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Disney Return of the Jedi Figurine Playset

September 6, 2014

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I first posted about these figures back in April, and it had been reported that they were going to be made available for May the Fourth (aka Star Wars Day). But they never showed up. I kept watching the Disneystore.com site, but it wasn’t until a few days ago that the Return of the Jedi and A New Hope sets were added. Strangely, the Empire Strikes Back set is still nowhere to be found. These sets come in somewhat flimsy plastic containers, with the figures attached to the paper base with twist ties. I ordered two of these, and in one of my sets the Bib Fortuna figure had come loose in the package. In the other, Bib’s head had scraped up against the top of the package, leaving a number of paint marks on the inside. If you want to get a mint set (and also check that you get good paint jobs), I would recommend trying to find these at a Disney store, or at a Disney park.

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Disney makes sets like these for most of their major properties, but I had thought that they were rather small — maybe 2-3 inches tall. That’s why I was surprised when I got these in hand. These figures actually are around 4″ tall, or roughly the same size as Kenner/Hasbro figures. They might be just a hair smaller, but they would easily fit in with a display of action figures. Here is the Gammorean next to the Hasbro Vintage Collection Gamorrean Guard figure. As you can see, the paint on the Disney figure is not great. The face and eyes look weird and there’s a lot of slop around the hands. The one in my sealed set is somewhat better, though, and some of the other figures like Leia seem to have almost perfect paint.

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The one exception with regard to size is the Jabba figure, which is clearly a lot smaller than Hasbro’s Jabbas. The head is a bit smaller, and the tail in particular is tiny. I’m pretty sure that the head on this figure is actually a scaled-down version of the Hasbro Jabba Glob figure. It’s difficult to say for sure, and the different colors and materials used do make them appear rather different. But there are a number of telltale wrinkles and the like that make me think that this is based on the same sculpt.

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Speaking of which, several of these figures are clearly scaled down versions of Attakus statues. This wasn’t obvious to me when I first saw photos of the set, but after having them in hand there is no doubt in my mind that these are literally copies of the Attakus statues. It’s now possible to use a 3D scanner to copy something and shrink it, and I’m assuming that’s what they did here. The Gamorrean Guard is the same as the Attakus Gamorrean Guard Statue, and the same goes for Bib Fortuna and Jedi Luke. I’m not positive about C-3PO but I think it may be a mirrored copy of the Attakus C-3PO statue. Of course, a lot of the fine detail is lost when you shrink something so much, but in terms of the stances and major details, they’re identical. (The Slave Leia figure also bears a striking resemblance to the Sideshow PF, at least in terms of the stance, but maybe I’m just reading too much into that.)

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There’s a small difference in size, however…

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The Attakus statues are all pretty good sculpts, so I can’t complain about them using them as the basis for these figures, but I did think it was interesting. The best part about these sets is that they cost just $12.95 for 6 figures. That’s an incredible bargain for figures of this size and quality. The occasional bad paint job aside, they’re really not that much worse in appearance than the average Hasbro figure costing 5 times as much. Of course, it should be noted that these aren’t articulated in any way. They’re plastic statues rather than real action figures, but I’d be willing to wager that a lot of kids wouldn’t really care.

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