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  1. Din Djarin – The Bounty Hunter (06784) Star Wars: The Mandalorian 1:9 Carrera Revell Firstly, some minor spoiler alerts. If you’ve not seen the series and plan on doing so, skip this section and go straight to text below 'The Kit' heading, where I’ll try to keep the spoilers to the minimum. We’ve all heard of Star Wars, the three trilogies, the spin-off films and now under the auspices of the massive Disney corporation, we are being treated to some television series on their streaming service Disney+ that are bringing back some of the magic that perhaps had been lost, or at least dulled over the years under the helmsmanship of J J Abrams. The Mandalorian reached our screens in 2019, right around the time the Covid-19 pandemic first hit, and it has helped keep us Star Wars fans entertained for two seasons now, with a third in the offing for 2023. It has brought us new characters into the much-loved Star Wars universe such as the Mandalorian, Din Djarin himself, Grogu the baby Yoda, and it has reintroduced the previously reviled but strangely popular Boba Fett, who seems to have mellowed during his time in the Sarlacc Pit, and has now got his own series on the strength of his performance in season 2. Even Luke Skywalker has made a brief appearance at the end of season 2, heavily de-aged to fit in with the show’s timeline of post Return of the Jedi Star Wars. Season 3 is just coming soon, airing toward the end February, and at time of writing, I can’t wait. The eponymous hero was until the second season known either as Mando, or the Bounty Hunter until his real name became knowns near the end of the season. Our moustachioed hero wears the distinctive Mandalorian armour, mostly forged from Beskar steel, which he was often paid in billets of by his early customers. Like many Mandalorians he was a Foundling that was taken in and trained in the ways of their warriors, taking the oath not to reveal his face as part of the deal, which must make eating, drinking and cleaning oneself a mite convoluted. When we first see him on Tatooine, he is working in the void between the fall of the Empire and rise of the First Order, and we often see Stormtrooper helmets and other garb on pikes and as trophies in the background, with the remainder a much grubbier prospect than their previously pristine white armoured hoardes. The Kit This is a brand-new kit from Carrera Revell, and isn’t part of their collaboration with Bandai. It is a static figure that comes with a diorama base and various accessories that arrives in a deep, end-opening box, with three sprues and two diorama panels in grey styrene, a small decal sheet and the colour instruction booklet with a photo of the finished model on the front, and detailed painting guidance throughout the following instruction steps. Detail is good, and is improved by his armour as separate appliqué parts over the simple cloth basis of the figure. Construction begins with the afore mentioned base figure, which is built from a front and rear half that acts as a basis for the additional detail parts that are added later. A detailed painting guide shows the colours for the cloth suit and the under-armour pads and straps, which is best done early before installing the other detail parts for ease of access. The base figure is bereft of hands, feet and head, which are added next, starting with the hands. These are made from the hand/glove with front of the gauntlet that attaches around the forearm stump on pegs to complete the arms. Similarly, the feet are each two parts and are installed on the shin for one leg, and at the end of a shin extension on the other leg in much the same way. The knee pads and calf strapping are added separately on more turrets, with more detail painting information included, then the thigh armour is built up with straps and ammunition belts. The right hand has a pistol moulded into it and a separate piece of hand armour with the arrow motif in the centre, fixing to the arm stub in the same way as the other. The chest is armoured front and rear, with belt and cross-strap laid over them in front and rear halves, plus a pair of shoulder pauldrons that slot into deep holes there. Mando has a disposable block supplied to help keep him upright while painting, which has a recessed foot shape moulded-in, and on that leg the raised thigh has additional armour placed at the top at an angle. Din’s head is nothing more than a ball-joint onto which the helmet is built, starting by adding the two-part socket inside, then closing it up around the ball-joint, allowing the head to be posed at your whim. The T-shaped vision slit is inserted into a recess in the front of the completed helmet, then the figure is finished by adding a cape around his left shoulder, latching against the figure as shown in detail. Attention then turns to the diorama base, which is festooned with a quartet of discarded or trophy Stormtrooper helmets amongst other things. Firstly however, a pair of cylindrical “sci-fi” objects with tapered tops are made up from a pair of halves and a separate top, to be put to the side while the helmets are made up. The two complete helms are built from front and rear halves to facilitate being skewered by pikes that have a mounting pin and two washers