‘Star Wars’ Collectibles & Toys Review: Hasbro Star Wars The Black Series Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony)

Photo Credit: Hasbro. (C) 2019 Hasbro, Inc. and Lucasfilm Ltd. (LFL)

Last fall, during the last months before the premiere of Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, Hasbro released a wave of new tie-in products from its Star Wars The Black Series collection to both promote the final film of the Skywalker Saga and celebrate the legacy of the first six films released between 1977 and 2005 during the franchise’s George Lucas era.

Released on September 23, 2019 in a wave that included First Order Jet Trooper, Wedge Antilles, Jannah, Cara Dune, Rey & D-O, and Sith Trooper, Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) not only represented the protagonist of 1977’s Star Wars (aka Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope), but was also the 100th figure in the Star Wars: The Black Series line.

On Yavin 4, the Rebels hold a ceremony to award the heroes who bravely fought to destroy the Death Star. Luke Skywalker receives his medal for bravery from Princess Leia. – Packaging blurb, Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony)

This six-inch scale action figure depicts Luke Skywalker as a fresh-off-the-farm 19-year-old from Tatooine clad in a Rebel Alliance junior officer’s uniform that he wears at an awards ceremony in the Massassi Temple after the Battle of Yavin. Luke, assisted by the last-minute arrival of Han Solo, Chewbacca, and the Millennium Falcon – and, of course, the Force – fired the proton torpedoes that destroyed the Galactic Empire’s dreaded Death Star battle station, thus earning the Alliance’s Medal of Honor.

As in the Throne Room sequence in Star Wars Episode IV: A New HopeStar Wars: The Black Series Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) is shown wearing a Rebel Alliance officer’s uniform, complete with a light mustard-color jacket, a black undertunic (which contrasts with the white tunic Luke wears on Tatooine and throughout much of A New Hope), brown military-issue trousers, a gun belt with a holster, knee-high spacer’s boots, and his Medal of Honor.

Luke also comes with a sporting blaster pistol that he can hold in his right hand or place in the aforementioned holster.

Photo Credit: Hasbro .(C) 2019 Hasbro, Inc. and Lucasfilm Ltd. (LFL)

The 6-inch scale Black Series Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) action figure is detailed to look like the character from Star Wars: A New Hope, featuring premium detail and multiple points of articulation. – Figure description, Hasbro official website

I bought Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) last fall, around the same time that I acquired a batch of Star Wars The Black Series figures, either at a nearby Walmart or via Amazon. In addition to Luke, I bought Emperor Palpatine and Throne (Amazon Exclusive), Rebel Trooper, and Rey & D-O. I rarely get that many figures in a relatively short period of time, but I hadn’t bought anything in a while and I was caught up in the pre-release excitement for The Rise of Skywalker.

I chose Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) in part because by the time I got to Walmart that day, there weren’t that many Star Wars The Black Series figures based on Original Trilogy characters left on the shelves. There were plenty of Sequel Trilogy, Rogue One, and even some Solo character figures, but Luke and Wedge Antilles were the only representatives of the 1977-1983 films. I passed up Wedge (at least temporarily) and bought Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony), Jannah, and Rey & D-O, even though The Rise of Skywalker was still a few weeks away from its theatrical premiere.

I already owned a few other Star Wars The Black Series Luke figures from A New Hope, including Luke Skywalker: X-Wing Pilot and Luke Skywalker (Death Star Escape), but I made it a point to get the Yavin Ceremony variant, even if it meant passing up – temporarily, anyway – Wedge Antilles.

You see, when I started collecting Star Wars figures in March of 1978, Kenner didn’t anticipate a demand for the different costume variants for major characters’ figures. For its 1978-1980 Star Wars collection, the Cincinnati (Ohio) toy company (which was then a division of General Mills) only created one “variant” figure for Luke Skywalker: Luke Skywalker: X-Wing Pilot. Kenner only got around to creating the Stormtrooper Disguise versions of Luke and Han Solo in its 1985 Power of the Force line, and it never got around to creating a Yavin Ceremony variant of any of the Heroes of the Rebellion while the company was independent from Hasbro.

It wasn’t until after Hasbro purchased Kenner in the mid-1990s that collectors started seeing more scene-specific variants of established character figures, including the coveted Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) version.

