First of all, hello to all the 'Yarders & welcome to my first written review. Today we will be looking at the ArtFX series from Kotobukiya, this is Series 2, the Clone Troopers. The 3 I have here are the Captain Rex, Commander Cody & Commander Gree statues, which are available at retail. A fourth statue, Commander Fox, is also available but is an exclusive. Each Trooper is roughly 6-7” tall & with each of the Clone Troopers, comes a body part to build an additional Clone Trooper. The buildable Clone is a standard Trooper with a Jet backpack. Commander Cody includes the right arm, rifle & lower body, Captain Rex includes the Clone Troopers head, left arm, jet pack & display base & finally, Commander Gree includes the Troopers torso. Also included are 2 magnetic display bases, one featuring the Galactic Republic Logo & one with the Clone Wars logo embossed on the stand.
Now let’s analyze each character.
Rex is the leader of Torrent Company, a division of the famed 501st Legion. He is a no-nonsense, hard as nails Trooper, and Anakin’s right hand man. Rex’s personality is captured perfectly in this statue, both in his physical stance & facial sculpt. Rex is posed in a gunslinger pose, with one arm reaching for a pistol in his holster, the other pointing in front of him, taking aim. He is nicely weathered, giving a battle hardened effect & really bringing him to life. His weapons are not removable, however he does come with interchangeable heads, one helmeted & one human. His helmet sculpt is extremely well done, with the jaig eyes above the visor, and rangefinder on the side of the helmet. (This is extremely flimsy however & could be snapped if pushed hard enough when swapping the heads.)
Assembly wise, I found this figure rather difficult to put together & at times was afraid of snapping some parts, particularily the hands which are thinned out at the wrist, and the rangefinder on the helmet. As with the other statues in this range, Rex comes with magnets in his feet, which enable him to be attached to the base included.
Overall rating: 8/10
Commander Cody is the Clone Commander of the 212th Attack Batallion, led by Obi-Wan Kenobi during the Clone Wars, he is perhaps my favourite of the 3 statues, however at the same time, he is also the one I found the most faults with. His physical stance depicts him standing proudly, aiming his rifle. He is holding the rifle by the barrel on the bottom. This is one of the many problems with this statue, when removed from the packaging, the barrel is attached by a very thin & flimsy piece of plastic, which, like with Rex’s rangefinder, is extremely prone to snapping. Other parts on this statue that could be easily broken include the antennas on both his helmet & shoulder armour, the latter of which I broke myself when removing this statue from it’s packaging. It is very hard to reattach & may require some trimming to get it back in place. For the price of these statues, I would expect fragile parts such as these to be made to a higher standard. On the plus side, he is nicely weathered, has perhaps the best looking stance of the 3 Clones & has a superb alternate head sculpt which pays particular detail to Cody’s scar. There is also some nice texture to the hair, which Captain Rex was lacking due to his clean shaven, blonde do.
Overall rating: 8.5/10
(Had it not been for the aesthetic value of this statue, he would have received a much lower mark due to the amount of fragile parts, however once displayed, Cody looks the best of all 3 statues, which boosts his grade.)
Commander Gree serves under Jedi Generals Yoda & Luminara Unduli, and leads the 41st Elite Legion. Gree is probably my least favoured of these 3 characters, compared to the other Clones, his pose is a little boring & minimal. He is posed on one knee, crouching, with one arm draping over his left knee, the other holding his rifle in an upright position. Compared to Cody & Rex, he is much smaller thanks to his stance, and because of this, seems to deliver less value for money, on a positive note, he has no fragile parts like Cody & Rex do, and has some nice modifications to his armour, making this Clone Commander very aesthetically pleasing. He has a holster attached to his right leg with a Blaster pistol identical to Rex’s slotted inside, however this can not be removed & placed in Gree’s hand. He also has a bandolier strap attached to his torso, which is also not removable. He is also unable to hold his rifle in any other pose besides the upright position thanks to his hands being in an open stance. On the plus side, he is probably the easiest & most secure to stand thanks to his pose. His alternate head features Gree’s trademark double mohawk haircut, and as with Cody, there is some nice detailing in the hair. His armour is also thoroughly weathered to give a battle worn look to the statue.
Overall rating 7/10
BONUS STATUE: Clone Trooper with Jet Back Pack
The idea of a buildable statue makes the price tag of these 3 statues a little easier to swallow, as you are basically getting 4 statues for the price of 3. This Trooper is a nice addition to the existing Clone line up & compliments the others nicely. What I found interesting about this statue is that it shares what seems to be the same pose as the exclusive Commander Fox statue, albeit without the specialized helmet & command kama. His stance is that of a Trooper in the midst of battle, with his rifle held out in front of him by one hand, unfortunately this makes the statue harder to stand without the help of his magnetic base. The Jet pack included has a magnet which allows it to be attached to the Troopers back. I was hoping for a plug in/clip on method, as utilized with Hasbro’s 3 & ¾” Action Figures that include Jet Packs, the magnet makes the Jet pack looser & not as stable as a clip on feature. Visually, this Clone is definitley up there with Commander Cody as one of the best of the set, however the lack of an alternate head, magnetic Jet Pack & failure to stand lose this statue some marks, otherwise, he would have scored the same as Commander Cody from a visual standpoint.
Overall rating: 8/10
Overall, I am thrilled to have added these items to my collection. Being in the UK, and having to buy these from a store that most likely imports them made the price rather inflated. At £39.99 a pop, these don’t really feel like good value for money, however I was eager to get them & the addition of a fourth statue included for “free” made it easier to make the purchase. The size of the statues also made the price point appear somewhat high & the amount of fragile & breakable pieces included such as Blaster barrels, rangefinders & antennas disappointed me as I would have expected better quality for the price. I also encountered some difficulty with the assembly, as each of the statues requires you to clip the body parts together, I found these (in particular the torsos of each Clone) to be very tight & hard to assemble. I reccomend to anyone who has just bought or is thinking of buying these statues to take great care when assembling them, and maybe even running some of the parts under hot water to soften them up when putting them together, making the process much easier. In all honesty, had I known these statues would probably have been reduced in my local store, I would have waited till then to purchase them as I do not think the £39.99 price point is at all reasonable for what you get. I do not know if this price differs in the USA or any other country, but I would seriously consider staying well clear of paying a high price for these unless you suspect they will not stick around long & want to grab them before they go (which I foolishly did.)
The moral of this story is, impulse purchases do not always guarantee satisfaction, although to give credit where it is due, these statues look pretty damn awesome when displayed!
Thanks for reading.