than my Saga version, but this is a tiny issue at best. The earliest Saga versions had a bloody right arm stump, but this OTC version remains as bloodless as most Saga entries. There are a few small areas on the head and body where the paint lets the plastic color show through when it shouldn't, but on mine they're all quite insignificant issues.
The body is cast in a less-yellow khaki tan color that is a bit more movie-accurate, but Hasbro also gave it a slight gray paint wash for weathering, it's nowhere as severe as the Saga version's and also not brown, but the OTC's limbs have a little more than its torso and I saw several different applications at the store, so double-check between them before buying. The brown of the gunbelt is lighter than the Saga's and looks nicer this way, and the silver accents are more pronounced; the boots here are a gray color rather than the Saga's yellowish color which got totally lost on that figure.
This figure has the same metal lightsaber, tourniquet, and pistol as the Saga figure, and the one of those recent generic base-stands instead of the antenna pieces. Unlike the Saga figure, this one's lightsaber seems to have glue on the blade peg intending for it to be stuck in place, but mine comes out and goes back in just fine with only a little effort.
The tourniquet and pistol are identical to the Saga versions, which means the gun is still a little too bloated but has the silver tip and the tourniquet is basic but well-painted and effective. Since this figure isn't meant to be the one hanging from the antenna, there's no real loss of that accessory.
Part of the overall grade is given to the superiority of the paint job, if Hasbro must do a repaint, this is the way to have it. The figure is still as cool as ever, the redesigned magnet on the removable hand looks better than before, the shortening of the gimmick button is always welcome, and the figure looks really cool in that packaging. If you have already experienced the Saga version and thought "I sure wish this had a better paint job" then this is definitely the figure for you, while newcomers will still be getting a nifty figure.