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    Wookiee Flyer with Wookiee Warrior pilot figure

    Hasbro's Wookiee Flyer is a late addition to the ROTS line's $15 pricepoint vehicles. The Flyer, seen only briefly in the movie, is also referred to by Lucasfilm as a dragonfly helicopter, a Wookiee Ornithopter (a flying vehicle that uses flapping wings for propulsion), and even a Raddaugh Gnasp fluttercraft - one thing about the design I don't like is that it's got only 1 weapon in the movie, it's kinda small and pointing backwards to boot, not very practical. The Flyer is pretty big for a $15 vehicle, has a missile-firing rear cannon, flapping-wing action, and comes with a semi-statue Wookiee Warrior pilot figure.

    Packaging: 4/5
    While most of the line's packaging hasn't done much for me, the $15 pricepoint window boxes are a little better, this box shows off the actual toy inside pretty well on the large, bright lava-themed cardboard tray, the figure is piloting the vehicle, and the whole set takes up much of the box. The graphics do their job, but the inset showing the flapping action could have been better; the die-cut photo of the Flyer's wings on the front go halfway across the window and are glued down. The instructions miss the part about the wings snapping into final position; and the tray itself uses 3 large twisties, a few annoying clear-bands, and plastic bubbles around plenty of parts.

    Sculpt-Design: 3/5 (Pilot); 4.5/5 (Flyer)
    The Wookiee Warrior pilot figure is a very-preposed sitting figure, he's a big stocky dude, about the same size as the Sneak Preview Wookiee. The pilot's lower body is all 1 rotocast piece but it's fairly thick material and fits well with the upper body's look - the details are actually pretty good in fact. The figure's arms and body have a good hairy sculpt to them, the arms are sculpted to look natural holding the above-the-head controls, and the upper body has a bandolier sculpted to the torso - same style bandolier as the Wookiee Warrior #43, except part of the chest here. Besides being preposed, the weakest element of the figure is the head, it's a new sculpt but too similar to the Preview Wookiee, right down to the ponytails on the front; the face is a little calmer than the Preview fig's though and the mouth is deeper with a sculpted tongue inside.

    The Flyer has a pretty decent and accurate sculpt, although some elements like the seats and central column elements are a bit simplistic, and the screws on the top and right-side nose are too obvious. The wings seem to be the right shape and size even if there's not much to them. The overall shape of the Flyer seems to be all in scale except the rear end being a little snubbed off. I like the top and bottom engines and underside details the most, and the bowcaster cannon is nifty too. The small handle and trigger at the rear are the biggest issues, but they're not too awful. Most importantly, this is a big vehicle at $15, it's larger than the $20 Grievous's Wheelbike, and more in-scale to the figures that use it than most other vehicles.

    Paint-Deco: 2.5/5 (Pilot); 3.5/5 (Flyer)
    The Wookiee pilot's body deco is pretty good, the transitions from tan to brown are farily subtle for the most part. The gray and black of the hands and feet are good work too, and the bandolier is neatly-applied even where the sculpted fur overlaps - thankfully it's not orange like the #43 Wookiee's version. Unfortunately, all that is shot down by the horrendous paint job on the head, the light tan is lighter than anywhere else on the body and has an even lighter accent shade applied as sloppy as the work on Tarfful; the worst offense is the dark brown starting at the eyeline, it's thick and gloppy, looks like someone spilled melted dark chocolate down his head, and there's zero transition at all - just "brown" then "tan". The facial features themsleves are not bad work, but I had some slop on my fig's right eye that had to be chipped out.

    The Flyer deco starts with the plastic's base color, it's dull-gold compared to the movie version which was rich dark brown, it looks ok but the packaging photos of the toy are the correct colors and this ain't. The wings themselves are clear, this gives them an almost ethereal quality and suggests motion, I wasn't sure if they were clear in the movie or not so this works for me. The seats, top engine, and rear gun are gray which isn't too inspired, but there's some silver paint on the underside to counter that. The landing legs and central column are a light gold plastic, it looks ok except at the top part holding the upper wings. Strangely, the aft section's outer panels have a rough tan paint on them, this wasn't like that in the movie but does add a little character I guess. Overall, it's a decent look but more accurate colors and some weathering would have been nice.

    Articulation-Features: 1/5 (Pilot); 4/5 (Flyer)
    The figure has a measily 3 points of articulation, standard waist and shoulders. The head is actually glued in place, and the legs are in a permanent pose. In the vehicle, the articulation does its job and keeps the fig in place, but the figure's pose out of the vehicle looks a bit like he's sitting in the bathroom reading a newspaper. The minimal articulation makes it very difficult to get the figure out of the cockpit as well, I have to actually bend the vehicle a bit to get him out.

    The Flyer starts off with the wings, they are folded back in the package but can be opened fully to a 13" wingspan; the folding on all 4 feels like it stops early, but it actually continues to a final stop point after that, the upper wings are a little loose before the final stop, but the front wings are smaller and hold pre-stop poses better (good since the top set of wings at the nose on the movie version aren't supposed to be out as far as the other nose wings, the toy has them stop parallel). The Flyer has a small handle at the very back with a trigger just in front of it, pull the trigger and the wings flap up, let go and they drop - your hand will get tired of this pretty quickly but it does look neat.

    The Flyer's rear gunner seat has a plastic seatbelt which is needed to hold a figure in place, and it works pretty well though the figures have to sit straight-legged -- the Sneak Preview Wookiee looks good in that seat, his mid-torso articulation works to advantage, the #43 Wookiee looks kinda small and awkward there though but he looks pretty decent in the pilot's seat holding the controls. The gunner station has a swiveling bowcaster cannon, I wish it could look up and down as well though, and it doesn't have actual handles for the figures to hold but imagination carries it through if you just put the figure's hands up against it; the cannon is also a missile launcher, it doesn't look that bad but the missile is very standard and plain. The final feature is that the rear landing legs can fold out, in the movie the Ornithopter actually flew with them out so it's not necessary, but it's still a keen little addition.

    Overall: B+
    This could have been another slightly underwhelming $20 vehicle like Grievous's Wheelbike, but as a $15 vehicle it's pretty dandy. The preposed figure and deco matters are a bit of a drawback, but the toy overall overcomes its issues to balance fun and accuracy, and it's cool to finally have a vehicle for the Wookiee forces. If the handle folded up or was removable, it would have made an even better display piece, but it's alright as it is anyway, and even makes for a good item for sealed collectors. Most importantly to me, other Wookiee figures in the line interact with it pretty well, which alone makes it worth buying.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    "We named the dog 'Chewbacca'!"
    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

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