Whatever's cool with me...

Whatever's cool with me...

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Star Wars: The Black Series #14 Mara Jade - 3.75" scale figure review...



3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

Now here's a Black Series figure that has been creating so much buzz in the cyber-space for the wrong reasons. Firstly, Hasbro's lack of sensitivity towards their often-criticized distribution system has left many collectors without most figures like Mara Jade here from the Black Series. We either end up paying a premium to scalpers or turning to eBay or amazon (also albeit hiked-up prices) to get what we want.That's just wrong Hasbro. It's just absurd for us fans to fight our way to get the figures that we want at retail. Why can't you make more of these high-demanded figures instead of flooding retail pegs with the unwanted Episode I VOTC figures? I was lucky enough to find her (twice for the record) at two separate TRUs as soon as the staff were re-stocking the shelves. I can't be counting my lucky stars forever now can I?

Secondly, this latest Mara Jade figure has been receiving constant criticisms from fans with regard to her hair. More on that later....but first let's take a quick look at the packaging before we scrutinize the figure.

Mara Jade

I've said it before. There ain't nothing really special about these packaging. They're basically...well...black. If you're a MOC collector then I feel sorry for you, we had the excellent VOTC packaging before this and now they're just so....bland. There was that plastic bubble dropping off the card back issue back then so if you're looking for that perfect MOC/MISB Mara Jade for your collection then you're in for a rough ride. 

Mara Jade

There's the silhouette image of Mara Jade at the back of the card with a brief bio of hers. Whatever...I'm ripping my figure off the packaging faster than you can say 'Hasbro's un-even distribution'.

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

Now a lot has been said about Mara's head sculpt. Nothing wrong with her facial features. I think she is one of the better female incarnations Hasbro has given us in recent times. She looks miles better than Shae Vizla for sure! It's just that 80s hairdo. It irritates many fans and in some way it doesn't really represent how she looked like as described in Timothy Zahn's novels. Heck, she even looked different from the silhouette image on the card back.

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

Even so, I had no issue whatsoever with her hair. It looks decent enough and it has a great flow to it. Some collectors even resorted to swapping the heads of the new Avengers Assemble Black Widow head sculpt or even Rise of Cobra's Scarlett's head sculpt with Mara's but I found those to be not-so-suitable. 

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

In the accessories department, Mara came with her ignited lighsaber, her un-ignited lighsaber hilt, her holster (which can be placed on her belt i.e. right hip or at the rear) and her blaster pistol.

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

Her black jumpsuit is gorgeously done and has a great shiny paint job to it to give us that leathery look. She almost look like some galactic biker chick to my eyes.

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

My main intention of getting her into my collection was always (of course) to pose her with the rest of the Thrawn Trilogy characters.

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

Mara Jade, just like the ROTJ Luke pictured above, does not have the much-needed hinged-hips so her fighting stance is pretty limited. I remembered when I was frustrated with Darth Malgus and Starkiller having the same problem. Well, here it is again!

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

THE REBEL'S VERDICT: The whole Black Series distribution in Malaysia is kinda crappy so finding the rarer figures sets our hearts pumping like crazy! Mara wasn't easy to find several weeks ago but I was lucky enough to have been at the right place at the right moment. Despite her shortcomings, she is essential to my collection as I look forward to dedicate part of my display area for the Thrawn Trilogy figures. If you're not too familiar with Zahn's books then I can understand why you could even give this figure a miss. For those drawn into Zahn's work then she is a must. Now if only Hasbro can give us a Joruus C'boath figure next eh? At the time of writing this, Mara's been re-stocked again together with wave 3 (yup, the Plagueis wave) and she's been popping out everywhere at retail again here in Malaysia. 

3.75" The Black Series Wave 2 Mara Jade

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