January 31, 2014 | By FLYGUY

Jedi Archives 1# | By Mike

It's hard to believe that this figure was originally released around 18 years ago.

Kenner's 12 inch Collector's series is somewhat hit and miss. On the one hand you've got a Luke Skywalker facial sculpt that's more akin to He-Man than Hamill, and on the other you've got this; one rather delightful recreation of the Dark Lord himself.

Housed within two possible packaging variations, newer versions are displayed within a windowed box (as seen here), with older versions sporting an additional flap. The later contains a large image on the front and a character bio on the inside of the flap; it's more visually pleasing and as a result is generally the pricier of the two.

The soft goods really add to the figure's quality.
Both sculpting and articulation have come a long way since 1996. And with that in mind, Kenner did a fantastic job in faithfully replicating Vader's helmet. The articulation is what you'd expect from a 90s 12 inch doll - not that Vader is the most agile of characters anyway. Originally retailing for around $20 the soft goods cape, tunic, and bodysuit are not at all a reflection on the modest price tag. Add to this the exquisite detailing on the control panel, belt and lightsaber hilt, and you've got one of the best figures in the Collector's series line - not to mention a very fine figure in its own right.

In 2014 this might not be the most accurate representation of Darth Vader available. But, considering it's still going for around $20-$30 today, you'd be hard-pressed to find a newer alternative that boasts more bang for your buck. The Collector's series really was the Sideshow of its day, and although some of the other figures are a little rough around the edges, Vader's definitely worth your time.

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