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Review : Star Wars Black Series 4-LOM, Empire Strikes Back 40th Anniversary Amazon Exclusive


The Star Wars Black Series Amazon Exclusive 2-Pack of 4-LOM and Zuckuss pays homage to the original Kenner figures of the 1980's. Not only are the figures presented on Vintage style cards like other 40th Anniversary releases, but they give the figures a decor update in line with the original Kenner figures. The set even swaps over the names of the two Bounty Hunters, replicating the original name mixup from Kenner. See my corresponding review for Zuckuss


Buy from Amazon UK (subject to availability)

Packaging 4/5


The two pack arrives in a sealed box with a black starfield design. The front of the box see's a Bounty Hunters title, subtitled with "40th Anniversary Edition". The card backs for the two figures are the illustrated on the front, shown without the figures. The 40th Anniversary logo sits top left in a foil finish. The hasbro logo sits bottom right.


Each side spine repeats the Bounty Hunters logo, with an illustration of each figure. On the right we have 4-LOM, on the left is Zuckuss.


The back of this outer box see's the first use of the Black Series logo, and the rest of the reverse is taken up with some yellow text that provides some history and background for this text. While I am sure the choice of yellow against a starfield backdrop is an homage to the scrolling Star Wars introductory text, it would have been nice to see this more angled like we see on screen.


"When Kenner first produced the 4-LOM and Zuckuss figures, the names somehow got reversed. But since these two bounty hunters were not identified in the film, the switch was not immediately noticed. When the mix-up was finally caught and corrected in 1989, Zuckuss and 4-LOM finally got back their rightful identities. In this exclusive set, we are paying homage to the first appearance of these bounty hunters that puzzled so many for years, with replicas of the original packaging-switched names and all!"


The outer box is opened via the top or bottom flap, and inside are the two carded figures packed face to face.



The vintage card is presented almost exactly the same as the 1980's Kenner version, using the same image of 4-LOM and the green name plate and figure backdrop. The name plate reads "Zuckuss" in the homage to the original mis-naming from Kenner. The card front carries the foil 40th Anniversary logo on the top left, and uses the original Kenner logo on the bottom left side.


The card back is more or less identical to the one used on Wave 1 of the Empire 40th Anniversary figures. This is not a direct replication of a Kenner cardback, but an homage using the tramlines, the Star Wars logo and a coloured checklist of the figures. There are 6 figures shown, with 4-LOM shown on the left with the other 5 figures from Wave 1 in sequence across to the left.

There is no background text here, just a short piece of text, generic to all the Empire 40th Anniversary cards, giving some background to the collection.


"Commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back with figures from The Black Series, featuring classic design and packaging"



Paint & Sculpt 4/5


4-LOM is presented on a protocol droid body, with many elements taken from the C-3PO figure. The chest is updated, and of course there is a very different head with insectoid features. The design of the head includes the large segmented insectoid eyes, with a cracked surface texture. These are painted light blue, rather than the green metallic of the onscreen droid. This is of course an homage to the Kenner original figure, as is the dull gunmetal grey body.


Paint apps are applied to the exposed wiring on his stomach, and the red splash of paint on his chest piece. Even without any paint apps on the body, the detail of the sculpt is crisp and clear, including the pivots and pistons of the arms and legs and the components on the box on his back.



This 2020 version of 4-LOM uses the same exact body as the first release in 2018. The difference being the paint job which is, as mentioned above, based on the original 3.75 inch Kenner release.


The new figure loses the green translucent eyes and the rusty look on the original body. It is still painted "realistically" so does not look out of place in a display.



Accessories 3/5


4-LOM is armed with a DLT-19 heavy blaster. This is the same as the original 2018 release, and before that included with the Imperial Sandtroopers amongst other figures. It is cast in a gloss black plastic with some net details down the barrel - while the main body of the gun is quite plain.


I am not sure if it is a change in plastic or not, but I found the weapon easier to fit into this 4-LOM versions hands. He has a trigger finger hand on his right, with the left cupped to hold and cradle the barrel.



Articulation 3/5


I also found this newer version of 4-LOM easier to articulate than the original, even though nothing has changed in terms of the 20 points of articulation - a couple extra than usual thanks to the rotating shoulder cups.


Head : ball joint neck

Body : torso ball joint

Arms : ball joint shoulder, rotating shoulder cup, bicep swivel, piston elbow joint, wrist pivot

Legs : ball joint hip, thigh swivel, single joint knees, ankle rockers


4-LOM did get some upgrades in 2018 vs the original Protocol Droid body, with the elbows now moveable with the pistons sliding with the movement. This is retained here and supports the two handed weapon posing.


The legs aren't hugely mobile, but can be tweaked into some motion poses. And the ankle rockers are very robust with a secure ratchet when posed to hold these positions with 4-LOM very stable in a number of poses.



Summary


4-LOM is the weaker of the two figures in this set, and is overshadowed somewhat by Zuckuss who is a spectacular figure while paying homage to the original Kenner version. 4-LOM pays similar homage, but the original figure was a dull grey with silver midriff and blue eyes - and while that is perfectly replicated, it does leave him quite dull against the varying shades and textures on Zuckuss.



Something has changed to make the posing easier on this version of 4-LOM, quite possibly the plastic - or with no paint job on the body the joints are left unencumbered. The downside of the set overall is the fact it is an Amazon Exclusive - which means in the UK at least availability has been patchy, and the packaging Amazon use may not deliver a mint box at your doorstep


I score 4-LOM from the Amazon Bounty Hunters 40th Anniversary Exclusive a 4 out of 5.




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About Me : As a child of the 70's and 80's I grew up in a golden age for action figures and in my youth bought and sold myself through collections of Star Wars, G.I. Joe (Action Force) and M.A.S.K. while also dabbling in He-Man, Transformers and Ghostbusters. Roll forward and I am now reliving that Youth with the action figures of today and am a collector and fan of the larger 6-8 inch figures from my favourite movie and TV licences - including the ones mentioned above, but also the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Doctor Who and the Aliens. I launched The Mephitsu Archives in 2015 with a view of creating a UK focused site or these figures where fans can pick up the latest action figure news, read reviews and get information on where to buy their figures and what is currently on store shelves. I hope I am delivering that to you guys...

action figures, reviews, review, articulation, star wars, black series, 40th anniversary, the empire strikes back, hasbro, kenner, zuckuss, 4-LOM

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