1998 - 2008: Hasbro Star Wars Dolls, Part Two

1998

Series 8

Electronic Darth Vader, 13.5 inch talking doll by Hasbro, 1998

Here is my favourite Darth Vader doll ever made. This is the Electronic Darth Vader made in 1998 which is a talking doll with two buttons on the back for playing sounds. One button makes the lightsaber sound effects and the other plays dialogue from the film:

Left button:
1) You don't know the power of the Dark Side! (breathing)
2) Help me take this mask off. (breathing)
3) Let me look at you with my own eyes.
4) Now go my son.

Right button:
1) Lightsaber opens and hums
2) Lightsaber battle
3) Lightsaber closing
The interesting thing about how Hasbro made the Right button work is that to hear the 2nd and 3rd lightsaber sounds you need to press the button before the 1st sound finishes playing, which makes this a very cool interactive toy!

As if that wasn't awesome enough, Hasbro also made Darth Vader's helmet removable in two pieces to reveal Anakin Skywalker! The costume is also perfect with lots of detail. I especially like the sculpting of the gloves which are attached as the doll's hands, and can swivel to allow some different poses. Hasbro went all out on this one! Oddly enough the packaging was very simple and seemed to miss out on showing off how awesome this doll really was. The box was also too short for the doll so the legs were bent to fit it in the box (shown below).

 Here is a closer look at the removable mask. The helmet comes off separately from the mask.



It seems odd that a more impressive display box was not used for this awesome 13.5 inch doll, especially as it is well known that many collectors like to display their figures unopened in mint condition. As this 13.5 inch doll is a tad taller than the actual box, the Dark Lord of the Sith was packaged with his legs bent so that he would fit inside, which made him look quite scrunched up and not very imposing at all! If ever there was a doll to leave unopened in the box, this would have been the one to do it with. Recently I noticed that the shiny fabric on the arms and legs of this doll has begun to break down, so that if it is touched the surface of the fabric cracks. That's a real bummer! If you have one of these mint in the box I would suggest you leave it there. Strange to think that this doll is now over 15 years old, seems like I just bought it yesterday!

The back of the box shows the final series of 12 inch dolls to be released in 1997 and is dated 1998. The side of the box says "Action Collection". Note the Kenner logo in the botom right corner. At some point during 1998 the Kenner logo was dropped from packaging and relpaced with the Hasbro logo, marking the end of an era within the toy industry. The Kenner logo would not be seen again on Star Wars packaging until sometime around 2010.

Here is a comparision of Hasbro's 13.5 inch Darth Vader with the 1st series 12 inch Darth Vader from 1996. All of the plastic parts for the costume of the 12 inch doll were resculpted in the larger size to suit the 13.5 inch doll, so there are no reused costume parts between these two dolls. The lightsaber for the 13.5 inch doll is also longer than the 12 inch doll and has an area on the handle that has been painted silver. This 13.5 inch Darth Vader with removable helmet was also released in a "Sith Lords" two pack set with a doll of Darth Maul that was "cut in half". I'm not certain if the Darth Vader in the two pack set also has the talking feature, or if that is unique to the above "Electronic Darth Vader" doll.

Star Wars Masterpiece Edition Anakin Skywalker, 13.5 inch doll by Hasbro, 1998

Hasbro used their 13.5 inch Darth Vader doll body to make a special edition Anakin Skywalker doll, shown above next to the 12 inch Ben Kenobi doll for size comparison. This doll was sold at book stores with an exclusive book "Anakin Skywalker: The Story of Darth Vader" and came in a specialy designed package. This doll and book set originally retailed for around $80.00 in 1998, but has since come down in value quite considerably. I was fortunate to find this doll second hand with a complete outfit. A lightsaber was not included with the doll and book set.

Luke, Leia, & Han, 12 inch dolls, 3 pack set by Hasbro, 1998

This set is from the "Action Collection" and includes Luke Skywalker in Tatooine outfit with poncho, Princess Leia in Boushh disguise (1st variation), and Han Solo in Besbin outfit (1st variation). The dolls came in a large box that had the Kenner logo on the back and is dated 1998.


This side of the box shows a different picture of Princess Leia than the back of the box.