moulded into them to prevent them from sliding down. Whether you decide there’s a head in there or not is entirely up to you, and will help you decide whether to smear blood around. All the helmets have decals for the eyes, vents and other details of the helmets, which will simplify their preparation somewhat. The partially buried helmets are similarly made in halves, but these are only present where they will be seen, disappearing where they might be otherwise buried under the sand. The other two diorama parts are the large sections of the base, which consists of an undulating sandy base with a few recesses for the various parts to be fitted, while the backdrop has a door, plus some lights and controls or sensors moulded-in. The two halves just clip together on tabs at right-angles, adding the helmets, cylinders, pikes, and of course Din Djarin, who trades in his temporary foot pad for a sunken Stormtrooper helmet that is fixed to the base. Markings Most of the decals are for detailing the Stormtrooper helmets, but others are included for Mando’s hand arrows, wrist control pad, silver logo on his right pauldron, rear helmet ‘track’ detail, and even a trio of blaster holes for the diorama backdrop, although it would have been nicer if they weren’t all identical. The large white Mandalorian logo decal is designed for the front of the base, but put it where you wish. Decals are printed for Revell by Italian company Zanchetti, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Conclusion A well-detailed static figure diorama that should go together relatively quickly, and with careful painting and decaling, will look the part. Highly recommended. Carrera Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit or
  2. I picked up Revell's new Razor Crest a few days ago, and while I was originally planning on starting the build next year, after going through the sprues and seeing how much detail Revell had put into the kit (something that's not always the case with their Star Wars releases), I had to make a start on it straight away. I won't bother with any sprue shots here, but I posted some in the discussion section, and there's also Mike's review of the kit. You get a fairly comprehensive interior included, and the build starts with the cockpit and upper deck area. There's quite a bit of detail here, probably more than is neccesary in truth, although that's not a complaint, just an observation. The main floor panel is a full length plate that also forms the roof of the lower cargo deck. The front of this is divided into two sections by bulkhead panels, the front of these sections being the cockpit, and the rear one is the small vestibule?, foyer?, landing? where you access the upper deck from below. Two side panels close these sections off, then the cockpit is completed by the instrument panel which also forms the forward walls of the cockpit. The rear vestibule section is fully enclosed, and will only be visible through two tiny windows in the upper hull, and will more than likely be completely invisible on the finished build. I'm surprised that they didn't mould the dividing bulkhead with open doors, or supply two versions, one open and one closed. You could of course cut the doors open yourself if you want the rear compartment to be visible from the cockpit. Most of the detailing here is very accurate to the cockpit set used on the show including the panel pattern on the door and the box holding three lights imediately above it (Apologies for the dinginess of these screen grabs, they're the best I've got) Moving to the front of the cockpit, Revell have done a pretty good job at recreating the various controls and screens on the instrument panel, although a few things are understandably simplified. There are however a couple of odd omissions. The lefthand side console has some piping running along the top, and a short tube at the front edge, and these have both been reproduced, as have the row of three red lights although they're quite faint. The throttle-type lever behind the left display screen is there, but quite a flat moulding, so I may cut that off and replace it. The holo emitter above the screen is also present, but again quite flat compared to the real one. To the right of these should be the main centre console display, and that's one of the omissions I mentioned. Where it should sit there's a rectangular recess that looks as if something should go in it, but nothing is included or mentioned in the instructions. Not a real problem as I can scratch something to go there. The two big clunky looking things sticking out from behind where the centre console should be are representations of the control sticks. The real ones are two columns that extend from below the console and end with a square block onto which the joysticks are mounted. These too will be better of replaced with something a little more refined. Interesting trivia: it appears that, in the photo below, the centre console has been removed, probably to allow better access for the camera when filming the scene. The photo below shows the ends of the control columns and joysticks better, and also shows the other strange omission from the instrument panel. While the throttle controls on the left and right side console have been included, Revell haven't moulded the famous lever with