George Lucas

Padme’s Closet: Sabe

Padme’s Closet: Sabe
Echo Station

 
 
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Welcome back all of you fashionable force users to Padme’s Closet! This week Ian and Kris discuss not Padme per say…but her Handmaiden Sabe. For those who don’t remember, Sabe was the one who was disguised as Padme during their escape from Naboo and during the battle to retake Theed. Sabe wore the famous black dress with a feather headdress along with a black and red battle outfit. While we know this technically isn’t Padme we are talking about, Sabe still wore her clothes so she gets her own episode.

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Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

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Derreck Mayer

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Flying Killer Robots

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Padme’s Closet: Sabe

Men’s Fashion in Star Wars

Grab the most expensive fabrics you can find because we are traveling the galaxy and talking mens fashion in the universe! Kris and Ian discuss some of the most fashionable men in the Galaxy from Bail Organa to Kylo Ren and yes even Jar-Jar Binks. They also discuss hot news topics such as new playable characters in BattlefrontII, the new Star Wars theme park coming to both Disney World and Disney Land Galaxies Edge, Star Wars Celebration news, and their upcoming panel at Planet Comicon! So strap in and lets talk fun fashion and some really cool Star Wars news!

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Echo Station Podcast Credits

A Heroes Podcast Network Production

Hosts
Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

Executive Producer & Editor
Derreck Mayer

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Flying Killer Robots

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Men’s Fashion in Star Wars

Padme’s Closet: Enter Mini Series

Hello all you fashionable force users! Welcome to Echo Station’s first mini series titled Padme’s Closet. In this mini series Ian and Kris are going to cover all of your favorite Queen/Senators outfits from the prequels. Each of Padme’s outfits is going to get its very own episode dedicated to it, starting with her red throne room gown in The Phantom Menace to her funeral attire in Revenge of the Sith. We are spanning three movies and well over 30 costumes. We will be dissecting each outfit from head to toe, talking about what we like and don’t like, and finally our first impressions of them. So grab your sewing machines because we are diving in deep with this first episode.

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Echo Station Podcast Credits

A Heroes Podcast Network Production

Hosts
Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

Executive Producer & Editor
Derreck Mayer

Music
Flying Killer Robots

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Padme’s Closet: Enter Mini Series

Bullying and Star Wars

In this weeks episode Kris and Ian talk about the controversial  subject of bullying in the Star Wars community and how it effects the fans, the actors, and the overall feel of Star Wars. They sit down and talk about actor Ahmed Best (Jar-Jar Binks) and the recent video he released about his struggles after The Phantom Menace came out and what he went through, actress Kelly Marie Tran, Daisy Ridley, their own experiences with bullying and so much more. Warning! There is mention and talk of not only bullying but suicide as well in this episode. So if you are uncomfortable with talking or hearing about said subject we recommend you listen to the news section and then turn it off after. We realize that it is a heavy subject to speak about and not everyone is comfortable with talking and or listening about it.

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A Heroes Podcast Network Production

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Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

Executive Producer & Editor
Derreck Mayer

Music
Flying Killer Robots

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Tribute to Carrie Fisher

It’s the winter finale here at Echo Station, and what better way to end the year with a tribute to our favorite Princess and General, Carrie Fisher. Come join Kris, Ian, and special guest star Lydia Heartwell from Another Castle Creations as they talk all things Leia and Carrie. Ian surprises Kris with her Christmas gift from artist Hannah Payne Art, and so much more. So come join us for our final episode for 2018 and we will be back with new episodes come mid-January!

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Echo Station Podcast Credits

A Heroes Podcast Network Production

Hosts
Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

Executive Producer & Editor
Derreck Mayer

Music
Flying Killer Robots

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The Mandalorian

Join us this week as Ian and Kris explore and talk about the new live action T.V. show currently in production, The Mandalorian! They talk what its going to be about, the list of announced directors so far, characters they would love to see appear and so much more! Grab your thermal detonators and set your blasters for stun as we dive into The Madalorian.

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Kristina Davis
Ian Turner

Executive Producer & Editor
Derreck Mayer

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Flying Killer Robots

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The Mandalorian

Costume Couture: Padme Amidala Spotlight

A guest joins us for a trip to a galaxy far, far away as we take a look at the mother of Luke and Leia, Padme Amidala. Luna Flare from Another Castle Creations joins us in full Padme cosplay to discuss the best costume looks for the Natalie Portman character. We discuss Padme Amidala’s looks from The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith.

