In the initial The Force Awakens trailer/teaser, surely one cannot miss seeing that white-blue colored X-Wing looming at the background while JJ Abrams gave us his first insights on the new Star Wars instalment. Since then, although the black-orange X-Wing has been appearing in subsequent trailers, many had speculated that we would eventually see a white-blue X-Wing leading up the Resistance charge against the First Order. I guess he will switch from white-blue to black-orange at some point in the movie (but we'd have to wait till December to find out ain't it?). Anyway, supposedly Walmart is currently selling the white-blue X-Wing in their stores right now. I'd love to get my hands on one but the lack of Walmarts in my country may just hinder that for a little while longer.
Cementing itself as one of the most bad-a** Star Wars vehicle of all time is the aggressive looking black-orange colored Poe Dameron X-Wing. While we got so used to seeing the grey-red colored ones, it's actually refreshing to see a different color scheme on the much-loved T-65 starfighter.
Personally, I absolutely love the new Kylo Ren-themed art for the new TFA toys. Not only Kylo's image at the top right corner of each packaging, but also the main art itself. I bought 3 deluxe sets for my son thus far and I told him to never throw away the packagings. The hand painted art are absolutely gorgeous. It reminds me a great deal of the box art of MOTU toys of the 80s. I seriously can't remember if any Star Wars had such cool packaging art ever. Did they?
My favourite bit? The front of the packaging depicts an image of the X-Wing as it flew rapidly near the surface of an 'icy' planet (Hoth?) as a lone First Order TIE Fighter gives chase.
Before I start blabbing about this new incarnation of the X-Wing, I just want to get the negatives out first. Just a couple:
1) If you've read the many reviews out there already then you might notice by now that the scale issue is among the hotly debated topic among collectors.
For the record, this 3.75" scale X-Wing is just slightly bigger than its corresponding LEGO version. Simply means that the LEGO version is a better scaled version of the two as the minifigure is way smaller than Hasbro's figure.
Let us compare Poe's fighter with the previously released Wedge Antilles' fighter. It is noticeably smaller in size. My immediate thoughts upon seeing this is how I was going to squeeze Poe's action figure into the cockpit?
I admit that I was initially hesitant to pick this X-Wing up because of the same issue (I obviously/eventually picked it up at a specialty toy store at slightly below market price) but I decided that its aesthetic is probably more important than its functionality (not that I really play with my toy planes these days anyway!).
I won't even go into the 5-POA action figure issue as I've talked about this already in my earlier postings on TFA toys. I think the figure looks great (more on this later) and with a bit of effort, the obviously oversized action figure can indeed fit into the undersized starfighter. Heck, I might even display the Black X-Wing without Poe inside the cockpit. So that's that.
So, scale issue? I can live with that.
2) One thing bothers me more than the scale issue i.e. the 'bent plastic' controversy. Parts of these new X-Wings are made out of flimsy rubber particularly the cannons and the nose cone. Chances are most collectors will face the same predicaments as these are mass-produced toys anyway.
I am not sure if heating up the plastic cannons will allow us to straighten them back into place or further distort their shape. Not even going to try doing it to the nose cone! I'd like to hear from my fellow collectors if they have other means of correcting these anomalies. I've done my best by slowly shaping/bending them back into place but that's as far as I'd go with them.
Ok. I'm done with the grouses. Now on with the niceties!
Poe’s X-Wing fighter comes with an exclusive (and obvious) Poe Dameron figure, complete with his blaster and helmet. I love it that this new design of the X-Wing incorporates the looks and features of the T-65 from the original trilogy and the blue-white starfighter used during the Clone Wars. Nice nod to both OT and PT.
Poe Dameron's X-Wing is obviously now black in color since he is the leader of the Black Squadron. I think he's also called Black Leader too if I'm not mistaken. The new X-Wing is now a T-70 model, apparently an upgrade from the T-65 from 30 years earlier.
The classic fighter had 4 big circular reactors, 2 on each side where else the new Black X-Wing has still 4 reactors albeit the circular shapes are now divided in two on each wing.
The X-Wing can launch a red missile and has a landing gear. As you could notice on the box, there’s BB-8! He’s not removable as it’s when you push him that the wings open and the button behind him is to close them, however his head can move which is nice. If you want a figure of BB-8 per se, you need to buy the 2-Pack figures with the Unkar’s thugs and Jakku Scavenger.
Concerning the colors, it changes from the usual red and grey X-Wing, black and orange looks pretty badass. With a little effort, Poe’s figure does fit in the cockpit so that is good thing! The figure itself has a removable helmet which is an improvement comparing to the figure in the 1st Space wave assortment. It’s a 5POA figure with a ball-jointed head articulation. Great sculpt and paint apps. It does look somewhat similar to Oscar Isaac, the actor who played Poe in the movie.
The design of this new pilot suit remains in the style of the X-Wing pilots from the OT as we find the white and orange colors again, it gives a fresh new look to the pilot suit. The helmet is also different, it’s a mix of the Phase 1.5 Clone Pilots from The Clone Wars (the top of the helmet) and the X-Wing pilot helmets from the OT. It’s interesting to see an inspiration from both the OT and TCW for this new ship and pilot suits, it gives something great, a mix between OT era and PT era.
In my opinion, despite all of the negativity surrounding this piece of toy/collectible, I think this is a must-have in any Star Wars fans' collection.