Tuesday 21 September 2010

Favourite Set #3 : Ultimate Collector Series Rebel Blockade Runner

Any ship appearing in the opening scene of Star Wars : A New Hope has surely got to be worthy of the LEGO Ultimate Collector Series treatment, and Set 10019 Rebel Blockade Runner doesn't disappoint. Released in 2001 and consisting of 1748 pieces, it comprehensively blows the more recent version (Set 10198 Tantive IV released in 2009 and shown below right) out of the water. In my humble opinion, naturally....


As well as looking great and nicely approximating the Rebel Blockade Runner ship from the Star Wars movies, I just think that the older set has more substance and presence than the slightly anorexic recent version. I mean, compare their engines, for a start.

I took the pictures below when I had finished building my set; click on the images to enlarge them. I generally don't leave models built for more than a few months as I only have limited display space and therefore need to free up space for other models after a while, but this set stayed built and on display for more than a year because it just looks so fantastic.....

In addition to the chunky design, I love the subtle use of standard red and dark red pieces, including the "go faster" stripe which runs the length of the ship, the restrained but effective use of greebles, and the massive engines. According to the excellent "LEGO Star Wars : The Visual Dictionary" by Simon Beecroft, this was one of the first sets ever to include dark red pieces.

The downsides ? Well, the engine section is quite fragile - be careful how you carry it - and heaven help you if you knock one of the engines off because they can be a right pain to reattach. There are also a couple of large stickers which cover multiple pieces, a pet peeve of mine. Finally, it's getting quite pricey these days - expect to pay between £200 and £300 for a used, boxed example in reasonable condition, and more for a MISB one. 

Pricey it may be, but in my opinion it's well worth the money if you can afford it - an interesting build using some cool pieces and colours, and the final result is excellent. Sure, you can certainly save yourself some cash and buy the more recent version, but it's false economy I reckon - this is one instance where I think the remake just doesn't reach the heights of the original.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous25/10/11

    Great review. I really want this set and missed out on an unboxed but complete one on ebay which sold for £122! I do think that the more recent set is a more accurate approximation of the actual Blockade Runner but it doesn't have the presence of the UCS set as you say. I just wish Lego would do a release of this set and other UCS sets as then humble people like myself would be able to get their hands on them!