Review : Han Solo (A New Hope)
Star Wars 6-Inch Hero Series
Wave/Series : Aldi Exclusive (UK)
Released : December 2016
Price : £6.99
Hasbro's 6 inch hero series is a scaled down version of their larger 12" figures. The aim of the figures appears to be to get a Star Wars presence into the discount stores of the US, UK and beyond. In 2015 the first 5 figures were sold in the UK exclusive to Aldi, you can read our overview HERE.
In 2016, Aldi have repeated the offer - bringing in stocks of the first five releases, and then five new releases we have not seen before in the UK.
Each figure is packed in an economically sized box. This follows the design of the standard Star Wars line from Hasbro. The box starts at the base with a red glow, and fades to a black background through the rest of the packaging. The front is dominated by the window, through which the figure is visible on a Black Series style red insert card. A white Star Wars logo is planted underneath the window, while the character name sits very bottom left along with the recommended 4+ age. The Disney and Hasbro logo's sit side by side bottom right.
While the right hand spine of the box carries the logo and then a bunch of legal small print, the left is a glorious artwork of the figure - reminiscent of how Diamond present their Select figures, albeit on a smaller scale. Anyone wanting to keep these in the box will be torn between displaying the front and the figure, or these wonderful art panels.
Round the back is another Star Wars logo, and under this sits the name of the film from which the figure is based. There is then a brief couple of lines of red text about the character, this is repeated in several other languages. The rest of the rear is taken up with safety notifications in various languages.
Once opened, via either the top or bottom flap, an inner tray slides out into which the figure is tied. This inner tray is four sided, not fully enclosed like the Black Series. It also carries some background detail rather than being a solid red, although it isn't clear what this is intended to be.
Han in strapped into this background with Blaster already molded into his right hand - a common practice that we saw on Finn and the First Order Troopers. Each of these Hero figures is 5 3/4" high, therefore the scale is thrown out on Han who should stand a little taller than Luke for example. The figure is cast in a hollow feeling lightweight plastic. It is also very shiny and I suspect quite brittle if the figure is ever thrown around or takes a shelf dive.
Sculpturaly, this isn't bad considering this is essentially a 6" figure at a cheaper price than anything in the 3.75" range. The face isn't great in terms of looking anything like Han, but there is definition in this face with cheek jowls and chin detail. The flight vest is a bit plain, but the shirt has cloth folds and creases. The trousers also carry some folds in the cloth and are a different texture to the other clothing. The belt is a bit "meh" and the boots are also quite plain. Han's gun is molded into his hand but there is some good detail in the gun.
All of this is painted OK. The head is the worst area, with the skin being too shiny. There is then some pretty bad eye painting - they only used black paint. There is then bleeding of the skin colour into the hair. After this each area is painted neatly in one shade (no paint apps here). Each paint also carries a gloss sheen and while this works on the boots, the vest is too shiny.
Articulation standard on these budget figures is 4 points of articulation. There is nothing in the legs at all, so the first joint is a simple waist swivel that allows the torso to turn to either side. The arms are then a rotating joint at the shoulder, and that means the arms simply rotate. The head on Han is a ball joint but it doesn't feel all that strong so I haven't turned Han's head too much. The up and down movement on the head, that you expect out of a ball type joint, is pretty much non existent.
Han is not the best example of this budget range. In fact he is arguably the worst put out so far. Will he satisfy a kid - then yes, but I suspect he won't last too long in terms of the joints - particularly the head - not feeling all that robust.
Will he fit in for collectors? Probably not from a looks perspective, but then again this is one of those niche ranges that may well be highly sought after in 30 years time. There is also an element of nostalgia in that the figure looks and feels like a blown up version of the Star Wars figures we "older" generation played with in the 70's and 80's.
Anyone thinking of using him in the Black Series can see the difference in height and quality in this comparison image - although I have used these figures as background fillers in my displays, and my Han is going into the Jabba's Palace display as a background smuggler.
In 2015 I didn't score the Aldi figures, rather took a look at them as a whole. This year I am going to apply our 5 star rating system, which remember takes into account the price range and then judges the figure on what we should expect. Last years figures set a benchmark, and there are better ones in the 2016 releases, so Han sits round about a 2 out of 5.