Review : Sergeant Jyn Erso (Eadu)
Star Wars Black Series (Hasbro)
Wave/Series : Rogue One, Kmart (US) Exclusive
Released : November 2016
Price : £29.99 - £34.99 (import price)*
* there is no confirmed UK release on this item, it is available only via specialist sellers. We will update this review should it reach UK retailers.
There is no doubt Jyn Erso is the key hero from Rogue One, and unlike the mistakes Hasbro made with Rey last year in terms of distribution we have had no issue in getting a Jyn figure - with an SDCC exclusive, wave 1 release, 3 pack release from Target and now this Kmart US exclusive.
The benefit of this Kmart release is that this is a variant outfit Jyn, with her gear from Eadu. The look here is a corresponding outfit to the wave 1 Captain Cassian Andor. The other big difference in this release is the oversized box and the pack in of a diorama base. Kmart did the same last year with Kylo Ren and a Rey, with the 2nd half coming much later after the film was released to avoid any spoilers. We suspect Kmart have a corresponding Rogue One release in the works for 2017.
At the time of writing there is no true UK distribution of this figure. It has been imported at a premium via some of the independents.
Unlike all other single figure releases, the box on this exclusive Jyn is considerably larger both in terms of length and width than the normal boxes. This is deliberately to incorporate the diorama piece and to then allow the figure to be displayed "in position" on the diorama. Aside from the size, the design principle applies in that the box is a gloss black with stark red spine. The artwork, in grey scale lined art, reflects the costume Jyn is wearing on the figure - completed with that headpiece. It is also overlaid with what looks like heavy rain, another clue to the situation and conditions on Eadu. The character name sits on the bottom of the box in bold red and is listed as "Sergeant Jyn Erso (Eadu)".
The red spine, being an exclusive, holds no numbering but rather a bar code type affair and under this is the character name. Round the back is an expanded image of Jyn but the rain has now been lost. Over this sits the usual four language bio of Jyn, and this text is identical to that used on both the single release and in the Target 3-pack.
Out of the box and Jyn is readily posed on her diorama base. This sits against the red cardboard insert, and interestingly this cardboard is not a flat red, but includes some black black lines and like the front of the box is probably meant to represent heavy rain. This will frustrate Purists in terms of the red not completely matching all the other phase 3 releases. This additional detailing on the card insert is something Kmart did last year on the Starkiller releases of Kylo Ren and Rey with black silhouette tree trunks added on these cards. Jyn comes with three accessories. Two of which she is already holding and a third, her baton, is packed to one side.
Jyn stands 5 1/2 inches high, consistent with the Jedha release. The facial sculpt feels a touch better on this Eadu release, although is still quite soft and featureless having been cast in a skin tone plastic with no additional skin paint applications other than a thin pink lip and dark eyes with lined eyebrows. The hat, which is really reminiscent of the hat worn by Leia on Endor, is nicely done and after initially thinking it was fixed I was really surprised when it popped off as a removable item.
The head sculpt is therefore now revealed as pretty much a re-use of the Jedha release, but with a flatter hair style and factory variants in the paint application.
The hat, which is a tight fit, is well engineered to fit this head and comes with a pair of white goggles sculpted above the ridge of the cap. The hat carries at least 6 different paint options, coming with a centre grey stripe over an olive green base. The goggles are white with black lenses and the strap is then an orange. From this strap sits a microphone that is pained in black and silver.
Another tweak for the head is the addition of a breathing mask, again influenced by the Original Trilogy as this is very similar to the masks Han wears in Empire when tackling the Mynocks. The mask is a soft rubber and is fitted around the neck. Being soft it pulls up over the mouth with a black strap going round the head. The front section is a translucent orange so the face detail can just about be seen underneath, And from this there is a touch of brown and silver paint to pick out the central breathing mechanism. A flexible tube runs down from the mask, again in a orange see through rubber, and ends at a canister. This canister is loose but can be tucked up behind the poncho out of the way
The body is a direct re-use of Jedha Jyn too with the waist coat removed and the poncho placed over the top. The arms are changed to match the poncho but the hands remain the same in the finger-less gloves. The poncho is a really nice piece, again reminding me a lot of the Endor Leia outfit and I suspect we will see lots of Leia Endor customs soon if this figure becomes more plentiful. The poncho carries a strap across the chest, with ammunition tucked in the top end. The strap is a gloss brown and then detailed with a matt black clasp and silver caps on the ammo.
To the side of this is what looks like a torch, also strapped in with a brown strap. To the other side of the strap on Jyn's right chest is an insignia badge or comms device (or both) and this is a flat sliver colour. The rest of the poncho is dark green soft rubber. Onto this is pasted a darker base coat and then some shading in lighter olive green to an almost sandy colour. This adds loads of depth and makes it look worn and dirty. There is even a nick out of the rear of the cape where it has ripped.
Down at the very bottom of the poncho, hanging from the end of the cross-strap, is a pouch and a hook. The hook we will come onto later. The pouch is cast as part of the poncho and to that end there is some paint bleed as the gloss brown doesn't go round the full pouch leaving the back of it a green colour and with the lighter olive green highlight bleeding into the sides.