What is your favorite Padme Amidala look? Did we pick one of your favorites? Let us know in the comments!

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Rae of SirynRae Cosplay
Ian of Haus of Turner Cosplay

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Luna Flare

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Costume Couture: Padme Amidala Spotlight

SH S5E07: Ranking Star Wars at Planet Comicon

It’s our big Planet Comicon live episode! This past weekend, we were at Kansas City’s largest comic convention, Planet Comicon and we put on a live episode during a panel. In this episode, we, along with the audience, rank the live action Star Wars movies. Our list only includes live action and theatrically released films.

What is your favorite Star Wars movies? Which do you think is the worst? Was our list totally off?

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Join us live on Tuesday nights and catch the episodes later on iTunes, Blog Talk Radio, Spreaker, Google Play, and more!

Go to Screen-Heroes.com right now to subscribe to us on iTunes and drop us a review. If you do, we’ll be sure to give you a shout-out in a future episode!

Want to join the conversation? Join us live every Tuesday night at 9PM EST on Twitch to chat with us! We’ll answer questions and note comments live on the broadcast! Follow at: twitch.tv/heroespodcasts

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SH S5E07: Ranking Star Wars at Planet Comicon

Carrie Fisher, Our Princess, Passes

Like many of you, I am in mourning today.  The world lost an idol and seems a little dimmer for it.  Carrie Fisher was royalty.  Her iconic role of Princess Leia carried over into our reality, acting as a beacon of hope when, at times, there wasn’t any. Her sheer honesty and courage could shine through any amounts of darkness, uplifting those lucky enough to witness it. But I don’t have to tell you all what she meant to the world. I want to tell you what she meant to me.

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I was not a Star Wars fan until I was an adult. It was the recent additions of Episode VII: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story that really pushed me into the fandom. They featured remarkable stories of courageous women caught in the fray of epic wartime. It took me awhile to realize that the original trilogy, as well as the prequels, also accomplished that.  But I digress.

I was, however, always a Princess Leia fan. She was a freaking warrior princess. How could you not love her? She had sass and charm and went after what she wanted but always did the right thing. That’s insane. Women don’t do that! I mean, seriously, we still have films today, almost 40 years later, that can’t properly convey women being as multi-faceted as Leia.

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Carrie Fisher was intense behind the scenes of Star Wars as well.  She has been quoted as standing up to Hollywood sexism that still plagues films today.  One of my favorite quotes came from 2008’s Wishful Drinking, her one-woman show she later adapted into a book, discussing with George Lucas why there’s no underwear in space.

George comes up to me the first day of filming and he takes one look at the dress and says, “You can’t wear a bra under that dress.”

So, I say, “Okay, I’ll bite. Why?”

And he says, “Because. . . there’s no underwear in space.”

What happens is you go to space and you become weightless. So far so good, right? But then your body expands??? But your bra doesn’t—so you get strangled by your own bra.

Now I think that this would make for a fantastic obit—so I tell my younger friends that no matter how I go, I want it reported that I drowned in moonlight, strangled by my own bra.

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If that’s not the cheesiest explanation to see boobs, I don’t know what is.

As an adult who is both a writer and a mentally depressed person, I have been able to appreciate and sympathize with Fisher on a deeper level than I ever thought possible. She has been bravely public about her struggles with addiction and depression, something that I, too, try to do.  When you have a disease where your mind wants to live, but your body wants to die, it’s comforting to see others overcome their struggles. Watching Carrie in anything always gave me hope.

I feel I need to talk just a little more about Star Wars, because it wasn’t until recently I recognized just how pivotal Fisher’s character was to the entire franchise. It may go without saying, but Leia is by far the overshadowed hero of Star Wars. She begins the story as an adopted princess given a life jeopardizing mission that she takes without hesitation. She loses her adopted parents and her planet, yet takes charge during her own rescue and saves herself.  She gets taken captive and made a slave by what can only be described as the most disgusting allegory for sexism ever and KILLS HER CAPTOR BY CHOKING HIM WITH THE SAME CHAINS THAT BOUND HER. She rises through the ranks of the rebellion, becoming a trusted strategist and ally until she is their leader. She is looked upon as hope for the galaxy. She stays with the fight while both Luke and Han had abandoned it (this may or may not be true later, but as far as Episode VII goes, it sure looks like it to me). From princess to rebel to general, Leia is the reason the fight is alive. I will be ever grateful for her portrayal of this woman who could do it all.

