SH Figuarts Luke Skywalker

This is a figure of Luke Skywalker as he appears in Return of the Jedi. Like most other figures Bandai has released, it was impossible to get in a preorder when the window was open. On the day this figure was released I bought one at full retail price off a seller on Amazon.

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The box is the same smaller size as the previously released Stormtrooper.

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Package contents. You get two extra pairs of hands, a lightsaber and the blade effect, and extra heads for Luke and Darth Vader.

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Overall views. At first glance you can see the figure has unusually slim proportions compared to other SH Figuarts figures. It uses smaller joints that make it look a bit more like a figma figure. Also the clothes are done in a matte finish in contrast to the glossy boots. The matte finish tends to get scuffed easily though.

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The main draw of this figure is the  use of stamp printing to achieve an unusually realistic head sculpt at this scale.

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While the face looks a bit fuzzy up close it is better looking when viewed from a distance.

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The hair is painted in a shiny gold which I couldn’t show well with my camera.

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The extra head is for recreating the Sarlacc pit scene (I think).

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It’s an entirely separate head with windblown hair.

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I didn’t show it but you can swap faces between the hairstyles.

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Due to the use of rigid plastic only, there are unsightly cuts in the body.

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Nothing much going on with the arms.

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With the use of smaller joints, the knees look better and don’t have that horrible Play Arts Kai-ish peanut appearance that recent figures are prone to having.

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Luke’s lightsaber is intricately detailed. The figure can hold it loosely in its right hand.

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You have to detach the top section to replace it with the blade.

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The lightsaber also pegs onto Luke’s belt.

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The figure has a single joint at the top of the neck and a ball joint at the base where the collar is. The chest and waist joints give it a generous range of ab-crunching articulation.

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The cuts in the shoulders allow his arms to swing forward, though with the upper arm swivels being at the very top of the arms, the sleeves get in the way.

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Despite the use of single joints for the elbow, you get over 90 degrees of range. It’s an improvement in appearance over the old double joints. The wrists have the usual ball-shaped combination swivel joint.

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With the design of the waist I expected extending hip joints but that was not the case with this figure. Forward range is limited but you can slightly compensate by using the waist and chest joints. The legs swivel at the hips too. The knees are single jointed and can bend about 100 degrees without breaking up the appearance too much.

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The ankles are slightly limited in their sideways range.

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Like Luke’s headsculpts, the included headsculpt of Anakin is also printed, right down to the scars on his head.

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While I don’t think it’s a terribly vital accessory, it’s still a good thing that Bandai was generous enough to provide it and make it look great at the same time.

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Size comparison. I have the impression that Darth Vader should be even taller though. Due to the different joint design of the figure you can’t put Luke’s head on the Stormtrooper body.

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From some angles the default face gives off an “I’ve seen some shit” vibe but at such a small scale who am I to complain.

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The left hand for holding the lightsaber has the thumb and fingers connected so it holds more securely compared to the right hand.

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With some patient fiddling you can get the figure into most two-handed saber-wielding poses.

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I’m not disappointed with the slightly reduced articulation range around the hips as the figure can still do many poses without trouble.

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I didn’t get the idea to try and photoshop a second Stormtrooper since I only owned one copy until after I packed everything back into their packages.

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See my Darth Vader review for the pic that happens after this.

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Whipping out the display that came with the first release of Vader. I must say setting up these poses took quite some time.

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Vader can’t walk up the steps because of his rigid cape…

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I couldn’t get Vader to look more slumped in this picture as he can’t really look down.

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And I couldn’t get Luke to crouch even lower so now he unfortunately looks like he’s looking triumphantly at a vanquished foe.

The use of stamp printing to produce incredibly realistic headsculpts at this scale shows that Bandai is being at the top of its game. The proportions of this figure are also much better compared to the bulked up pin-headed look that most other SH Figuarts figures often have. While it is lacking a bit in the accessories department with the inclusion of Anakin’s head only aimed at those who want figures of both Vader and Luke, overall I think this is a highly recommended figure, and I hope Bandai would continue making human characters that look this good. I expect that Bandai might release Luke in his A New Hope garb in future, but I’m not sure if I’m hardcore enough to get it. I’m actually more keen on R2-D2 and C-3PO.

★★★★☆

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