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Princess Leia Organa (Hoth)

SWV: Empire Strikes Back
by yo go re

Star Wars has always telegraphed its characters with their costumes. And you can even track the progress of Han and Leia's relationship thanks entirely to the costume department.

Princess Leia Organa was one of the Rebel Alliance's greatest leaders, fearless on the battlefield and dedicated to ending the tyranny of the Empire. In the battle on Hoth, Leia helped evacuate rebel forces as Darth Vader and his fleet descended upon the rebel base.

When we first meet Leia, she's a teenager wearing her official princess robes; the only other thing she wears in the first movie is the ceremonial dress at the end - both of them pure white. In Empire, we start with this white outfit, but at Bespin she gets some color for the first time in the series: a red dress with a white shawl, showing that she's warming up to Han, but is still trying to maintain her cool exterior. Oop, but then Vader shows up, so it's "no time for love, Dr. Jones" and she's back into these clothes for the escape. She dresses as Boushh to rescue Han, gets clothes she didn't choose, then Rebel Camo, and finally the dress the Ewoks made for her. Even in the new trilogy, she never goes back to wearing white again. Therefore, we can deduce that Han and Leia had sex for the first time in the Millennium Falcon on their way from Tatooine to Endor. Thank you for coming to my TED Talk.

It's no surprise that the majority of this figure is the same as the Target exclusive - she was wearing the same thing in the movie, so there is absolutely no point in resculpting/remolding what's there. The new pieces include the shins, because she's wearing her snow boots, and a new left forearm, because there's some piece of equipment on there that was absent on Bespin. It's hard to tell if the hands are new; they probably could have gotten away with just painting them pink or white as the situation requires. She does have her cute quilted vest, though, which honestly makes this snow bunny look work a lot better than the streamlined Bespin appearance. One note, though? The boots should be wedge heels, not flats.

The head is also a new piece. "Bespin Escape" Leia had her dinner party hair-loopies, while this one still has the more practical braid-halo. Her likeness remains outstanding, and would look equally at home shooting at Snowtroopers, performing routine building maintenance, or fending off unwanted sexual harassment in the corridors. A princess' work is never done!

Leia has plentiful articulation, with joints at the ankles, knees, thighs, hips, waist, wrists, elbows, shoulders, neck, and head. It's not like Leia is known for her combat acrobatics or anything, but when in doubt, more articulation is better than less articulation. Maybe she needs to run for the ship, or get in a fistfight with Chewbacca. It's your toy, use it to tell any story you want. Heck, give her a lightsaber, and beat The Last Jedi to the punch by 37 years!

The figure does not come with a lightsaber. Instead, you get your choice of a DH-17 pistol (aka the standard Rebel blaster) for times of war, or her welding torch and goggles for times of peace. In the film she just held the goggles up to her face while she was working, but here the strap is extended so you can slip them onto her head. Judging by the Hot Toys release of this costume, the welder should have more paint and a coiled cord that connects to her vest for some reason, but it's not that visible in the movie, so who cares?

The exclusive Bespin Escape Leia was a decent placeholder, but as far as snow outfits go, this one is the real deal. She looks ready for a day on the slopes followed by some hot chocolate!

-- 02/16/19

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