For several years, I collected and sold Star Wars action figures. From my childhood, I remembered a couple of figures that had peculiar-looking faces. It was understandable that toys from the ’70s and ’80s wouldn’t look exactly like the actors in question, but sometimes they’d look … horrific.
When the Power of the Force line started things back up in 1995, it continued Kenner’s habit of making unintentionally weird-looking versions of the heroes from a galaxy far, far away. For around fifteen years, I saw hundreds of action figures come through our office. Occasionally we’d see face sculpts that looked so odd or ugly that we’d keep a copy for ourselves.
For this Top 10, we narrowed down the characters to mainly the core three: Han, Luke, and Leia. These characters have seen so many interactions by various artists. Occasionally, some truly ugly-looking faces end up in stores. Han Solo as played by your fifty-year-old aunt? It exists. Ron Pearlman as Luke Skywalker? Oh, yes. I’ve seen it.
These are in no particular order.
#10 – Swole Neck Han Solo
That neck! Han didn’t miss Neck Day at the gym. He must do the barbell shrugs as I do. This figure is from Kenner’s 1985 The Power of the Force line. It was a cool toy at the time, mainly because it came with the translucent carbonite slab. The likeness to Harrison Ford, though, makes him look more like wrestler Paul Orndorff.
#9 – Ron Pearlman Is Luke Skywalker
It may be a bit unfair to target the relaunched Power of the Force line from 1995. It was the first time in almost a decade since Star Wars toys were produced, and early toylines always go through growing pains. However, there were some weird design choices with this first wave. For example, what’s with the super buff bodies? OK, this was during that point in the ’90s where even lines like G.I. Joe and DC Superheroes were chasing that weird ultra-bodybuilder body shape. So, it was a trend, but why use it with Star Wars?
Not only does the face look nothing like Mark Hamill, but it bears a strange resemblance to a younger Ron Pearlman. Remember how he looked in Ice Pirates? Yeah, those are the vibes I get off this Luke. However, the most offensive thing about this head was that Kenner kept using it over and over. Even Jedi Luke from RotJ got this head. Why?!
#8 – Princess Leia’s Stunt Double
More weird design choices from Kenner during that first wave of ’95 PotF figures. What do we get for the first female action figure in this new line? A very masculine-looking Leia, complete with manly hands and a manly face. Little did we know that this was a homage to Carrie Fisher’s stunt double from A New Home.
#7 – Star Wars Guest Starring Charo
Power of the Force again? OK, this is the last one from this line. This version of Leia came out just before The Phantom Menance. It came with a little window with a pull-tab. When pulled, the window would change to show a glimpse of Padme, I believe.
What always struck me weird about this figure was the makeup. This was less Carrie Fisher and more famed Spanish singer/dancer Charo. Cuchi cuchi!
#6 – Chewie in the Dumps
Our one and only Chewie that makes the list. This interpretation of the famous Wookie came packaged with a version of Han Solo that we’ll see show up later down the list. So why is Chewbacca on here? Well, the mold of his body less resembles fur and more looks like a stringy turd. He is one of the figures from the cheaper side of the toyline with less articulation and detail, but that glossy sheen and fibrous “hair” make this Wookie look a bit stinky.
#5 – An Interview With The Vampire Jedi
Luke, you OK? Are you going through withdrawals from not being around Tatooine’s twin suns? We can forgive Luke for coming with the wrong lightsaber and wearing what looks like a construction safety jacket, but that skin tone! I’d say it was a trick of the studio lighting, but I’ve seen this guy firsthand, too. The pink flesh tone was way off. He looked almost like a corpse. Not to mention the sculpt looks nothing like Hamill.
#4 – Princess Leia Mulan Skywalker Organa Solo
Sometimes artists can get Fisher’s face spot on, but it’s usually either the Bespin version or the OG A New Hope head. When we stray into things like Boushh and Slave Leia, things get weird. From the classic series and the Black Series, these two Leia’s have the same head, but neither looks anything like Carrie.
The one on the left could get there if the eye detail was slightly better and the skin was less porcelain. The one on the right reminds me of bodybuilder and doctor Yuan Herong. Did Leia put on lipstick to save Han from Jabba’s palace?
#3 – The Adventures of Ham Salad!
Have you seen Hardware Wars? No more explanation is required.
#2 – BOOOOOY!
Why does Luke look like he was just caught trying to steal cookies from Aunt Beru’s kitchen? Or maybe it’s the face you make when you realize exactly what the Ewoks have been feeding you at that celebratory feast (grilled stormtroopers).
Ultimately, the face reminds me of A. Michael Baldwin as he appeared in 1979’s Phantasm. The hair, the eyes, and even the expression. Did Luke see the Tallman?
#1 – Wine Aunt Cosplays As Han Solo, now with the new menthol smell!
Jedi Temple Archives
Here’s the inspiration for this Top 10. I spotted this Han in the wild in 2013 and thought he looked so strange. His facial features reminded me of the 20-pack-a-day Walmart cashiers you’d see in the most trailer parky parts of Florida. This is the Han who gets packaged with the Turdbacca from earlier. Not a high point in the Star Wars toyline for sure.
That’s it for our Top 10. What did you think? What figures would you nominate? Let us know in the comments.
[Source: Jedi Temple Archive]
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