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Ewoks: Wicket & Logray

SWVI: Return of the Jedi
by yo go re

I only had a handful of Star Wars toys as a kid. A Darth Vader, an R2-D2, a Weequay that someone found in their yard and gave to my grandmother to give to me... no, seriously. One of her friends found it in the grass, and I somehow inherited it. Anyway, I also had Chief Chirpa, the gray Ewok. Loved that little guy. And while I never got the chance to get the updated version of Chirpa, my collection isn't exactly hurting for Ewoks today.

Logray and the Ewoks stand amazed as their newfound idol, protocol droid C-3PO, begins to "magically" levitate as Luke Skywalker uses the power of the Force.

These little guys were released in a two-pack in 1998, as part of the Power of the Force 2 line. In fact, if you remember the "Freeze Frame" figures? That's what these were. They even predate the Episode I toys by a year, which makes them almost depressingly old. A sizeable chunk of our audience was barely forming coherant thoughts when these were released. [so what? you're barely forming coherant thoughts right now, smart guy --ed.]

Logray was the ewoks' medicine man, recognizable mainly by the fact that he was wearing some kind on pointy animal skull on his head. He was overseeing the group that planned to sacrifice Luke, Han and the others. If you get into his "Expanded Universe" history, then he was a strict bully who was dabbling in animal sacrifice and other dark magic. He was banished after the Battle of Endor, and put a curse on the village, but his successor convinced the Golden God (C-3PO) to lift it. When you get to the point where you're writing backstories for the freaking Ewoks, it's time to consider that maybe you've already written enough.

Return of the Jedi wasn't Logray's only appearance: he also showed up in the Caravan of Courage Ewok movie, and in the spin-off Ewoks cartoon. Funny thing is, he looked entirely different in each incarnation. Like, truly, vastly different. The only thing they all had in common was the bird-hat. This figure's based on the movie, of course, since that's the official "G-canon" version of the character.

Logray is tall for an ewok, so the figure stands 2½" tall. His hat and medicine pouch are removable pieces, if you want to have a tiny naked teddy bear hanging around. The sculpt is good, making Logray look more like a real animal than a guy in a costume. His pudgy little body is covered in fur, and his nails (claws?) are smooth. His ears are pointy, rather than rounded, and his face seems a bit fat compared to the movie stills.

Still, the biggest problem is the paint. Logray is tan with light vertical stripes, which the figure matches, but in color only - the actual pattern bears only the slightest resemblence to the real suit. He has four stripes on his chest rather than two, the marking on his face don't line up at all, and his legs are way too harsh - not to mention that the lines don't even match up on either side of a joint. This type of thing might have flown a decade ago, but I'd hope today they'd take more care.

Logray's only accessory (that he doesn't wear) is his "staff of power," the ceremonial stick that helped him channel his Force abilities. Hey, if he was force-sensitive and started using dark "magic," does that make him a Sith? Anyway, despite being molded from soft, easily warped plastic, Darth Logray's staff is detailed well - the details are a bit large, but they're all there. The head of the staff seemed to be made from spinal bones and topped with feathers, and that's what we get here. The churi bird skull on his head is done nicely, as well, and the small details on his bag are especially impressive.

The other Ewok in this set is pretty much the ewok - Wicket W. Warrick. He's the one you think of when you think "ewok." He assaulted Princess Leia after she was thrown from her speeder bike and probably had a concussion, then took her home to feed the tribe. Oh, don't be fooled by their supposedly "friendly" actions: those nasty little carnivores were probably going to sacrifice her to their golden god as soon as they were done devouring her friends. Okay, so that's not quite an accurate recap, but Wicket was still the star of the show.

Wicket is a scant 2¼" tall, and even more adorable than Logray. He's mostly brown, with grayish white on his face and chest. His orangey leather hood can be slipped off his head to better show off his cute little head and big round ears. His sculpt is just as good as Logray's, and he doesn't even have the paint problems. His sole accessory is a spear a full inch taller than he is. The body looks like wood, and the tip is painted silver to simulate stone. It, like Logray's staff, is molded from overly soft plastic that's prone to warping, and both ewoks move at the Big Five.

There's a comedian who has a bit about how if you can name a male porn star - other than Ron Jeremy - then you watch too much porn. The same can sort of be said for Star Wars: if you can name an ewok - other than Wicket - then you're a gigantic, irredeemable nerd. But still, that doesn't excuse how ridiculous it is that an ewok would have a first, middle and last name (Wicket Wystri Warrick). This set is a good one, even with its flaws, and who knows when we'll see a newer update?


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