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Carrie Fisher and her embodiment of Leia are the symbols of survival that we so often need. She struggled and persevered. She offered humor during times of sadness. Her talent changed the world of both fiction and non-fiction as we know it. She made 44 movies, appeared in 46 TV shows, authored 7 books, wrote and starred in 4 stage productions, doctored numerous scripts including Sister Act and Last Action Hero, and dedicated much of her time to educating masses on mental health. While the stunning Carrie Fisher may be gone from this world, she’ll always be regarded as a pioneer across many platforms.

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May the Force be with you, Carrie Fisher. Yours will always be with me.

Carrie Fisher, Our Princess, Passes

Star Wars – Expectations and Disappointment

I was born in 1977, the year that the first Star Wars movie was released in theaters.  I (half) jokingly like to say that I was born with Star Wars in my blood.  Some of my fondest and earliest memories revolve around Star Wars.

I remember endlessly watching The Empire Strikes Back on VHS tape.  (For those of you that aren’t dinosaurs, that’s how we used to watch movies before they could be streamed over the Internet.  No, before DVDs, too.  Yes, I’m old.)  In fact, I think I might have worn out VHS copy that we had, to the point that my mother had to make sure to re-record it the next time it aired on TV.

star wars 1I have vague recollections of going to see Return of the Jedi in the movie theater, and reenacting, with my best friend, the lightsaber duel between Luke and Vader for weeks on end.

So during my Junior year in High School, the announcement that George Lucas would be returning to “a galaxy far, far away” to show us the origin of Anakin Skywalker and how he would eventually evolve into Darth Vader made me giddy beyond belief.  One of my courses was a yearbook/journalism course, with a semi-regular assignment to bring in a newspaper article (good grief, I’m old) that was in some way ‘controversial’.

I brought in the first article I could find about the announcement the Lucas was working on a new Star Wars trilogy.  There was nothing controversial about the article at all.  I was just so excited that I completely forgot that aspect of the assignment.

Saying that I’m a fan might be understating things a little bit, which, as one might expect and like many other Star Wars fans out there, means that I had certain expectations about the prequel trilogy, expectations that were essentially shattered upon meeting the cold hard reality that is the prequel trilogy and the seemingly constant re-editing of the original trilogy.

Now I (only half) jokingly say that George Lucas both created and destroyed my childhood.

star wars 2Ten years after the release of Revenge of the Sith, I find myself in the same position again.  A part of me is almost excited beyond words at having a new trilogy of Star Wars movies in my future.  But I still have certain bare minimum expectations for what that new trilogy should be like, and I remember how badly I was burned before. So let’s talk about that for a minute.

Why don’t I just relax and forget about my expectations?

Well, first off, that’s just not who I am.  I’ve got a really good memory for a lot of things, including my favorite books, television shows, movies, etc.  I used to try and play a game with my mom where we would try to have entire conversations using only movie quotes to see who could keep it going the longest.

More importantly, the film industry doesn’t work like that.  In fact, they’re banking on your, and my, expectations.  Look at the movies that are produced these days, especially the ones that are blockbusters or expected to be.  The vast majority of them are adaptations, reimaginings, reboots, or sequels to existing properties.  They’re relying on your familiarity (aka expectations) of an existing property to entice you into paying the price of admission to the theater to see the next big thing.

What happened the last time we were here?

The offenses of which the prequel trilogy is guilty are terrifyingly numerous, and it’s not particularly difficult to find lists of those offenses.  For me, the most important parts of a really good movie is the strength of the characters and the integrity (the structural kind) of the story.  This is where things started to break down for me.  Since I imagine it’s possible for me to ramble on for quite a while about these various transgressions, I’ll stick with just describing my top two:

Motherhood and Memories

leia_truthIn Return of the Jedi, Luke asks Leia if she remembers her mother.  The conversation goes like this:

Leia: Luke, what’s wrong?

