Saturday, January 18, 2020

Wrapping Up 2019: Heavy Infantry Mandalorian from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

    While I'd love to say it's simply a loving homage to the time when most background Star Wars characters didn't have names, that fact that the package simply calls this guy Heavy Infantry Mandalorian rather than his real name, Paz Vizla (he's voiced by Jon Favreau, who also voices Pre Viszla in The Clone Wars and Rio Durant in Solo). It's a small thing but, to me, it shows the current lack of cooperation and trust between Disney and Hasbro. With The Mandalorian, we've received one of the best things to come out of the Disney era of Star Wars, and Hasbro's currently on fire with the quality of what they're producing in the Black Series (sorry 1/18th scale fans, I know y'all are definitely getting left out in the cold and I do feel for you), so why not bring this stuff together? We should be swimming in product for The Mandalorian right now! Still, I'm grateful for anything we're getting from the series (even though I have yet to actually acquire a Mandalorian himself) and this guy was a surprise that kind of showed up out of nowhere as a Best Buy exclusive.  While he's a bit bulkier than some other figures, it's kind of odd that Hasbro felt the need to designate this guy as a Deluxe release (he's given the designation D2 on the side, following after General Grievous' D1 numbering). Is he really that deluxe and worth of a $8-$10 dollar price jump? Well, let's check Paz Vizla out after the break and see if he's deserving of a salute himself...

 The Facts:

Height: 6 1/2 inches

Articulation: Swivel/hinge ankles, double hinged knees, thigh swivels, balljointed hips, mid-torso balljoint, lateral pectoral hinges, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel/hinge elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, balljointed neck, and a balljointed head.

Accessories: Jetpack, heavy blaster cannon, and a fuel hose.

Non-Scalper Price: $30 dollars

 The Positives:

* If you don't like Mandalorians, I don't know what to tell you. Paz Vizla is a Mandalorian and he's got some incredible armor. His blue beskar armor is covered with rivets, wear and tear, and lots of cool little doodads and gadgets. If you sat around in school doodling Mandalorians when you were supposed to be taking notes, odds are that at some point you drew a guy who looked like Paz Vizla here, and there's nothing wrong with that. This guy is big, bulky, and tricked out like the best of them. I really like his leather utility belt and what might be a communications device on his chest.

* Vizla's helmet looks fantastic, too. He's got a bit of light blue on the "cheeks" of the helmet to give the shape of the helmet a bit more definition and, of course, he's got an antenna and a range finder mounted on the sides. There are also a lot of dings and dents here, too, because the Mandalorians play hard.

* The paintwork on this guy is definitely better than on your average Black Series figures. The paintwork has been pretty good on the line, don't get me wrong, but I can definitely see where this guy is a but more intricate than some other figures. Again, there are lots of scratches and scuffs on the armor along with some great drybrushing effects to give him a rougher look. He's also rocking a mythosaur emblem on his left shoulder.

* Despite being tall, bulky, and covered in beskar armor, the Heavy Infantry Mandalorian is one of the most well articulated figures in the line. Not only do his joints have a great range of motion but he also has the lateral pectoral hinges, which allow for better two handed weapon holding poses and soft shoulders pads, so that none of the shoulder articulation is sacrificed.

* Paz Vizla comes with three accessories, although they all connect together. His jetpack is really awesome looking with great paint applications. It fits very securely on his back and the grey fuel line connects to it (the fuel line runs to the flamethrower on his left forearm).

* This crazy flamethrower-like weapon on his left forearm is amazing, too. Seriously, I love the detail on it. Wrist mounted weaponry always just seems so cool and I'm glad this guy is toting some around.

 * Paz Vizla probably gets the designation of Heavy Infantry Mandalorian since he's toting around this massive heavy blaster cannon (which reminds me of Baze Malbus' cannon from Rogue One). The sculpt is excellent, the barrel of the gun has multiple paint applications, the magazine that attaches to the jetpack is nice and flexible, and there is an articulated handle on the side that allows for the figure to hold it in different ways.

