Resculpts that are much in need indeed, seems to have been a nice trend in the end of the Saga line, and the OTC line. One figure that stood out as one of the most needed resculpts of the modern figure era is, without a doubt, Lobot. Iíd say Lobot was merely a step above R5-D4 in crap-a-tude, and thatís only because he didnít have an action feature. Lobot even was, sadly, a figure whose POTF2 version wasnít even near as nice as his vintage version. Ouch Hasbro!
Lobot was a guy who really did nothing of interest in The Empire Strikes Back, but he still has fans out there and deserves a figure to best represent him. Hasbro came through for us in the OTC line, finally replacing the abysmal POTF2 version in his unnatural disco pose. The new version takes all the old figureís flaws and changes them for the better, while Hasbro also adds some other great little features to the figure to make him a little extra special. You canít ask for too much more than that folks, so read on for the figure goodness that is Lobot (now he is anyway).
-Sculpt: Very accurate, very John Hollis (The actor who played Lobot for the uninformed). Thatís a good thing, and Hasbro came through on this figure tremendously.
The head sculptís likeness is really spot-on to me, and the blank expression the character sports is very true to the character. A no-nonsense look on his face, he looks like heís ready and able to do what Lando needs help with on Bespin, and not argue about it. Lobotís head sculpt actually has real signs of realism, like semi-wrinkled skin, and other features that show the characterís likeness in realistic detail. Itís a head sculpt that the sculptor should be very proud of, as I would rate this one of the more detailed ones Iíve seen out of Hasbro.
The sculpt of the body sports lots of folds on the characterís billowy shirt sleeves, and the pants and vest look incredibly realistic and more form-fitting to the figure, just as they should. Lobotís electronic looking belt is also nicely done, with all the gadgets on the center of it there, and clearly raised from the figure.
Also, Lobotís electronic headpiece is sculpted to have many raised and sunken panels, buttons, and gadgets that really bring this tiny piece of the figure to life in this scale. While small, this piece of the figure is one of his trademarks, so the detail hereís very important.
-Articulation: Not as great as maybe he could have been, but not bad either, Lobot definitely sports some above-average articulation for the line. Of note are his arms, which can achieve several nice ďat easeĒ poses, or poses where heís actually talking to someone (Lando perhaps), or even where you have him shooting it out with Stormtroopers while escaping Bespin himself.
The count is:
-2 standard shoulder joints
-2 angle-cut elbow joints
-2 standard leg joints
-2 wrist joints
-1 standard neck joint
-1 standard waist joint
OK, so 10 total doesnít sound like a lot, especially since (maybe) someone would want Lobot in a bit more of an action pose since he did help subdue the Imperials on Cloud City. Nonetheless, ten points is not bad, and itís far more than his predecessor had. *shudder* Lobot now can assume a nice, perfectly vintage, neutral pose, or he can take some more specific looking poses. Nothing like heís dancing, but he can be posed differently than straight up and down neutral.
I think I wouldíve liked it if Lobot could hold a blaster with two hands perhaps, as Hasbro did sculpt his hands as if they could hold a confiscated Imperial rifle. Iíd not minded having him sit either, so some knee joints maybe would have been a good ideaÖ Ya know, so he can sit around in his swinginí duplex bachelor pad. All in all though, Iím pretty happy with the figure since he is ďjust LobotĒ.
-Accessories: While Lobot doesnít come with a ton of accessories, or very large accessories, he does come with some unique things. I like it when Hasbro gets creative, especially with accessories since you donít have to have them with the figure when displaying it. Lobot comes with something pretty neat though, not seen in the films.
Lobot sports a neat little laptop that is cast in a clear plastic, and the screen is sculpt looks like itís really projecting an image of Cloud City that is printed on the screen. The little notepadís keyboard is painted silver, and it even features what looks like a little track ball on the left. Thatís nice Hasbro!
To top it off, Lobot comes with a little white and silver communication tool. The little accessory is one of the tinier ones Hasbro has put out in recent years, and to make it even cooler it has a little hole on the laptop thing that it can plug into. Lobot is Bespinís proverbial ďmover and shakerĒ it seems. Always on the go with his laptop and always able to be reached on his communications device, I would label Lobot something of a space yuppie/businessman.
Lobot also sports the little rectangular Star Wars stand that has become almost standard with figures. The standís cool, and nice to have, so itís good to list.