the round knob that attracts Grogu's attention throughout the show. Given how well known that feature is, it's strange that Revell don't include it when they include details that most people wouldn't notice. Again, no problem though, as it can easily be added. Revell aren't the only ones to forget though, as in some scenes the control lever (not just the knob) is missing from the cockpit set. The seats are all well done with the two passenger seats being quite basic as they are on the show, while Mando's chair has a lot more detail. The bands on the headrests of the passenger seats represent the straps hung over the back of the seats. They do appear like this in the show, but they can also be seen in use, especially when they're strapping Grogu in place. I'll probably sand these off and replace them with some foil straps. The hole in the back of Din's seat will also need to be filled as I won't be using the included figure. Well, what about some actual modelling I hear you say. Well, yes, I have managed to do something other that look at reference pics, although not a great deal to be fair. I've removed the moulded detail from the tops of the side consoles, and this will be replaced with some wire and brass tubing. I've also made up a simple centre console from styrene sheet with a thinner piece of sheet added to represent the screen. The base for Grogu's lever has been added as well. Oh, and the control columns have been removed ready for some replacements. The two grab handles on the left hand screen are made from thin stretched sprue, and will probably get knocked off before I even get close to painting If you look back up the page at the screen shot with the missing lever, you can also see that there's a folded metal shroud over the top of the centre console, and I've made a simplifed representation of that from some styrene strip (barely visible in the photo below, sorry). A bit of brass tube has also been added to the holo emitter, although now I look at the screen shots, the emitter should be further to the left hand side of the console, so I'll probably re-do this. Okay, that's about it for now. I should get a little more done over the next couple of days. Andy
  3. Revell's new Razor Crest from the Star Wars TV show 'The Mandalorian'. The kit is definitely a step up from some of Revell's previous Star Wars releases, featuring some excellent detailing and a full interior. It's also nice that they've made it in a standard modelling scale rather than some random one as many of their earlier SW kits were. The only significant downside with the kit is the poor surface texturing across many of the parts, including some quite visible tooling marks in places. Much of that can be removed with a sanding stick and a little effort, but I'd have prefered it not to be there in the first place. Despite that, the kit builds up well and has excellent fit for the most part. A few areas can benefit from a little extra detailing and enhancement, but the end result is an accurate and fairy imposing replica of the Crest, especially if you can stand it next to it's natural stablemate - Slave 1. The full build can be found here Thanks for looking Andy
  4. Star Wars Outland TIE Fighter (06782) 1:65 Carrera Revell The new Disney+ series The Mandalorian has expanded the Star Wars universe beyond the grandiose operations of the Rebels against the evil Galactic Empire/First Order, dealing instead with the adventures of a Mandalorian Bounty Hunter in the Galactic Outer Rim after the events of Return of the Jedi. His name is Djin Djarin, a foundling that was taken in by other Mandalorians as a child, and grew up to be a feared and respected Bounty Hunter, known colloquially as Mando, as his name isn’t something he often shares. During most of the first series the remnants of the Empire are bit-players, but by the end of the season they make a profoundly effective appearance, and the Outland TIE makes an landing, with Moff Gideon at the controls. The original films glossed over the manner in which the TIE carried out landing and take-off with its unusual “bow-tie” shape with large solar* panels hanging way below the spherical fuselage. The sequel Star Wars trilogy showed us how the more modern TIE Advanced were docked aboard Star Destroyers, but it wasn’t until The Mandalorian that we saw one land on the ground without a huge ball of flames (Lookin’ at you Poe Dameron). Moff Gideon’s TIE dramatically folded its solar wings horizontally at the centreline, allowing the hull’s gear legs to deploy and land without the them hitting the ground. You’d have to pick your landing area very carefully though, as any rocks or slopes could end with a large repair bill and a temporarily out-of-service TIE fighter, plus the possibility of an invisible hand strangling you if news of your accident filtered high enough up the command structure. * That’s what they look like, but it’s anyone’s guess what they really are. The Kit We’ve started to see new kits from Revell relating to The Mandalorian, the first of which was the handsome Razor Crest, which we reviewed here, where we remarked with relief that it had been scaled to 1:72, the most common scale for Star Wars kits from the Far East of late. This kit is 1:65, which might seem a disappointing choice initially until you compare it