* Not only does Paz hold the canon well but it can also store on the side of his jetpack, too. It looks pretty cool like this, don't you think?
   Yeah, the figure might be $10 dollars more than the standard figures, but considering how well done everything is on this guy it's hard for me to be too upset. Seriously, the Heavy Infantry Mandalorian/ Paz Vizla is one of my favorite Black Series figures of 2019. I'll probably be dong a best of 2019 list of the Black Series and I imagine this guy will be on there. He's an Epic figure and definitely a great example of what Hasbro is capable of in this line. While you can knock there character selection and distribution at times, they are putting out some killer action figures. This is the way.

This is the first figure of Paz Vizla I've reviewed. For more figures from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III, check out the following:

0-0-0 (Triple Zero)
442nd Siege Battalion Clone Trooper, 212th Attack Battalion Utapau Trooper, Coruscant Guard ---(Phase II), and 501st Legion Clone Trooper 4 pack
Admiral Ackbar and First Order Officer
Admiral Piett
Ahsoka Tano 
AT-AT Pilot 
Battle Droid
Baze Malbus
BT-1 (Beetee)
C-3PO & Babu Frik
C-3PO (Resistance Base) 
Cal Kestis
Captain Cassian Andor (Eadu) 
Captain Phasma
Captain Phasma (Quicksilver Baton)
Captain Poe Dameron
Cara Dune
Chewbacca (Target Exclusive)
Chewbacca (The Force Awakens)
Chirrut Imwe 
Chopper (C1-10P)
Clone Captain Rex (HasCon Exclusive)
Clone Commander Gree
Clone Commander Fox
Clone Commander Obi-Wan Kenobi
Clone Commander Wolffe 
Constable Zuvio
Darth Revan 
Darth Vader (Emperor's Wrath)
Death Star Trooper
Dewback/ Sandtrooper
Director Krennic 
DJ (Canto Bight)
Doctor Aphra
Dryden Vos
Elite Praetorian Guard
Elite Praetorian Guard (with Heavy Blade)
Emperor Papatine and Throne
Enfys Nest's Swoop Bike/ Enfys Nest
Ezra Bridger
Finn (First Order Disguise)
Finn (FN-2187)
Finn (Jakku)
First Order Flametrooper
First Order General Hux
First Order Jet Trooper
First Order Snowtrooper
First Order Snowtrooper Officer
First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter
First Order Stormtrooper
First Order Stormtrooper Executioner 
First Order Stormtrooper (with Gear)
First Order TIE Fighter Pilot
Gamorrean Guard
General Grievous
General Leia Organa
General Veers
Grand Admiral Thrawn (SDCC Exclusive)
Grand Moff Tarkin 
Guardians of Evil 4-Pack
Guavian Enforcer
Han Solo (Exogorth Escape)
Han Solo (Mimban)
Han Solo (Solo)
Han Solo (The Force Awakens)
Hera Syndulla
Imperial AT-ACT Driver
Imperial Death Trooper
Imperial Death Trooper, Captain Cassian Andor, and Sergeant Jyn Erso (Jedha) 3 pack
Imperial Hovertank Pilot 
Imperial Jumptrooper
Imperial Patrol Trooper
Imperial Shock Trooper 
Imperial Royal Guard 
Inferno Squad Agent
Jaina Solo (Legends)
Jango Fett
Kanan Jarrus
Kylo Ren 
Kylo Ren (SDCC 2016)
Kylo Ren (The Last Jedi) 
Kylo Ren (Starkiller Base)
Kylo Ren (Throne Room) 
Lando Calrissian (Solo)
Lando Calrissian (The Empire Strikes Back)
Lando Calrissian (Skiff Guard)
Luke Skywalker 
Luke Skywalker (Death Star Escape)
Luke Skywalker (Jedi Knight)
Luke Skywalker (Jedi Master) 
Luke Skywalker (Jedi Master)- Ahch-To Island
Luke Skywalker (Skyalker Strikes)
Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony)
Mace Windu
Maz Kanata 
Obi-Wan Kenobi (Force Spirit)
Obi-Wan Kenobi (Padawan) 
Obi-Wan Kenobi (SDCC 2016) 
Offworld Jawa
Padme Amidala
Phase 1 Clone Trooper Commander, Phase II Clone Trooper, Imperial Stormtrooper, and First Order ---Stormtrooper Officer four pack
Poe Dameron
Poe Dameron and First Order Riot Control Stormtrooper
Princess Leia (Bespin Escape)
Princess Leia Organa 
Princess Leia Organa (Hoth)
Purge Stormtrooper
Qi'ra (Corellia)
Qui-Gon Jinn
R2-A3, R5-K6, and R2-F2
Range Trooper
Rebel Trooper
Red Squadron (R2-D2, R5-D8, and R2-X2)
Resistance Tech Rose
Resistance Trooper
Rey & D-O
Rey (Island Journey)
Rey (Jakku) & BB-8 
Rey (Jedi Training)
Rey (Jedi Training)- Crait
Rey (Starkiller Base) 
Rey's Speeder (Jakku)
Rio Durant
Sabine Wren
Sandtrooper Sergeant, Crimson Stormtrooper, Lieutenant OXIXO, and R2-Q5
Scarif Stormtrooper
Scarif Stormtrooper Squad Leader 
Second Sister Inquisitor
Sergeant Jyn Erso (Eadu)
Sergeant Jyn Erso (Jedha)
Sith Trooper
Stormtrooper (Mimban)
Stormtrooper (With Blast Accessories)
Supreme Leader Snoke (Throne Room)
Tobias Beckett
Tusken Raider 
Val (Vandor)
Vice Admiral Holdo
Wedge Antilles
X-34 Landspeeder & Luke Skywalker (SDCC Exclusive) 
X-Wing Pilot Asty 
Yoda (Force Spirit)


