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“Jabba!” Drawing by Wizard of Barge

March 28, 2015

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Etsy seller Wizard of Barge drew this terrifying Jabba with copic markers on 9 x 12 paper.

Upcoming: Salacious Crumb Talking Plush by Underground Toys

March 18, 2015

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A reader recently alerted me to this new plush from Underground Toys, who also made the excellent talking Jabba the Hutt plush I posted about a few months ago. Right now, aside from the Underground Toys Twitter and Facebook pages, the only mention I can find of it is on the Forbidden Planet site (a UK retailer). But since it’s not due to come out until the end of June, I’m sure other places will be listing it sooner or later. The Jabba plush underwent some fairly big changes between the prototype and the final product, so I’m interested to see if the same will be true of this. I’d say he’s pretty cute as is, although his stubby little legs seem a bit out of character:

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“Campus” Notebook with Jabba the Hutt Cover by Kokuyo Japan

March 5, 2015

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This notebook from Japan is part of a recently released collection of Star Wars notebooks by Kokuyo. There are two sets of 5 notebooks. This one comes in a set with Boba Fett, Han Solo, R2-D2 and a stormtrooper, as you can see below. The other set has Luke Skywalker, C-3PO, Yoda, Darth Vader and Chewbacca notebooks. The have 30 pages and are 179mm x 252mm (or roughly 7 x 10 inches) so they’re on the small side.

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All of the notebooks have a different image on the back cover: Princess Leia giving R2 the plans to the Death Star for R2-D2, Greedo for Han, Slave One for Boba Fett, Vader for the stormtrooper and Salacious Crumb for Jabba (as you can see above). They’re all the same on the inside: lined with a stormtrooper on one side and R2 on the other.

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The images used are the same line art images that I’ve seen on other products (the Jabba was used on a baseball cap made by Fresh Caps a few years ago, for example). It’s always a little disappointing when licensed products reuse artwork like this, but it’s probably preferable to reusing the same stock photos of the characters that we always seem to see.

When I bought these, I figured I wouldn’t be returning to Japan anytime soon, but as it turns out we found a reasonably good deal on airfare, and so our whole family will be heading to Japan in June to visit my wife’s family. Maybe I’ll pick up some more of these.

Vintage Jabba the Hutt Pajamas by Wilker Bros. (Yellow)

March 2, 2015

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I like character pajamas, since they remind me of a time in my life when things were a bit simpler and I might have worn something like this to bed. I like the ones with Jabba on them in particular because of the mismatch between the character and his place on a child’s pajamas (which one might assume would normally be reserved for the likes of superheroes, rather than bloated intergalactic gangsters). So I’ve been trying to get my hands on these for years.

In the 5+ years I’ve been running this site, I’ve been searching eBay for Jabba items daily, and have automated searches for Jabba pajamas set up. I’ve posted multiple requests on Star Wars forums and asked around to people “in the know.” And yet the only things I was able to find during that entire time were one used pajama top (no bottoms) and one used robe. Finding anything in the package seemed like a pipe dream. There don’t seem to be all that many people who actually want to collect the Return of the Jedi pajamas, so they’re not particularly valuable, but if my own experience is any indication, these are actually more rare than even the rarest of production Star Wars toys.

That’s why I was so excited to see these pop up on eBay recently. Luckily, I was able to negotiate a direct sale with the seller. Interestingly, I can actually trace the chain of ownership of this particular item, because someone I knew contacted me to tell me that they originally sold it to the person I bought it from! That person acquired it from an auction that Lucasfilm ran when they were purging their archives of licensing samples. That means that this was apparently one of a group originally supplied by Wilker Bros. to Lucasfilm as examples of their product. That’s kind of cool, and would explain how it remained in the package all this time, as it was sitting in a Lucasfilm vault until a few years ago.

This set is white and yellow, and has Lando in his skiff guard disguise standing next to Jabba. (There are two “Return of the Jedi” logos, but the lower one is on the plastic of the packaging and not the pajamas themselves.) The pajama top I linked to above just has Jabba on his own, and also has a white and blue color scheme, so there are actually two variations of Jabba pajamas out there. I’d love to get an example of that in the package as well — I guess the search continues! I also wonder if there was a yellow version of the robe made.

1/6 Scale R2-D2 Figure by Sideshow Collectibles

February 15, 2015

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Sideshow’s 1/6 scale Star Wars figures were one of the things that got me started collecting a few years ago. When I was just starting out, I was able to pick up a fair number of them second hand for very reasonable prices — $40 in many cases, and as cheap as $19.77 for Bib Fortuna. Things in the 1/6 scale figure market have changed quite a bit since then, with many companies shifting to the higher end of the market, and the price of the average figure exceeding $200. As the prices skyrocketed, my interest in 1/6 scale figures dwindled. I did buy some of the earlier (non-Star Wars) Hot Toys releases, but in the end it became impossible to justify the prices, even if the quality was considerably better. Now the only 1/6 scale figures I buy are things that will work with my 1/6 scale Jabba’s Palace display.

