Wednesday, October 4, 2023

The ABCs of 31 Days of Toy Terror: D is for Darth Vader (The Dark Times) from Star Wars: Retro Collection by Hasbro


   I love to mix things up during 31 Days of Toy Terror and it seems like Darth Vader is a pretty terrifying fellow, so he gets a spot on this year's list, beating out Dracula and a bunch of evil Doctors. This version of Darth Vader is from Hasbro Star Wars: Retro Collection and comes from last year's Disney+ series Obi-Wan Kenobi. I do like the Retro Collection figures, although I often tend to wait until it goes on clearance since, well, it tends to go on clearance. This Vader was my most desired figure from this series, though, as it's a really nice "update" of a vintage Kenner Darth Vader. You, like, if Kenner had remade Vader in the Power of the Force series in 1985 or even for the Return of the Jedi line, this is what it might have looked like. Having a vintage Vader with a removable lightsaber is pretty exciting, too. Ready for what be the most "must own" Star Wars: Retro Collection figure of them all? Then join me after the break...

The Facts:

Height: 4 1/8ths inches

Articulation: Swivel hips, swivel shoulders, and a swivel head.

Accessories: Lightsaber and cape

Year of Release: 2022

Original Retail Price: $11 dollars

The Positives:

* This version of Darth Vader (given the variant designation of "The Dark Times") is a really nice looking retro styled figure. I love the detail on it; it doesn't look anachronistic, but like a figure from later in the vintage Kenner Star Wars line. Better proportions (though still kind of skinny), a more detailed costume, and more accurate details. The black used looks great and there are lots of small touches to really accent the sculpted details. 

* The helmet is impressive, too, especially the red lenses. I love the red lenses in Vader's helmet and I just like how they turned out here. His helmet is fuller and rounder than the vintage toy, too. 

* Rather than a vinyl cape (which the Inquisitors in the series do come with), this version of Darth Vader comes with a rather nice soft goods cape that lays over his shoulders and around his neck quite well. Kenner even used a cloth cape for the Jawas in 1978, so this seems like a logical improvement we would have seen on a true second edition of Darth Vader if one had existed at some point. 

* The paintwork on the buttons is really nice. Again, it doesn't look anachronistic or anything but simply resembles the best of the best of the later original Kenner Star Wars figures.


* I also think it's pretty cool that Hasbro gave Darth Vader the robe around his waist. Even the earliest Power of the Force 2 figures didn't include this (I think the first was the Darth Vader from the Throne Room Duel cinema scene set), so it's pretty satisfying to see it here, but rendered like a vintage figure with the legs sculpted to look like one solid piece.

*  Just like most other figures in this series (and pretty much every other Kenner inspired retro action figure) Darth Vader is articulated at the big 5: Hips, shoulders, and head. He's well made with smooth joints and feels pretty accurate to the vintage Kenner figures. You know what you're getting here.

* Last up is Vader's red lightsaber. It's a single, simple piece, like Bespin Luke Skywalker and Jedi Luke Skywalker, but it's just oh so nice to have an official version of this accessory.

   This Darth Vader (The Dark Times) figure just really appealed to me. While I wasn't even born until 1983, I did have a few random vintage Star Wars figures as a kid and I stated collecting them in the mid-late 1990s when the Power of the Force 2 figures came out, so I've loved them almost as long as the original fans. This is a great new take on Vader that still feels truly Kenner inspired, but also which nicely updates the early figure, which was about 7 years old when the vintage line ended, so a refresh makes perfect sense. He's a Great and a 1/2 figure and well worth hunting down, especially now that you might find him on sale. 

For all of my reviews of Darth Vader/ Anakin Skywalker, check out Fortress Vader.

For more Star Wars: Retro Collection reviews check out the following:

No comments:

Post a Comment

What'chu talkin' 'bout?