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The Legacy Collection

Emperor Palpatine - TLC - Basic (BD 39)

Name: Emperor Palpatine
Collection: The Legacy Collection
Number: BD 39
Source: Expanded Universe (Hasbro Concept – Based on Hologram Image)
Availability: May 2009
License: Hasbro

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The Emperor contacts Darth Vader during the Sith Lord's pursuit of the Millennium Falcon. Palpatine warns Vader of a disturbance in the Force caused by the son of Anakin Skywalker. The Emperor commands Vader to turn the young Jedi to the dark side.

Technically simultaneously a never before released figure and an Expanded Universe character, Emperor Palpatine has finally been immortalized with how he appeared in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, but minus the hologram effect. Technically this figure is a Hasbro concept, a realistic “in the flesh” styled action figure based on the holographic visage scene first in the original version of Episode V. We would need to get this figure in holographic form for it to be truly sourced from The Empire Strikes Back. Although the image of Emperor Palpatine seen in the film was a holograph, Hasbro put their heads together and created a great figure they knew collectors would want in their collections. After so many other versions of Emperor Palpatine, this one is “close enough” to what was witnessed on film. They cleverly utilized a current inventory of parts to reduce tooling costs while still making it a "new" (and very good might we add) figure. Emperor Palpatine came out much better than expected and we believe lovers of The Empire Strikes Back will be very happy. (We did recently get the Special Edition version in the form of the Hasbro SDCC 2008 exclusive Disturbance In The Force set, but this Emperor Palpatine is based on the original appearance of the character in film.) The figure's body is on loan from the original 2005 ROTS The Sith Evolutions set and there are barely any differences that we can find from this original sculpt. And not too many changes were needed since we don't know what this character looks like from the chest up (and only in holographic form to boot). Still, this figure is incredibly special because it is technically a first time offering and harkens back to the original version of Episode V. In many ways this is more accurate than and Episode VI Emperor Palpatine figure (from a certain point of view).

Really, the things to concentrate on with Emperor Palpatine are the newly sculpted head and hood. These new pieces are beautifully sculpted and painted, and the final result is awesome. The hood has been molded in a pliable plastic and fits wonderfully over Palpatine’s new portrait. We can basically kiss the 2003 SW [S - P3] The Emperor ('03 #30) and the 2006 TSC Emperor Palpatine (SAGA 043) figures goodbye! (Well, maybe not right away - at least until they remake a Return Of The Jedi based Emperor Palpatine with this perfectly fitted hood.) The hood blends in very well with the fabric robes giving a wholly draped look from head to toe, and it has all the right texture and curling needed. We typically do not like the mixture of soft-goods with plastic molded goods, but it works very well here. Once you merely glance at this figure, it is immediately reminiscent of that figure with no pupils in his eyes that we saw in the original release of the film. (Is a holographic version up next? We sure hope so because this is the definitive sculpt of this character and we would love to have a movie-accurate version of him. And let us comment that you feel a bit creepy when you stare at his face. The eeriness works to our favor because the Emperor should instill that fear. The action figure glares back at you, and you don't know where to look into his eyes. It is a very effective and dark figure to add to your collection. Hasbro has been guilty of referring to this figure as the "monkey-face Emperor". This reference is a bit confusing to us because it looks nothing like a monkey to us. Instead, it personifies the epitome of the dark side of the Force. Palpatine is very ominous and foreboding. It is one of the better Palpatine sculpts we have seen in awhile, and this is no doubt due to the simple but eerie design of the holographic image we saw talking to Darth Vader. Emperor Palpatine is "evil", and this portrait is evil looking, so we give our highest marks of praise to Hasbro!

Accessories include the removable plastic hood, soft-goods outer robe, cane, and his Episode III lightsaber. The inclusion of this accessory confirms the fact that this is more of a Hasbro derivation of the onscreen character. Although this figure may not come with the most appropriate accessories, he is nonetheless cool with all the necessary "Expanded Universe" liberties taken here. (And we are fine with this! EU is extra cool when it is based directly from an "off-screen" moment.) The Legacy Collection’s The Empire Strikes Back wave of figures that Emperor Palpatine comes in has had the distinction of coming with two different shades of U-3PO’s droid parts (part of the Droid Factory pack-in premium). The lighter silver colored parts are the error (per Hasbro), and they have been a bit of a chore to locate at the retail level. One of the lighter shipped waves of figures by Hasbro in a long time, we have to admit that they have not been the easiest figures to find at the retail level. But with anything, Hasbro may decide to release some o all of these figures again at some point in the basic figure line. Emperor Palpatine comes with U-3PO's “body” Build A Droid part. The figure retails for $7.99 plus tax and while we can't make judgments on what figures are and are not worth this price (this is solely up to you), we can guarantee that he will be a very happy addition to your collection. And if you are a Sith fan, you have another reason to consider this figure. You'll have to buy them all or other reissued figures with new droid parts if you want to complete your U-3PO figure, which you should, because it is another great figure to finally get! Emperor Palpatine should be included in your collections, we highly recommend it! But we feel strongly that Emperor Palpatine has a high level of merit by himself and is a figure you should own regardless of needing the droid part or not. We are really enamored of this figure.

Collector Notes

Emperor Palpatine

Status: Emperor Palatine is a retool of the figure from 2005's ROTS The Sith Evolutions set. This time the figure has an all-new head sculpt, a new hood and has been repainted. It also appears if the soft-goods have been cut from a slightly different fabric as well.

Articulation Count: 22 points (14 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), ball-jointed left shoulder (2), ball-jointed right shoulder (2), ball-jointed left elbow (2), ball-jointed right elbow (2), swivel left wrist (1), swivel right wrist (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1), ball-jointed left knee (2), ball-jointed right knee (2), ball-jointed left ankle (2), ball-jointed right ankle (2)

Accessory Count: 4

Accessory Details: removable soft-goods robe, removable hood, lightsaber, cane

Original Droid Factory/Build A Droid Part: U-3PO body

Date Stamp: 2005

Assortment Number: 87572/87535

UPC: 653569354901

Retail: $7.99 USD

Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on Click here to check the market value on eBay! listings.

The Legacy Collection Wave 6

Luke Skywalker (BD 38)

Emperor Palpatine (BD 39)

Captain Needa (BD 40)

Princess Leia (BD 41)

Hoth Rebel Trooper (BD 42)

Ugnaught (BD 43)

U-3PO (Build A Droid)

Added: May 25, 2009
Category: Legacy Collection, The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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