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Of course one reason that Sideshow was able to put out so many inexpensive figures years ago was that they concentrated mostly on humanoid characters like Jedi that they could make using their standard action figure body. They stuck with that tried-and-true formula for a long time, which is one reason why we’re only getting an R2-D2 — arguably one of the most important characters in the films and certainly a fan favorite — nearly 10 years since Sideshow started making Star Wars figures. They needed to engineer his body from scratch, and that’s no mean feat — especially if you want to include a lot of features like opening hatches, etc.

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They definitely didn’t skimp on the features or accessories with this little guy. R2 has a retractible third leg and quite a number of opening panels on his body and his dome, plus he has LED lights that are activated with a touch-sensitive panel on his dome. (This is a cool idea, but you’ll find yourself accidentally activating the lights a lot as you handle the figure.)

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He has a couple of sensors that pop up from the dome, and I have to give Sideshow credit for making them actually pop up and go back in, rather than being a separate piece that you attach.

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You get also Luke’s lightsaber, which fits into a space on the dome, and has a magnet in the end that you can use to open some of the panels. You also get a tiny restraining bolt. It attaches via a magnet, so you can put it several places on the body.

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You get a number of different arms that can attach various places. This is the exclusive version, so apparently you get two or three additional arms than the regular release, although I’m not positive which those are.

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When I was opening up the figure, I accidentally dropped the contents of the accessory tray on the floor on top of some open cardboard boxes filled with random junk, and it took me at least 15 minutes to locate the restraining bolt…

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You also get his Jabba’s Sail Barge drink-serving tray and arm. The individual drinks are removable and the arm is articulated and includes some clear hoses. It’s really pretty impressive. I probably wouldn’t have bought the figure without it.

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Finally, you also get the table from Obi-wan’s house on Tatooine, and a little hologram of Leia. It slots into the table and lights up with a press of a button, but I don’t have any shots of it because I forgot.

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Above, you can see a comparison of the Sideshow figure on the right with the Hasbro FAO Schwartz-exlusive figure on the left. As you can see, even though they are both ostensively 1/6 scale, there’s quite a difference in size. I believe Sideshow’s is closer to being accurate. Lots of companies have had trouble correctly sizing R2-D2 for some reason. I used the Hasbro figure in my Jabba’s Palace display up until now, but will be swapping it out for the Sideshow version.

Overall, I’m a lot more impressed with this figure than I thought I would be. At $150, he’s not cheap but with all the accessories he seems like a decent value. There are a few problems, though. The thin hatches and doors make the figure feel sort of brittle and fragile. On my figure, the two long vertical doors on the left and right of his body won’t open using the magnetic lightsaber, so you have to pry them open with a fingernail. Sometimes they pop off. Speaking of the lightsaber, it’s supposed to fit inside his dome and pop up, but it just doesn’t work well at all. Still, these are relatively minor issues and not deal-breakers by any means.

Video: Slimy Piece of Worm-Ridden Filth – Life Inside Jabba the Hutt

February 11, 2015

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Apologies for the lack of updates recently — literally every single member of my family has been sick in the last week or two and I personally feel like Jabba’s underside right about now. But I thought I should share this wonderful mini-documentary about the what it was like for the people inside in the Jabba the Hutt puppet in Return of the Jedi. It features friend of the site Toby Philpott very prominently and is a lot of fun to watch. There was some footage I don’t think I had ever seen before. Check it out below, and click here for more info.

“Jabba in Adidas” Canvas Print by Duncan Mattocks

February 2, 2015

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I first posted about the artist Duncan Mattocks way back in 2011, when he released a version of this painting to commemorate the release of the Star Wars-themed Adidas shoes (such as these Jabba the Hutt shoes) in Australia. That painting was sold, but later in 2014 he painted the same theme again, this time adding a lot more detail. The second version is just fantastic, and one of the best paintings of Jabba I’ve ever seen. Unfortunately I couldn’t afford the original, but he told me that it would eventually be offered as a print, and that finally came true recently. You can buy art prints, canvas prints, and even things like tote bags and iPhone cases with this image on it through the Society6 website.

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It turned out that the larger art prints weren’t that much cheaper than the larger stretched canvases, and when you consider that you don’t need a frame for a stretched canvas, it seemed like the better deal. I went with the largest one available: 24″ x 18″. It’s quite nice looking — even my wife was impressed!

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