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Review : Star Wars Black Series Luke Skywalker (Bespin), The Empire Strikes Back



Welcome to our review of Luke Skywalker in his Bespin fatigues from the 6 inch Star Wars Black Series line of action figures. Bespin Luke was released in 2014 in the 3rd wave of the fledgling Black Series alongside Obi-Wan Kenobi and an Imperial Stormtrooper.

Packaging 3/5


Luke is packed in the original phase 1 packaging, a matt black box with grey Star Wars Black Series logo up top with an illustrated grey image of Luke in a circular insert to the side. The figure is visible in a window and is set against a black backdrop. A broken orange line runs down this backing card. Under the window, now in an orange text, we have confirmation that this is number 11 in the line and the figure is Luke Skywalker - there is no mention of this being "Bespin" Luke.


The orange line continues round the back of the box and we also have a still from The Empire Strikes Back with Luke brandishing his lightsaber in the depths of Cloud City - this, like the front image, is converted to a grey image. Over this sits a short piece of text that does then give the figure context in terms of what film and scene it is from.


"LUKE BATTLES DARTH VADER ON A NARROW PLATFORM IN CLOUD CITY AND REJECTS VADER'S URGING TO TURN TO THE DARK SIDE AND RULE THE GALAXY WITH HIM.


"You'll find I'm full of surprises."

Paint & Sculpt 3/5


The head sculpt, like the previous X-Wing Luke, is passable as a young Mark Hamill. It is however quite basic with the head cast in skin tone and only the eyes and eyebrows painted. This lack of detail around the lips and the fact the skin tone plastic is quite glossy means the figure (as is the case with all human characters of this era of Black Series) doesn't quite match up to the looks of the Alien characters or those in Armour like Boba Fett and the Stormtrooper.

Luke's costume is a good representation of the flight suit he wore on Bespin with the main suit of the body cast in a brown plastic with sculpted cloth creases, pockets and seams. It is then washed with a darker brown to create a dirty grimy look - as you'd expect having had Luke just come from the swamps of Dagobah.


The figure comes with a belt which is a separate cast piece in a rubbery plastic. This has a holster and a hook for the lightsaber. It is also washed to dirty it up and then we have silver painted buckles and rivets.


Accessories 3/5


Luke's first accessory is the DL-44 blaster, the same weapon packed with the Wave 1 X-Wing Luke Skywalker. The blaster is done in a softer plastic and that leads to some warping on the barrell. It is cast in black and has a brown grip and silver barrel.


It is designed to fit in Luke's right hand with a trigger finger that slots in place.


When not in use the blaster will fit into the working holster on Luke's belt. The blaster slips in neatly, not too loose but not overly tight either. To secure it in place there is a flexible rubber strip that wraps over the grip and plugs into a hole on the holster.


Accessory two is Luke's lightsaber. Again, this is the same as the one packed with X-Wing Luke. it has a removable blade, and the blue on this is more subdued than the X-Wing release. Like the blaster it is also susceptible to warping on both the blade and the hilt due to a softer plastic compound.


The saber can be hung on Luke's belt by matching up the loop on the base of the saber with the hook on the belt.


The saber can also be fit into either hand, with a two handed pose an options in certain poses thanks to the arm articulation.


Articulation 4/5


Luke has the standard 16 points of articulation and this gives him a pretty wide ranging options for posing. The head is ball jointed and can rotate and look up and down - the only downside being a visible joint on the neck which can spoil the look of the figure. The torso has a ball joint fitted quite low down in the stomach region, this serves as being able to rotate the torso as well as giving some back and forth lean.


The arms are ball jointed at the shoulders and beneath this is a single rotating elbow joint that can bend to 90 degrees. This lets the figure achieve quite a few weapon and action poses, including a two handed lightsaber stance.


The arms finish with peg hand joints - although there is no option to remove one of these or a swap out option for the hand that gets cut-off by Vader.

The legs are ball jointed at the hips with a thigh split underneath. This upper leg movement is therefore quite expansive with the holster moving with the legs. Knees are double jointed to bend back on themselves for kneeling and crouching. The figure finishes with solid ankle joints and has no trouble standing.



Summary


Bespin Luke is a figure of its era, a well executed body with a generic head that is lacking some details. Articulation is standard and the accessories are contemporary to the figure and the various Bespin scenes.


My only build on the figure would be the addition of a removable hand for the iconic "I am your Father" scene. As it stands I score Bespin Luke an above average 3/5.




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