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SWVI: Return of the Jedi
by yo go re

We've said it before: galaxy-spanning, heavily military and industrialized empire, held to a deadlock with a bunch of losers using dilapidated hand-me-down equipment, and the deadlock is only broken when one side enlists the help of stone age teddy bears. And people complain about the prequels as being dumb?

A friend of the Rebels, Wicket W. Warrick is a loyal curious and adventurous Ewok scout who meets Princess Leia in the woods of Endor. He becomes her friend and he encourages his tribe to help the Rebel Alliance fight the Empire. Wicket's trust and belief in Princess Leia brings the Rebels the allies they need to destroy the second Death Star and end the Empire's cruel control of the galaxy.

That bio is from the 2004 "Original Trilogy Collection" release of Wicket, not this figure - this is part of the Vintage Collection line, so there's no specific text on the card, just a general blather about the movie and toys. That was the same mold that had been kicking around since 1998, so an update was much needed.

The face is the most important part of the sculpt: there are only so many ways to sculpt an Ewok body, but if the face doesn't look like Wicket, we Star Wars fans are going to start flipping tables. He has the buck teeth, the puffy cheeks, and the lifeless eyes... black eyes, like a doll's eyes. No creepy digital blinking for him!

The figure stands 2¼" tall, which seems appropriately small (Warwick Davis was 2' 11" at the time). The body looks to have the same proportions as the movie costume, though it's very "hippy." Big birthing hips on this tiny male Ewok. Okay. He's also sculpted with a tiny little butt. He's wearing his leathery orange hood, which is sculpted with all the appropriate wrinkles and stitches. He has distinct finger- and toenails, and pads sculpted on the bottoms of his feet. There's grayish tan paint on the ears, face and tummy, and white for the teeth.

Since this is part of the black-carded Vintage Collection, it has really good articulation. Certainly as much articulation as you can pack into a realistic toy of this size! He has a balljointed head, swivel/hinge shoulders, hips, and ankles, and swivel wrists. There really isn't much you can do with him, but the joints are there when you want 'em.

Wicket comes with a 3" long spear that he can hold in either hand (or, thanks to his articulation, in both hands). It's sculpted as a stone tip tied to a wooden shaft, and three different colors of paint.

When this figure was first under development, he was going to be one half of a two-pack with Princess Kneesa from the Ewoks cartoon. That didn't happen (for whatever reason), and she was eventually shuffled off to that Toys Я Us Ewok five-pack, but there's at least one remnant of that idea in the packaging; or, technically, two. In the second season of the cartoon, the characters were redesigned, and Wicket got a green hood and a "Belt of Honor" (basically a Boy Scout sash for badges). The figure's hood is removable, and the set includes a green hood and a tan bag that can be placed on him, instead.

Wicket, like most worthwhile Star Wars toys in the past few years, was nearly impossible to find. And even if you could find him, he wasn't worth the $10+ that the Vintage figures were selling for, so getting him required a perfect storm of availability and a sale. And yes, the toy is good, but it sure was a hassle to acquire one.

-- 06/01/13

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