Hasbro’s Star Wars Universe Expands For 2017

By bill - January 24, 2017

Hasbro dispatches a new wave of 3.75″ Rogue One-centric action figures to kick off the new year.

Up to the release of the film, we’ve only seen two Rogue One-focused waves of Star Wars Universe 3.75″ toys from Hasbro.  But now that the film is out in theaters, the third series of figures is starting to make its way to retail.  This new lineup includes four new Rogue One figures— Bodhi Rook, Jyn Erso in Imperial disguise, a Deathtrooper Specialist, and a Shoretrooper– as well as the all new Grand Admiral Thrawn from Disney XD’s Rebels.  While the new Mon Calamari Admiral Raddus was slated for this wave, he has been pushed back for some reason, and replaced by a tragically prudent re-release of Princess Leia from Rebels, to round out the new case.

As a long-time fan of the five point of articulation/ vintage/ Kenner aesthetic, I found quite a lot to love with these new figures.  Of the movie figures, Bodhi and the Shoretrooper are the most unique– the former being the Imperial defector who joins the Rebel Alliance to deliver some pertinent intel to the war against the Empire, and the latter a light armor Imperial specialist featured in the amazing battle on Scarif during the climax of Rogue One.

Bodhi Rook features a great all new sculpt, complete with a very nice portrait of actor Riz Ahmed.  From his goggles and ponytail, to the separate rubber vest on top of his Imperial jumpsuit, every aspect of this figure feels perfectly accurate to Rook’s on screen appearance.  Even his action feature– a working winch backpack with an extendable line of rope– is screen accurate and fits in perfectly with this character (a rarity for these action feature gimmick accessories).

The Shoretrooper– one of two army builders in this assortment– is another great new figure.  Sharing some tooling with the previously released Shoretrooper Commander, this soldier still features an entirely new belt/ midsection, and a distinct paint job which establishes his continuity amidst the soldiers of the Empire, while giving him enough visual flourishes to stand apart.

The other new troop builder in this wave is the Deathtrooper Specialist, a variant of the previously-released two-pack Deathtrooper, now with a removable harness and shoulder pauldron.  While the all-black pallet of this figure may be less visually dynamic than the Shoretrooper, the Deathtroopers proved to be an intriguing new division of Imperial soldiers in Rogue One, so another opportunity to build their ranks in toy form seems like an ideal situation to me.

Speaking of Imperials, here’s where things get interesting– the first wave of Rogue One Star Wars Universe figures included the conspicuously short Imperial Ground Crew figure, and this latest wave finally justifies that height discrepancy with the Jyn Erso in Imperial disguise figure.  Jyn features the same base sculpt– complete with the twin flare staffs– as well as a new removable helmet, and adds newly painted brown gloves and boots (just like Jyn’s slapdash disguise in the movie).  The headsculpt features a nice portrait of Felicity Jones, and can be easily hidden beneath the rubber helmet.  Good guys disguised as bad guys is a big-time trope in the Star Wars series, and for that reason alone, this Jyn variant is a welcome addition to the lineup.

But this toy line is not exclusively dedicated to Rogue One.  As we have seen over the past year and change in the Star Wars Universe toy line, Hasbro is making room for figures based on the Star Wars Rebels animated series, as well.  The latest Rebels release isGrand Admiral Thrawn, the blue-skinned Imperial mastermind who first made a name for himself in Timothy Zahn’s Heir To The Empire book series, before being officially welcomed into the Disney Star Wars canon as the main villain of Rebels Season 3.

Thrawn looks great in his animated aesthetic, which smooths out and simplifies the styling of his white Admiral uniform, as well as his slicked-back black hair, blue skin, and piercing red eyes. As one of the few non-human officers within the Empire, Thrawn needs to both stand apart, and fit in uniformly in the ranks of his fellow Imperials, and this figure does that perfectly.

Each new Star Wars Universe figures features five points of articulation– a ball jointed neck, cut shoulders, and cut hips– as well as a few accessories.  In addition to the screen-accurate weapons and gear packed with each figure, everyone also includes a play action accessory. Bodhi Rook’s backpack is the only pack-in which can be considered film accurate, while the other four figures each include a missile launching weapon which can be held in their hands or clipped to their arms. Since none of these weapons appear in any Star Wars movie or cartoon show, I’d just as soon ignore them from here on out, if it’s all the same to you.

This latest wave of Star Wars Universe figures is available now from Entertainment Earth, and should be hitting more retailers very soon.  Rumors suggest there may be one more wave of new Rogue One centric figures– including an action figure of Mads Mikkelsen’s Galen Erso (!!!)– released this spring, but as of now, Hasbro has confirmed nothing.  If this wave ends up being the last Rogue One assortment, I feel Hasbro did a commendable job making the line feel complete.  We rounded out the core team of Rebels, and added some new troops to the ranks of the Empire. Would I have loved to see Galen, Bistan, Tarkin, more Rebel soldiers, or even young Jyn join this toy line?  Of course.  But what we did get leaves things in a pretty good place… even if I’m left desperately wanting for a Mads Mikkelsen action figure a little longer.

If you want to add the latest Star Wars Universe figures to your collection, Click Here and order them now from Entertainment Earth.

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