Luke: Leia, do you remember your mother? Your real mother?

Leia: Just a little bit. She died when I was very young.

Luke: What do you remember?

Leia: Just… images really. Feelings.

Luke: Tell me.

Leia: She was… very beautiful. Kind, but sad. Why are you asking me this?

Luke: I have no memory of my mother. I never knew her.

Yet, when they were born in Revenge of the Sith, there is literally no chance that Leia develops any kind of memory of her real mother that Luke somehow would not have.  Because she dies shortly after they are born.  What’s supposed to be one of the most powerful and emotional moments of the movie, and maybe even the trilogy, where Luke reveals to Leia her true heritage and what she may be called upon to face if he fails, is supposed to be a powerful moment.  But all the power of that moment seems to ebb away, for me at least, because what Leia says and what we witness as an audience do not connect together in any kind of reasonable way.

star wars 3Quick digression: I’m sure there will be people that suggest perhaps Leia was raised by Bail Organa’s first wife, and that she passed away when Leia was young, and that’s who Leia is referring to.  To this I respond that, first, that’s not the emotional intent of the conversation and, second, even if that’s true this is where we hit the limitations of movies.  And this is one of the big points of this post.  For movies, the audience can only follow along with what is presented ON SCREEN.  If it doesn’t happen on screen, at best with the audience actually seeing it happen or at worst with a character telling us what happened off camera, then it might as well not have happened at all. 

For two decades I expected that Leia did indeed know her real mother before she ultimately passed away.  Pulling the rug out from under that particular expectation was really bad for me, but nowhere near as bad as…

Darth Vader, Anakin Skywalker, and his family

I came out of the theater after seeing Attack of the Clones feeling rather dejected.  It hadn’t been a great movie, and I feared for what might come as part of the third movie in the prequel trilogy.  I imagined that the odds were high that the majority of the movie would continue to be disappointing, but I thought as long as they got one particular thing right to finish the trilogy, I’d be happy with it.

star wars 4That one particular thing was establishing why Vader would finally turn on the Emperor in order to save Luke at the end of Return of the Jedi.  In my mind it needed to play out like this: despite all of the evil that Anakin had perpetrated over the course of two decades, his love for his family needed to remain untarnished by the Dark Side.  That would give it the weight and power needed to finally urge Anakin to act, instead of Vader, for the salvation of his son. 

I wasn’t a huge fan of Anakin’s slaughtering of the Sand People in Attack of the Clones, but I was willing to accept it.  It was violent and angry, but it was an act meant to avenge the death of his mother.  So it fit what I hoped would be established.  How hard could it be for the trilogy to end with Anakin falling to the Dark Side without harming Padme?

Finally, Revenge of the Sith was released and I was once again disappointed.  Anakin uses the Force to Choke his pregnant wife.  He’s been haunted by ‘visions’ of her death the entire movie, and now he’s attacking her.

anakin-choking-padmeFor me, that destroyed any ability to believe that Darth Vader would turn against the Emperor to save Luke.  Anakin doesn’t know Luke, didn’t raise him, was never there to care for him or teach him, or do any of the things that would make him a father.  Padme, however, was his wife.  The woman he swore to love and cherish and protect above all else.  If he was willing to attack his own wife that way, I just didn’t believe that he’d sacrifice himself to save a son he barely even knew.

How am I going to be disappointed this time?

For the upcoming The Force Awakens and its sequels, the original trilogy will obviously serve as the base upon which the films are built, with 30 years of history and changes separating them.  This is the first thing that worries me.  Remember what I said before about how things need to happen ON SCREEN or they might as well not have happened at all?  There’s a LOT of room for things to go wrong here. 

So here are the things I’m already worried about, given the limited information about the upcoming movie.

Han Solo and Leia Organa not-Solo

The last time we saw these two crazy kids, what were they doing?  Snuggling by the Ewok bonfire, warm in the glow of their newly professed love for each other.  With that as the last thing we see of those characters, where do you imagine than_and_leiahey end up 30 years later?  Happily married with kids is where I think is the most reasonable place to go from there, and the Star Wars Expanded Universe (I’m sorry, Star Wars Legends) novels took the relationship in that direction to great effect.  It’s one of the things I liked most about those novels, despite how annoying the children turned out to be.  But from what little information we’ve seen so far, it doesn’t look like Han and Leia manage to maintain a relationship following the Battle of Endor.  From the information available so far, they’ve gone completely separate ways.

