Questions for February 16, 2007
Given that Hasbro has already dipped into the swelling cachť of Expanded Universe Characters from the comic series that have already concluded, can we expect to see any Knights of the Old Republic or even Legacy characters?
Could we expect to see some more EU in the Titanium Series?
What do you, as more of an insider than I, think the probability of seeing a renewed interest (on Hasbro's part) in the action fleet vehicles is? -Nick
I think at this point itís fair to Ďexpectí anything from Hasbro. Considering there are a couple KOTOR baddies on the way, Hasbro must be taking a hard look at other characters from both the games and the comics. Iím not so sure about Legacy, but if Hasbro sees where it is making an impression on fans, they could easily venture into that realm as well.
Hasbro did mention at Comic Con that they would be releasing some EU vehicles in the Titanium Series this year; the Outrider was hinted at. While Iím not sure how into the EU they will get (they might have just been thinking red TIE Interceptor type EU), itís at least a distinct possibility. I for one would love to see Hasbro cover some of the bounty hunter vehicles in this line, as well as the Outrider, Moldy Crow, and others. I may be in the minority here, but Iíd really like to see them dive into some of the concept vehicles as well. I was a big fan of galoobís Alpha Series; I know they have some tooling available in the Titanium Series scale; weíll just have to wait and see if they think this makes sense for the line.
The Action Fleet is one of those tricky lines that a lot of fans always talk about, but hasnít preformed well in the last two outings (three if you count the TS Ultra line). Itís pretty clear nothing will happen while Hasbro has the Transformers line in the mix, and thereís a good chance we wonít see it while the Titanium Series is out there either. Three and three-quarter inch line aside, it really makes very little sense to have multiple vehicle lines on the shelf at the same time. If and when the Transformers line runs its course, and Hasbro has exhausted their ideas for the Titanium Series, we could see the Action Fleet make a comeback. If Hasbro could card the line like theyíve done with the Transformers, bring the price way down from where the TS Ultra was, include mini-figures, and have some "funnish" play features, I believe the line would do well. Weíll see, Hasbro knows there is interest out there for the line, if they see an opportunity to take advantage of that interest, Iím pretty sure theyíll take it.2
An old question regarding the new TAC: I suppose I can understand why Darth Vader and R2 are in the first wave, given the anniversary, but why a prequel Obi-Wan Kenobi, Mace Windu and Super Battle Droid? Mace has been in two recent Battle Packs, an AOTC Obi-Wan in another (and sold individually in the Battle of Naboo wave and as a hologram), and a Super Battle Droid was just re-painted/re-packaged! Are these all going to be brand-new sculpts? Why the redundancy? -Lord Edzo
While I havenít seen the figures for myself to know if anything ďnewĒ is offered in these sculpts, the bottom line is the same answer Hasbro has always given when it comes to core characters; they are going to be a part of the line each year because they are easily identified with the movies, and tend to attract "entry level" fans. Battle Packs and recent releases aside, Hasbro feels they need these characters in the line each year, and will include them where they make the most sense. It can be frustrating for collectors, seeing the same old characters year after year, but whether it makes sense or not itís just a part of the hobby. 3
MOVIE Q: What's the deal with Sith eyes? Anakin gets them when he turns evil but doesn't always have them (when with Padmť). Darth Tyranus doesn't even have Sith eyes, Palpatine only got them when his face was messed up but not before (even though he was always evil). Darth Maul had then all the time. Do you know anything about this??
Aside from what we see in the movies, I donít believe this phenomenon has ever been fully explained. Apparently ďSith eyesĒ manifest themselves when the person in question is feeling particularly angry or enraged; otherwise the eyes can appear perfectly normal. Obviously they would have to appear normal or the Jedi could just pick out the guys with creepy red and yellow eyes in a crowd and be done with the Sith altogether. We never really saw Tyranus in a state of rage, which would explain why he was never shown with Sith eyes, though I would assume heís perfectly capable of exhibiting this characteristic. Then again, maybe he just wasnít strong enough in the dark side to reach this levelÖ Maul on the other hand was pure evil, rage, and anger all rolled up into a handy little package, maybe his eyes were just permanently Ďsith-o-fied.í4
I am dad of three boys and a definite closet collector of Star Wars. Thanks to my Jedi mind trick skills I've brainwashed them into liking Star Wars as well, thus having an excuse to buy more toys. One thing as a parent that is frustrating is that Hasbro has said previously, that play-sets don't sell well. However I find that they are the hardest and most expensive things to find, thus causing me to think that they are in demand. I wore my Death Star out when I was a kid. Why the reluctance on Hasbro's part?
