Updated: Nov 26, 2018
Review : Kylo Ren (The Last Jedi) Star Wars Black Series (Hasbro) Wave/Series : Wave 12 (Phase 3) Released : Sept 2017
Pros : Head sculpt is brand new and is quite expressive Cons : The head and neck do jut out quite considerably from the body?
Star Wars Black Series Wave 12 see's the first of The Last Jedi releases, and in this review we take a look at #45 Kylo Ren.
Like the rest of Wave 12, Kylo has a bolder Star Wars Black Series logo on the top of the box.
The bottom section carries a new image of unmasked Kylo Ren, now with his scar and updated outfit for The Last Jedi. Unlike Rey and Luke from the same wave, Kylo doesn't carry any kind of subtitle to his name.
The gloss red spine carries the #45 in gloss black, with the opposite spine with the partial wrap around window - the character name repeated in red and a design that captures a zoomed in view of the "Kylo Ren" text in a grey shade.
The rear of the box has the same image of unmasked Kylo alongside the standard white text. In this bio, it talks about how Kylo Ren is "growing more powerful in the dark side of the force" and aside from this it gives little away in terms of plot details.
Kylo comes with two versions of his lightsaber, packed either side of his head in the inner plastic tray. He slides out from either the top or bottom flap.
The facial sculpt for Kylo is a much better likeness for Adam Driver than the one we got towards the end of The Force Awaken run. The skin tone is more bronze than the very pale Kylo we got in 2015. Rather than a neutral sculpt, the Hasbro team have captured a frustrated Kylo with the furrowed brow and intense eyes. The skin tone is monotone, and the eyes quite plainly painted with black/brown iris. Kylo comes with the scar on his right cheek that he picked up at the end of the last movie. It isn't particularly detailed and has no paint application to make it stand out,
The hair is a simple tone of brown, but is again quite expressive and swept to the side.
For some reason, when you look at the figure from the side - the head juts out quite considerably and looks a bit peculiar when the cloak is in place.
Kylo's outfit has been overhauled since The Force Awakens. It is more formal and more regimented vs the tattered robes. The cloak on Kylo is a single rubber piece and simply hooks over the shoulder and round the neck section - perhaps a reason why the head appears to be jutting forward.
The cape is not a simple rubber piece, and it is sculpted with a leather like texture and some panelling/stitching. It is designed with folds and creases in place and looks pretty natural in terms of how the robe would flow off the characters shoulders. The cloak is coloured in a slightly different tone and rather than flat black there is a brown hint to the cloak.
The costume starts with the tunic which is cast with a square pattern texture. It is tied with a plain gloss belt and then extends as skirt sections down past the waist. The arms are not the same pattern and are a ridged affair similar to the 2015 Kylo. The legs which look black are a very dark brown/grey tone which adds some variety in the colouring. They then go down to gloss black knee high boots.
Lined up with the 2015 Kylo, you can see the huge step forward that Hasbro have taken with the 2017 figures. the head is a big improvement once you look at the two side-by-side and you can't deny that the cloak on TLJ Kylo flows a little better than the soft goods, although with that you lose a lot of posing ability,
There are no obvious re-uses from 2015 Kylo Ren - even the arms, which could have been a re-use, are new pieces when you compare closely.
Articulation is awesome on Kylo and there isn't a single joint that is hindered in anyway when the cloak is put to one side. The head rotates fully and Kylo can look down (somewhat disapprovingly).
The arms are made up of a ball jointed shoulder with a full range of movement and supported by a single elbow joint which bends beyond 90 degrees. The wrists are pegged, but are a little blocked by the sleeves but will rotate as needed.
The legs are fully mobile even with the bottom skirt of the tunic. Kylo can kneel on one or both knees - something we may see him do in the movie with Supreme Leader Snoke.
While the usual approach for light sabers is to include a hilt and removable blade, Kylo has two versions of the weapon - one lit and one unlit.
The saber is a re-use of the 2015 version and is cast in grey with gunmetal details and a red ignition button and stripe on the hilt. This decor is much darker than the 2015 versions which were more silvery in tone and had brighter red details.
The lit version has a slightly darker blade than the 2015 release and the blade is not smooth, but is reflective of the more unstable blade on Kylo's weapon.
The arm articulation allows a good level of offensive and defensive poses with the weapon, including two handed poses.
While I am not yet sold on the new outfit for Kylo, the figure does replicate the costume really well. There is also some good colour tone variation when you get up close - the whole figure is not just a flat black. Articulation is pretty special with Kylo getting being able to realise some cool action poses.
I would like to have seen the scar on Kylo's cheek be more pronounced, particularly when the rest of the figure doesn't use too many paint applications. I also find the head quite unnatural in how far it juts out from the body.
The obvious miss with this figure is the lack of a helmeted head. That being said we've not had a Kylo figure with both unmasked head and helmet outside the Celebration 2016 exclusive. We will see what the Throne Room Exclusive Kylo brings when he arrives (Walmart Exclusive).
With all this considered I am scoring this vanilla version of The Last Jedi Kylo Ren a 3 out of 5.
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