The trousers are identical to the Jedha release in relation to both sculpt and paint. They are a heavily creased tight black material working down to a pair of ankle boots. The trousers hold some texture in the sculpt, with seam lines and a ribbed effect round the shin. There is also a subtle strap under each knee which is picked out with grey trim to either side. The boots are a flat brown, with a grey fastener very neatly painted over the top. A thigh holster sits on the right leg and does go up under the poncho to the belt which again is identical to the Jedha release.
Accessory wise and the first is the exact same light weight blaster that comes with the Jedha Jyn. This comes already sitting in the holster on the thigh, and can be kept here or in the right hand which is perfectly sized to hold it with the trigger finger just soft enough to be eased into the trigger. This gun is cast in black, but with silver details.
The second gun is the Rogue One version of the E11 Stormtrooper blaster. This is the same as the one that comes in the Walmart Scarif Trooper exclusive release. It is cast in flat black with no painted details. On arrival it is fastened to Jyn's hand with a clear elastic band. And if you take it off and try and get her to hold it again you will see why. Because the hand was designed to hold the smaller blaster, then pushing this larger gun into her hand means it is too big for her to grip securely and her trigger finger won't stretch anywhere close to going in the trigger.
The final accessory is Jyn's baton, which is in its folded position. This does fit in the right hand, but being folded doesn't really look all that good. It has an eyelet on the top of the baton and this hooks onto the hook we mentioned earlier on the belt. The baton is a matt black plastic, but has a silver trim and the eyelet is also silver. This is a nice addition in terms of making the figure more screen accurate but could have easily been a fixed piece and the money better invested in an alternative hand that could hold the E11 blaster better.
Articulation is good, and starts with the new head ball joint with the extra joint in the ball and Jyn can look right round and up and down, with the downward movement allowing her to pretty much rest her chin on her chest and look at her own feet - this works brilliantly when she gets to her diorama base as this elevates her up and requires her to look down on other figure - and most likely look down to whomever is her mystery opponent.
The arms are ball jointed at the shoulder and raise out to the side and rotate up above the head. There is also a rotating elbow joint and this bends to 90 degrees, albeit very stiffly. These combined allow a two handed weapon pose if you wish with the larger E11 gun, but I suggest keeping the clear elastic band to hold the gun on the right hand otherwise it will skew off without careful balancing.
The standard Jyn has a torso joint, and you can feel this still in place under the poncho but any movement is severely restricted by the cloak meaning you will be left with the ability to rotate the torso slightly to either side. The legs sit on a ball jointed hip, which feels loose straight out of the box. Jyn can't do the splits or sit down particularly as the poncho blocks some of this movement - but you can get some wide action stances, and these are crucial to the way she clips into the diorama base. The thigh split remains, but on this version is hidden by the hem of the cloak. The knees are double jointed, and further enhance action stances, and you can kneel her if you wish on one knee or on both. The ankles have a rotation where the boots meet the trouser leg, and there is also a rocker to aid secure standing on display.
The base is essentially a block of chocolate coloured plastic. Up close it carries a lot of detail in the sculpt with peaked rock and grains and grooves built into this round all the sides. It is a hollow piece, so it isn't heavy, and it does look as though the base section could pop off if you wanted to. There is a very subtle application of darker paint in places and this is so subtle they aren't really noticeable. I suspect it relies more on the deep sculpt and how the light falls on these grooves and peaks to give it depth and realism.
The Starkiller snow bases of 2015 had foot sized holes cut into the piece so the figures looked as though they had sunk in the snow. They were however crying out for foot pegs, and thankfully this time round these have been added. The top foot hole is hidden in the definition of the rock and there is a foot peg to put Jyn's front foot to make it look like she is ascending the rock face. The lower foot peg is more pronounced and sits on a flat "foot" sized cleft in the rock. Jyn's back foot plants here, making her front leg bend so the back leg sits straight and down into this slot. It does take some tweaking and teasing, but the pose does look and feel natural once finalised.
I am 99% certain a companion piece will be released in 2017 to link into this one, and if you look at the "front" of the rock face there is a cut out that looks suspiciously like a jigsaw type join into which the 2nd piece is likely to slot.
Considering this is another Jyn, it is actually one I am really happy to buy being a variant look to the Jedha version. Aside from this it is also a cool looking action figure, and screams with Original Trilogy influences like the Endor Poncho and Helmet and the breathing masks last seen on the Millennium Falcon. Three accessories and a base mean that even at import price of £30 approx it still feels value for money. The hand being able to hold the E11 blaster is disappointing, but there isn't much else wrong with the figure. I am going to score Eadu Jyn a 4 out of 5, one star higher than the Jedha single release and earned by the extra accessories and the diorama which is pretty awesome in hand, even if it doesn't photograph all that well. If you get the chance of picking one of these up, then do so - particularly if the 2017 companion piece is a corker as you don't want to be paying secondary market prices to complete the full piece.