Is Sgt. Edian really Sgt. Edian? We find out from Hasbro's answers to SSG questions for February 23rd, 2010. Thanks again to Hasbro for the answers, to all the folks who sent in questions and especially those who voted on them.
Hasbro Q&A for the week of February 23rd, 2010SSG: While we know that the readership of ToyFare Magazine and its parent company, Wizard, are not chiefly a Star Wars collecting-oriented group which can give weird results like the 2006 EU-centric Fans Choice poll, it seems like the most recent Fans Choice poll results are arousing even more raised eyebrows and suspicions among the collecting community. Certain characters seem to have come out of nowhere to claim top spots, and the website which ToyFare ran the poll seemed to have no obvious safeguards against ballot-stuffing. To quell fans suspicions on this, where there safeguards in place to prevent overzealous fans from flooding the poll with votes? We know it's just a toy line, but obviously collectors take it seriously, so what can you tell fans to satisfy their concerns about the poll's veracity, that this is truly all of their choices, and not just the choices of a few unscrupulous fanatics?
Hasbro: We were vigilant to make sure the poll ran smoothly, and we can verify that Wizard World counted only one vote per IP-address (despite what appeared to be glitches that allowed multiple votes). Overall, the votes were surprisingly evenly distributed. The final results were interesting in the sense that there was a burst of EU characters at the top of the charts, followed by a long stretch of film characters. This tells us that there is demand still for a few higher-profile and interesting EU characters. This poll provides a good roadmap for the next few years just as the previous poll did. The 2006 results were very prophetic; many of the characters from that list that inspired development turned out to be some of our most popular from the last few years. While we won't have the widened EU scope over the next few years that we have had recently, we are still passionate about bringing great characters from other media into the lineup.
SSG: Regarding the head on the Cloud City Wing Guard figure, the cardback bio suggests this is supposed to be Sgt. Edian, yet while the coloring is a black person's and Edian is a black man, the sculpt is clearly that of a white guy. Everything about the head sculpt, even the part in the hair, is a different guy given a dark brown deco. While it could be seen technically as an update to the vintage black Bespin Security Guard on skin tone alone, the features and cardback on that Kenner figure were clearly Edian and were differentiated from the other Kenner white Bespin Guard figure. In fact, there is some similarity to another guard, Sgt. Merril, an older white man. Was the original idea to produce a Merril figure and that looked too similar to the planned Utris M'Toc so his ethnicity was changed? Why was this new Edian figure given a white guy's face sculpt? Any chance we'll see this head sculpt again as Sgt. Merril, and a new, more accurate Sgt. Edian sculpt in the future?
Hasbro: The Bespin Security figure sculpt reference was based on Sgt. Edian. While it was not our intent, we see how you might think the sculpt does have some resemblance to Sgt. Merril. That was not the intent, in any case.
And our questions at CollectionStation.com:
- Most of Emperor Palpatine's scenes from ROTJ feature him seated in his throne, which hasn't been released in 13 years. That release, the "Final Jedi Duel" Cinema Scene, suffers by comparison with newer items in its relative lack of detailing and permanent attachment to the extended base from that set. Have you considered, or would you consider now that we brought it up, an improved version of the throne which would ideally have more detailed controls, a swivel base (that's not several inches long), and Luke's lightsaber hilt (with a spot to put it on the arm)? Oh, and while we're at it, what about an Emperor who can sit in it as well as he stands?
- Many collectors are reporting their local stores' Star Wars pegs clogged with slow-moving Saga Legends figures, stagnating and choking out Legacy Droid Factory basic figures. Recently, Wal-mart and Target stores have been selling "blockbuster value" buy-1-get-1-free 2packs of Saga Legends basic cards alongside the 2packs of Legacy basics. The SKU is the only one in the brand to not be changing this year. And now your site is offering a promotion where the purchase of many of the Role Play toys will get 3 free Saga Legends figures. Is the future of Saga Legends perhaps not as bright as had originally been forecasted? If not, why the incidents mentioned above? We already know that the main figure line in 2010 will be more a mix of Greatest Hits and have vintage-themed packaging which will help differentiate it from Clone Wars, and Saga Legends is going to share the CW line's card style, so how will Saga Legends fit into the mix other than a packaging change, will it be scaled back so as to not overwhelm the pegs? Will we see a quicker rotation of product so to avoid pegwarmers like Saesee Tiin or character crossovers into Clone Wars and Legacy like Plo Koon?