As a last accessory, Iím going to count Lobotís cybernetic head thing. It comes off as if it is an accessory, though Iím not sure it is intended to do so. Its removal leaves a funny looking gaping hole in the back of Lobotís nogginí, so I donít believe itís intended to be removed. Itís a nice separate piece though, and oddly cast in translucent plastic and then painted as if it were to shine or something. Itís there, and youíll likely leave it in your Lobotís head, but since mineís clearly removable (as they all seem to be) Iím going to just leave it here as an accessory then.
Hasbro maybe didnít include a blaster, which I think wouldíve improved Lobot some, but I am not complaining since I think the computer thing and the communication thing are both pretty neat (if not so tiny youíll lose them quickly) accessories. Nice creative thinking on Hasbroís part, and the computerís screen detail makes it really stand out.
-Head Paint/Deco: Iím not too pleased with the body, but the headís paint/deco is superb. Iíve yet to see a bad paintjob on Lobotís eyes and eyebrows, which often suffer the most and figures look cock-eyed or just generally bad due to misapplication of the paint.
This figureís eyes really are blank, just as they should be for the character, and his detail is intricate. There are 3 separate colors in the eyes alone actually, when you inspect it closely. The blue-ish tint of the eyeís color is there, as well as a dark ďlineĒ to form the eyeballs in shape, and also there is a central dot among the blue. This all highlights Lobotís eyeballs. The white of the eye then surrounds all the other colors, and Hasbro really seemed to go all-out on Lobotís eyes here.
-Paint/Deco: Unfortunately, while Lobotís head is painted nicely on pretty much every sample Iíve seen (Only his eyes and eyebrows are painted of course), his body isnít so nice. The reason I mention this is because the legs/lower body (below the belt) and the upper body (his vest) clearly donít match in color. Itís a noticeable difference in its finish and color, so it stood out to me as something pretty bad.
Also, some small details like the silver on Lobotís belt, and the small sliver of ďcreamĒ color where his shirt peeks out under his vest, arenít exactly clean. There is a bit of paint off the mark all over the figure, but in small doses. I also noticed some paint from where his shoes were painted is smeared up onto his pant-legs, and it just doesnít look very good. Itís nothing terrible, but itís noticeable. Itís just not quite as noticeable as the difference in color between lower and upper body.
-More Artculation?: Maybe, and maybe notÖ I think it wouldíve been nice and made Lobot a little more interesting as an action figure/toy rather than whether it was necessary or not. I know, I know, thatís the common argument. ďThey didnít need to do that! He never did anythingĒ, but really thatís not what toys are about. To make Lobot a little more fun, some ball/socket knee joints maybe wouldíve helped.
These are small things mostly, but things that can make the difference between a collector pegwarmer, and a kid-friendly or customizer-friendly action figure that sells routinely. Lobotís improved, but I guess my point is there couldíve been a little extra effort there in the improvement phase.
-Accessories: Itís a Pro, and itís a Con. I like the computer and communicator. A stand is always nice. Why is this all though? An Imperial Blaster, or a Bespin Guard Blaster, or just something extra maybe would have been interesting. Perhaps they could have even snuck in a small ďwrist communicatorĒ thing for your Lando figure to use to call Lobot up for a night of partying it up at Bespinís nightlife? Itís all just something that maybe wouldíve enticed more people to buy the figure.
Not a bad figure at all, itís just that Lobot isnít a lot to talk about either. I feel that Lobotís an incredible resculpt though, and heís all I really want in this figure to make me happy to put him on the shelf, finally. I couldíve used maybe the knee articulation, and a blaster, but beyond that Iím happy with the end result. Itís been a long time coming for a new Lobot, and I think this is the last one weíll get for a while if not forever. He really isnít overly interesting and it is human-looking guys like Lobot, who also arenít interesting, who tend to clog pegs. No army-building status, limited customizing potentialÖ Heís not got a lot going for him to warrant continued re-release by Hasbro.
He is good for what he is though, and I know weíve waited so long for a new one that many of us are picking this Lobot up out of simple desperation to get a new one.
Nothingís perfect though, and the Lobot figure is testament to that, however I wonder if Lobot had been done at the end of the OTC line, would he have more articulation like the Cantina Wave seems to have? Perhaps, and perhaps not.
The paint application errors I noticed on Lobot are minimal gripes to me though. Iíll live with them gladly, and I highly recommend you grab a Lobot for your collection if you havenít already done so. Heís worth it to me, and if youíre holding out for something better down the road than I think youíll be waiting a while.
Go, buy, enjoy, and tune in next time when hopefully I have a figure thatís more interesting to talk about!