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  1. #1

    In defense of the new DS2 Luke figure

    There's been a lot of complaining about Hasbro's new Death Star II Luke figure which seems to have snowballed into a sense that this figure flat-out sucks. Granted, there are some deficiencies in this figure, but it's not that bad really, and I encourage everybody to really check this figure out before deciding.

    First though, let me focus on the figure's actual problems:
    - The arms and legs, recycled from a previous figure, don't fit the body too well. The shoulders are bulky and gapped, a little wide too. The legs are too close together and don't quite meet the crotch properly.
    - Incorrect/incomplete belt design.
    - Extreme left hand pose.
    - Wasp-waisted proportions.
    - Handcuffs don't fit too well.
    - Wrong lightsaber.

    Ok, so there definitely are a few issues with this figure. There's no question the recycled limbs were not effective, though I feel the arms are the real problem, the legs aren't that bad. The left hand thing is a Force gesture I suppose, reaching for the saber on the Emperor's throne, but that's not a good enough reason to go extreme with the pose. There's no excuse for the wrong belt, but at a glance it's not a huge difference. The handcuffs are limited by the scale. And the lightsaber thing is a repeated situation that we're just stuck with for poor Luke.

    The waist issue is a pretty noteworthy one, and Mark Hamill was slight but not like this. Compared to the last Luke figure, where the waist meets the hips on this new figure is around 12% narrower, that's a considerable amount visually, scaled up that's nearly 2 and a half inches smaller than the previous figure.

    ---

    Ok, so here's where the defense comes in. First off, the likeness is very good, this is probably my favorite main character OT sculpted likeness in the last 5 years. The hairline isn't quite right, and there's a passive nature to the expression, but the likeness itself is quite strong.

    The articulation on this figure is excellent, the mid-torso can be overused but with some restraint can be posed in ways that are extremely expressive. Little tilts and leans for smaller stuff, arches for the big battle poses, it's got it all and it can move in multiple directions at once unlike most mid-torso joints. The head has ok range, the legs and arms look good in action, and the elbows aren't hampered (though they stop at 90 degrees). And once you have any pose going on this figure, even a fairly passive one, the small waist and ill-fitting arms don't have as great an impact on the overall look, so posing this figure is a massive improvement every time.

    The removable chest panel is a nifty idea and works with the actual costume's lines. The "closed" panel is ok but not fantastic. The "open" panel though is a great design, even with the slight paint slop on mine it looks utterly terrific. This is a major element for the costume even though it was only seen after the battle, it is one if its signature elements.

    The gloved right hand is a new design despite the previous use of these arms having its own glove, and this is a better design, it really looks like a glove, slightly thicker than the other hand.

    If Hasbro is going to use the Obi-Wan lightsaber sculpt, at least they're using the best mold this time and painting it like Luke's. They're using the ROTS Obi-Wan sculpt, and even though it has some differences like the notched upper hilt and PT belt attachment, it's lightyears better than the POTJ Ben saber they had been using that had an extremely soft sculpt and overly long blade. Plus, unlike the previous Luke ROTJ that came out last year, this time they've painted the hilt correctly (minus the silver rings around the upper hilt, but not sure if that'd even be possible at this size).

    ---

    In conclusion, yes this is a flawed figure, that is not in doubt. But it has positive aspects as well, and is not the horrible figure that many fans are making it out to be. Luke DS2 is my favorite look for my favorite Star Wars hero, so I'm both biased for AND against any figure - after all, how can it live up to my expectations? Yet that the likeness and the panel gimmick both work means this is an ok figure in my book, and I intend to buy a second one when I find it at retail.
    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.

  2. #2
    I hadn't noticed the problem with the legs until reading your review. Overall I suppose it's not a bad figure, but the waist thing really bothers me. I'm also not too keen on the elbows, but as you said the arms are recycled and I didn't care much for them on that figure either. The figure isn't horrible, but it does seem to be one of the weakest of the wave. It's like they had such potential, but missed it by that much.

  3. #3
    I agree with JT, it's not a great figure. But it does have its flaws and for a figure that we have been waiting and wanting for so long to end up rather halfhearted leaves a bad taste. Though it is much better in my hands than I thought it would be once I first saw the photos online.
    Have: CW Yularen, CW Clone, everything from CW Slave I set except Slave I, TFU Shadow Stormtrooper x2, Evo Trooper, Saga AT-AT Driver, K-Mart Jodo Kast || Want: Vintage Fordo
    Thanks to TheDarthVader, Phantom-like Menace, TheRealDubya, Jediguy, Dark Marble, Umbra, Qui-Long Gone, CrunchyNug, GH_fan and jedikiss.

  4. #4
    I also agree with you on this JT. I think alot of people have jumped on the bandwagon for hating this figure without taking a close look at it. Here's some of my random thoughts:

    -The headsculpt is one of the best of Mark Hamill in ROTJ. Its one of the few times where the product's likeness was better than the early photos we saw. I like the serious determined look on his face too. It gets high marks for this, in my book.

    -I don't mind that they reused the limbs. They are a bit bulbous, but theres been worse.

    -At first, I didn't like the swappable chestplate. I thought it made him look a bit like a droid. But I don't mind it so much now. If you put in the flap open panel, the white flap distracts from chestplate seams, or so I think.

    -The waist is the one thing I really don't like. It is so much narrower than the shoulders, that it really looks odd. If Hasbro would've fixed this probelm, we'd have a pretty good DSII Luke.

  5. #5
    I like this figure and don't have many problems with it. It beats the ones before it.
    One way to out think people is to make them think you think they'll think what you are not really trying to get them to think what you think.

  6. #6
    I opened him and made him with his tunic folded open. I like that look.

    Luke's busy fighting 2 Yuuzhan Vong right now.

    I'll be adding Vong to the scene as I get around to it - moreso when I have a Jacen Solo figure to fight along side the Jedi Master (from "Darktide: Onslaught! (or Ruin! (?)" in the NJO novel series - good stuff!)
    BAD Pts Need: R5-C7 lf leg (x2), , R4-P44 right leg BAD Pts Offered For Trade: PM me - I have lots of parts now including BG-J38!. New Kyle Katarn is also available.

  7. #7
    I too found this figures poseability to be a pleasant surprise and the headsculpt is actually good with the least offensive ball-jointed neck I've seen in some time. Thats where the good ends though.

    The aesthetics of the figure are downright awful. Off proportions and huge joints. Look if they can put tiny invisible joints in a naked princess Leia figure they can do it on DSII Luke. Theres no excuse as far as I'm concerned. It was bad on the TAC Luke, this time they were just being lazy and cheap.

  8. #8
    Jt: you are with us or against us!!!! Pick you Jedi defender!!!! Figure is crap! Admit it....turn to the darkside!!!!!
    Real men buy Willrow

  9. #9
    Ok, I picked up a Rancor - I assume this is pretty similar to the updated ROTJ version?

    Its an ok figure - perfect example of how a SUPER ARTICULATED figure is totally unaesthetically pleasing. Sculpt is as sublte as a Mack truck doing 150 down a school zone.......for my money, I much prefer the far less articulated, but far nicer sculpt from a few years back with soft goods cloak

    Hasbro is using the economy to justify subpar work....at least, in some cases. They are not very consistent these days
    Real men buy Willrow

  10. #10
    The Luke that came with the Rancor is the same one from the 2007 TAC line, with all the accessories but the coin. This one shares parts with the new Luke figure, being discussed in this thread.

    It looks like they updated/corrected his vest for the new Endor battle pack, but now it looks huge. Eh, I'll keep the poncho on and it won't matter.

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