Original Trilogy Collection

OTCVINTAGE

Han Solo

Info and Stats
Year:  
2004
MSRP:  
$9.99
Definitive Status:  
Needs Resculpt
 
The sculpt is irredeemable. It will take an all new sculpt to make a definitive version of this item.
Suggested Hasbro Action:  
Resculpt (High Priority)
Grade:  
6/10 Bantha Skulls
 
* Bantha Skull is compensated for any purchases made through these Ebay links.
* Bantha Skull is compensated for any purchases made through these Ebay links.
Review by: Chris
Review date: 01/02/2024

If I had reviewed this figure in 2004, I probably would have given it a 10 out of 10.  This was a darling in the line for a while.  It was once the “definitive” Episode IV Han Solo.  For that reason, I think a lot collector stuck this release in their displays with the mindset that A New Hope Han is “checked off”, and haven’t bothered to take a look at the figure in a while.  Twenty yers later, this figure stacks up so poorly that it’s almost as bad as 2023’s VC281 - Han Solo (zing intended).  By the time TVC 2.0 rolled around, whenever someone would say we have a definitive Episode IV Han Solo, I would give one of those snarky Twitter-esque replies:

Tell me you haven’t looked at the VOTC Han Solo in a while without telling me you haven’t looked at the VOTC Han Solo in a while.

Of course the “tell me while not telling me” quip hadn’t been invented in 2018, so I’m projecting back and saying I would have said that if I had known about it.  You get it.  Even though this VOTC Han Solo was well regarded for many years after its release, it wasn’t really reflected in the market.  I almost wonder if it was an encapsulation of the business aphorism that being too early is worse than being too late.  It’s possible the market wasn’t ready for super articulation when the main line would still fall short of 14 points of articulation on many figures for three more years.  It wasn’t until 2008 when almost everything in main line was super articulated.  For quite a while I was able to snagged VOTC Han Solo figures on the secondary market for $10 shipped.  Now, even though the figure is fairly dated, it will take around $25 with shipping to land one in your collection.

The ways this 2004 Han Solo falls short of 2024 standards are numerous.  Despite having almost all of the points of articulation we get today (minus the thigh swivel), the types of joints used in many places are now considered archaic.  In 2004, we got a ball and socket head, flat plane (i.e. swivel) wrists, flat plane hips, and standard ball jointed wrists.  Today, we will accept nothing lest than a double barbell neck, hinged wrists, barbell hips, and rocker ankles.  Even the types of joints that are at the current standard, lack ideal range of motion.  Neither the ball jointed elbows nor the ball jointed knees bend to a full ninety degrees (okay, so maybe that part is up to 2024 standards - zing intended again).  This all sums to a figure that, while it can be posed, none of the poses look particularly natural.  The result is a bizarre contortion that approximates what a human body could achieve.  Today we expect 3.75” action figures that are virtual anatomical models.

The articulation isn’t the end of the woes for this Han Solo.  If wall thickness is a concern today, it must have been a galderned national emergency in 2004.  So thick is the holster belt, that it forced Hasbro to sculpt a Han with the equivalent of an 18” waist. This figure has DJ Qualls lower body.  Then there’s the head sculpt.  It looks absolutely nothing like Harrison Ford.  In fact, I feel like this is more a tribute to the “small head” Kenner Han Solo variant than an attempt to look like the actor.  Finally there’s the included DL-44 blaster.  It’s archaic.  There’s no trigger guard like we’d expect today, just a void where the tigger would be in order to accommodate the figure’s c-grip (another blast from the past).  Additionally, the accessory is simply molded in black plastic.  Today we’d expect a painted grip, and perhaps some silver dry brushing to indicate a little wear.  Based on what a 10 out of 10 figure is today, I’m giving this a 6 out of 10.  I really want to give it a 5, but I sense there are 5POA figures that we’ve given 5’s to.

One last thing I want to mention is that I feel like we’re in the midst of a Cantina resurgence right now.  The Last Figure Standing finals was down to a pair of Cantina candidates with the Tonnika sisters winning.  I see constant request for some sort of Cantina playset, either grand (HasLab) or small (an alcove).  “Smuggler” Han is quintessential to a Cantina display, and we can’t march into any sort of playset with this VOTC Han Solo as an anchor.

* Bantha Skull is compensated for any purchases made through these Ebay links.
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