All three of these dolls introduced new head sculpts for these characters. A Luke doll similar to this version, but with a different head sculpt, was reissued separately without his poncho, and it had a button on it's back to control the lightsaber slashing action.

This version of Princess Leia in Boushh disguise, shown above in the middle, was only available in this three pack set. Hasbro also made a different version of Princess Leia in Boushh disguise (2nd variation) that was sold with Han Solo in Carbonite (1st variation). The costume for that Leia doll was quite different from the one shown above. For example it had grey boots instead of brown, and the cape did not have dark brown on the inside (I believe it also had a different head sculpt).

A doll of Han Solo in Besbin outfit (2nd variation) was also reissued separately, but without his jacket. That version also came with a Han Solo in Carbonite (2nd variation) that was very different from the one that the Princess Leia came with. Confused yet?

Basically this Star Wars doll collection has at least two versions of all three of these characters based on these same outfits!

Here is the back view showing Leia's backpack and cape.

Above are two different blasters. The one shown on the bottom fires missles and came in the three-pack set with Luke Tatooine, Leia Boushh, and Han Bespin. The top blaster does not fire missles and came with the Stormtrooper. It's interesting to note that both are slightly different. For example the thickness of the trigger guard on each is quite different, as are some other details. Click on the image for a closer look! This certainly shows how much attention to detail Hasbro put into this 12 inch series.

Here are the two blasters that came with the three pack set, and the missles that they fire (which I haven't removed from the package yet). Below are the binoculars that were also included.


At this point there were at least seven Luke Skywalker dolls in the Hasbro Star Wars collection. They are (L to R) Luke from series 1 in Tatooine outfit, Luke from series 2 in Bespin outfit, Luke from series 3 in X-Wing Pilot outfit, Luke in Stormtrooper outfit (not shown), Luke in Cerimonial outfit, Luke in Hoth Gear (not shown) and Luke with Tatooine outfit with poncho. The Luke with poncho shown here was sold in the above three-pack set. His beige poncho covers most of his costume so I folded it and tucked it behind him in order to show both Tatooine outfits.  

Hasbro made quite a few other 12 inch Luke dolls, including a Jedi Luke in black outfit, Luke with a back pack holding Yoda, Luke wearing his Endor outfit sold with a Speederbike vehicle, Luke in Stormtooper outfit with Trash Compactor Monster tenticle, and Luke with Lightsaber slashing action, just to name a few! Hasbro also made a special edition of Luke to mark the "100th figure" of the Habro Star Wars 12 inch collection.

Series 9

This set was the first series of the "Episode 1" movie characters and was included in the "Action Collection". Dolls were packaged in boxes with a red design on a black background. (Packaging for the later series was changed to green designs on a black background.) The Hasbro logo is used on all packaging from this point onward. This series from 1998 is the first time any of the Episode 1 characters were marketed as 12 inch dolls.

Jar Jar Binks
Qui-Gon Jinn
Darth Maul 


Hasbro and Lucasfilm thought that Jar Jar was going to be a huge hit with kids so the character was marketed heavily, but as we all now know, he was not as big a hit as they hoped! In fact it was almost the opposite, with many fans hating the character. Jumbo sized plush Jarr Jarr Binks dolls, interactive toys, and other Jar Jar products, including this 12 inch doll, lingered on toy store shelves well after the movie was out of theatres. I eventually bought this one on clearance. Some other characters that were later released - such as Watto and various droids (robots) - had the same problem, but Darth Maul, Qui-Gon Jinn, and Ben Kenobi (McGregor) items sold quickly.

Here is the back view of the Jar Jar 12 inch doll. Even though I don't care much for this character, I find Hasbro did an excellent job on this doll. I like the detail of the costume and Jar Jar's ears. The painted detail of the face and arms is also well done.


Hasbro gave Qui-Gon rooted hair which I think really suits this character. They did an awesome job too, adding a ponytail on the back. 

 Hasbro also did a super job on Darth Maul's head. Click on the pictures to see a larger version.

Series 10

The second series of "Episode 1" characters in the "Action Collection", made in 1998. These were some of the smaller characters so they were packaged in smaller boxes with a red design on a black background. Anakin was packaged kneeling which looked rather odd.

