Sunday, April 10, 2011

Stormtrooper (SW 1978-79)




Just in time for Halloween: the stormtrooper! Helmeted; white; menacing...unless you're a furry creature about a meter tall.

The stormtrooper figure is one of the original twelve figures, and the ultimate army builder. If you are not a hard-core collector, the term "army builder" means figures that there are many, many of in that universe. So, while there may only be one Han in the Star Wars universe, there are a million stormtroopers (actually, it's estimated that Luke killed about one million Imperials when he blew up the first death star, making him the biggest killer in the movies). In the first movie alone there were lord-knows-how-many stormtroopers shot just by Luke and the gang while trying to get out of the death star.

The stormtrooper had the traditional blaster, which was subsequently copied for many of the other figures in the Star Wars wave. His head couldn't turn, but in subsequent versions (1990's+) it did. This figure came on all four cards: SW, ESB, ROTJ, POTF. The figure itself is very close to the actual stormtrooper detailing.

Why should you own this figure? Five reasons:

1. As mentioned before, army builder, army builder, army builder. You shouldn't own one, you should own 10. Check Ebay, there are probably people selling 10-20 of these at a time.

2. They fall like dominoes in the movies - so get a bunch and have your own stormtrooper domino rally.

3. The most prevalent figure in the original Star Wars universe. You're going to get a lot of crap from your friends if you don't get this one.

4. Like I've mentioned in many a post, helmeted figures are automatically cool. Having one that looks like a skull-head is even cooler.

5. Recreate your own exciting version of the conversation near the death star's tractor beam: "Must be another drill." Oh, the drama!

Backstory:

Stormtroopers grew out of the surviving clone troopers that served in the Clone Wars. By the time of the first movie, about 1/3 of stormtroopers were from Jango Fett's original DNA, the rest were from other DNA sources and humans recruited in the traditional manner.

A stormtroopers armor was made of a plastoid composite fitted over a black body glove. This gave some protection from blaster shots (obviously not a lot given the movies' body count) and protection against most climates. In fact there was a limited air supply built in and troopers could survive in the vacuum of space for short periods. The E-11 blaster rifle was standard issue for most troopers (the one that came with the figure).

When not in the white armor, stormtroopers wore a black dress uniform, seen mainly in the first movie aboard the death star. About the only variation that stormtroopers had were the shoulder pauldrons to show rank (see the stormtroopers on Tatooine in the first movie), otherwise the Empire wanted an across-the-board uniform appearance.

The stormtroopers were a feared force...until Endor. After their defeat by a handful of Rebels and primitive natives, two things changed. One, the stormtroopers were no longer seen as such an imposing force, and two, stormtroopers finally got some camouflaged armor - white was a glaringly obvious target.

Want more? His Wookieepedia article

153rd in alphabetical order

1 comment:

james said...

Luke isn't the biggest killer in the movies. Grand Moff Tarkin is. There were millions of people on Alderran.