The Good: Marginally interesting concept.
The Bad: Terrible balance, Poorly sculpted Han Solo figure, Flight pack doesn't do anything interesting.
The Basics: Arguably one of the worst Star Wars figures ever, Han Solo with Smugglers Flight Pack is a deluxe action figure which falls down... literally!
When I look back at the enthusiasm surrounding the Special Edition releases of the Star Wars movies back when I was in college, it's hard not to feel a little disappointment. I was a real tool for the marketing and merchandising surrounding the films. For the first time in my life, I had disposable income. I was in college, writing, working multiple jobs and studying and I had enough money leftover each week from swiping the bottles of the drinkers in the dorms (I took the garbage out on weekends) that I was able to afford some toys and trading cards. As I look back upon them now, I realize I was just as nuts as those people who paid thousands of dollars a year to go to college only to drink and not get an education. In my case, I thought I had hit bottom when I discovered the Deluxe Luke Skywalker's Desert Sport Skiff concept figure still in my collection. But, alas, I kept digging and I discovered I have the Han Solo with Smuggler's Flight Pack figure and this is truly the bottom of the barrel.
The 4" Deluxe Han Solo figure is an overall lousy figure and it was a pegwarmer even at the time.
The concept behind the Han Solo with Smuggler Flight Pack appears to be that before Han Solo joined the rebellion, he needed a personal arsenal on his back and a giant mechanical claw to grab things with. This is the halfway point between a jetpack and one of the giant mechanized lifters from Aliens.
The Han Solo figure that comes with the Smuggler Flight Pack is abysmal. This was made during Kenner's obsession with beefing the characters up. As a result, Han is wearing a recognizable costume from Star Wars: A New Hope (namely, his black smuggler's outfit he wears on Tatooine and most of the Death Star scenes), but the person underneath it looks almost nothing like Han. With an upper body that makes Han Solo look like the Terminator, this is Han Solo on steroids. Han has no real neck and looks like a body builder and his legs look like those of a professional footballer.
The detailing on the costume is fair. Han is painted to have molded and colored details on his belt and across his chest is a belt which makes it look like he is strapped in when attached to the Flight Pack, but ridiculous otherwise. Han's hair makes him look like he is wearing a helmet. Still, Kenner got the eyes mostly right as they are dull brown.
Han stands 3 3/4" tall and has a hole in his back where his Smuggler Flight Pack presses into him and attaches him to his accessory. He does not stand up on his own or when attached to the Smuggler Flight Pack.
The sole reason to buy the Han Solo with Smuggler Flight Pack is for the accessory. The Smuggler Flight Pack is a blockish backpack which presses into the back of the Han Solo figure. The chest guard flips down to make it appear that the pack is on in a stable way and there is a giant, ridiculous claw which flips forward to encircle Han or flip back to hold bounties. The thing is, unless the bounty is something thin, like another figure, the Smuggler Flight Pack's claw is not deep enough to hold anything. In other words, most of the accessory is fairly useless.
Sadly, the main body comes with two gray side cannons which are spring loaded and flip up and over Han's shoulders. This Han Solo would be deaf from the discharge from these giant laser cannons, but the packaging does not address that at all.
The four inch toy line was designed for play and Han Solo with Smuggler Flight Pack is poor in that regard. The figure is mildly articulated, with only swivel joints at the groin socket, shoulders, waist and neck. This Han Solo balances poorly at all times. In fact, the best way to get the figure to tip over when its feet are placed on the foot pegs on accessories that have them is to activate the shoulder guns. The torque from that tips Han Solo over and there is something sadly comical about this figure.
In addition to poor balance, the flight pack has spring-loaded guns which rotate at the touch of a button. Unfortunately, that spring wears out very quickly, which results in a far less dramatic result than one might want after only about fifty uses of that function.
The Han Solo is part of the Power Of The Force Deluxe four-inch series, a series of Star Wars action figures that was exceptionally common. This was a pegwarmer at the time, largely because it was massively overproduced and fans were still not sure about the concept figures. Now, this remains one of the Kenner failures as even years later, it is hard to find it for more than its initial release price. Investors took a bath on this one and this is not a figure most fans are replacing, even when the springs do wear out.
The Deluxe Han Solo with Smuggler Flight Pack figure is a poor execution of a mediocre concept, making it very easy to pass by. Between not being a figure of anything remotely seen in Star Wars, the figure has poor balance and low playability from the functions which initially look cool.
For other Deluxe Star Wars figures, please check out my reviews of:
Snowtrooper With E-Web Repeating Blaster
Yoda with Force powers
Darth Maul with Sith Speeder
For other toy reviews, please visit my index page by clicking here!
© 2010 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.