  1. He reminds me of Jorge from McFarlane's HALO REACH line.

    I have to agree with you regarding the seeming lack of action figures from THE MANDALORIAN. Given that the title character is the star of the show, I have to wonder why he's seeing such a limited release.

  2. Sigh... Another infuriating exclusive that I really want. Oh well, at least I can get The Mandalorian and The Child from BBTS in a few months...

  3. This is a great figure for the Black Series. I wonder if the people at Hasbro can tell the difference between what will be a dud and what will be a hit. I am sure they had pre screenings of Last Jedi and Mandalorian. Aren't they fans as well. regardless of the bomb that was Last Jedi and its merchandise, didn't they see a preview of Mandalorian and say - "people are gonna love this!" I don't get it.

    1. I really get the impression that Disney has cut Hasbro out of the decision making process and they're basing stuff on trailers and such. Apparently the Star Wars license for Hasbro is up for renewal this year and I really hope Hasbro bucks up and tries to get a better deal and access to stuff. Star Wars stuff isn't the cash cow for Hasbro that it once was and with all of their other licenses, I imagine Hasbro would be fine without it or without a master license. I mean, I want Hasbro to keep making Star Wars stuff, but I also want better Star Wars stuff to be released overall. We got a new Star Wars TV series and end up with, what? 6 or 7 figures, a couple of which are just repaints. It's all characters we saw in publicity stills, too. They didn't even make Mando as he appears after the first episode. That's ridiculous.

  4. That's what worried me about Disney buying Marvel and STAR WARS: there would come a time when Disney would want to make the merchandise themselves so that they'd be the ones raking in most or all of the money. But surely they realize that Hasbro has treated STAR WARS well over the years and how profitable their partnership has been, don't they?

    1. Disney does seem to make some of the merchandise themselves (they've released quite a few 1/18th droids and a Sandcrawler, I believe as well as those metal Star Wars figures that are about 7 inches) and it's been hit or miss. I know it sounds crazy, but I doubt they'd really want to handle that on as massive of a level as a company like Hasbro produces product unless Disney simply bought out a company and utilized them. Hasbro has been good to Star Wars and if you look at their history with Kenner, then you could say they've been there since the beginning. If another company or Disney tried to manage Star Wars collectibles, I think they're going to find that it's a fickle game. Star Wars collectors have usually been Star Wars collectors for a long, long time and have a pretty good idea of what they want. Compatibility is going to be key going forward, as if whatever is produced doesn't mesh with the traditional 1/18th scale Hasbro offerings or the Black Series, it's probably not going to go anywhere.

  5. To their credit, Disney hasn't been interfering with Marvel Legends in any way. I hope it stays that way for however long Hasbro has the Marvel franchise and I hope that Disney lets Hasbro run the STAR WARS franchise the way Hasbro has been doing it since the Black Series began.


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