Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A More Action-Oriented Yoda, Increased Playability, Less Character From The Attack Of The Clones Figure!

The Good: Good sculpt, Good accessories
The Bad: Inability to hold some of his accessories.
The Basics: Fun and playable, the Attack Of The Clones Yoda action figure justifies its own existence by providing the first action-oriented Yoda toy on the market.

As I wrap up my month of daily Star Wars action figure reviews, I wanted to continue my Star Wars figure reviews with another Yoda action figure. The last Star Wars toy review I did looked at the virtues of the first Yoda action figure (reviewed here!) from the Kenner Power Of The Force line. When I opened my big box of Star Wars figures to consider them, the next one staring up at me was Yoda from the "Episode 2" line.

The Attack Of The Clones Yoda action figure seems to be based on two fundamental changes in both the Star Wars series and the collectibles market. This Yoda is sculpted in more of an action pose with his robes flowing than the passive Yoda from the original Star Wars trilogy. This Yoda is more youthful in appearance and looks ready to kick some Sith butt. Similarly, as science fiction films and television shows have become more prevalent, Hasbro realized they were competing for fewer dollars in the hands of collectors and released a Yoda action figure that was loaded with accessories to try to increase the overall value of the figure. Given that Yoda is a diminutive figure - in physical size, not stature - the ability to pack the action figure with more incentives to buy in the form of recognizable or usable accessories makes sense. This is what pushes the otherwise average Attack Of The Clones Yoda figure up from average to above average territory.


Yoda in this form is a Jedi Master posed in a dramatic action moment during the Battle Of Geonosis from Attack Of The Clones (reviewed here!). He is posed with his legs in a solid stance, but spread. As well, this Yoda's robes are molded open so it looks like they are being swept back from the force of his movement. His feet are positioned such that it looks like he is striding or in mid-flight for a jump and kick. Yoda's arms are spread and hinged to allow a wider range of motion than earlier Yoda figures, which makes sense as this Yoda was the first to be engaged in lightsaber battles. This Yoda figure stands only 1 3/4" tall and he is slightly hunched over. Yoda is appropriately coifed in his tan Jedi robes with his brown tunic underneath. Yoda's green head and hands are exposed, as the hood on Yoda's robe is down and Yoda never wore gloves.

This toy is a decent sculpt, which is pretty easy considering Yoda is one of the most distinctive characters in Star Wars and it is very easy for toy manufacturers to get him right. He is easily recognizable and Yoda is impressive in his coloring detail, save that the character he is based on sometimes lacks realistic flesh shading details.. The detailing on the figure's face is somewhat monolithic and the skin tones are nowhere near realistic for anything other than a puppet. Conversely, Hasbro made an effort to both mold and color the figure's hair (which is still remarkably thin on the back of my Yoda's head) and the finger and to nails are appropriately colored.


Yoda, being a noble Jedi Master, might not need a lot of accessories, but this one comes loaded with four scene-appropriate accessories. This Yoda figure comes with a lightsaber (the "blade" detaches), a platform from Geonosis, his cane, and Force energy used to deflect attacks. The lightsaber is a one and five-eighths inch plastic green lightsaber that is translucent - like the one in the movie - to its base. This lightsaber is nicely cast in shiny silver plastic and the "blade" of the lightsaber may be pulled off to allow Yoda to appear peaceful. Unfortunately, because the base of the lightsaber blade is a thin pin that fits into the base, this accessory breaks real easy leaving one with a detached blade and a choking hazard. As it is, the lightsaber may fit into either of Yoda's hands and the right hand has a magnet in it which attracts the base of the lightsaber.

Yoda comes with a tiny cane as well. The brown plastic stick is straight and lacks any surface details, but it fits easily enough in Yoda's left hand.

Unique to Geonosis, where this action-oriented Yoda is intended to be from, there is a platform. The platform is a cool, mushroom shaped accessory that is just under two inches tall. At the base, the platform is 3 1/4" in diameter and the platform is in two pieces, with the base and the actual platform. Yoda has a hole in the bottom of the figure which fits into a peg on the platform and when one twists the platform or the base, the Yoda figure rises on the peg! This is intended to mimic the appearance of Yoda using the Force to levitate and it is a cool idea. The platform is copper colored and looks well-detailed, making it an ideal way to add value to a Yoda figure. As well, one of the four feet on the base may be removed to make it look like Darth Tyrannus has shattered it using a Force blast.

That fragment of the platform fits perfectly into the Force Energy accessory. The Force Energy accessory is a blue plastic vine that wraps around both the fragment (or anything else of similar size) and attaches to Yoda's arm, to make it look like he is using the Force to deflect things being thrown at him! Unfortunately, this is made of a soft plastic and it often sags under the weight of things like the fragment and it poorly attaches to Yoda. Still, it is not a bad idea for an accessory.


The four inch toy line was designed for play and Yoda is not bad in that regard. First, Yoda has the "Force" hand function (the magnet in the hand is a neat enough idea and because the magnet and lightsaber are so small, it looks good, even when it doesn't work so well). Second, in addition to the fight-ready action pose, this Yoda has the appearance of levitation when on the base and he is the only figure to fit the peg on the platform.

The figure is generally playable as it has excellent balance. Yoda figures are not known for wonderful articulation and comparatively, this Yoda has low articulation . . . until one compares it to other Yoda action figures. This Yoda is gifted with only four points of articulation and for a figure so small, this is more than enough. Yoda, as an action figure, has joints at the waist, shoulders, and neck. There is no articulation in the knees or groin socket and half of the joints are simple swivel joints. The shoulders, though, are ball-and-socket joints, so they have more articulation than usual and they are only limited for full articulation by the way the molded sleeves drape on the figure.


Yoda is part of the 2002 Star Wars Attack Of The Clones collection of four-inch action figures. This series of Star Wars action figures was fairly common and the Yoda figure was #23 in that collection and was slightly shortpacked in the cases. As a result, Yoda was mildly scarce initially and is slightly less common on the secondary market today. Still, this Yoda is a poor investment and is more ideal for collectors and children who actually want an interesting Yoda to play with!


Yoda is an wonderful figure and this is one of the better action-oriented Yoda figures offering enough value to collectors to make it worth hunting down yet another Yoda figure.

For other Attack Of The Clones action figures and toys, please check out my reviews of:
Hailfire Droid
Deluxe Yoda with Force powers
Geonosian Starfighter
Shaak Ti


For other toy reviews, please visit my index page for an organized listing by clicking here!

© 2011, 2009 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.

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