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Review : Star Wars Black Series Knight of Ren (Vicrul), The Rise of Skywalker

Updated: Apr 17


The Star Wars Black Series Knight of Ren was released in March 2020 as part of Wave 24 of the Star Wars Black Series (3rd Phase Packaging). He is number 105 in the line and represents Vicrul, the first of the Knights of Ren to make it into 6 inch figure form. Other figures in Wave 24 are Count Dooku, Zorii Bliss, Clone Commander Bly and the Sith Jet Trooper.

Packaging 4/5


The Knight of Ren arrives in the usual phase 3 packaging and is number 105 in the line. What is strange is that each of the Knights of Ren are named via visual guides for The Rise of Skywalker and supporting comics - this is actually Vicrul, but Hasbro have simply named him as Knight of Ren, which is the credit he got in the movie? Hopefully going forward Hasbro will go name specific on any future members of the Knights.


The illustration of Vicrul is a side on view of his hemet and part of his shoulder and chest. The is repeated on the back of the box alongside a very vague - and also not character specific - piece of text.


"An enclave of masked warriors wielding distinct weapons for ranged and close quarters combat, the Knights of Ren are elite, fearsome enforcers of Kylo Ren."




Paint & Sculpt 4/5


Vicrul's helmet is well recreated in 6 inch scale. It is cast in a glossy black plastic with painted segmented silver visor and face plate. The rear skirt of the helmet is also painted in a duller brown grey colour which adds some variation.


After this the rest of the body is cast in black plastic. The robes carry the reptilian scale texture we see on screen and particularly in the reference guides. There is some interesting detail in the wrist bracers, but this is lost without them being painted and that is a shame.


Paint apps on the body are essentially a silver painted belt buckle and then sporadic weathering with a mud/sand colouration. The boots are very heavily painted - perhaps a tad too much and then the effect stops. It picks back up on the back of the skirt section and then jumps up to the right side of the torso and up onto the left shoulder. It's not the worst weathering in the world but would have been better toned back a bit and covering more of the body



Accessories 5/5


Wave 24 weaponry has been hit (Zorii Bliss) and miss (Bly) so far with paint effects - and thankfully Vicrul is another example of weaponry done very well by Hasbro. Up first is his blaster pistol which is very accurate to the reference pictures in terms of the various parts and components. It is cast in a dark plastic with painted silver over the top and a brown grip.

This slots into Vicrul's right hand where there is a flexible trigger finger that slots as usual into the trigger. When not in use there is a holster of sorts on the figure's right hip. This is an unusual design with two fitted loops - but again this is accurate to the character. The blaster does not slot in from the top as per usual, the top loop is too small. Instead you slot the bulk of the blaster in the bottom part then flick the top part over the back piece to hold it in place.



Vicrul also comes with his Scythe. This vibro-weapon is cast in dark plastic but is fully painted with silver blade, silver hilt and brown wrappings on the grip. It fits into either hand, although watch out for the trigger finger which can look a bit odd sticking up while holding the scythe.



Articulation 4/5


Vicrul has 19 points of articulation, with the new joint in the neck that articulates at the base of the neck rather than having a pivot. This makes the head just as mobile as the previous option, but without the unsightly neck pivot. He also gets the new butterfly joints in the shoulders, which really supports weapon posing with both hands.


Head : ball joint neck, ball joint neck base

Body : ball joint waist

Arms : ball joint shoulder, butterfly shoulder joint, single joint rotating elbows, wrist pivot

Legs : ball joint hips, thigh swivel, single joint rotating knees, ankle rockers


The shaping of the elbows and elbow joint is a little odd. And while it works, it looks a little strange when straightened. The arms move sufficiently for weapon posing and action shots.



The iconic Scythe over the shoulder we see on the cover of the Rise of Skywalker Visual Guide can be recreated, and looks great.


Leg positioning is good, although the skirt and single joint knees won't allow much past wider action stances and posing. Ankle rockers work well and are tight and the figure stands with no problem.



Summary


Vicrul is a stunning looking sculpt that has some basic paint work and with a few extra touches he could be spectacular. The weathering needs refinement and some variation in textures, particularly where the sculpt shows it could be (wrist bracers) would really set this figure off.



Articulation is good, and Vicrul can achieve most of the pose you would want him to achieve, including the pose from the Visual Guide.


It still remains odd that Hasbro should name the figure simply "Knight of Ren" when each of the Knights has been named in various additional media.



I score Vicrul the Knight of Ren a solid 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...

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