The Royal Guard is Coruscant's most elite security force. During his rise to power, Palpatine seized control of all senate security, consolidating the blue senate guard and his own crimson personal guard under his direct authority.
One thing that always happens often from one Star Wars film to the next is that a character’s outfit is often at risk for changing appearnce. Heck, even some characters’ facial likenesses, like Kit Fisto’s for example, aren’t exempt from changing. This succession and evolution is all part of the process so George Lucas could reach the most definitive vision of the films (through his eyes) and well as add continuity to the story, although, some changes seemingly cannot be explained. Change can be good, but change that alters a story or prevents the dots from being connected can be problematic. When we see the blue Senate Guards’ outfits change to be more a little more like their clone counterparts, it seems to fit into the story like a glove. The Senate Guard’s outfit/uniform was identical (for the most part) in Episode I and Episode II. But in Episode III a significant change was made to obscure the human’s face underneath of the helmet. The revised version made its debut appearance in Tartakovsky’s Clone Wars micro-series. Instead of the open face plate or cut-out visor, it was replaced with an opaque black one instead. Also, the crest of the helmet also changed significantly. Instead of a royal/regal feathered plume, it has been changed to a cold and hard "fin" augmentation to the otherwise smooth and sleek curvy helmet.
Although we first saw this revision in the Clone Wars, this revised look was of course also carried forward into the Revenge Of The Sith film. Hasbro cleverly killed two birds with one stone (in this case one sculpt – minus the head sculpt) and added both blue Senate Guard and red Royal Guard versions into the toy line. (They were universally dubbed as Royal Guards for the Revenge Of The Sith basic figure line as well as other lines.) Both utilize the same body type. The only differences are in the head (helmet) sculpt and the color of the uniform. It’s a shame that each character didn’t get its own packaging so their respective differences could have been better documented. They each have unique names and blending them as Royal Guards unfortunately blurs too many lines together and it’s something we’re not entirely comfortable with since they each serve unique bodies of government. Thankfully, as action figures, Hasbro gets much higher marks for the work that went into the sculpts than the thought process that went into the packaging. The blue Royal Guard (also called a Coruscant Guard, but more accurately a Senate Guard) is an exciting figure that has been reissued in The Saga Collection in a sub-line entitled The Episode III Greatest Battles Collection. The figure isn’t perfect because it misses the mark by having swivel elbows. But it isn’t terrible by any means either.
The Royal Guard is good enough for now, but you can bet that you’re going to want to see this updated in the basic figure line in the near future. It was popular in 2005, so it will be popular again in 2006. Let’s talk a little bit more about the figure The figure comes with decent articulation. The soft-goods on the Royal Guard look nice (as long as you don’t mess with them). Once you remove the outer robes from the figure (or even posing the figure) it significantly changes the drape of it and it is much too big. So be forewarned – don’t futz with the soft-goods too much because it's hard to get them perfectly back into the same position in which they arrived. Underneath is an incredibly designed body loaded with armor. Hasbro is paying homage to the Expanded Universe here and fans of Crimson Empire have reason to be happy! Royal Guard comes with a gun that looks identical to a Biker Scout’s pistol and also a strapped blaster file with a metallic blue deco. It looks awesome. Lastly, the Royal Guard also comes with an environmental display base as well as a miniature hologram “bad guy” figure. This is a fair interpretation of the Senate Guard. We really wish that Hasbro didn’t package it as a Royal Guard again, but no matter how he’s arrived, he is still a great choice to carry forward once again.
Status: Royal Guard is a straight repack of 2005's ROTS Royal Guard [Senate Guard] (III 23) figure.
Articulation Count: 16 points (12 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), ball-jointed left shoulder (2), ball-jointed right shoulder (2), swivel left elbow (1), swivel right elbow (1), swivel left forearm (1), swivel right forearm (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1), ball-jointed left knee (2), ball-jointed right knee (2)
Accessory Count: 4
Accessory Details: strapped blaster rifle, blaster pistol, removable soft-goods outer robe, environmental display stand
Date Stamp: 2004
Assortment Number: 87250/87181
Retail: $6.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.