The Good: Good costuming, Generally good sculpt, Great hair detailing
The Bad: Slight proportion issues, Poor balance
The Basics: One of the iconic Princess Leia figures comes to the 12" scale when Slave Leia makes her popular (and rightfully so) debut!
There are few iconic sex symbols from science fiction and fantasy that have the broad, universal appeal of Princess Leia in the slave outfit following her capture by Jabba The Hutt. Yes, it's Slave Leia, Leia in the metal bikini, the Leia who is effeminate and has boobs. And now, in addition to recast figures which are arguably perfect (read the review of that Slave Leia figure here!) there is a doll of her. I suppose there is a younger generation who hears "babe in a metal bikini" and thinks "Cordelia" and there IS a figure of Cordelia in her metal bikini, but I suspect it will be a long time (if ever) before she takes the instantly recognizable status that Princess Leia had once she was captured by Jabba and dressed in that iconic outfit.
Like most of the dolls in the 12" Star Wars action figure line, Slave Leia is a faithful cloth and plastic replica of one of the heroes of the Star Wars Trilogy. Unlike the Sideshow Boushh doll (reviewed here!) the Hasbro Slave Leia is not an immaculate rendering of the character. Slave Leia, as Princess Leia Organa was known after she was captured attempting to infiltrate Jabba's palace and outfitted in a scanty metal bikini, was essentially in two scenes of Return Of The Jedi (reviewed here!): in Jabba's Palace and on Jabba's sail barge. I suppose one does not need to run around long in a metal bikini and loincloth-like skirt in order to make an impression.
Slave Leia is a human Rebel leader who was captured by the vile gangster Jabba the Hutt. She ended up in my collection of Star Wars dolls because the bounty hunters I had standing around needed at least one bounty to focus on (otherwise, they are just a bunch of aliens with weapons standing around gawking at one another). The figure stands 11 1/2" tall to the top of her topknot. Slave Leia is dressed in a cloth skirt with plastic bikini bottoms on front and back. Her chest is covered (barely) with a bikini top held on with elastic cords. In other words, this is a doll with a lot of skin showing.
This toy is a pretty incredible sculpt, very much like the imprisoned Princess Leia. Slave Leia has amazing coloring detail, like slightly pink cheeks and earrings that are actually attached to the doll's ears. While the fingers do have fingernails, they are not colored and there is no other coloring to the figure that adds depth or realistic shading. There are, however, detailed plastic elements like the bracelet that the character was outfitted with as well as the bicep bracelet on her left arm. Similarly, Leia has hair that has been meticulously braided and put up through a headpiece that is surprisingly ornate and detailed. In other words, wherever the doll lacks coloring specificity, there seems to be a strong attention to accenting details through accouterments attached to the figure as opposed to molded or painted on.
Slave Leia, intergalactic object of lust and desire for men (and women so inclined) of all ages, comes with no accessories to speak of, save the chain that is around her neck. Sure, when you look like this, little is expected outside the outfit, so it's not like anything else is needed and it's not like Leia did anything in the movie, save lounge around and strangle Jabba with the chain. The chain is a real chain and is attached to Leia's neck by a collar and that looks decent as far as the detailing goes.
I don't know who plays with these twelve-inch figures. As far as displaying, though, there is not much to recommend Slave Leia. First, she is not a well-articulated action figure. Slave Leia is so close to naked that the manufacturers seem to have been faced with the question of making her poseable (with lots of exposed joints) or less mobile and good-looking. They opted for the latter. As a result, Slave Leia has only five points of articulation. She has joints at the groin socket (somewhat hidden by her skirt), shoulders, and neck. The neck is a simple swivel socket, which is all right. As a result, Slave Leia can turn his head left to right, but not front to back as any sort of nodding motion. As well, the shoulder joints and groin are simple joints, which only allow the figure to scissor kick her legs or raise her arms up and down.
As problematic is that Slave Leia is not incredibly well balanced. When posed in a flatfooted position, she requires a bit of manipulation or she falls over. It is difficult, but not impossible, to get Slave Leia so stable that she does not wobble or shake at all from vibrations near one's display. Slave Leia can be situated such that she does not fall over. Still, she is not the easiest figure to balance completely.
Slave Leia is part of the Power Of The Jedi twelve-inch series, a series of Star Wars action figures that were released during a time that they were largely being mass produced. Still, Slave Leia was fairly uncommon, and given the obvious appeal of this particular Leia, she tended to disappear from the shelves as soon as they were taken from the boxes. As a result, this is one of the more solid Star Wars toy investments!
Slave Leia is a decent figure, less the balancing and posability issues, but she certainly does her job, which is to stand there in her outfit with her chain and make alien bounty hunters gawk at her. One suspects most households with science fiction geeks in them will find the alien bounty hunters will not be alone in this.
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© 2011, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.