Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Ornament Review: Jedi Master Yoda - Stars Wars #15 - 2011 Hallmark Ornament

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Great sculpt of a beloved character
Cons: Sound too loud so a little hard to understand; slight balance issue
The Bottom Line
Popular Jedi
Too bad sound is mushy since
The sculpt is perfect

Like This Ornament of Me, You Will

If there is one iconic character from the Star Wars saga, it would have to be Jedi Master Yoda.  This small green creature speaks in a unique way that is pretty funny.  People really seem to love him.  Not bad for a character that has been played by a puppet or some other special effect.

Over the years, Hallmark has created ornament of him a few times, either alone or in a set.  He even made a previous appearance in the official Star Wars series with Luke in an ornament that commemorates his training of the young Jedi.  But 2011 marks the first time that Yoda has gotten his own ornament in the series.  About time, if you ask me since this is the 15th ornament in the series.

The ornament features Yoda on Dagobah, the planet where we first meet him in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.  He is actually standing on a stump.  There are hints of greenery around him as well as vines or roots around the stump.  Yoda has both of his hand resting on a cane.

The detail work on this ornament is fantastic.  Not only does it capture the detail on Yoda's skin (he is over 900 years old, after all), but it also captures the texture of the stump.  You can really picture the planet from the series based on the little bit around Yoda we see.

This represents a first in the series.  While there have been plenty of Star Wars ornaments that have included scenery, this is the first time we've had one in the official series that included more than a character or possibly two.  Of course, Yoda is so small on his own, you need a little more to make the ornament bigger.

Of course, they also needed more room for the magic part of the ornament.  This is only the second ornament in the official Star Wars series to include sound.  It comes with two button batteries that go in the base of the ornament, and there is a button to press on the right side.  When you press it, you'll hear one of four quotes from Empire Strikes Back. 

As much as I love that feature, it is also the biggest downfall of the ornament.  Why?  Because the sound level is a bit too high.  It's hard to understand exactly what he is saying because of it, too.  I've played with several of these ornaments now, and the sound in all of them is slightly mushy, so I'm sure it's a design flaw and not just mine.

On the plus side, the big base means the ornament sits flat.  You'll also find copyright information and the 15 in a Christmas tree that Hallmark uses on their series ornaments.

The hook for hanging the ornament is located on the stump next to Yoda.  The ornament isn't quite balanced, so it tips slightly forward and a little bit to the left.  It's not that noticeable, however, and once it's been on your tree for 5 minutes, you won't even notice.

If the volume on the sound box were slightly lower, I would love this ornament.  The detail makes it a work of art, and the sound is lots of fun.  Even so, I still like Jedi Master Yoda.

Be sure to check out the rest of the Star Wars ornament series

Original Price: $17.95

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