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Review : Maz Kanata, Black Series, Wave 13 (Hasbro)

Updated: Nov 26, 2018

Review : Maz Kanata (The Force Awakens / The Last Jedi) Star Wars Black Series (Hasbro) Wave/Series : Wave 13 (Phase 3) Released : October 2017


Pros : Wonderful head sculpt, set off even more by those articulated eye glasses Cons : Hip joint has quite a gap, even in neutral posing.

Maz Kanata made her debut in the Star Wars Universe in The Force Awakens in 2015, and yet despite her popularity it has taken 2 years to bring her into the 6" Black Series range as a figure. She arrives in wave 13, the 2nd wave of The Last Jedi figures.

The packaging remains unchanged with an interesting illustration of Maz from Gregory Titus. He seems to have chosen an odd expression for Maz, and it makes her look older and frail? The character name sits to the side in red, it is simply Maz Kanata and like most Black Series releases it doesn't specify which movie the figure is taken from.

Maz herself is fully visible, being of smaller stature, in the window set against the gloss red card back. To her side sit a blaster, lightsaber and the case from her castle. The front is headed by the Star Wars Black Series logo.

Maz is number 49 in the 3rd phase of Black Series releases. The numbering sits in bold black on the gloss red right hand spine. The opposite spine has a wrap round of the window and a repeat of the character name - initially in red small text and behind this a faded grey blown up version.

The rear of the card starts with the Black Series logo and the numbering, now in red. Beneath this sits a short paragraph about Maz - and here it specifically talks about her role in The Last Jedi considering it starts "the destruction of her castle has forced Maz to become more mobile and take a hands-on (and blasters-firing) role in the turbulent criminal underworld". This is repeated, as usual, in three other languages.

This paragraph sits atop a larger version of the Titus illustration. But like the the other Wave 13 figures the image has been truncated by a new warning section which cuts the image off half way down. This warning simply states "some poses may require additional support" and this is then repeated over and over again in 26 other languages. Considering there are no poses shown on the box, this addition is bizarre and spoils the box back for me by truncating the artwork we love. Having now got Wave 14 figures in hand, this new text box seems to have disappeared and remains unique to Wave 13 so far.

As always the package is opened by the top or bottom flap which are sealed with tape. The inner tray slides out and Maz sits in the plastic tray - there are no twist ties or straps.

The sculpt on Maz is exceptional, another fantastic realisation of an Alien character in the Black Series 6" line. The head carries a real depth of wrinkles and creases, but it is her large expressive eyes that bring the figure to life. The skin is painted and then washed to darken the wrinkled areas, and it almost glows golden under certain lights.

From the head, the skin tone and colouring continues into the neck and just before the neckline of the sweater you can see a very thin necklace detail painted so neatly considering the size and location in gold paint. Maz is wearing a simple knitted textured sweater with her beaded necklace also sculpted onto the torso piece. The sweater continues down each arm and the whole piece is painted a rich green - but there is no additional paint apps outside the base colour. Each arm has a collection of bangles, all painted in gold and silver with their own intricate designs. And then we go out onto the hands and these are adorned with sculpted rings with the same skin tone used on the exposed skin as we see on the head and neck.

The trousers are a single tone burgundy colour and these are tucked into some colourful knitted textured socks - there is around 7 different paint tones on these boots alone. The trousers are separated from the sweater by means of a belt piece in a bright orange plastic. From the belt we have a couple of pouches and straps. The belt loops are painted burgundy to match the trousers, and there is some silver detailing on the belt buckle and some of the hanging trinkets.

Maz stands just 4 inches tall, which is spot on to her reported height of 4'1 in the movies.

Out of the box and Maz's eye glasses are placed on the top of her head. I was delighted to find these are articulated and can be swung down over her eyes. The mechanism works well and the lens on the glasses are actually a convexed plastic so it actually gives the impression that it magnifies the eyes.

Being a smaller character, Maz has had some small concessions made on her articulation. She still boasts 16 points of articulation (18 if you inlude the glasses), and this starts with a ball jointed head which also pivots allowing her to look down by some way. There is a similar joint in her waist and this too allows forward leaning motion as well as rotation.

The arms are ball jointed at the shoulder and the elbows a single rotating joint. There is full movement in the arms. The wrists, remain a pivot on a peg but the size of the hands see's the pivot set quite far back in the wrist which does mean the hands are limited to rotation only.

The legs are ball jointed at the hips and these are quite wide with a large gap - even in neutral poses. The thigh swivels are still there and are also a bit unsightly on such a petite figure. The knees have been paired back to a single joint - and on our review copy the joint was ceased and when we finally opened it up it had stretched and discoloured the plastic. The figure ends with ankle rockers, and these allow Maz to stand quite well on her own.

If you want to - Maz's waistcoat is removable being cast as a separate piece in soft plastic. There is a full sculpted sweater underneath and Maz doesn't look out of place with the waistcoat removed.

Maz is armed with a DH-17 blaster. This is the same sculpt as included in the Death Squad Commander (40th Anniversary) and Wave 11's Lando Calrissian.

I am going to start to consider which version of Maz we have here. The packaging indicates this is The Last Jedi appearance, but the fact she comes with the trunk and light saber seems to dispute that. This blaster is however not the one she sports in The Force Awakens (see the visual guide). It may be the one she is firing in her Last Jedi scene, but there is no clarity on that as yet.

The weapon is cast in black plastic with a silver barrel. It fits in Maz's right hand perfectly well, but there is no flexible trigger finger to fit into place, Maz's hand is so small it wouldn't have been practical.

The trunk sits purely as a Force Awakens prop/accessory. It is cast in a rubbery plastic which means the hinges are simply soft plastic rather than a joint of any description. The texture of the wood is brilliant, as is the paint job to make it look like aged wood. The metal straps and rivets are all scaled well and painted in silver with black washing to age the chest. If I am being really picky, the prop chest in the movie had more rust on the metal.

The inside of the chest is a brown sculpted piece of various "junk". There is enough room to place the saber hilt on top and then to close the lid. The lid closes easily but won't hold shut until you clip the clasp piece on the lid over the bracket on the front.

The saber itself is the smaller version of the Anakin lightsaber as included with Jedi Training Rey. There is no blade included. The hilt is painted in silver and black with a loop on the end to hang on a belt.

The chest is well scaled to the figure of Maz, and also will look great posed with Rey or in a larger diorama of Maz's castle. Maz can hold the saber hilt i both hands if you want to pose her handing the weapon to Rey (or Finn).

We do not get a lot of Alien characters in the 6" Black Series line - but when we do , Hasbro execute them really well. Maz is up there with other alien releases such as Greedo, Maul, Bossk and more recently Snoke. The sculpt is excellent and the paint job overall is well done with plenty of colour on the figure as well as that extravagant jewellery. The working eye glasses are a real treat too.

Articulation is great, although I would have liked the hips reduced in movement so they look less "gappy". The issue with our figure on the knee is also a frustration.

I do have to consider which Maz we are getting here. The box says The Last Jedi, but there is no jetpack. The contents say The Force Awakens, but then the blaster is not accurate - and Hasbro usually get these things spot on. I guess this is a combo Maz that will do for displays for both Episode 7 and 8, and I personally will use this as a Force Awakens figure. I score Maz a 4 out of 5 overall.


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