The Good: Great sculpt, Wonderful coloring and shading, Great collectible value, Great balance!
The Bad: Seems a little small next to other Star Wars character ornaments . . .
The Basics: For 2015, science fiction fans will want to hunt the Limited Edition Admiral Ackbar ornament from Star Wars as it is an all-around wonderful ornament!
As fans of Hallmark ornaments gear up for the annual Ornament Premiere Weekend, they have a lot to be excited about. In recent years, Hallmark has made a Premiere Weekend exclusive ornament for either Star Trek or Star Wars. With last year having the exclusive, hard-to-find science fiction ornament being the Star Trek Vina ornament (reviewed here!), this year it is the Star Wars franchise's turn. The big ornament to hunt this Premiere Weekend is the Admiral Ackbar ornament!
Admiral Ackbar is a limited edition, exclusive Hallmark ornament, and it is not one of the usual ornaments considered # in a series. Instead, this is outside the regular numbering and if past precedent is any indication, it will likely be sold out within hours of Hallmark opening on Saturday!
Hallmark Keepsake has a line of collectible ornaments from major franchises, like Star Wars and Star Trek. From the Star Wars line comes the Admiral Ackbar limited edition ornament. Fans of the original Star Wars Trilogy will easily recall Admiral Ackbar. Admiral Ackbar was the fishlike Rebel Commander who commanded one of the capital starships at the climax of Return Of The Jedi (reviewed here!). Admiral Ackbar is the Mon Calamari leader who coordinates the attack on the Death Star from his massive ship.
The Admiral Ackbar ornament recreates the androgynous fish alien in solid plastic. The ornament, released in 2015, is the obscure alien leader in his white and off-white Rebel uniform, standing with his arms at his waist! Admiral Ackbar in ornament form is 4" tall, 2" wide and 1 1/4" deep. Hallmark charged $14.95 for the ornament originally and it is a virtual guaranteed sell out at that price, with most on-line vendors already doubling the purchase price. Given that the ornament was designed for fans, this is an ornament that appeals to collectors and Admiral Ackbar is easily recognizable to them.
The Hallmark Admiral Ackbar ornament is made of a durable plastic and it is almost the level of quality of modern action figures! The Admiral Ackbar ornament is immaculately sculpted. Ackbar has his mouth open and his big fish-eyes are on very subtle stalks, just like the character in the film. The level of sculpted detailing is impressive on the character's arms as well. Hallmark made sure to sculpt in the tiny fin nodules along the character's forearm.
Admiral Ackbar is detailed exceptionally well in his coloring details as well. The character's arms and head are accented by tiny dark brown spots that give it almost a photorealistic sense of texture. The character's skin has a slight gloss to it that makes it look appropriately wet or mucus-covered. In contrast, Admiral Ackbar's uniform is clean and dull white with the shirt being a slightly darker cream color. The badge on Admiral Ackbar's chest is painted immaculately to give him the proper rank and appearance.
As a Hallmark Keepsake ornament, Admiral Ackbar could have a function like a sound chip or light effect, but does not. This is just an ornament, a low-cost (comparatively) option for those who might not want to shell out for the starship or diorama series' of Star Wars ornaments. This is Admiral Ackbar and he simply hangs on the tree.
As with all ornaments, the intent of the Hallmark Keepsake Admiral Ackbar ornament is to be hung on a Christmas Tree. And for those creating the ultimate Star Wars Christmas Tree, Admiral Ackbar is a cool accent piece. Die-hard collectors and fans will definitely want one, despite the fact that Admiral Ackbar is in no way essential to the story, nor is he a popular, iconic character from the Trilogy. The ornament has a brass hook loop embedded into the top center, slightly back, of the character's head. From that hook, the Admiral Ackbar ornament hangs perfectly balanced. It is impressive and the ornament sways when rocked, but otherwise sits stable in the right position!
Hallmark Keepsake began delving into the collectibles market in 1991 with Star Trek when it introduced the exceptionally limited edition original U.S.S. Enterprise ornament (click here for my review of that one!). Since then, they have branched out into other popular franchises like Star Wars and The Wizard Of Oz. The Admiral Ackbar ornament is very limited and is likely to quickly appreciate in value, especially as most Hallmark Gold Crown stores sell out of it.
This is a great investment piece, especially if one is able to find it on the day of release and get it at its original price. That said, the quality of this ornament is such that it is work more than the original release price, so fans who are hunting it should not begrudge having to pay a little more if they have to find it in the secondary market!
Like most Star Wars ornaments, Admiral Ackbar has nothing to do with the Christmas holiday, but the ornament is impressive. In fact, all that really keeps it from being perfect is its scale. The ornament looks small, especially compared to this year's "There Is No Try" ornament. Most fans, though, will find it to be well worth incorporating into their collection!
For other Hallmark ornaments of Star Wars characters, please check out my reviews of:
2014 Yoda Peekbuster Ornament
2014 Imperial Scout Trooper
2013 Jango Fett
2013 Wicket And Teebo
2013 Lego Yoda
2013 Boushh Limited Edition
2012 Lego Imperial Stormtrooper
2012 Sith Apprentice Darth Maul
2012 General Grievous
2012 Momaw Nadon Limited Edition
2011/2012 Lego Darth Vader
2011 Jedi Master Yoda
2011 Bossk Limited Edition ornament
2010 Lando Calrissian Limited Edition ornament
2010 Luke Skywalker X-Wing Pilot
2010 Boba Fett and Han Solo in Carbonite mini-ornament set
2009 Greedo Limited Edition ornament
2009 Han Solo As Stormtrooper
2008 Emperor Palpatine ornament
2005 Slave Leia ornament
2000 Darth Maul
1999 Max Rebo Band mini-ornament set
1998 Princess Leia
For other holiday ornaments, please check out the Ornament Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2015 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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