Malakili (Rancor Keeper POTF2)
In the nineties, Hasbro decided that the time was right to bring Star Wars figures back to the world. In hindsight, that was probably a great decision. The original Star Wars generation had reached an age where they had disposable income and were feeling nostalgic for their childhood.
At this point Power of the Force 2 figures came to shelves everywhere. Fanboys that missed some of the characters when they were kids could now own them all. The new line was more detailed than the vintage figures, but at the same time was stylized in a new heroic way. While the early versions of Luke and Han looked more ripped than the original poster, this would even out.
Malakili, the updated Rancor Keeper, came after the muscular stage. There’s a fair amount of detail on this guy. The arm gear has a number of dodads on it, for example.
While a little soft on detail, the harem style pants are done well enough for the time period.
This pet handler is on the portly side, but the heroic sculpting of the line, has been kind to him. He’s overweight, but not in a grotesque way.
All of this brings us to his head. While he has the same stylish piece of leather draped over his head as his vintage predessor, this one is not removable. It also hinders his oveall head movement a little bit.
I have to say the portrait reminds me more of Stephan Fry than it does of Paul Brooke, the actor in the film. I can’t say exactly why. Maybe it’s his size or eyebrows, who knows.
Now the question of fun. I have to admit as a collector who was trying to get one of every figure, I didn’t consider it at the time. I do remember that kids must not have like the poor crying Jabba zoo keep. He clogged up pegs around here for a few months.
I mean back then if you were a kid, I’d have to imagine even a Han Solo repaint was more exciting that this guy with 5 seconds of screen time. He didn’t even shoot somebody, die, or speak a line. All he did is emote over a dead rancor.
In general, this version is a worth update of the vintage figure. He’s more detailed. The paint work is better. And he has a waist joint.
Considering that he was updated before a number of other figures in the vintage line is a strong testament to how memorable his short amount of screen time was.