Of all the added characters in the Star Wars prequels, Aayla Secura is one of my favorites. She has all the hallmarks of classic, fan favorite Lucas characters: 1) She looks badass; 2) She barely appears in any of the movies; and 3) She dies like a punk. So it was with much excitement that I received my 12″ Aayla Secura figure, one of Sideshow Collectibles’ exclusives from the 2008 San Diego Comic Con. Here’s my look at whether she measures up to the hype.
Sideshow has a great track record with their 12″ figures. These toys routinely have awesome likenesses, come wearing well crafted costumes, and include tons of cool accessories. And then there’s Aayla Secura. Sure, I know she’s a con exclusive and limited to 3000 pieces, but does that really warrant her being the most sucktastic addition to the Star Wars line? Apparently so.
I’ll start with the positives. Well, she’s in the 12″ scale, so that’s good. The likeness isn’t horrible, either. Oh, and her Jedi robe is a great addition, because when she’s wearing it, her disproportionately large head doesn’t look quite as huge. And that’s about it.
Large head? Yeah, poor Aayla suffers from noggin ginormonous, a malady that most of Sideshow’s recent 12″ figures have been immune to. Whether it’s because of her overall small body frame or just a too-big head, there’s definitely something “off” about her head to body ratio. I really wish her body had been a bit bulkier, to be honest. The actress who plays Aayla, Amy Allen, is a pretty small gal, but she’s not horrifically rail-ish like the action figure is. The smallness of the Aayla figure’s body causes the joints to be very weak, and the figure has trouble maintaining even the simplest of poses. She’s not even able to hold a raised arm pose without her tiny, tiny appendage swinging back down. This makes it nearly impossible to put her into anything even close to Aayla’s iconic pose with her lightsaber raised above her head and behind her back.
Another problem I have with the Aayla Secura figure is the visibility of her joints. I realize that the character wears a midriff-baring, sleeveless top, so I don’t fault Sideshow for any sort of costume design. Still, having her hip, shoulder, and elbow joints so clearly visible gives the figure a sort of freakish look. This is another thing that can be hidden by putting the Jedi robe on her. But really, why would you want to have an Aayla Secura 12″ figure if you’re just going to cover her up with a robe?
One more bad feature the robe helps cover is the shoddy work on the costume. Maybe I just was unlucky with the one I received, but the shirt and belt show some of the poorest construction of any Sideshow figure I’ve encountered. There are loose strings at every seam, and one seam on the shirt doesn’t even match exactly right. It ends up just looking sloppy.
If the figure and costume are lacking, at least she’ll have some cool accessories, right? Try again, young padawan. Aayla comes with an interchangeable hand, lit and unlit versions of her lightsaber, and the standard Star Wars display base, and that’s it. Granted, the character didn’t have a lot of screentime to use any nifty gadgets, but I still expected something more than this bare minimum. And even the swappable hands have issues. Because Aayla’s force-push hand goes onto the sleeveless arm, the attaching joint is very visible, making the hand poke out awkwardly, looking just plain weird.
All in all, this figure is a big disappointment, especially in light of its $65-70 pricetag. From the bad sewing to the flimsy joints to the general off-ness, the 12″ Aayla Secura is a collectible you can safely pass on buying (or at least not feel so badly about missing if you didn’t attend the SDCC).