This action figure is based upon the deleted scene from the start of Return of the Jedi where Luke Skywalker is building his new lightsaber before going to confront Jabba the Hutt. Star Wars fandom just about exploded with excitement at Star Wars Celebration V when George Lucas revealed this scene to the masses of Star Wars fans gathered there (I was at Celebration V, but I think I slept through George’s panel. Blasphemy, right?). The scene didn’t exactly set my world ablaze (as I’m a prequels fan), but I was happy enough for some new Original Trilogy footage to be released to the public. This scene being released was a landmark occasion, as fans dreamed of seeing it for decades, so I’m thrilled to see Hasbro release this Lightsaber Construction Luke in the Vintage Collection to commemorate the event.
Since “Lightsaber Construction” is the designation of this figure, the accessories are pretty vital here and we’ll cover them first. Luke includes 5 accessories: a cloak (of a sort), an “opened” lightsaber, a tool, a utility belt, and an ignited lightsaber. The less said about Luke’s “cloak” here in “The Right”, the better, so I’ll skip that for now. The “opened” lightsaber hilt is new and surprisingly fun to have. Call me crazy, but I love having Luke use the tool to “work” on the new lightsaber that he’s building. It’s nerdy, but strangely compelling and different from what you could do with any Luke before this. The tool looks similar to accessories I’ve seen with a couple Star Wars figures in the last few years like the Medical Frigate Luke, but I believe it’s all-new.
The utility belt is a very-requested item that fits great on Luke and can be easily put on and taken off (Luke wasn’t wearing the utility belt in the scene this is from, but I’ll give Hasbro a pass here since it’s removable and comes packaged separate from the figure). The ignited lightsaber is accurate, and Luke’s hands have both been sculpted such that it fits securely into either one just fine. In fact, Luke’s hands are good for grasping any of the accessories pretty firmly, so you can get maximum play value using Luke with any of his accessories.
I didn’t realize what a great likeness and representation of Luke Skywalker this figure really was until I picked up the horrid Luke Skywalker Jedi Knight from the 30th Anniversary Collection and was appalled by just how terrible that figure is. Even with the drawbacks of the Deleted Scenes Luke Skywalker, it’s still a vastly superior figure to the more-accurate 30th Anniversary one from 2007. The softfoods skirt on this Luke bother me, but the 30AC Luke’s softgoods look like tattered rags in comparison. And while this Luke’s hair isn’t quite right, the 30AC Jedi Luke’s head sculpt looks like it’d make a good zombie Luke to complement the zombie-looking Sandstorm Leia released in this wave. The improvements Hasbro has made in the last half-decade are quite palpable, and I applaud Hasbro on the strides that they’ve taken in just a few short years.
Luke has the best articulation of any of the figures in the Deleted Scenes wave of the Vintage Collection. He has 16 points and features a ball-jointed neck, ball-jointed shoulders, ball-jointed elbows, ball-jointed wrists, a swivel waist, ball-jointed hips (thank God), ball-jointed knees, and double-jointed ankles. The biggest boon here is the ball-jointed hips, as the restrictive T-Crotch hips on the other figures in this wave were pissing me off to no end. With the ball-jointed hips, Luke can balance far and away better than any of his wave-mates, and can actually take advantage of the abundance of other articulation he’s been granted. He may have been specifically created for a passive “building” scene, but this Luke can pose for battle and duel with the best of them.
While there’s a lot that’s “Right” with this figure, it has its drawbacks. Unfortunately, the drawbacks are so monumental that they’re not just “Wrong”, they’re…
Unfortunately, the people at Hasbro who designed this figure were either drunk or had absolutely zero reference material and were going by hazy childhood memories of what Jedi Luke looked like. Lightsaber Construction Luke’s hair is parted in completely the wrong direction, the softgoods skirt sides of his tunic are bizarre, and Luke sure as Hell was not wearing an enormously oversized Jedi Robe (which is the wrong color) during this or any other scene in Return of the Jedi. I can’t even begin to contemplate what they were thinking at Hasbro when they assigned Luke this robe, but it looks absolutely horrible and is more suitable for Hagrid the half-giant from Harry Potter than Luke Skywalker.
As far as authenticity is concerned, this figure was just a terrible effort by Hasbro, and should have never made it off to design floor as-is, and much less past approval by Lucasfilm. Utterly ridiculous.
The Lightsaber Construction Luke Skywalker figure is part of what’s being called Wave 1.5 of the 2012 Star Wars: The Vintage Collection figures. The Blu-Ray Deleted Scenes figures are all packed at just one-per-case and are mixed into cases with old figures, so they’ve been challenging to find at retail thus far. For online shoppers, there are lots of options:
Amazon has Vintage Deleted Scenes Luke Skywalker in-stock right now at right around retail price with free shipping from various sellers, but prices and availability change rapidly on Amazon so you’ll need to click through for the current specifics.
BigBadToyStore stocks every single Vintage Collection Star Wars figure, and have cases of 12 containing all the Deleted Scene figures and some Phantom Menace Vintage Collection figures as well as Deleted Scenes Luke available individually for $7.90.
Overall: If you look up “Mixed Bag” in the Star Wars toy encyclopedia, it would show a photo of this action figure. This has to be one of the most inaccurately-outfitted Luke figures Hasbro has ever put out. While he doesn’t having bulging muscles like He-Man Luke from POTF2, this Luke’s hair is going the wrong way, his softgoods tunic looks freaky, and the “cloak” he comes with is so ludicrously inaccurate it’s almost funny. On the flipside, this figure has a lot of strong articulation and some unique accessories that make for an amusing, different kind of play experience. There’s no way I could give this figure an “A” with all its drawbacks, but it does enough this well that I can’t bring myself to be too harsh with him either. Deleted Scenes Luke Skywalker Lightsaber Construction is an interesting figure that earns a mild recommendation, so long as you understand exactly what you’re getting and can deal with the errors Hasbro made with this figure.