I have been collecting toys for a long time. Of all the various action figure lines I’ve collected throughout the years, I have very few female figures. Why, you may ask? Simply put, I was just never that into them. Of my two favorite childhood toy lines, G.I. Joe and Star Wars, the only consistent female figure in my collection(s) was Princess Leia. You couldn’t have Han and Chewie flying around the backyard in the Falcon and not have Leia there to make sure Han doesn’t get them all killed. This by no means was a sexist agenda, just my childhood action figure preferences.
Fast forward more years than I’d like to remember and the trend continues, but for a few different reasons. The first being that my action figure tastes have gotten far more refined and expensive than they were in the 1980s and 90s, causing me to be very selective with every piece I purchase. In the case of 1/6th scale figures, the companies I tend to buy from hadn’t yet released a female character I was interested in. Also, often the likenesses of actresses have been lacking and less than on par with their male counterparts.
However, when Hot Toys announced they would be releasing a Princess Leia Organa from STAR WARS, I knew that she would be my first female purchase in the 1/6 scale market. The big question was, would they nail the sculpt or release a figure with a closer likeness to Carrie Fisher’s stunt double from THE BURBS?
I’m going to begin with The Good because there really isn’t much Bad with this figure. As I’ve mentioned, I was most concerned with the likeness to a young Carrie Fisher. Hot Toys has once again assuaged my fears by releasing the definitive Princess Leia likeness to date. This is Carrie Fisher as seen in Star Wars. (Side note: I never call the film “A New Hope”. To me the films are STAR WARS, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, and RETURN OF THE JEDI). Every sculpted feature is a perfect representation of Leia, down to the very tiny tips of her earlobes that protrude ever so subtly from beneath her iconic hair buns.
When I first removed the figure from the box I was amazed at how petite and dainty she feels as compared to the male figures. Even the smaller Luke figures — which have reviews coming — seem to tower over Leia. That being said, the underlying body is very sturdy and can be posed to a greater degree of satisfaction than many other 1/6 scale figures. After a bit of futzing, the costume hangs perfectly off the body. From the hood to the flow of the dress around the chest, waist and legs, the costume is impressive, most impressive. I really have had a lot of fun posing and re-posing Leia.
The boots seem to be pleather with a plastic sole that allows for plenty of flexibility. The material also adds to the realistic stress and seams that life size boots would have.
Leia doesn’t change much for most of STAR WARS. For the majority of the film she is in the same outfit with very few accessories, so it’s not surprising that the figure’s release doesn’t come with much. But not all releases need to come with a plethora of accessories. Honestly, I find that the more additions a figure comes with, the more I tend to leave in the box. With Leia that’s not a problem. Aside from a few switch out hands, she comes with the Defender sporting blaster pistol seen during the Tantive IV boarding attack, and an E-11 blaster, the trusty sidearm of the Imperial Stormtrooper. The Sideshow Exclusive also comes with a pretty amazing Tantive IV backdrop that adds miles of galactic awesomeness to the display. Finally, included is the basic grate-like stand released with the majority of the Hot Toys Star Wars figures.
The packaging is your basic black shoe box design with an image of the figure on the front and the design credits and legal mumbo jumbo on the back, as well as the figure photo insert and the plastic tray that holds the figure and all accessories.
I hope you have a lot of time, because this list is going to be… very short. The only real issue I have with this figure is the underlying body. Because of the cut of the dress, at times Leia’s leg and knee joints show. Normally this wouldn’t bother me, but had HT used a sculpted leg with partially hidden joints this would have been a perfect figure for me. Would that have hindered articulation? Maybe a bit, but nothing too drastic.
One last tiny nitpick is the facial expression. I would have liked a little more liveliness to her sculpt as opposed to the straight faced stare. Something that captured Leia’s confidence and arrogance. But again, that is such a small grievance considering how fantastic the actual sculpt came out.
The weird is a new category I’m going to implement with this figure. It’s a feature unique to female figures, and since this is my first one, I’m not certain it will apply to any others, but I have a feeling it may. Whilst futzing with Leia I noticed certain parts of her anatomy were “squishy”, or softer than the other parts. It seems her breasts and glutes, rather than being part of the figures sculpt, are actually separate pieces of the body. Before anyone gets too creeped out by this revelation (if that is even what it is), let me say there is probably a reason behind the squishy, well, behind. In making the breasts and glutes separate from the base body, HT can increase or decrease the size of individual characters’ anatomy without producing an all-new base body. This would work with most female figures that are relatively the same height. For taller female figures such as Captain Phasma or Wonder Woman, a new body will have to be made, but will more than likely use the same method. So yes, it was a bit weird to me at first, but after some thought and a bit of a laugh, it all made sense.
Final score: 9 1/2 out of 10.
Pick this figure up before she’s gone and the aftermarket prices have you auctioning off a kidney of regret. The exclusive from SS is sold out, but you can jump on their wait list. Oftentimes figures become available. Otherwise, BigBadToyStore still has her available for $204.99.
May the 4th Be With You.