Star Wars: Smuggler’s Bounty review: Revenge of the Sith forgets Padmé


The July Smuggler’s Bounty box honors Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, but it also neglects the biggest female character of the prequel trilogy.

Smuggler’s Bounty headed back to the prequel era for a box dedicated to Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith this July. Naturally, it covers the iconic moment of the prequels as a whole. But Funko and Lucasfilm have an ongoing issue when it comes to this subscription box: forgetting about the women of the series. Sure, the very first box featured Captain Phasma, and Rey was represented in The Last Jedi‘s box. However, the 40th anniversary box only put Leia on the box itself; the Solo box only put Enfys Nest on a pin and forgot about Qi’ra; and now, this box has no Padmé Amidala whatsoever.

By the way, that’s a spoiler for the contents of this box.

In fact, everything but the patch and the promised Pop! all feels a little disappointing in this box, truth be told. Yes, even the pin, just because it looks off. Let’s start there:

Star Wars: Smuggler’s Bounty July patch and pin. Image taken by C. Wassenaar; Smuggler’s Bounty via Funko/Lucasfilm.

The patch has a pretty cool concept behind it: both Anakin Skywalker and Darth Vader are represented, showing that they’re one and the same. Sure, the detailing on Anakin’s face might be a bit off, but it’s easy to overlook considering just how flat-out cool it is, particularly in all of its contrasting. Meanwhile, Mace Windu is a good option for the pin, too, considering the way he gets to go out in the film itself, but there’s just something off about the artistic rendering. Look, Samuel L. Jackson’s face, like the rest of him, deserves the utmost respect, and it doesn’t feel like said face received that respect for this pin.

Star Wars: Smuggler’s Bounty July luggage tag. Image taken by C. Wassenaar; Smuggler’s Bounty via Funko/Lucasfilm.

See all of the detail that goes into this Commander Cody luggage tag? It goes beyond just picking out every single bit of orange on his armor; it’s even to the point of showing the holo message he gets from Palpatine to “execute Order 66.” (We dare you not to read that in Ian McDiarmid’s voice.)

Also, why Commander Cody? Sure, it does tie in to the revival of The Clone Wars pretty neatly, but it’s not like he’s a major character in Revenge of the Sith itself.

Palpatine Mystery Mini from Star Wars Smuggler’s Bounty July box. Image taken by C. Wassenaar; Smuggler’s Bounty via Funko/Lucasfilm.

This is a fair choice for the Mystery Mini. Palpatine is one of the grand villains of the first two trilogies of Star Wars, and his pulling out the Force lightning that helps permanently alter his face to the evil wrinkles we see in the original trilogy is a big moment in Revenge of the Sith. It’s got some nice detail on the robes, and the Force lightning does look cool. However, all of this is easily outclassed by the Pop! of the box.

Duel on Mustafar Pop! Movie Moment from Star Wars: Smuggler’s Bounty July box. Image taken by C. Wassenaar; Smuggler’s Bounty via Funko/Lucasfilm.

You want clear plastic to simulate something not solid? This Pop! has clear plastic to emulate something not-solid (in this case, lava). You want fine detailing? Not only does Anakin have his scar, but there are also some great folds and work done in both his and Obi-Wan’s robes. You want moments that basically define the movie that inspired this box? There’s a reason we remember some of these lines better than almost anything else from the prequel trilogy (aside from “I hate sand,” of course).

Frankly, the Duel on Mustafar Pop! makes up for a lot of the shortcomings of this box. But “a lot” does not mean “all,” because missing Padmé is a major problem.

dark. Next. Solo: A Star Wars Story's Smuggler's Bounty box plays it safe

It’s not enough to stop this writer from continuing to pick up Smuggler’s Bounty boxes wherever they end up going. But it is starting to become more and more obvious that this is a problem.