with the standard TIE model that shares the same scale, at which point you notice that they also share a good number of sprues. If you’re listening Revell, please make any new tools in 1:72 going forward, although we’ll forgive you if it’s a Star Destroyer or Starkiller Base kit, as those may be a little…large in 1:72. The kit arrives in one of Revell’s deep end-opening boxes with their usual Star Wars branding and the helmeted Mando intimidating us from the top right corner. Inside are ten sprues in a medium grey styrene that would look OK with no paint if you were so inclined, or too young to be painting models. There is also a small sprue containing two clear parts, and a TIE pilot in shiny black vinyl will also be found in the box with a big peg in his bottom. The instructions complete the package with the decals hidden inside the disposable Safety Advice sheet that could easily be thrown away if you don’t unfold it first. We’ve reviewed the kit it is based upon recently, and it’s a nice-looking, well-detailed kit of the bad-guys’ primary fighter, with lots of greeblies where they should be, and a well-appointed cockpit to house your pilot in. The snap-fit heritage of the original is still evident from the turrets and receiver cylinders inside the main parts, but that doesn’t detract from the detail, and if you remove or ease their fit by reaming out the cylindrical receivers, you shouldn’t end up with parts that are stuck and won’t come undone even before you glue them. A new set of bisected wings have been tooled for this boxing, and a new set of fuselage halves have been created too, in order to accommodate the landing gear bays. The gear parts have been spread around the new wing sprues, while a revised exhaust part and crew hatch on the top of the hull are found next to the new fuselage halves. Construction begins with a choice of wing layout. You can set your wings vertically like every other TIE around, you can have them slightly folded outward as if it changing configuration for landing, or the final option which is landed with the wings folded up at a sharp angle to provide ground clearance. With that, the pilot is painted and added to his chair by way of his butt-peg, then the rest of the cockpit is built up with copious colour call-outs along the way, and a number of decals to be applied to the walls around the pilot. The hull and access hatch are painted inside, and the hatch is fixed into the upper half to remain openable if you don’t flood it with glue. The twin cannons are fitted to the nose, and the gear bays are painted in preparation for later. The hull is closed up around the cockpit, with the ion exhaust also painted inside so it matches the cockpit, and the iconic faceted windscreen is put in place after a coat of paint is applied to the frames. More detail is picked out with alphabetic flags that match a key at the front of the booklet, then the wings are begun. Cleverly, the new wings can be used for all flight options, leaving the original un-hinged wings on the sprues, which would come in handy if you wanted to model some of the more esoteric TIE derivatives, such as those that have appeared in the various Star Wars games over the years. Each wing half has a moulded-in frame on one side, with a separate frame for the other to avoid sink-marks, and predictably, you build up four of these in two pairs. The in-flight options involve closing over the gear bay areas with press-in doors, and the wings are then attached to the hull on either straight H-shaped brackets, or the slightly angled type of a similar format. For the landed option there are another pair of brackets that are sharply angled, and the three gear legs are each made from three parts including their open doors. These too press into the bays, and the tail leg has two separate doors that are added after the leg. For the flying options, a stand has been included that is similar to the one found in the Razor Crest, but with a cruciform adapter that cups the bottom of the hull and has a peg that holds them together. Markings All the decals are used inside the cockpit, and there is only one official scheme for the type, which is predominantly blue/grey with black solar panels, and some darker accent panels here and there. Decals are by Zanetti, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Conclusion I’d have loved this to be 1:72, but as it is based upon a previous TIE kit, we’ll let them off. Detail is good, and in the landed configuration it looks quite impressive, partly for the unusual look when compared to the usual TIE shape. Who will be first to sculpt a 1:65 Moff Gideon with Dark Saber to go with this? Highly recommended. Currently, Revell are unable to ship to the UK from their online shop due to recent changes in import regulations, but there are many shops stocking their products where you can pick up the kits either in the flesh or online. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit or
  5. This behind-the-scenes feature on ILM building a model Razor Crest for use in The Mandalorian TV series was on last night. https://youtu.be/8YuaIwVbEZo Great to see scale models being used again in this way. The skills on display are amazing. C’mon Bandai...now it’s your turn! Cheers, Dermot
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