Review : Captain Phasma
Star Wars 6-Inch Hero Series
Wave/Series : Aldi Exclusive (UK) / Walgreens in US
Released : December 2017
Price : £6.99
Pro's : Silver armour colouring is good
Con's : Far too short. Gun is fixed in hand. Very limited articulation. Hollow and lightweight.
As well as producing the successful 6" Black Series range of Star Wars figures, Hasbro do produce and distribute a budget series of 6" figures. These limited articulation figures share similar qualities to the 12" Hero series. They were predominantly made for the Far East market as well as discount stores in the US and of course the UK, where Aldi stores have become the retailer of choice.
These first hit UK stores in 2015 in line with The Force Awakens release. The first set of figures included Stormtroopers, Snowtroopers, Finn, Kylo Ren and a Darth Vader. A second set was released in December 2016 as part of the Rogue One merchandising, but didn't contain any Rogue One figures - instead we got figures of Rey (Force Awakens), Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker, Darth Maul, Han Solo and Kanan Jarrus. The only Rogue One figure we are aware of is a Deathtrooper which has only been circulated in Canada.
In 2017 we have a new set, this time just the four figures, and these went on sale in Aldi on the 10th of December for the £6.99 price tag which is unchanged since 2015. In the US these have been on sale in Walgreens since September. The 2017 set includes re-releases of Rey and the Stormtrooper. We then get two new figures - Captain Phasma and C-3PO.
Like the previous two years, the figures are packed in a small window box. It uses the white backdrop and red highlighting as is used for all The Last Jedi product - but there is no direct reference to The Last Jedi. All four characters are due to appear in the movie.
The box front includes a half window, through which we see the top half of Captain Phasma against a red card backdrop. Under this sits a large red Star Wars logo and then a black section wraps the bottom of the packaging. This carries the character name as well as the age rating and the Disney and Hasbro logo's.
The left hand spine of the box carries a further red Star Wars logo and a nice illustration of Phasma. While a nice picture, it is not as dynamic or eye catching as the illustrations that were included on the 2016 releases.
The other spine is made up with various notifications and safety markings. This is the same on the bottom half of the box back. Above this is a red section which contains some basic text about Phasma. If this text is familiar it is because it is taken word for word from the 2015 Black Series packaging for Captain Phasma.
The box top has a hanging tab attached. This appears to be factory installed rather than at the retailer - particularly as Aldi and Walgreens both merchandise these on shelves or in baskets and not on pegs.
The figure is accessed by the top flap which is taped down at either side. The figure slides out attached to a three sided backing card. The ties round the figure are elasticated rather than being twisty ties. There is a printed safety notice which sits behind the figure. Phasma also has a further plastic clear insert between her cloak and the main body of the figure.
Once free from the pack and in hand you can instantly feel the lower quality of the plastic in this figure vs the standard Black Series. Phasma is light and feels hollow. That being said the sculpt is pretty detailed with plenty of details on the armour. The armour is also nicely coloured, in some ways better than the 2015 Black Series version as it carries more of a shine. The cloak is fixed to the figure and this is also nicely done in a rubber material, but with some panelled detailing at the back and the red striping. The only criticism I can have on the figure is the helmet which looks a little too squat on the shoulders.
Phasma's weapon is the screen accurate larger stocked blaster. It is sculpted directly to the right hand and is cast in a sickly brown plastic. While it has quite a bit of sculpted detail it has no paint applications at all to bring these out - and the colour chosen with which to cast the weapon is miles away from the very subtle gold sheen metallic finish that we saw on Phasma's weapon.
Most of these Hero 6" Budget figures have just 4 points of articulation.The head rotates on a simply peg allowing Phasma to look to either side. We have a similar rotating joint in the waist that allows further turning of the torso in relation to the legs. The legs themselves are fixed and do not move at all. Thankfully they are cast to be nice and flat to the floor and therefore do not present the figure with any stability issues
The final joints are in the arms, a rotating shoulder joint allowing the arms to be raised and lowered. Phasma somewhat strangely gets a 5th joint in her wrist. This allows the hand and the moulded weapon to turn. The left hand does not do the same. I suspect this joint is simply a byproduct of having to cast the hand and weapon separately and attach them on an assembly line.
The Hero 6" figures are made to a set size rather than adhering to a scale. And this is Phasma's big downfall - she is tiny! Line her up with the Black Series 2015 release and the difference is massive. She is even dwarfed by Rey from the same line.
While some of the 6" Hero figures are genuinely good enough to be used in a Black Series collection, Phasma falls into the camp that isn't. She will sit alongside Kylo Ren, Vader and Kanan Jarrus as novelty figures and a bit niche for collectors - being far too small to fit into a true 6" display.
While there are some great features like the armour sculpt and paint job, this figure is going to score a lowly 2 out of 5. While she is niche and cheap, there are much better options out there for mid-range Phasma figures.