Also any thoughts on some new figure cases? The figures are piling up.
I donít get any kind of production numbers on the Hasbro toys, but I would guess in the case of playsets far fewer are made than the average item in the line. This has the general effect of making the playsets both scarce and expensive. Despite these two negative factors, what Hasbro has done may work just fine for their ultimate goal. Theyíve had a playset out there for each of the last two movies, and when everything is said and done, there wasnít a whole lot left over to go to clearance. Granted they havenít always been the easiest of the movie toys to pick up, but theyíve been out there to be had, and there hasnít ever really been a huge outcry once theyíve sold through. All things considered, it would appear the demand for the sets that were offered was ultimately satisfied.
So why not make a Death Star playset? Well, compared to the previous playsets, demand should be higher. Compared to the other playsets the Death Star should be bigger, more complex, more expensiveÖ Retail, still looking at the relative few playsets that sold in the past, may not bite off on the higher quantity, higher priced, and larger footprint that a Death Star should/could entail. Basically itís hard for Hasbro to justify the expense of developing a large playset, when theyíre not convinced retail would buy in. Not that we wouldnít buy it, the question is would retail place the order. Given the recent trends in boys toy, playsets are not big movers. As much as thereís a chance that retail might buy in, thereís probably a bigger chance they wonít and that leaves Hasbro with an investment they can never recover.
So, why not come up with smaller modular playsets you can stack to build your own Death StarÖ? Thereís certainly other ways that Hasbro could approach the playset question, but for now itís just been put on the back burner. If you feel strongly enough about the subject, let Hasbro know via email or at the conventions this summer. They may dismiss it all as being too costly, but if enough people keep harping on them or suggesting new ideas, they may come around to our way of thinking.
Figure cases, another lost cause I guess. You would think it should be a very simple thing, but for some reason Hasbro canít see their way clear to making this happen. All weíve been able to get out of them are the campy Darth Vader and C-3PO cases from the vintage era; we donít seem to be even remotely close to an updated version of the nice vinyl cases from that period. As much as I hate to say it, I gave up holding my breath for these a long time ago; itís just not gonna happen.5
Maybe I missed the announcement, but has the 3 3/4" Titanium figures line been canceled? I have not seen any new figures since the Grievous & C3-PO that I found a few months ago. If the line has been canceled, were these the last figures to be released, or did the Hoth Luke & Darth Maul ever make it to production? Also, the last Patina variant I found was the 501st Clone, were there variants of any figure produced after that?
Yes, according to Hasbro the line is no longer in production, the Star Wars line anyway. While there are a lot of Marvel Forged Figures showing up, nothing for Star Wars has hit the shelves for a while now. Weíre trying to get confirmation of this, but it appears Grievous and 3PO are the last figures to be produced; I donít believe patina versions of either of these two characters have or will ever ship.6
Is shopstarwars.com going to sell the final figures in the Saga line as a wave instead of individually?
Whatís the word on the Star Wars Poker Chips?? -Tom B. (Indianapolis, IN)
I certainly hope so. Iíve had zero luck tracking down the Wal*Mart wave and Iím starting to get pretty disgusted with the whole situation. From what I gather each of the Wal*Marts in my general area (thatís six stores) received ONE case each, and the figures were bought up by local scalpers (guys with collector shops) within five minutes after the doors opened. Itís been my experience that Wal*Mart is the absolute worst when it comes to handling their exclusives, how Hasbro decided that they should get five exclusive basic figures is totally beyond me. Since the first reports, not one store has restocked, the pegs are completely empty but for a few Padmť and Emperor figures. To make matters worse, from what I understand, these exclusive figures are packed ONE PER CASE with other figures from wave 9Ö If true, thatís completely insane. Iím waiting and hoping StarWarsShop.com comes to my rescue, but considering these last five figures are "exclusive," thereís a good chance they wonít be allowed to sell them. I guess maybe Disneyland could get themÖ Anyway, no indication starwarsshop.com will have these figures as a set/wave; so far the standard figures are just available individually.
