Back in early 2012, Sideshow Collectibles announced a new line of Star Wars statues in the 1/5th scale. Characters from new and existing storylines would populate this line and bring history, unique details, and personal choices to each chosen character to elaborate on who they are and offer Sideshow’s interpretations of what they have done outside of the Star Wars canon. The announcement was met with both excitement and reservation. Many were excited to see what the Sideshow team would bring to the table given the artistic freedom to explore subjects and situations outside the Star Wars canon; others held reservations on how this new line would fit their collections with a new scale. Today we review the first entry into the Mythos line of statues, the Sideshow Collectibles Darth Maul Mythos Statue, released in March of 2013.
Darth Maul is the main antagonist from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace and was considered one of the more powerful Sith Lords before being cut in half by Obi-Wan Kenobi on Naboo. It was later revealed that Darth Maul survives this encounter through his intense hatred, which kept him alive. However, the events on which this Darth Maul Mythos statue are based upon occur far earlier and tell the story of how Darth Maul became to wield a dual-bladed Lightsaber. Darth Maul is sent by Darth Sidious to assassinate Jedi Master, Siolo’urmanka. During this encounter, Darth Maul loses to the Jedi Master, who beats him with only his force imbued staff. It was after this defeat that Darth Maul decides to build his dual-bladed saber to use as an element of surprise during his second attempt at Siolo’urmanka’s life. At the second encounter, Siolo’urmanka again beats Maul and has him pinned with his staff, at which point Maul activates his double blade, which rips right through Siolo’urmanka’s chest, killing him in the process.
Sideshow brings us the Darth Maul Mythos statue based on the aftermath of the foretold event. The first thing you will notice when unboxing this statue is the incredible artwork on the statue’s box. Sideshow includes fantastic imagery taken from their concept of the art design and has adorned all sides of the box with this incredible and eye-catching artwork. Once you open the box, you are greeted with a black cardboard envelope that is also adorned with more artwork; inside of which, you have a certificate of authenticity. The certificate is printed on heavy card stock with one side having the actual certificate and the other side with additional artwork. The inclusion of the Certificate of Authenticity adds excellent value to this statue and gives owners the option to display their figures with the certificate.
The first thing you will notice once you take the statue Styrofoam packaging out of the box is that Sideshow omitted to include which side is up or down. I ended up getting it wrong the first time, but thankfully I was careful not to break anything. For all those who do end up deciding to get this piece, look at the Styrofoam carefully; the side with more grooves and indentations is the bottom side. The statue ships with nine individual parts, of which only seven are used at a time. We have a weighty base with the statue name and numbering on the bottom; Darth Maul’s body attaches to the base through a metal peg on his left foot, which slides into the base. Unfortunately, while this does the job of holding the statue in place, it’s not exactly very stable. If you live in earthquake country as I do, you will want to secure it further to the base with some earthquake putty as any shaking will rattle the statue and potentially break it. What you have is a choice of two great head sculpts, one with a menacing look with an open mouth displaying Maul’s teeth, the other more tranquil. Both of these head sculpts are excellent and, in my opinion, look better than any other Sideshow Maul head sculpt. Both head sculpts attach to the top of the body through a key that also provides a magnetic grip to hold both heads securely in place.
Once the body is positioned on the base, and you have your selection of heads installed, you have the left hand which wields the dual saber. At this point, you begin to question some of the design decisions with this piece. The heads, which are heavy enough and go into a large groove on the top of the statue and will never fall out of place, have magnetic grips. The saber hand, has to battle gravity to stay in place has no such grip. It is only held into place by a metal peg on the arm that goes into the hand; the hand on my statue was so loose that it fell out on more than one occasion. I ended up putting a small amount of earthquake putty on the inside of the hand groove to hold it securely in place. The deployed sabers are made out of see-through plastic and attach to the hilt through metal pins, which you twist into place and are entirely secure once in place. The final two pieces to this statue are the two right hands that attach to the statue through a metal pin (no magnets). These are a lot more secure in place than the saber hand though I would personally still feel a lot safer with a small amount of putty so that they don’t fall out and break while handling. One hand is an open hand gesture as if Darth Maul is performing a Force push, the other, which ties in directly to the story above, is a hand holding the Siolo’urmanka’s Force imbued staff after Maul defeats him. All three attachable hand options are well crafted and look good on the statue.
The paint job introduced more technical issues. While the paint scheme and colors are excellent and match the look of the character, for some boggling reason, Sideshow decided to make the paint on the head sculpts far glossier than the rest of the body. You can see it in the photos below, where the heads look shiny. This issue is further exasperated with flash photography, where Maul looks like he is sweaty. As a person who enjoys not only displaying his collection but also taking photos of them, I am incredibly disappointed by this paint snafu. The issue is not as apparent when the statue is put in a display case, but the head still looks shinier than the rest of the body. I am convinced the product photos for this statue on Sideshow’s website, which don’t do this statue any favors, were intentionally shot with dull lighting to hide this issue. Again, it won’t look nearly as bad in a display case as it does when trying to photograph it, but buyer beware. The torso has an excellent paint job applied, which doesn’t exhibit the glossiness issue, and the polystone cast clothing is further brought to life with the fantastic paint job that brings out all the details.
So, what are my overall thoughts on this piece? I have to say I was a bit reluctant to get this piece considering the scale. I had concerns about how it would fit my collection being the odd-sized piece that falls between my 1/4 scale statues and 1/6 scale figures. I eventually decided that this wouldn’t be an issue as I will be expanding my Mythos collection, and this piece will have companion pieces to display with down the line. The second concern that you should consider is space. While this is a 1/5th scale piece, it takes up a HUGE amount of space because of the dual lightsabers. This statue will not fit in a Besta or Detolf display case; the saber is just too big unless you choose to display it without the attachments.
The Darth Maul Mythos statue is an excellent introduction to this new Star Wars product line. The figure sculpt is of excellent quality, and both heads are amazing and, in my opinion, Sideshow’s best so far for this character. The scale could be an issue for some, but if you plan on getting some of the other already announced Mythos statues, this shouldn’t be as big of a problem. The head sculpt paint job is what bothers me most with its glossiness. Sideshow’s odd design decision to not include a magnet in the hands is also an issue for me especially since I already suffered two close mishaps with the saber hand falling out. This Statue is a really good statue that could have been a great statue. Unfortunately, it’s bogged down by technical mishaps and design decisions, which I hope we don’t up seeing with the newer Mythos statues coming down the production pipe. I still recommend you get this statue if you plan on collecting the Mythos line. It’s an essential character from the Star Wars universe that deserves a place in your home, be aware of the shortcomings that come as part of this piece.
This product was purchased by the reviewer and was not provided by the manufacturer for this review.