Funko Star Wars Smuggler’s Bounty Box Review March 2017

Funko Star Wars Smuggler's Bounty March 2017 Review
  • Pin/Patch
  • T-Shirt
  • Pop Figure(s)
  • Hiakri Statue

March’s Star Wars/Funko Smuggler’s Bounty sub box rebels against The Empire with this month’s REBELS!

Review by Matt Cummings

As 2016 ended on the Star Wars/Funko alliance known as Smuggler’s Bounty, it was clear the sub box line had learned some big lessons, mixing heavy disappointments with stellar submissions. Even with an awesome November, we were curious to see if January would make it 2-for-2, or whether the line was in for a turbulent 2017. I can happily report that January’s THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK theme is filled with a very good wearable, a nice plushie, and one of the best Pop! figures we’ve ever seen.

Before diving in, let’s review the details:

  • The cost for a Month to Month is $25 (plus S/H), or $150 (plus S/H) for a one-year subscription.
  • You get one box every other month, with SB promising $50 in value and no fluff.
  • If you choose the Smuggler membership (yearly), you are promised an additional gift on your anniversary. Guess which one we chose.

Again, this month’s theme is REBELS, led by the terrific and truly epic Disney XD series.  If you haven’t watched it, what’s wrong with you?  Check it out, as it deftly merges many of the prequel’s elements with the classic series, including the stellar ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY.

As always, we use QUALITY and TIMING to base our reviews, so let’s see how this box measures up. As always, we’ll end our review with some additional thoughts after the unboxing:

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The STAR WARS universe is so rich with characters that it was amazing to see REBELS not only carve its own niche out of that huge universe, but to do so in such a compelling way. Upon opening this box, we realized that Funko also understands the same.

As always, you’re first treated to a pin/patch set that usually offers solid returns. I personally love these sets each month, and Funko really did these right in terms of likenesses and quality. Zeb’s stitching and colors are incredible, standing out in the photo but even more when holding it close. Sabine is also very well done. We’d love to have someone out there translate the Mandalorian on the patch, so please consider contributing in the Comments section. Until then, this set is such a WIN.

One reason I committed to these boxes was Funko’s promise of a wearable, something that Loot Crate and Geek Fuel used against us with cheap hats, socks, and anything other than shirts. SB and Marvel Collector Corps also made those mistakes, but for the past two boxes it appears the company might have listened to fan outrage. This shirt is simply awesome, with the core REBELS team on display in funky Funko fashion. The shirt is also soft and I really like the exclusivity of it; simply put, you’re not going to find in your local mall teen store. It’s a fabulous edition to my collection, and will be an instant choice come Casual Friday. WIN.

Perhaps the most popular reason people subscribe to these boxes is the inclusion of an exclusive Funko Pop! figure. Well, that comes in a pair this time, showing off two popular characters from the prequels: Captain Rex and none other than Darth Maul! Usually when someone uses the phrase “interesting” to describe something, they usually mean, “That’s an example of ass” or “The fact that you’re 30 and still live at home is a problem” so please don’t take my use here as negative. I love the idea that Funko has dug deep into the rich history of the franchise to produce these, and the results are spectacular. Rex’s belt and beard are finely detailed, and I love his color scheme. Maul is perhaps one of the best Pop! figures I’ve ever received from these boxes, as his contrasting colors really show off his horns, lightsaber, and glowing yellow eyes. Together, these figures demonstrate how committed Funko is to every figure they produce. WIN.

So let’s talk about the word “Curious”: I generally use the word “curious” to describe questionable things, like “That terrorist with a bomb belt over there is curious,” or “That was a curious choice by the chef to add beets to my Chilean Sea Bass.” To be more clear, I dislike anything that isn’t, like Rock Candy, Dorbz, and Hikari. As I’ve said before, I’m collecting Funko; the last thing I need is start collecting yet another line of cheaply-crafted figures. And while it clear that the company’s mantra is to expand their brand, I just don’t get Hikari. Chopper is a great choice, but again it’s for a line that doesn’t interest me in the slightest. The Internet agrees, as everyone’s chief complaint about March’s box is the Hikari. Why SB do you taunt us with these things? So while I love my Pops! the Hikari moves this category to FAIL.

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March’s Smuggler’s Bounty REBELS delivers another very good box, delivering a solid return on our $50 investment. The pin/patch set is impressive, as is the shirt.  And the two Pop! figures are really well done.  But it’s also clear that Funko has every intention of continuing to shove other lines down our throats (as they’ve done with DC’s Legion of Collectors and Marvel Collector Corps).  Based on other reviews of the same box, it’s clear that opinion is decidedly against their future inclusion.  If it’s their intention to continue on this trajectory, I hope they will provide us with frankly better product.  Imagine a Star Wars Black fig appearing with a Pop! or how about variant comics from the new Marvel lines?  This is a common practice with Legion and MCC, and it’s surprising that they haven’t included them here.

If Funko decided that smaller boxes equal better ones – and removed Hikari, Dorbz, Rock Candy, and Pint Sized – I don’t think fans would be too upset.  But it does force the company to hit better marks on what they do include, something that I think we all agree is usually very good.  So long as that quality remains high, I can live with a fail once in awhile, but won’t forgive submissions that consistently ignore the narrative: stick with what works, expand your brand smartly, and make sure that everything we get isn’t a throwaway designed to artificially inflate the box’s contents.  Next up is the STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE 40th Anniversary, so I’m expecting a box worthy of such a feat. For now, consider this box a WIN, even though that message currently is being ignored.

About the author

Besides being an ardent burrito eater and an exceptional sleeper, Matt shares in your passion for all things movies and Blu-ray. He also loves special editions and is known to triple-dip on command.