Hasbro is pretty cheap with their Star Wars figure line generally… Let's not mix words here. But, for all the bad cheapness, there are logical times to reuse parts, and Hasbro seems to have struck some gold with Tanus Spijek the Elom, and J'Quille the Whiphid, both of whom lurked the dark halls of Jabba the Hutt's Palace and Sail Barge. Who here can really say these two oddball figures aren't a nice little deal from Hasbro? Sure they reuse most of the body between the two, but Hasbro does take the effort to make both unique, and I'm here to say these two turned out to be some of the neater filler for our Jabba's Palace dioramas.
Now, the question is whether these figures stack up with the rest in the line, or not. I'll say off the bat that I love these two figures, but please read on for all the furry details.
Sculpt: Between the two, they're both excellent representations of their on-screen counterparts. Hasbro took some extra care to notice the physiological differences between the characters, and they took the time to make sure the major differences were created in plastic too. Reused parts, yes, but also uniquely sculpted and accurate parts too.
Having seen some nice close-ups of both costumes, Hasbro nailed these two in spot-on likenesses - from Tanus's intricately sculpted face that has raised and recessed detail galore, to the nicely sculpted hair that hangs down on J'Quille's head, even showing light through various areas where the hair parts. The sculptors who worked on these two were kicking it into overdrive on the quality. The heads show the most detail overall, but the rest of the body pieces are also very well done (both the shared pieces, and the pieces unique to each figure).
Tanus sports unique hands from J'Quille, proof that Hasbro did take the time to notice that these two aliens DON'T have the same hands. It's something that most would think should've obviously been done this way, but we know that Hasbro and “obvious” don't always jive, so it's nice to see it in this case, and therefore it deserves mention here. For you nitpicky guys, Tanus sports four rather angled and sharp looking claws, whereas J'Quille sports three rounded claws on his hands - very interesting differences.
A second sculpt difference between the two figures is that Hasbro had the foresight to allow for an area on the belly where they could “attach” a separate piece and make the figure's body look unique to it. Now, you're asking yourself, “What the hell did Jesse just say to me?”, and I'm not going to blame you because I re-read that and it confused me as well. I'll try to break it down like this:
Hasbro sculpted the body with an open cavity in the center of the body. The cavity is there so they can sculpt a separate piece unique to Tanus or J'Quille that GLUES into the cavity and creates the appearance of a unique body sculpt, AND it acts as a “belt” or waist piece (depending on the figure). On J'Quille, the piece serves as both a belt and a flat “stomach” piece that sits in the cavity. The belt further sports a couple greenish-brown utility pouches on it. Kind of funny seeing a naked furry guy with a belt, but it is how the costume really looked, so whatever.
On Tanus, the piece is a belly piece that juts out somewhat, and has Tanus's “teats”… Yes, he has Mole-Man nipples I guess. The costume had them as well. Hasbro's figure tones down the nipples so it at least doesn't appear overly cold in Jabba's Palace, but it still provides some of the detail. The “belt” piece that J'Quille had is replaced on Tanus with extra fur and a tail, because his species has big furry tails (I guess). Pretty neat, and again it's one of those physiological differences that Hasbro noticed and took the time to apply to the figures to make sure they were unique.
Beyond these unique pieces, the figures share the same upper and lower arm pieces, the same main lower and upper body pieces, and the same legs (with identical toe claws). Not sure they're correct on the feet being identical on these characters, but I can let that slide since I don't know that we ever saw either of these guy's feet anyway. So, it works for me basically.
The short of it is that the sculpts of both figures are very well done, and you won't be disappointed. Hasbro did great. Huzzah.
Paint Application: Pretty decent paint applications are sported by both figures, and while somewhat simplistic in respect to most other figures, both Tanus and J'Quille offer unique colors and patterns, and Hasbro really seemed to not miss the mark with either one.
Tanus has dark grey fur with lots of light and dark highlights throughout, using a variety of washes. He also sports a white stripe with some grey flecks throughout it, from the peak of his head all the way down to the tip of his tail. It kind of brings Tanus to life, and makes the figure look a little more realistic. The skin tone of the figure is a dark fleshy color with a wash to bring out highlights, and his eyes and what appear to be nostrils are painted dark contrasting colors to again bring them out. Tanus's lower lip is also a separate color, as are his teeth. Hasbro seemed to the extra mile to bring out this figure's face sculpt.
