I feel bad for Jar Jar. Haters have used him so often as a symbol of what they don’t like in the prequels, he hardly ever gets any new merchandise. From my memory, it’s been a long time since we’ve seen a movie version of him in action figure form.
I was excited to hear that we were getting a Jar Jar update. I’m not as big of fan of his as some of the folks out there, like Marjorie from Star Wars Action News. But, part of me appreciates him for his goofy nature. I would imagine young kids were able to latch on to him if they saw Episode 1 before any of the other films.
Enough about that though, let’s get on to the figure.
First off let me say, I think this figure looks a bit better proportionally than some of his previous versions. One of the things ILM was able to to with him was tweak his body a bit to give him a tall thing lanky look that this figure pulls off. The thinness of the limbs helps with this.
The most important piece is the head and face and I think they did a pretty reasonable job here. I’m glad to see they went with a fairly neutral face for him, rather than some crazed tongue out look. The, uh, ears have some great texture on them on both sides. They captured his likeness fairly well.
The thing that really impressed me about this figure though is the paint. Where I’ve shied away from the new Qui Gon’s because I don’t see any of their hair color being an improvement, Jar Jar here is the opposite. Where most of his older versions look like somebody sprayed safety orange spray paint on them, this one one has an excellent natural looking variation to his skin tones.
This continues with the arms. Molded in the creme color and covered with the darker shade, Hasbro pulled it off. Add on to that small grey finger nails and it looks really good. The tips of his ears have this same detail along with his toenails. One detail people probably would have missed is the fact there is skin showing in the arm holes of his vest.
There a couple of minor areas the paint is a bit of a let down. Around the collar of his vest, there is a bit of slop. It’s not horrid, but it could be better. Also, on my figure at least, the feet aren’t painted orange all the way up to the pants. It’s like he has a tan line on the top of his feet.
Like I said above, I really like the lankiness of this figure. The thin limbs and body just really remind me of the Jar Jar that was on screen walking through Mos Espa. To really slim the body, his vest is sculpted on, unlike some of the previous figures. I think I like this better. The J Crew sweater tied around his waist is a separate piece.
It’s this skirt piece that cause a slight problem. The top of of the skirt is sculpted with a large flat area turn his waist. Unfortunately, this flat is too big and looks like his torso is sitting on top of a platter. It’s not as bad in some poses as others, and really depends on viewing angle.
Viewing angle is also part of another small issue, his neck. The majority of Jar Jar’s neck is molded as part of his torso. There’s a flexible piece through the middle that allows some lateral movement at the same time as the head is moved around the ball joint. It’s a great idea, allows for some head tilt to give the Gungan some expression. The down side is from certain viewing angles the mechanism is exposed.
I can’t remember if any of the previous Jar Jar’s had knees and elbows. This one does and they work fairly well. I actually wasn’t sure if the knees bent or not until deblistered him.
There are a couple of joints missing that may have helped him. The first is ankles. If you are wanting a swimming Jar Jar for your fish tank, this isn’t going to be it.
The second missing item is ball jointed shoulders, and I’m torn on this one. There are some poses I could get him in that I was trying. But, on the other hand, the shoulders look appropriately slim. It’s a bit of a trade off. The elbow feel solid, but with an added shoulder, that may not have been the case.
Jar Jar comes with a spring loaded weapon to fight battle droids. It actually looks more like a Wookie weapon since it is a bowcaster. It’s bulky, but the way it is sculpted, I don’t mind the bulk here. It’s projectile is a boomer. Ironically, the first time I loaded it, I wasn’t sure where the trigger was. Turns out you have to pull the loading handle on the top straight back. In strange way, I kind of dig this gun.
Also in the package are game pieces. The base, card and a die. I’ve never heard of anybody actually playing this game, maybe kids do. To be honest, I could do without any of these. Knock a couple bucks off the price pack Jar Jar in a blister with non-gimmick boomer and that’s it. But what do I know.
I really like this figure. Yes, there are some areas he could be better. But to me, the paint more than makes up for these. I’m just really glad I can finally add a revised Jar Jar to my collection that can be displayed and not look like he was spray painted by a tagger.
If you are not a Jar Jar or prequel hater, this figure wouldn’t be a bad add to your collection.