What a breath of fresh air this year’s New York Comic Con was for Star Wars fans. Coming just before the end of the Comic Con (aka major announcement) season, NYCC fans were treated to figure reveals, animation information and tons of new fodder for speculation. From 4-LOM to Zuckuss is taking a look back over the week’s events with a figure perspective in mind.
The week began with a sixteen second teaser trailer for Star Wars Rebels which filled us with much speculation as to what figures and vehicles could be making their appeareances on screen and in plastic next week. Our detailed speculation can be found here.
The day before NYCC kicked-off, Hasbro played host to the “Twas the night before the con” party which provided two world debuts. The first was the fourth wave of their collector-focused line The Black Series. This wave is set to include a new Dagobah Luke Skywalker which is backpack compatible with a new Yoda figure to put him through his Jedi Trials. The next few figures in this wave all hail from Hoth and include Snowtrooper Commander, Snowspeeder Wedge Antilles and the never-before-released Toryn Farr making her action figure debut. Rounding out the wave is a Darth Vader figure from a yet to be determined scene. Vader and Wedge were featured at Hasbro’s party but were not included in Hasbro’s official press photos released later that evening.
Hasbro’s Press Release is as follows:
STAR WARS® BLACK SERIES 3.75-INCH ACTION FIGURES
(Approximate retail price: $9.99; Ages: 4 & up; Available: Spring 2014)
Complimenting the six-inch STAR WARS BLACK SERIES collection is the 3.75-inch BLACK SERIES figure assortment which features the exceptionally accurate detail and superb articulation customary to HASBRO’s action figures. Being revealed and seen for the first time at HASBRO’S annual New York Comic Con party is Wave 2, consisting of the following figures: Episode 5 LUKE SKYWALKER, Episode 5 YODA, Episode 5 SNOWTROOPER COMMANDER, and Episode 5 TORYN FARR. Each sold separately.
Hasbro’s second reveal was the packaging design for their Star Wars Rebels action figure line. These cardbacks are a return to the aesthetic last seen in their The Legacy Collection design. This also immediately gave us our first clue as to one of the first figures that will be released in the line; a new Stormtrooper.
Hasbro also included one of the first plot details of the series in their press materials:
In anticipation of Lucasfilm’s STAR WARS REBELS panel at New York Comic Con (Saturday, October 12, 2013; 2:45 PM 3:45 PM; Location: Empire Stage 1-E), Hasbro unveils the packaging treatment for its STAR WARS REBELS 3.75-inch action figure line supporting the upcoming animated series.
STAR WARS REBELS continues the epic tradition of the legendary Star Wars saga with all-new exciting, action-packed adventures. It is a dark time in the galaxy, as the evil Galactic Empire tightens its grip of power from world to world. As the series begins, Imperial forces have occupied a remote planet, ruling with an iron fist and ruining the lives of its people. But there are a select few who are brave enough to stand up against the endless Stormtroopers and TIE fighters of the Empire: the clever and motley crew of the starship Ghost. Together, this ragtag group will face threatening new villains, have thrilling adventures, and become heroes.
Hasbro’s STAR WARS REBELS line, featuring highly detailed 3.75-inch action figures with multiple points of articulation, is coming to a galaxy near you in 2014.
At the Star Wars Rebels panel mentioned above Lucasfilm’s Pablo Hildago gave attendees close to an hour full of information and reveals about the upcoming animated series. Now to the action figure fan and collector this hour was so much fun as there were no less than three major vintage Kenner influences that will be included in the series. The first was the updating of Kenner’s Imperial Troop Transport/Imperial Cruiser vehicle. Hildago appearing to be equally nostalgic about this as the fans as he even brought one out on stage with him.
The second was in the design of the show’s Stormtrooper blaster to include the non-screen accurate fin on the barrel as a nod to Kenner’s vintage action figure design.
The third vintage tribute included in the presentation was focused on the show’s TIE Fighter design. In the Original Trilogy, TIEs have fairly long “wings” but when the toys were released in the 70’s proportions were not nearly as authentic and therefore the were much shorter. But being as this show is meant to pre-date the TIE’s of A New Hope by 4-5 years, Supervising Director Dave Filoni chose to use a wing design inline with Kenner’s scale.
Now while it is very exciting to see our beloved toys earn a place in the next era of Star Wars television this is no confirmation that we will see them released in plastic form again but the odds appear to be in our favor. But while we are on the topic of possible toys (our favorite topic of course) there were lots of possibilities presented in not only the teaser trailer and the Hildago’s panel slides but also in the Dave Filoni video featured here:
After multiple views we have put together our thoughts of possible characters and vehicles highlighted and possibly referenced that could very well be in our collections someday in the next year.
The obvious ones would include the new villian The Inquistor and what will most likely be his legions of Stormtroopers. TIE Fighters with TIE Figther Pilots based on their Episode IV flight suits and AT-DPs with AT-DP Drivers will be working most likely under the orders of dark green uniformed Imperial Officers. Also appearing to join this bunch will be Sandtroopers which would make sense if the teaser trailer is truly from the show as it appears to feature Tatooine. And finally the Ghost, landspeeders and new Imperial speeder-bikes round out the obvious contenders to enter our collections.
Now the not so obvious reveals we are speculating on include a figure based on Ralph McQuarrie’s concept design for IG-88, possibly Bail Organa as images of Alderaan were on display, a potential appearance of a vehicle that could be a mash-up of a mini-rig and the prototype Millenium Falcon cargo hauler designed for Kenner’s 1986 action figure line and what appears to be a young Wookiee looking design (dare we say Lumpy!) around the 22 second mark of Filoni’s video.
In the Q & A section of the panel, Pablo Hildago provided some additional clues for potential characters. The first was his discussion about George Lucas’ vision of what became of the Clone Troopers during the Original Trilogy. He confirmed that Stormtroopers were not clones but enlistees from across the galaxy and yet some clones may still be around training these trooper recruits.
Now for the speculative big one: when asked if any characters from The Clone Wars would be appearing in Rebels, Hildago stated with a smile that he couldn’t comment and then made some reference in the vein of the creators having strong feeling for the characters of their previous show. Now if you combine this non-answer with the fact that he later said Jedi would be involved with this series and that the name “Ghost” is purposely used by its owner and has meaning, it would only make sense that its pilot would be that of Ahsoka Tano. This seems only to be supported by that for a show about Rebels we have not heard or learned about a single protagonist or hero for the series. Since a surprise like Skywalker’s padawan would need to be kept close to the vest, it only makes sense to take fans in another direction by showing them how cool and nostalgic the enemy will be. Nostalgia is also at play here as Lucasfilm needs to recapture Original Trilogy fans who were not so thrilled about The Clone Wars and by showing them vintage toy and OT designs, they are set to ignite interest which may not have happened by showing them a slightly controversial character like Ahsoka.
Yet again its all speculation but for us here at From 4-LOM to Zuckuss; Original Trilogy, Prequel Trilogy, Sequel Trilogy, whatever the Star Wars is, its all fun and good to us and we look forward to collecting figures from them all!