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Senate Guard

SWII: Attack of the Clones
by yo go re

Parents, cover your children's ears: it looks like we're working blue today!

Protecting the Galactic Senate and the Chancellor, Coruscant guards represent the Senate's supreme authority and the long tradition of its wise and just rule. Each guard is a highly trained soldier ready to serve and protect.

Guards have supreme authority and are mysterious and imposing in their robes. They are handpicked for their strength, intelligence and loyalty. Coruscant holds more than a trillion inhabitants. Guards have in-depth knowledge of the city and the ability to hunt offenders throughout the maze of streets and skyscrapers in the galactic capital. Guards are also trained to check persons for illegal weapons or devices. Special training enables guards to locate a specific target in the vast amphitheater of the Senate and massive crowds in the city streets.

The Senate Guards were introduced in Episode 2, as obvious precursors to the Emperor's Royal Guards. Yes, their helmets were open in the front and had two feathered crests over the top, but the idea was there. The helmet on this figure is a separate piece that can be pried off, but the head beneath isn't a complete, standalone mold.

The figure is wearing a heavy softgoods robe that comes down lower than his feet. It's fitted around the shoulders, but splits at the elbows so his arms can stil out. Below that, he's wearing a second robe, this one a lighter blue and a lighter, silkier material. This one also extends past his feet, but is more like a complete dress, with just holes for the neck and arms. This guy really likes his layers!

Unfortunately, the body beneath the robes can really get lost in all the fabric. And that's a shame, because it's a pretty good body! The armor worn by a Senate Guard may look ceremonial, but it serves as powerful defense against all types of attacks. This is a minor retooling of the Episode 3 Royal Guard body, which means we still get the fancy Crimson Empire-inspired under-armor. Hooray!

The colors on this figure are darker than the previous release: other than his skin, the lightest color on him is the Williamsburg Blue of his arms and dress, and then it's all downhill from there (chromatically speaking)! The pants and shirt are darker than the arms, the armor is darker than the pants and shirt, and the boot covers and belt are darker than the armor. The protective plate on his left arm is longer than the one on his right - that's new.

In fact, the arms are the only new part of the body, which means they're the only parts that get new articulation. So the Senate Guard has a balljointed head, swivel/hinge shoulders and elbows, swivel gloves and waist, T-crotch, swivel/hinge knees, and no ankles. A bit outdated, honestly, but at least the elbows aren't angled peg joints any more. Since the robes are all softgoods, you can bend and flex him as much as possible without them getting in the way.

Beyond the robes and the removable-ish helmet, the Senate Guard comes with three accessories: the blaster pistol fits in the holster worn against his hip and can stun or vaporize his target; the large, unwieldy rifle may be extremely awkward and mostly for ceremonial purposes, but is extremely powerful; and then there's that favorite of Star Wars guards everywhere, the Force pike.

The Vintage Collection Senate Guard is a nice update of the previous versions of the character, but not quite as good as he could have been. In that way, he's like several of the Ep.2 Vintage toys.

-- 05/11/14

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