Anakin Skywalker (as a boy)
R2-A6 (green R2 droid)
Pit Droids 2 pack set

Here is Anakin Skywalker shown next to the 12 inch Jar jar binks for size comparison. This Anakin doll uses a new doll body. A variation of this doll was later sold with racing gear, and was packaged in the larger 12 inch box.

Series 11

This was the first "Power of the Force" set for the 12 inch dolls. Boxes have green designs on a black background, made in 1998.

Luke Skywalker in Stormtrooper outfit with Dianoga tenticle (ie: Trash Compactor Monster tenticle)
Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alec Guinness) with glow in the Dark Lightsaber (this doll was sold without the brown robe)
Ponda Baba Known as "Walrus Man" to fans in the 70s and 80s. He comes with a removable arm...ewww!
 
The box that I have for Ponda Baba has an error on it. The sticker with the name of the character was attached to the back of the box rather than the front.

Here is Ponda Baba with his arm attached, minding his own business. Moments later a pesky kid and an old man come along...

And his arm falls on the floor...yucka!

 Here's a closer look at the arm socket.

Here is the arm with the doll joint attachment at the end. The jacket sleeve attaches with Velcro. The gun is removable from the doll's hand but I've left the cellophane wrapped around it (so that the gun doesn't get lost).

1999

Series 12
In 1999 Hasbro did a special series of Princess Leia dolls aimed at Barbie doll collectors. The box for the doll below says that there are three dolls in the series but I only know of two of them. The triangular shaped boxes were specially designed for this series with a flap on the cover.

Leia in Ceremonial outfit, special edition box, Barbie doll body type
Leia in Slave outfit with R2-D2, special edition box, Barbie doll type body, R2-D2 has serving tray accessory

Here is the box with the front flap opened.

A view of the back of the box showing a window to look at Princess Leia's hair.


This is the only Barbie type doll I have in my collection. Hasbro made other dolls of Princess Leia in the 12 inch series that have a different doll body with many joints for posing the figure, therefore making them more of a boys type of doll. This Ceremonial Leia doll is not very pose-able and was made as a girl's doll, however many male Star Wars collectors also bought this doll to include in their 12 inch Star Wars doll collections.

Here are the shoes that come with the Ceremonial Leia doll. They fall off very easily.

This doll also came with a doll stand, unlike any of the other dolls from the 12 inch series that were previously offered. I left the stand in the package, shown above.

Series 13

Third series of "Episode 1" characters in the "Action Collection", made in 1999. Dolls were packaged in boxes with a red design on a black background.

Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor)
Watto
Battle Droid

Here is Obi-Wan out of the box.

This doll has a ponytail made from rooted doll hair, as well as a long section of braided hair on the right side of the doll's head.

Series 14

Forth series of "Episode 1" characters in the "Action Collection", made in 1999. Dolls were packaged in boxes with a red design on a black background.

Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson)
Qui-Gon Jinn with screaming face
Battle Droid Commander

This is an awesome doll of Mace Windu. Hasbro got this one perfect!

2000

Series 15

This may have been (?) the first "Power of the Jedi" set for the 12 inch dolls. Boxes have green designs on a black background with an illustration of Ben Kenobi on the front, made in 2000.

Bossk
IG-88 (This was not a re-issue of the 1980 Kenner large size figure, it's a completely different sculpt.)
4-Lom

Hasbro made fans wait quite awhile for Bossk to join the collection. Thankfully Hasbro did an awesome job on this doll and included many details in the costume and sculpting. The only drawback to this doll is that his outfit is not removable. The ends of the sleeves are attached to the arm. I also find the feet could have been a tad bigger and the legs a touch taller. In any case, this is an awesome 12-inch doll!

Oddly enough, Bossk was the last doll I bought for this collection new from the store. Since then any additions I've made to this collection have been bought second hand at nostalgia shows. I found this series to be quite challenging, and at times frustrating, to collect. There were many special sets that were only available in the United States which, at the time, I had no hope of getting. Also, many individually packaged dolls were repackaged with other dolls or creatures: therefore I was never certain if I should by the individual dolls, as I didn't want to end up buying doubles. Looking back on the collection now it's easy to put things in order, but at the time there was no way to know what was available when, so it was really hit and miss... and all to often I found that I was missing out on really awesome dolls, so I stopped collecting.