I’m not going to bore you with a long history of the genesis of the Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) figure. Suffice it to say that Kenner and Hasbro have created several figures, most of them in the 3.75-inch scale, in various collections, including The Power of the Force 2, from which I own two versions: the 1997 Luke Skywalker in Ceremonial Outfit and its 1997 Princess Leia Collection counterpart, which is essentially the same figure, but his mustard-yellow jacket is made of fabric, whilst the original figure’s jacket is made of the same material as the figure.

What’s in the Package?

  • Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) Action Figure (Star Wars The Black Series #100)
  • Defender sporting blaster pistol
  • Medal of Honor

I still have those figures in their original packaging, but they’re in boxes tucked away in my closet, so I got Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) so I could display him on my Star Wars-themed Ikea bookshelves.

My Take

Kids and collectors alike can imagine the biggest battles and missions in the Star Wars saga with figures from Star Wars The Black Series! With exquisite features and decoration, this series embodies the quality and realism that Star Wars devotees love. Star Wars The Black Series includes figures, vehicles, and roleplay items from the 40-plus-year legacy of the Star Wars Galaxy, including comics, movies, and animated series. (Additional products each sold separately. Subject to availability.– Figure description, Hasbro official website

I’ve been a fan of Hasbro’s Star Wars The Black Series collection for nearly three years; I’d stopped collecting Star Wars figures a decade ago due to the challenges I faced after my elderly mother became gravely ill and I became her primary caregiver for the last five years of her life. Other life changes after Mom’s death ensued, and I thought that my changed circumstances had put an end to my collecting days for sure.

After I was given my first Star Wars The Black Series figures as Christmas presents in 2017 (fittingly, the 40th Anniversary year of Star Wars: A New Hope), I started collecting again, although I focus only on the six-inch scale figures and limit myself to a handful of figures each year. Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) represents the batch of figures from 2019, which was modest in comparison to my 2020 purchases!

Photo Credit: Hasbro. (C) 2019 Hasbro, Inc. and Lucasfilm Ltd. (LFL)

If there’s one thing that fans can say about Star Wars The Black Series figures, especially the six-inch scale ones, is that they are extremely well-designed and manufactured. I am impressed by how well the sculpt and paint job capture the essence and look of young Luke as he appeared in 1977’s Star Wars. Hasbro’s design team did an excellent job with the figure; the face bears a close resemblance to actor Mark Hamill’s, down to the cleft in his chin, the blue irises of the eyes, and the dirty-blonde color of his hair.

The figure comes in a black-and-red Star Wars The Black Series box, and the details of Luke’s Rebel officer’s uniform are nicely rendered. (No, his jacket is not made from fabric; it’s molded and painted to give the illusion that it is made out of tough-but-fashionable material, but the articulation points at the shoulders, elbows, and wrists are all-too-visible and mar that “cloth-like” look somewhat.)

Overall, I like my Star Wars The Black Series version of “Yavin Ceremony” Luke. My figure must have been made in batches Hasbro made after its initial September 2019 release; the first figures hit stores with typos on their packaging. Apparently, there are three errors in the figure’s product name on the box front and in the various blurbs on the reverse side.

Check this out. Hasbro misprinted Luke’s last name on the Star Wars The Black Series box thusly: “Skywalkwer” on the front panel, and “Skwalker” on the back panel and faintly in the background of the left side. (The Hasbro promo photo I use in this review shows the “Skywalkwer” goof. Once you see it, you can’t unsee it!) I don’t think that you’ll find samples from the September 2019 batch; the one that I have is from a later release in November and has no typos.

(I am not sure how rare boxes with “Skywalkwer” are in 2020 or if they’ll become highly sought-after collectors’ items. If you get a Luke Skywalker (Yavin Ceremony) with the typos after reading this review, let me know in the comments section below!)

Otherwise, this is a definite “must-get” figure, especially for 1977 Generation fans who grew up watching the Original Trilogy and its unforgettable cast of heroes and villains. It looks remarkably like the farmboy-turned-Hero of the Rebellion, and it is nicely sculpted and painted to capture most of the salient details of Luke’s Rebel Alliance uniform as seen in the Throne Room sequence in A New Hope.

Well, that about wraps it up for this Star Wars Collectibles & Toys review. I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. And until next time, remember, the Force will be with you…always.

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

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