When Hasbro announced their plans for the Star Wars 40th Anniversary figure line, I was pretty excited to get my hands on the vintage-inspired carded figures. While I have not gotten those yet, I did manage to find something else in the store today that is totally awesome: The Legacy Pack. This is the only way to get the Darth Vader figure on the vintage cardback, and if you were on the fence, don't be. It is great.
First off: the packaging of all this made me cringe to have to open it. Made up to look like the classic Early Bird certificate, it has trowback style art, the superb 40th Anniversary design in the corner, and a window to see the Dark Lord of the Sith inside. The back offers a glimpse of the other of the "First 12" figures that will also fit on the base included, with bright and vibrant art. The vintage style cardback for the Vader figure is a pretty faithful recreation of the original card, way thicker, which I appreciate. I was worried about how flimsy they may be. The Star Wars logo is a little off center because of the tab punch, but the rest is straight vintage-Kenner style right down to the Kenner logo on the card. The original art looks awesome, I only wish that the back of the card was 12-back style as well, but it still looks pretty great.
The stand itself is very easy to put together, just a couple snaps and putting the cardboard in place. The backdrop is reversible, both showing off more vintage style art modeled after the Kenner figure stand and Early Bird certificate. I will be keeping mine with the figure art.
As much as it pained me to do so, this is a new Vader sculpt, so I went ahead and opened it. And this figure is way, way better than the original Vader 6-inch. But it still has some issues. First is positives. Gone is the removeable helmet that would never stay on the other version. Since this is based off his look in A New Hope, it makes sense. But even if it wasn't I would hope they learned their lesson on that one. The cape is sown into the shoulders which makes the cape easier to drape around the figure. The legs are not as rubbery either, so he does not do the splits if you touch him. I still hate how big the cape is though. This new material is very malleable, and easier to shape around Vader, but it still looks way to long and if you close it around the figure he looks like a cloth triangle with a Vader head on top of it. The star of the show is the helmet sculpt. Right down to the red tint in the eyes, it is sheer perfection if you ask me. Overall, a vast improvement over the first offering, but not 100% perfect.
Of course, now I will be getting the other figures for sure as they are released. Look for The Legacy Pack and the first five figures in stores now if you can find them, with the other 6 in releasing in June.