Friday 15 March 2024

Toybox REVIEW: Star Wars Black Series Krrsantan

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Release Date: September 2023
RRP: $33.99/£33.99

While the recent string of Star Wars television series has seen a number of popular characters from Clone Wars and Rebels make the jump from animation to live-action (and in the case of Fennec Shand, the reverse), this isn't the only place they've been drawing inspiration from. The Book of Boba Fett also saw a popular Marvel Comics character make his live-action debut, namely the Wookie bounty hunter Black Krrsantan. After working alongside the likes of Jabba the Hutt, Darth Vader and Doctor Aphra during the time of the Empire, in Book of Boba Fett Krrsantan is hired the Twins to reclaim Jabba's territory. After a failed assassination attempt on the new Daimyo, Krrsantan joins Boba in his fight against the Pyke Syndicate. A much-anticipated release for the line, Black Series Krrsantan joins the range as a deluxe-sized release.

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"A former gladiator turned deadly bounty hunter, Krrsantan is a towering black-furred Wookie who made a name for himself in the criminal underworld with his intimidating presence and raw strength."

Black Series Krrsantan hails from that short-lived period in 2023 where Hasbro toyed with plastic-free windowless packaging, only to quickly walk back on it when mint-in-box collectors weren't too happy about not being able to see the figure they were buying and collectors who open their toys weren't too happy about not being able to check for defects (and in some cases, receive faulty figures). The fourth release in the green-bordered Book of Boba Fett range, the front of this deluxe-sized box features a stock image of the figure, which is then repeated on the back alongside the character bio. Only the connecting mural side of the box features the great artwork made for the Black Series, whereas the other side simply has a generic image of the figure alongside its one accessory. Inside both figure and accessory are bagged up in Star Wars branded tissue paper and stored on a cardboard tray.

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Despite being a relatively new character to the Star Wars universe this is actually the second figure Krrsantan has had in the Black Series – the first being a comic-inspired release that rather shoddily just repainted a Chewbacca figure black and slapped some new armour on it, looking nothing like the character it was supposed to represent. Thankfully this version is a considerably better offering, being a brand new sculpt that properly captures how the character looked in The Book of Boba Fett. Being a deluxe release naturally a lot of that deluxe price point went into making sure he had the right height and build, but a lot of it also went into the detailing as well. Being a Wookie the figure is covered head to toe in textured plastic to give the impression of fur, complete with additional dry-brushing to add an extra layer. The head sculpt looks especially good with its snarling mouth, grey beard and sculpted braids. The armour pieces are made from gold plastic, which despite lacking the shine they'd have with paint have been given additional paint to improve the look and give them more depth. The belt also has painted pouches and pelts which nicely stand out against that wash of black and grey fur. It's a good-looking and appropriately heavy figure, which gives a good impression that the additional cost of the figure has been put to good use.

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Though Krrsantan may be a whole new Wookie mould functionally he isn't all that different to Chewbacca, which is to say sculpt quality was definitely put ahead of articulation here. Altogether he features;
- Ball jointed head, torso and hips
- Single hinge neck
- Swivel hinge shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees and ankles
To keep the sculpt looking as accurate as possible the fur texture overlaps a lot of the joints, which means there are quite a few restrictions and limitations to talk about here. Even though you can feel the head and neck joint underneath it all movement in that area is next to nothing, while the elbows, knees and ankles also don't have quite the bend they would on an otherwise unimpeded figure. Waist and thigh swivels would have helped to make this release a little more poseable, but sadly both are absent. However even though Krrsantan might be a bit lacking in this department, as tends to be the case with larger figures (especially ones with particularly good sculpts) it's amazing how good they can look with so little. His size makes grappling/combat poses look particularly intimidating.

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Krrsantan's single accessory is his enormous blaster rifle, which is an all-new variety unique to the character. An impressive piece that’s around half the length of the figure itself, the rifle is moulded in gunmetal grey plastic with some red button paint apps as well as a silver barrel which turns to a metallic blue at the tip. It isn't a great deal of paint, but together with the level of detail the gun has it's a pretty nice piece. Getting the weapon into the figure's hands isn't the easiest as the fur around the wrists gets in the way, which in turn makes dynamic poses tricky if you want him to wield it two-handed. When not in use, the blaster can be pegged onto the back of Krrsantan's armour. It's a nice weapon and definitely adds to Krrsantan's shelf presence even when held neutrally, but it's hard not to feel short-changed her when the Vintage Collection release came with an incredible range of accessories including multiple hands, different blasters, a sword, removable knuckle-dusters and a number of effect parts. It might be a little much to expect the Black Series version to come with all of that, but one or two pieces might have been nice.

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Really all Black Series Krrsantan had to do to be a success was be better than that woeful comic-style release, and while that admittedly wasn't a large hurdle to jump the Book of Boba Fett version leapt straight over it. Although the articulation is a little underwhelming for a recent release, Krrsantan definitely makes up for it in terms of size and sculpting – accurately conveying the Wookie's ferocious presence without any key detailing lost. Deluxe Black Series releases that justify their "deluxe" status and price tag don't come around all that often, but Krrsantan could definitely be considered one of them.

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