Vintage Large Size Boba Fett

June 28, 2009 | By | 2 Replies More


Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba FettYou have to be impressed with what the marketing folks in the late seventies did with Boba Fett. He was a character that none of us knew anything about, yet we all thought he was the baddest dude in the Star Wars universe. He showed up in the holiday special. He was one of the first mail away figures. And he got a large size figure. All of this before “The Empire Strikes Back” was even released.

Large size figure you ask? Kenner knew that boys would want Star Wars Dolls, so their line that was more in scale with the GI Joes of the day was dubbed Large Size Action Figures. Ironically, the Princess Leia included a brush and booklet with hair styles if memory serves correct. The little girl that lived next door had Leia, I had Luke and Han. I have to say I’ve never held an IG-88 in my hand. That said, I think it’s a safe assumption that Boba Fett had to be the coolest of the large size figures.

Appearance:Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba Fett

The strange thing is that I remember as a kid the regular and large size Boba Fetts being the most movie like figures. I think there is just so many little details about his costume that compared to a character like a Stormtrooper, it’s easy to think, “Wow is he detailed.” This was in the days before the Internet. It was hard to compare this little bit of minutiae or that doodad to the film, because there just weren’t pictures and screen captures available.

My Boba came out of storage not that long ago. the thing that struck me was how little detail he actually had. The sculpt is fairly soft by today’s standards and some of the detail that is there is just off. I have to say I was a bit surprised. Here was a figure I remembered as one of the coolest ever, and now he looks a bit like a knock off.

Boba’s mainly a green body with gray arms and legs. There isn’t a a terrible amount of paint detail on the body and limbs. A little yellow for the knee pads and undersized shoulder pieces. The gauntlets are red and yellow.

The helmet sits on top of a neck that’s just a little too long. For the most part it looks like the Boba Fett we’ve all come to know. The most recognizable feature of Boba’s helmet is missing however, the big dent in the front.

That’s actually something that is missing from the entirety of this Boba Fett figure. Battle Damage. Boba wasn’t like his pop, he seemed to like his armor to look like it was scuffed up and mismatched. Must be some sort of Mandalorian grunge movement. This figure represent Boba in more of a pristine condition. No wear on the helmet or scuffs on the painted areas.

Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba Fett

One of the cooler pieces of this Boba Fett figure is the rocket pack. Is it is screen accurate? No. But for the era this figure comes from it’s close enough. The pack has almost as many colors as the rest of the figure, and for the most part looks pretty close to the screen version except for the missile.

That projectile is different because it’s made into action feature in this figure. Apparently, Kenner wanted kids to believe this was a grappling hook of sorts. There’s a line that goes through the pack. This would allow Boba to swoop along the line.

BF also has a separate molded belt with pouches and other details sculpted on. All things considered, it’s not bad. There is a cloth cape to go over one shoulder. I’ve never figured out what that’s for. My guess is it’s a left over from the concept drawing of Fett with a poncho type thing on.

A word of caution for the vintage collector. The elastic on my cape is badly deteriorated. Only one of the two loops is style fully attached and neither of them have any elasticity left. Also, the rubber pieces for the jets on the pack and missile have yellowed a bit.

Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba Fett

Boba Fett comes with a pistol. The pistol has an attached shoulder loop. I have no idea any more if this is even close to Boba’s Empire weapon. I’m guessing it’s not. It does match some publicity photos out there. The thing is that when it’s hanging from his shoulder it doesn’t reach his hand. You have to kind of loop it near his elbow. Overall, it’s a wussy gun for the galaxy’s most feared bounty hunter.

I have to admit my Boba isn’t complete. I’m apparently missing the Wookie braids that originally came with him. They were a couple of braided strands of brownish and blondish nylon type stuff with a bead to hold them on the figure. I’m not sure, but these could still be in storage somewhere waiting to be discovered.

His appearance isn’t terrible, just not as screen accurate as I remember thinking as a kid. The lastglaring example of this is the scale of the figure. He stands a good inch or two above the Han Solo figure. As a kid I didn’t care. As a “collector” today I would be upset. But, keeping in mind the era, he’s not too bad. This was the same period of time when Steve Austin had cartoon bionics under a roll up rubber sleve.

I was going to digitally add some color to Boba to show what could have been with this figure when I came across this tidbit when doing some research for this review. It’s a fully painted 
prototype
of this Boba Fett figure at the Star Wars Collectors Archive. While it’s not as detailed as say the recent Medicom version (Check out Michael Crawfords Review here), it’s still pretty cool. Check out the burn mark on the cape.

Fun:

The Large Size line was a bit odd. The heroes (Han, Luke, Leia) were similar to other dolls of the day with removable outfits. The remainder of the line were basically scaled up versions of the smaller figures. The articulation was limited to cut joints at the neck, shoulders and hips.

Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba FettIn contrast to that, Boba Fett had ball jointed shoulders, elbows and knees. This makes him the most posable in the line and capable of a lot more action than say Luke or Han. One other small point of articulation was the range finder on his helmet rotated 180 degrees as well.

The range finder brings us to the next “action feature.” The bionic eye. Okay, it’s not a bionic eye but basically the same as the eye on the Six Million Dollar man figure. You could theoretically peer in a tiny hole in the back of Boba’s helmet and see what he was looking at. Pretty nifty stuff, huh?
Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba Fett

The last little piece of detailing had was a bit of an action feature as well. The stripes on the left side of his chest were a small lenticular piece that changed the red stripe from top to bottom. I can give you no reason for this especially since the woefully small sword logo on the other side is a decal and the skull is completely missing from the shoulder pad.

You can definitely tell that Kenner went for broke trying to make the large size Boba Fett an “action figure.” Boba Fett reminds me more of the Six Million Dollar Man line mentioned above than the Star Wars line. You have to think this was an effort to save the line from cancellation.

I recently came across a commercial on YouTube for the large size Boba Fett. You can really seem them playing up all the features. Do you think they knew at the time he’d only have a few minutes of screen time and 3 or 4 lines in the film?

Overall:

Kenner's Large Size Action Figure of Boba FettNow, this isn’t the best representation of Boba Fett in the world. This isn’t even the most articulated version of Boba Fett. However, at the time he was released, he was. You have to wonder how much the hype and packaging for this figure and his associated 3 3/4″ figure have had to do with Boba Fett’s enduring success. I know a lot of what I use to think about Boba was influenced by it.

If you think about it, he doesn’t really have a huge role in the film. His whole “brilliant” capture of Solo was basically a bit of luck. And don’t even get me started on his sail barge performance in Episode 6.

So the lesson is this. If you want to be a famous bounty hunter, get good PR and marketing people behind you.

Engineernerd Score: 90/100

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  1. tim says:

    This backpack, or one much like it turned up in ROTJ.

  2. Engineernerd says:

    The missile was what I think I was referring to. But, I was also looking at the fact he was released for Empire.

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