Luke Skywalker

In the EU novels, within a few years of the Battle of Endor, Luke has begun training other Force Sensitive individuals he has encountered to become a new generation of Jedi Knights to protect the New Republic.  For the new trilogy, that appears to distinctly not be the case from the extreme lack of any lightsabers shown so far outside of Kylo Ren and Finn.  Some articles I’ve read seem to suggest that Luke is mostly in hiding, as he fears even his own power.  I can’t find any confirmation of that particular line of thinking right now, but I desperately hope it is not true.  

Names are Important, but I’m not telling what they are

reyFinn and Rey are two of the new characters being introduced in The Force Awakens.  But unlike nearly all of the other characters being introduced in this movie, they only have first names.  According to J.J. Abrams, “It is completely intentional that their last names aren’t public record.” 

Remember, before Star Trek Into Darkness was released, how Abrams said that John Harrison is DEFINITELY NOT KHAN…except he totally turned out to be Khan?  Thifinns feels like that.  At least this time he’s not lying to our faces.  I can’t help but feel that the deliberate withholding of that kind of information is an incredibly cheap method of suspense for a story.  It’s a cheap trick to try and keep the audience guessing (not in a good way) and be confused.  And if those are the tactics you have to resort to, it makes me worry that the rest of the story you’re telling isn’t going to stand up very well on its own.

Now we wait…

Thankfully, the bar has been set really low with the prequel trilogy.  I’m cautiously optimistic, despite my reservations and seemingly already dashed expectations, because whatever The Force Awakens does, it just needs to be better than Episodes I – III.  How hard can that be?  Right?

Do you think Star Wars: The Force Awakens is going to crash and burn? Or do you think it’s going to be incredible? Do you agree about the prequels? Let us know in the comments.

Star Wars – Expectations and Disappointment

Star Wars Figures: 1995-Present

When I was 8, I was walking down the action figure aisle with my dad. As I gazed upon the seamless displays of toys, my eyes fell upon a C-3PO glistening in its shiny gold paint. At the time, I had never heard of Star Wars (Mind you, this was at the tail-end of the Star Wars dark age in the 1990s when there were almost no toys or products to speak of. The C-3PO I saw was the beginning of the return.) but I was very much into robots. So, as an avid robot lover, I asked my dad what that was and if I could get it. His response was along the lines of, “Oh, that’s C-3PO from Star Wars. I think you’re old enough for that.” If he knew what would happen next, he probably would have never let me get my first Star Wars figure.

Within a week, I had also gotten R2-D2. Playing with the two droids was odd since I didn’t know what either one sounded like or what their backstory was. But I can assure you that the two of them had some grand adventures even if they had nothing to do with Star Wars. Shortly thereafter, my dad finally tracked down Star Wars: A New Hope and thus officially began my Star Wars action figure collecting. With this article, we shall go through the past 20 years of Star Wars figures leading up to the recent release of The Force Awakens figures. Now, mind you, this is only a part of my collection and not an exhaustive presentation. Let’s just say I would need a lot more space if I were to show my entire collection. Now, without further ado…

1995: The Return of the Figures

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It is a fact that there few to no products released during a certain span of time following Return of the Jedi. This was a dark time for Star Wars fans as they had almost no books and toys to collect. Nevertheless, with the publication of Timothy Zahn’s incredible Heir to the Empire, the products were coming back. Here’s a shot of the original set. Note that Leia was included into this set later and that I considered myself a bit of a painter back then and tried to do the Toy Story 2 restoration to some of my figures. These were quite simple and also very hard to find at the time. For the next few years, though, the main molds for the figures would be used for a variety of figures. Luke and Han always had the same head regardless of the figure. They did not bother messing with the mold until much later. Figures during this era were $4.99 apiece.

