Sunday, June 26, 2011

Only One Stance, Zam Wesell Doesn't Quite Stand On Her Own!

The Good: Decent detailing, Good articulation, Good accessories
The Bad: Low collectibility, Terrible balance and poseability options.
The Basics: The Attack Of The Clones Zam Wesell should have been one of the coolest figures in the line, but I find myself much more eager to check out the recast!

When it comes to obscure bounty hunters in the Star Wars universe, one of the most effective and least competent ones who is forgotten more than many of the background alien and robot bounty hunters is Zam Wesell. Zam Wesell is the bounty hunter with limited shape-changing abilities seen in Attack Of The Clones and is the subject of at least three 3 3/4" Star Wars action figures, as well as a 12” doll (reviewed here!). The second of the standard figure was Hasbro’s Attack Of The Clones figure, which followed up on the Sneak Preview Zam Wesell figure by giving the bounty hunter a different pose.

For those unfamiliar with Zam Wesell, she was seen on Coruscant in Attack Of The Clones (reviewed here!). After her botched attempt to kill Senator Amidala, she takes Obi-Wan and Anakin on a high speed chase over the planet before ending up in a club where her right arm is amputated by Obi-Wan Kenobi’s lightsaber (nicely foreshadowing a similar event in A New Hope!

The 4" Zam Wesell figure from the Attack Of The Clones Collection is the bounty hunter in her purple outfit and helmet with the chameleon face that can be slid over the female human face that is standard for her.


The Zam Wesell figure stands 3 3/8" tall to the top of her helmet. She is dressed in the purple suit she was seen in during the chase scene and her death scene. As such, she has boots, gloves and a weird frontpiece with grips whose purpose is not clearly defined. This particular figure is made of hard plastic with a soft plastic skirt and holster that remains flexible even about a decade after its original release. This means the figure can be put in a sitting position, though the skirt will resist that. Zam Wesell’s human face is well-sculpted and is fairly recognizable and Hasbro cheats the character’s hair by having the helmet be non-removable.

The coloring of the human elements, which is only the face, is very good. While all of the rest of the coloring of the uniform is monotonal - a very clean look for the character - Zam Wesell's face includes slightly pink cheeksand bright red lips. Her eyes are appropriately white, blue and black, so the figure looks better than most. The rest of the coloring details are adequate. This is a completely clean look for Zam Wesell, so the purple suit is clean as are the boots and the skirt. The strap area on the front of the suit is appropriately highlighted with gold and copper accents in points that make it look realistic.


Zam Wesell, marginally efficient bounty hunter that she is, comes with only two accessories. She has her alien face and a tiny blaster. The facepiece is a decently-detailed work of sculpting and coloring. The 1/2" tall soft plastic face is a perfect fit for the figure's head and it features tabs that slide around the neck which serve the dual function of holding the piece over Wesell’s face and obscuring the human flesh tones of the neck. The alternate face is green with giant lizard-like eyes and includes such molded and painted details as the character’s gills.

The figure comes with Zam Wesell’s distinctive blaster. The 5/8” long black and gray plastic gun looks exactly like the one Wesell pulled out in the Coruscant Outlander Club in the film. It fits well in either of her hands as well as in the holster on her right thigh! The fact that it has both the black and gray tones to it makes it fit the coloring detail quality of the figure.


The four inch toy line was designed for play and this Zam Wesell is mediocre in that regard. Zam Wesell has absolutely terrible balance. She is molded to stand in one aggressive pose, but even in that position, she falls over constantly. This is a poorly designed figure that is entirely dependent upon utilizing the holes in the bottom of her feet to stand, when in conjunction with a vehicle or playset.

Zam Wesell makes up for this severe balance deficiency by having bonus play features like a removable right arm. Around the elbow, Wesell’s arm separates and is held together by magnets. This allows one to slash it off when playing! As well, the right arm is spring-loaded. When the arm is pushed down, it locks and a button on the back of the figure releases it, allowing for a quick-draw action! Never once while playing with this figure has the arm flung off!

This Zam Wesell figure is articulated at the shins, knees, groin socket, waist, shoulders, elbows, and neck, making her one of the most articulated figures of this era of Star Wars toy. Most of the joints are simple swivel joints, though the knees are a hinge joint and the shoulders have great articulation with the hinged ball and socket joints. This gives her above averaged poseability, even if she can’t stand.


Zam Wesell is part of the Attack Of The Clones line that was released in 2002. She is 2002 Attack Of The Clones Collection figure #18. Zam Wesell was fairly common and demand for her was easily met. As well, because she was recast completely for the 2010/2011 Vintage Collection, this version’s price has continued to depress in the secondary market. In other words, this figure is a very poor investment.


The Attack Of The Clones Zam Wesell is good, but not great. For those looking to flesh out a collection of Star Wars bounty hunters, a Zam Wesell is essential, but given recently quality improvements in the toys, I have to believe this one is not the indispensable one.

For other Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones action figures reviewed by me, please check out my reviews of:
#01 Acklay Battle Obi-Wan Kenobi
#02 Arena Escape Padme Amidala
#04 C-3PO
#10 Shaak Ti
#13 Kamino Escape Jango Fett
#23 Yoda
#26 Luminara Unduli
#27 Count Dooku
#35 Orn Free Taa
#39 Supreme Chancellor Palpatine


For other Star Wars toy reviews, please check out my index page by clicking here!

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

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