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Review : Star Wars Black Series Clonetrooper (Mk 1), Attack of the Clones



Welcome to our review of the Star Wars Black Series Clone Trooper, Mark 1, as seen in Episode II Attack of the Clones. The Clone Trooper was released in 2014 and was the last figure in the phase 1 orange line packaging. He was numbered 14 in the line, having seen the last wave skip a number 13 due to issues with getting the planned Chewbacca figure into the existing packaging.

Packaging 4/5


The Clone Trooper was the last figure to grace the original phase 1 orange line packaging, the next wave would move to the blue line 2nd series. The figure is presented in the matt black box with Star Wars Black Series logo top left, and next to this a basic illustration of the Mark 1 Clone Trooper in the circular insert.


The figure sits in the box on a black card insert with the weapons either side. An orange line, in the design of the Imperial corridor lights, runs the full length of this backing card. The character name, CLONE TROOPER, and the number #14 are also picked out in orange underneath the window.



The back of the box has a large Star Wars logo and under this a repeat of the character name and number. The orange line runs the full length of the box back to the right and there is then an image of the Clone Troopers advancing, converted to a grayscale image. Just over this is a short piece of text giving a brief background to the Clone Troopers.


"CLONE TROOPERS ARE GENETICALLY ENGINEERED SUPER SOLDIERS WHO ARE DEPLOYED INTO COMBAT FOR THE FIRST TIME ON GEONOSIS, WHERE THEY BATTLE THE SEPARATISTS' DROID ARMY"


"The Droid Army is in full retreat"

Paint & Sculpt 3/5


Like the Stormtrooper that preceded this release, the Clone Trooper has a very crisp sculpt to all of the armour parts. The helmet is cast in white plastic over which is painted the visor and the various markings. The paint is pretty neat, but up close you can see areas of white where the black hasn't quite covered.


The top ridge curves out of the helmet and angles round to the back. The helmet then flares at the sides down to the base. To my eyes it sits a little too high on the neck and is too slim when you consider there is a human head inside this.


The armour is, like the head, cast in white gloss plastic with the black inserts like the neck painted in. Like the helmet this leaves some areas unpainted and the line rough and messy.


There is similar issues around the joints and this is made worse as the joints themselves are cast in black and painted white, a white that is a differing shade to the rest of the armour on the elbow and knee pads.


Accessories 3/5


Accessory number one is a DC-15S blaster. This is cast in black plastic and has no paint apps whatsoever. The detail on the cast is crisp and you can see the various parts of the weapon and a brush of gunmetal silver would have brought it out a treat.


The weapon sits in the Clone's right hand with a trigger finger slotting into place. He can also hold it in the left, but not as easily and there is no separate trigger finger to use on this other hand.


The other weapon is the corresponding DC-15A Blaster Rifle. This larger of the two weapons is also cast in back with no other paint apps included.

It is also designed to fit into the right hand of the clone with the trigger finger bent into the trigger. The left hand can, and will, cradle the barrel if that pose is preferred.


Articulation 3/5


The Clone Trooper body carries 18 points of articulation, two more than is usual for the Black Series. The head is sat on a ball joint allowing it to rotate and also lean forward so the front touches the Clone Troopers chest. The torso then has a ball joint built in around the stomach area which allows the upper body to rotate and gives some degree of leaning in and out of poses.


The arms are ball jointed at the shoulder, but are massively restricted by the large shoulder panel which stops movement about half way up. The extra joints vs normal are located in the biceps where we have a swivel. This is because the elbows are then double jointed so the bicep gives the rotation. These double joints work brilliantly for handling the weapons, but without the ability to raise the arms at the shoulders a lot of the good work is undone. The arms end with pivot wrists which can bend and rotate.


The leg areas are less restricted by the armour and the ball joint hip can swing out and to the side and a semi-sitting pose is achievable. There is a swivel in the thigh just beneath the hip to rotate the legs in or out. Knees are double jointed and sadly very very loose which is a shame as this can impact the ability for the troops to stand well on display. We finish with ratched ankle rockers.


Summary


The Mk1 Clone Trooper would lay the groundwork for the brilliant Mk2 clones to come in the line later on. On its own it does have its flaws which combined do make the figure a difficult one to mark highly.


The helmet looks too thin and sits too high on the neck. Paint around the armour is messy and rather than bleed we get white areas unpainted. The weapons are left in their cast plastic colour when a dry brush would bring out the brilliant detail the weapons contain. And finally the articulation, even with extra joint upgrades, is restricted by the shoulders and the knees are far too loose - the same on all the early releases.



I score our Mark 1 Clone Trooper a just above average 3/5




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