J'Quille's paint is equally detailed for the most part, though I found a few minor flaws compared to Tanus that I'll point out. Overall, his paint application is a bit more simplistic than Tanus's. The eyes and teeth/tusks on my J'Quille had some slight bleeding into the fur, but they are definitely passable. I'm certainly not disappointed, and didn't even bother to look at the other figures when picking mine out, since it looked just fine to me. J'Quille's fur is a more basic tan/brown highlight that's quite different from Tanus, and again distinguishes the two figures nicely, despite the fact they share parts. The claws are a darker brown, and the belt is a simple OD Green/Brown color, like some form of military gear.
Again, the short of it is that these two figures are nicely painted, and while a little simplistic at times, it gets the job done, and is more than sufficient to make a realistic looking figure. As it stands, these don't seem like they were the most complex costumes Lucasfilm had on the Jabba sets, so I suppose the figures probably shouldn't be too overly complex either.
Articulation: Can it be better? Probably… Did Hasbro do a half decent job for themselves? I'd say so.
These two figures both sport the same 10 points of articulation each, and while not overly versatile the points get the job done, and the characters are in naturally neutral poses. For Hasbro, that's not too shabby.
The articulation points are:
-2 standard shoulder joints
-2 cut elbow joints
-2 wrist joints
-2 standard hip joints
-1 standard neck joint
-1 standard waist joint
Not terrible, as you can see, but one could make the argument that Hasbro could employ the ball/socket a little more here, and achieve a slightly more poseable figure. I'll cite the articulation as a slight con as I expound upon it below, since it has to do with these figure's main accessory as well.
Accessories: While these figures both sport a new accessory that isn't a repackaged weapon of some sort, it's also the only accessory beyond the same generic Star Wars stand that most figures have been coming with of late. I'm not overly upset with this, but there's also a feeling of disappointment that there wasn't a 2 nd weapon or some sort of other accessory packed in.
The new gun is an interesting one though. It's designed around the Sandtrooper's heavy cannon from A New Hope, and based on the real life British Lewis Gun that Lucasfilm had developed. Hasbro even included the rounded clip on the top that the real life weapon would've had, yet the gun didn't feature this in the film. I'll include a little photo of the real deal for you below:
Nix the sight at the back, and the bi-pod there, and you pretty much have the accessory packed in with these two. Pretty great work on Hasbro's part getting the detail down, so I'm pretty happy with this accessory's look - but again, I still wonder if both J'Quille and Tanus needed this weapon. It would've at least looked better had Hasbro maybe packed in the vibro-knife that came with either Kabe or Ephant Mon – just something to make these two stand out a little more.
The simple black gun and stand don't stand out enough though, and the guns are a tad flimsy, as is unfortunately common with many of Hasbro's weapons these days (especially the larger ones). The pack-in knives might've just been a nice little extra, especially since the molds already existed. It's a thought at least.
Articulation: Articulation's not terrible, as I mentioned in the pros section, but it does beg the question of just how poseable these figures would be had they been given ball/socket elbows and/or shoulder joints. Then again, couldn't all figures be that little bit better if Hasbro had just given them ball/socket shoulders and elbows?
You see, the problem with the articulation that gives it a negative point here, is that these figures DO have large rifles as their accessories. Hasbro's style of articulation makes these characters unable to hold their rifles like they should be able to, with two hands, so it's tough to get a realistic looking shooting pose out of Tanus and J'Quille because of this.
Ball/socket elbows might've allowed a sharper range of motion so these guys could not just look cool in neutral poses while they stand around having a cold one with their favorite slug crime-lord, but they could also be blasting away at any unwelcome Jedi come to steal wall decorations. Sadly, they don't look quite right doing it though… One-handed firing of a big blaster rifle is just odd.
What can I say? There was little to really gripe about on these two figures. The slight lack in poseability was my only real major complaint. I'm content with the accessories given really, and I just threw that in mostly to balance out the review a little. Picking of nits, if you will.
Hasbro's found a way to save themselves a little cash in overall costs, and at the same time they were able to give us two seemingly unique figures, and two very obscure characters from Jabba the Hutt's palace that many collectors have been longing for.
If I had to pick a favorite, I'd say Tanus, who's fortunately been packed into a new case assortment with the recent Dengar/Motti wave, thus making him slightly easier to find at retail, after months of fruitless searching for most collectors due to it initially being short-packed at 1 per case. J'Quille's been an even tougher find at retail lately, so while I implore you to go out and pick each of these figures up, things are dry out there and it's gonna be semi-tough for you to find these unless your retail situation's dramatically different from my own.
When you get these though, you won't be disappointed, and they're nice, weird, ugly aliens that help fill out your Jabba's Palace very well. Don't pass them up if you find them out there in the void.