1996-1998: The Special Edition

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Shortly after the 1995 releases, Kenner must have realized they could still sell Star Wars stuff without there being a movie in theaters. They therefore expanded the Star Wars line to include some more figures. Of course, when the Special Edition was released in 1997, a plethora of action figures hit the market. It was at this point that I could not keep up. So I had to pick and choose which ones I wanted. You’ll notice that the detail is much more enhanced (the Leia’s don’t look like men!). Yoda included the backpack that Luke carries him around in while the Dagobah Luke was sold separately. In fact, Luke could not stand properly without the backpack. The Jawas’ eyes actually glow when you hold them up to the light. But, with any run, this one hit its end in due time. Tarkin and the spy from A New Hope were the last figures I purchased from this era at around 90 cents apiece.

1999: Figures can talk!

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Yep, that’s right. Star Wars figures could talk! With the arrival of The Phantom Menace, Hasbro included computer chips for each action figure. When the chip was scanned by a Commtech Reader (you can see that under the destroyer droid), the lines from the chip could be heard. The inclusion of the computer chip made the $6.74 price tag more than worth it. You can certainly see an evolution with this line. The figures were much more poseable, which made putting Darth Maul into fighting moves much easier. Detail was insane as well. You just have to look at the C-3PO to see that. You will also notice the battle droid on the STAP. That one was actually an Episode I preview that was released before the actual Phantom Menace line. And the last bit of information on this one pertains to the Sebastian Shaw Anakin Skywalker standing next to Qui-Gon. This one was in a series of flashback action figures in which you had a little card that showed you what the character looked like before and after. By the release of Anakin Skywalker (2001), the commtech chips were no longer offered with the toys but the price remained the same.

2002: Using the force

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First, figures could talk. Now they can use the force… with the help of magnets. Hasbro included a number of magnetic variations into their Attack of the Clones line. You’ll notice Obi-Wan is hanging onto the assassin droid. And, in fact, you could run around the house with that droid with Obi-Wan dangling for dear life (trust me, I tried it). However, the magnets were not as strong as Obi-Wan’s. That’s one reason why Anakin’s arm is somewhere deep inside my Attack of the Clones box… along with the Tusken Raider’s head. Lightsabers had a tendency to fall out of the Jedi’s hand. Oh, and I don’t know what the lightning is all about with Aayla Secura. It came with her and looked cool, I guess. But hands down, one of the coolest toys was the Jango Fett action figure. Not only could you remove his helmet and play shenanigans to Kenobi with his cable, but you could also fire a missile out of his jet pack just like the original Boba Fett. Did I also mention that R2 can blind you with his light because he can. Beware!

2005: Revenge of the Sith

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This was the peak of Star Wars figures during the prequel era. These figures had a good balance of detail along with some fun slashing action. I was disappointed with the Emperor, who does not wear the awesome fighting robe from his duel with Yoda. But it’s sort of full circle with C-3PO, whose appearance looks much like it did in 1995 (albeit more detail) with the shine. These were a good line… even if they may have gone a bit far with the “Anakin battle damage” action figure.

2006 to the Present: End of an era

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With the end of Star Wars as we knew it, the action figures started dwindling down. I more or less went into retirement since my interest had turned to video games and I did not have the budget for both. I occasionally purchased the random figure here and there, but I mostly just looked. Hasbro also seemed to see that they needed to release different items. So they turned to the EU. In particular, Knights of the Old Republic and Genndy Tartakovsky’s Clone Wars. Cad Bane was probably the only figure I bought during Lucas’s Clone Wars run. Otherwise, this was a pretty dead decade for me with collecting.

2015: The Force Awakens

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Well, I just had to come out of retirement for the new movie. These new figures are fun, but they are not nearly as poseable as their predecessors. It’s unfortunate really. It’s almost a step back to the days of 1995. They’re still fun, but the Black Series for the 3 and a half inch line seems to be where all of the poseable figures are going. Those are a bit too expensive for my taste. I will say that I got the X-Wing primarily because you can actually remove Poe’s helmet with that set. The single figure has his helmet permanently on and obscuring his face. Also, BB-8 is in the back, but he isn’t removeable. That’s probably a good thing since someone should always stay with the ship.

Do you collect Star Wars figures? How long? Do you have a favorite line? Do you collect other Star Wars stuff? Let us know in the comments.

 

Star Wars Figures: 1995-Present