Today the value of most of these dolls have come down due to the quantity of 12 inch Star Wars dolls on the market from Hasbro and several other toy companies. So if you're a fan of the Hasbro series, now is a good time to start collecting again! These dolls can be found in abundance for as low as $10 to $20 a piece with the box. Look for them on e-bay, at nostalgia shows and stores that sell second hand collectables!

Other 12 inch Hasbro Star Wars dolls from this collection

Here are some of the other dolls in this series that I know of. These were made between 1996 and 2006. This list is far from complete!

Original Star Wars Movies
 
4-Lom
At-ST Driver, blue box
Biker Scout with Speeder Bike
C-3PO in triangle shaped box with book
Cantina Band Aliens, each with assorted instruments
Chewbacca in Chains
Chewbacca, plastic sculpted fur (I find this one looks really bad!)
Chewbacca, plastic sculpted fur, (not as bad as the above, but still a bit off) "Revenge of the Sith" box
Death Star Droid (silver C-3PO type droid from original movie)
Death Star Trooper (evil guy in a black uniform)
Dengar, blue box
Electronic Darth Vader and Ben Kenobi, 2 pack set
Electronic C-3PO and R2-D2 with dessert damage look, 2 pack set
Electronic Boba Fett
Emperor and Royal Guard, 2 pack set
Emperor -individual box, may have a different head sculpt (?), "Revenge of the Sith" box
Garindan (spy with long snout from original Star Wars film ), in blue box, 2003
Geamorian Guard (Pig Guard)
Han Solo, A New Hope, lever to control arm, blue box (this is the worst head sculpt ever!)
Han Solo in Trenchcoat
Han Solo and Luke as Stormtroopers, 2 pack set, black box
Han Solo as Stormtrooper - single green box
Han Solo with Carbonite block
Imperial Officer (evil guy in a grey uniform)
Jawas, A New Hope, 2-pack set, blue box (these are large size action figures, not dolls)
Lando Calrissian, Skiff Guard outfit, blue box
Leia in Boushh diguise with Carbonite block
Leia in Slave outfit with R2-D2, 2 pack set
Leia with Chain (in Slave outfit), individual green box
Leia in Hoth outfit
Liea with Speeder Bike, blue box
Luke with Speeder Bike
Luke, Jedi outfit with Bibfortuna, 2 pack set
Luke, Jedi outfit - single box
Luke, Special Edition 100th 12 inch Star Wars figure in large box with various costumes and accesories
Luke in Tatooine outfit, no poncho, single box, different head sculpt from series 1 Luke
Obi-Wan Kenobi, (Alec Guinness) "A New Hope", in blue box
R5-D4 (red R2-D2 style droid from original Star Wars)
Sandtrooper with Patrol Dewback creature
Stormtrooper, Action Figure Kit (doll body with pieces of armour to assemble), green box
Wedge and Biggs, 2 pack set
Wicket the Ewok (I found this one was very poorly sculpted)
Zuckuss

1990s Trillogy

Amidala in red outfit, spedial edition box, barbie doll body type
Amidala (fashion doll with various outfits)
Amidala, white outfit, blue box
Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen)
Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), Attack of the Clones, blue box
Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), "Ultimate Villain" special set in large box "Revenge of the Sith", comes with pieces for Darth Vader costume
Barriss Offee (Female Jedi)
Boss Nass
C-3PO from Episode 1 before he was completed (without his gold armour)
Chancellor Valorum and Coruscant Guard, 2 pack set
Clone Trooper (various colour variations)
Count Dooku, blue box
Darth Maul with Sith Speeder (this Darth Maul doll is different from the others that were issued)
Electronic Qui-Gon Jinn
Electronic Talking Darth Maul
Electronic Talking Jar Jar Binks (This was a very popular toy... Not!)
Electronic TC14 - silver C-3PO droid from Episode 1
General Grevious
Geonsian Warrior
Captain Tarpals with Kaadu (Gungan warrior with mount)
Jango Fett (large box with many costume pieces)
Ki-Adi-Mundi (Male Jedi), blue box
Mace Windu without brown robe, in a blue box
Obi-Wan Kenobi, beige outfit, longer sculpted hair, blue box
Pit Droids, 2-pack
Ploo-Kloon
Qui-Gon and Queen Amadala (burgundy dress) "Defence of Naboo", 2 pack set
R2-A6 (green R2 droid), small red box
Sebula
Shaak Ti -Revenge of the Sith (female character that I've never heard of ???)
Sith Lords 2 pack set, Darth Vader with removable helmet and Darth Maul "cut in half"
Super Battle Droid (Attack of the Clones)
Watto
Zam Wesell - female character in purple outfit, blue box (never heard of this character before????)
 
