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The Power Of The Force “2” [Freeze Frame/The Kenner Collection]

Emperor Palpatine - POTF2 [FF/TKC] - Basic

Name: Emperor Palpatine
Collection: The Power Of The Force "2" [Freeze Frame/The Kenner Collection]
Number: N/A
Source: Return Of The Jedi
Availability: March 1998
License: Hasbro

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This figure of Emperor Palpatine featured a single leg "stump" for a lower body. The outer cloak can be removed, but the figure looks the same without it.

After waiting much too long, Kenner/Hasbro finally gave many Star Wars collectors what they wanted: a modern update to Emperor Palpatine. Originally released to a mixed reception in 1997, the figure has now become part of the Freeze Frame Action Slide lineup and comes with a stunning pack-in premium. Many found Emperor Palpatine perplexing as a modern action figure. They couldn’t tell If the new action figure was better than the vintage Kenner 1984 ROTJ The Emperor figure. But as time went on, collectors found themselves satisfied with the modern release of Emperor Palpatine, knowing it wasn’t perfect, and that better versions would arrive later on in the line. Emperor Palpatine has an almost-perfect silhouette, a great molded outer robe, and a decent likeness that captures the evil-faced villain nicely. However, at the same time, you will also feel that Kenner/Hasbro could have done more to make the figure better. You’ll also find that people are “all over the map” when it comes to their assessment of the figure too. Emperor Palpatine is a paradox. We find it curious that the 1984 ROTJ The Emperor figure comes with more articulation than this release. And although only our opinion, the vintage Kenner figure has a better likeness too. It's not that the modern release looks terrible, but it seems like Kenner nailed this character unbelievably well in 1984. From the evil Sith Master expression to its posture, Kenner did justice to The Emperor years ago. In our opinion, technology today should have taken the figure much further than it did. So, you may be disappointed with Emperor Palpatine because you’ll feel like there was some untapped potential in the final figure. You’ll feel like they could have done more here.

Emperor Palpatine comes with only four points of articulation. There isn't any articulation below the waist, unfortunately, but the figure does possess a waist joint. Based on how they approached the figure, the included waist joint is, no pun intended, wasted. It’s an unnecessary point of articulation because the long robes surround the figure from its neck to its feet and it inhibits most of the movement this waist joint would offer the figure anyway. We suppose the gesture is nice, but Kenner/Hasbro could have sculpted Emperor Palpatine figure without it. The figure is posed in a rather generic posture, but Emperor Palpatine is leaning forward slightly, which has been done intentionally. We'll explain. Emperor Palpatine comes with a walking stick (that's what they call it on the packaging, but collectors refer to it as a cane). And the figure’s right hand is perfectly tooled to accept it and hold onto it. Despite the figure’s setbacks, we are impressed with how believably the figure can hold the accessory. Kenner/Hasbro did a wonderful job with regards to this feature for Emperor Palpatine. To our surprise, the walking stick also has a lovely sculpt as well and appears to replicate the prop from the film beautifully too. It looks screen-accurate and has a shininess to it, which is an appropriate finish to the accessory. Also of note, Kenner/Hasbro updated the paint operations on the figure’s face quite a bit on the 1998 version when compared to the 1997 release. The orange circles around the eyes are significantly pronounced this time, and the overall gray base color of the face is shinier this take. Side by side, you’ll see the comparisons between the two figures more overtly. It’s interesting to see Kenner/Hasbro do what they can to improve previously existing figures for the 1998 line.

Of course, the selling point for the 1998 The Power Of The Force "2" [Freeze Frame/The Kenner Collection] Emperor Palpatine figure is the included Freeze Frame Action Slide. What makes Emperor Palpatine slide image a little more special is that Hasbro took the same still that they used on the 1984 ROTJ The Emperor figure and included it here. It almost feels as if it’s a direct homage-paying tribute to Kenner’s original release. These collectible add-ins allow collectors to capture a piece of film history while enjoyment of action figure collecting is the focus. The first pack-in premium in the modern line, it has caused the basic figure to go up to a $5.99 MSRP for 1998. No worries, the Freeze Frame Action Slide are worth your extra dollar. Emperor Palpatine, along with many, many other figures in the POTF2 line, were found under multiple Collection numbers in the “green” carded lineup. Now, Kenner/Hasbro has chosen Collection 3 for the figure in the 1998 collection. You could go crazy if you try to collect all of the various card backs of the many POTF2 line looks. Regardless, the jury is still out on whether Emperor Palpatine is a good action figure or not. In Return Of The Jedi, the character mostly sits in his Throne Room chair. Then he gets up and attempts to kill Luke Skywalker with Force lightning. We need a figure that moves in these configurations. Emperor Palpatine will look excellent on a display shelf or walking off of an Imperial shuttle. But that’s the extent of the figure’s capabilities. We’d unequivocally recommend the Freeze Frame Action Slide version to acquire for your collection. There is something almost magical about these pack-in premiums. And we hope that they’re only the beginning of what Kenner/Hasbro will include with their action figures.

Collector Notes

Emperor Palpatine

Status: Emperor Palpatine is a slight repaint of 1997's POTF2 [R/G] Emperor Palpatine figure.

Articulation Count: 4 points (4 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: swivel head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel waist (1)

Accessory Count: 1

Accessory Details: walking stick

Date Stamp: 1997

Collection: 3

Freeze Frame Details: Conspiring the obliteration of the Rebel Alliance.

Assortment Number: 69705/69811

UPC: 076281698113

Retail: $5.99 USD

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

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