Still no definitive word on the MR poker chip set, but my guess is itís out the window. From what Iíve seen it was nowhere to be found at Toy Fair, which would tend to indicate itís not currently in any of MRís distribution plans. Again, like I said, it was a fun little something MR threw together, but probably never got final approval from Lucasfilm to release it.7
I got the Dagobah training set and I was curious how come the plastic smells so different and stronger compared to my other figures that do not smell. -Steve M.
Because it was factory fresh
? Itís hard to imagine what might have caused this set to have a particularly strong odor, but Iíve noticed my self that this can happen from time to time. Every once in a while Iíll open a figure that has a stronger plastic odor to it than the rest. I canít see where the scent relates to anything obvious, like a particular type of plastic or paint application, and the scent almost always goes away after the figure has been out for a while. I guess itís just one of those things; I wouldnít worry about it too much, but I wouldnít suggest breathing too deeply around it either...8
1. Do you get your info directly from Hasbro or from multiple sources?
2. I know at the last Comic-Con Hasbro played a joke on everyone with the "Crispy" Owen and Beru figures, and I know that some people actually would want to see that but we know that will never happen because of kids and such and as a parent I agree. However, I believe I heard it mentioned somewhere before about a pyre figure but Hasbro said they probably wouldn't do because of the same reason. If you do talk to Hasbro directly, my question is why? There is nothing wrong with a Qui-Gon Jinn or Darth Vader pyre figure/deluxe figure. The pyre is a structure, such as a mound of wood, for burning a body as part of a funeral rite, and is how the Jedi honor their dead/deceased Jedi, and as Master Yoda says is a part of life. So, in that, I see nothing wrong with having a Qui-Gon or Vader figure maybe with some red yellowish hues for the flames painted on their bodies and making them maybe slightly transparent like the Dagobah/Emperor's Wrath Vader figure and maybe some flames that could be attached like the demise of Grievous, along with the actual pyre each having the one that represents their scene from the movie. Have you heard anything about this further? -Dave (Spring Hill, FL)
For as long as Iíve been doing this, Iíve always gotten my info from multiple sources. For a period of time there I had a great relationship with some great people at Hasbro; I learned a lot about how their business works from them. Iíve made friends in and around the industry that still provide a ton of insight and information, not to mention all the people Iíve met working with Philip and everyone here at Rebelscum. But above all, I just ask a lot of questions and try to do my best to pass that knowledge on.
While you make an interesting case, thereís a big difference between being able to make a toy, and being able to market that toy to your target age group. Sure, Hasbro could definitely whip this up, but given the target audience of the line (which ultimately are children between the ages of 4 and 12), can you sell it to them? Hasbro has a hard enough time selling female characters to boys in that age range, I canít see where they would have much more luck selling dead Jedi or extra crispy dead Aunts and Uncles to them, or their parents. While McFarlane might be able to get away with something like this because their target audience is much older, Hasbro just canít.9
A question that periodically makes it way onto StarWars Q&A's involves the best long-term storage options for SW collectible and how to avoid decay issues from starting. I am curious though, has anyone actually documented (with photography) the decay problems that SW collectibles encounter over time? I have heard of gray and green mold/fuzz and other decay issues that have appeared on both the Vintage and Modern line. Is there any Internet site or published book that has images of some of these issues? I have a fair amount of collectible in storage and while I haven't encountered issues yet it would be nice to know what to look for when I do my checks. -Jamie
While I thought we had something like that around here somewhere, I couldnít find anything in our Special Feature section, or the Vintage Archive. Itís not a bad idea to have one, a guide of sorts; Iíll definitely suggest it as a potential feature, but I know I havenít seen one anywhere else. Basically what you want to look for is anything out of the ordinary. Discoloration, white powdery/fuzzy substance, splotching, slimy tacky surface, these are all common signs of plastic deterioration and from what I know nonreversible. If you keep your collection in a dry/cool/sunlight free environment it should last longer, but eventually any or all of these signs may present themselves no matter what you do.10
I have the following Jabba the Hutts: POTF with Han Solo, Episode 1 with Podracer announcer, Episode 1 Jabba Glob and the Saga Ultra Figure. One, are these all the Jabba's that have been produced for the 3.75" line? And two, are these all the same molds or are some different from each other? Thanks!
So far the four you mentioned are it for modern Jabba the Hutt "figures" from Hasbro. The Power of the Force 2 Jabba
and Episode I Jabba
are both unique, however the Jabba Glob
and 2002 Ultra Jabba
figures are from the same mold. Hope that helps!
Until next time... Got Questions?