Trilogy Collection, 2004
Boba Fett
Chewbacca
Luke Skywalker, Tatooine outfit
Stormtrooper

2008

Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Remote Control R2-D2, made by Hasbro, 2008 

Here is Hasbro's remote control R2-D2 next to a 12 inch Luke for size comparison. Although this R2-D2 toy is not officially part of the 12 inch doll series, it's the same size as the R2-D2 figure that was made in 1997 for the 12 inch collection, which is likely no coincidence. The legs on this R2 are not movable but when he is roaming about his head turns and the lights blink. He also makes R2-D2 beeping sounds.

This toy is part of the marketing for Clone Wars, as shown on the box. The back of the box is shown below. There are only two buttons on the controller, one that makes R2 go forwards or backwards, and one that makes him talk. There is also an on/off switch on the back of R2. You can't steer him left or right, he just goes where he wants to. Below you can see the wheels on the bottom of the toy. Playing with this R2-D2 is a great way to waste an entire afternoon!

 
Here is a comparison of three R2-D2 large size figures. The first one is the original Kenner figure made in 1978, the middle one was made by Hasbro in 1997, and the last one is Hasbro's Remote Control R2-D2 from 2008. Below is the bottom showing the wheels of each figure.


Giant Size Yoda, by Jakks Pacific, 2015


Here is a very cool Star Wars toy! A giant Yoda action figure surprisingly not made by Hasbro, but instead by Jakks Pacific. I've shown it next to Hasbro's 12 inch Luke doll for size comparison. Yoda is actually an action figure rather than a doll, but he comes with a cloth robe so I thought I'd include him here. I like that they gave this giant Yoda a fabric robe, unfortunately though the robe is made with a rather cheep, flimsy material that had been very crudely finished along the hem which, for me, diminishes the over all quality of the figure. The sculpting is exceptionally well done, as is the painting, and the figure itself is quite solid so the toy seems to be well made. As such the cheep fabric robe really is quite a draw back. If only they had used a nicer material! None the less, this is still an awesome toy!

Giant sized action figures have become quite a trend since 2006 when Mattel released a 3 foot tall Superman figure as part of the action figure line for Superman Returns. Since then I've seen Star Wars, Ninja Turtles, Wrestling and Power Rangers characters being offered in the 3 foot size. This Yoda is 18 inches tall, which is in scale with the 3 foot tall Star Wars figures. The others in this set include Darth Vader, Stormtrooper, and R2-D2. I've also seen Han Solo, though he's not pictured on this box, so I'm not certain what company made the figure. Below is the back of the box with the other characters listed. I'd collect all of these in a heartbeat if only I had space for them! The giant Darth Vader is especially awesome!

In addition to showing the other available characters, the back of the box says that this giant Yoda figure has 7 points of articulation, but in fact it has nine: the neck (1), both arms move back and forth at the shoulder (2,3), both hands turn at the wrist (4,5), both legs move at the hip (6,7) and both feet turn at the ankle (8,9). There are no ball joints on this figure though, just basic joints that move back and forth or turn to the side, so the posing options are limited.

This is giant Yoda out of the package. He comes with a lightsaber which is awesome, but it's much smaller than the one the giant Darth Vader comes with which seems odd when placed side by side. ...Poor Yoda, his lightsaber is tiny! Hee hee! :) Still, this is a very cool Yoda figure! It's the sort of toy we could only dream about back in the 1980's! Kid's back then had to be content with the rubber Yoda puppet, by Kenner, as their large-size figure! How times have changed!!!


Text & Photos © Mike Artelle 2010, 2013, 2016

4 comments:

  1. It's really too bad that Kenner didn't use a better material that would last long through the years for the 1998 Electronic Darth Vader.

    It is a very well done piece in the "Reboot" line of the mid to late 1990's and is unfortunate that even MISB versions are affected by this defect.

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