Thomas channels the dark side to review the sublime new Emperor Palpatine figure from Hasbro’s Black Series line
A Black Series figure of Emperor Palpatine was first released in 2014 but it was with plastic robes (only the cape was in fabric) and no throne. This time Hasbro upped their game! They added soft goods robes, three interchangeable heads, two Force lightning interchangeable hands, a cane and the Emperor’s throne! Yes, you are not dreaming, interchangeable heads are finally coming to the Black Series line! So hopefully, this is not the last time we see interchangeable heads in this line! Marvel Legends has been doing it for a long time now.
This figure is an online retailer exclusive. It was released in Asia, Europe, Australia and Canada in August and it will be released on Amazon at the beginning of September for the US.
Let’s start with the throne, I can’t tell you how happy I am they included this! When you think of the Emperor, you immediately think of him sitting on his throne. It’s a great accessory and if you have the S.H. Figuarts Darth Vader display base, it’ll fit perfectly there! The purple plastic is softer than the rest of the throne. They included little buttons on each side of the throne-like in the movie, it’s nicely done.
Now, for the Emperor. It’s such a great improvement that he is now entirely with soft goods – cloak and robes. With fabric, the articulation range is not limited and since there’s a throne with this figure, he can sit in it! This figure has 19 points of articulation and unfortunately for this one, they brought back the ugly neck joint instead of the redesigned neck joint that worked so well. My guess is because they used the old sculpt of Palpatine and didn’t want to have to rework the neck as well. For the fabric, they didn’t use the same fabric as General Kenobi which is a relief, they used a better fabric! It is the same type of fabric as Darth Vader’s and the Royal Guards.
In terms of size comparisons, I think it’s pretty good, they got it right.
As I previously said, three heads are included with this figure. The first one is a “neutral” expression (or can we really say neutral with a face like this?), the second is an evil smile. These are excellent head sculpts, it’s spot on Palpatine. They got the yellow eyes, the decrepit skin color, it’s great! The third head is what I call the Emperor “I’m from a horror movie” Palpatine head, it’s an extremely creepy head, I really don’t like it.
The Force lightning hands are a nice accessory. But I would have loved a lightsaber as well, they did it with Yoda even if it wasn’t from the movie the figure was from. That’s basically the only thing I would have added.
Overall, Emperor Palpatine great figure and finally the action figure we deserved!
The Future of the Force. The future of pop culture writing.
Thomas Storai is the Senior Collectables Correspondent for Future of the Force. He is passionate about Star Wars, Marvel, DC, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and a wide range of movies. Follow him on Twitter @ThomasStorai where he uses the force frequently!