LEGO builder Hannes Tscharner (aka Marshal Banana) has reminded me of one of the hottest debates in sci-fi fandom, that being; what the heck is up with E.T.’s finger? I mean, seriously is it a Slim Jim with a lightbulb on the end or what? Also, having nothing to do with nerdy fanboys debating online is this awesome Star Wars replica of Han Solo’s blaster. The handsome DL-44 borrows design DNA from the Mauser C96 but added a scope and a bunch of other greebly bits including the “mystery disk”. What does the mystery disk do? It shoots mouthy Rodian bounty hunters right in the aedeagus, that’s what! This movie-accurate replica is 1:1 so you can hold it and practice your lovable scoundrel smile in the mirror. Isn’t that what we all do when not debating E.T.’s dubious finger?
It’s been 27 years since LEGO brought us the Western theme, but Marshal Banana wants to bring us back to that time with their beautiful riverside town, clad in a brilliant array of earth tones. I love the distinct construction styles used on each of the town’s buildings. The whole build is a clinic in old-timey build techniques: the angled boards jutting out from the sand green hotel; the larger sand blue panels on the dockside hut; the long, dark red slats making up the façade of the fur-trading store; and of course the timber poles of the log cabin.
This quartet of structures nestles neatly into the side of a beautifully-sculpted hill of plates, complete with a well-worn path down to the river’s edge. I love the bits of dark green and olive vegetation, with pockets of rime distributed throughout the build setting the calendar in the winter months. While Marshal isn’t specific as to the setting, the whole thing screams of the Pacific Northwest in the United States around the early 1800s.
Yes, I know Boba Fett’s version of the Slave 1 is a more iconic Star Wars ship but hear me out. We love it when a LEGO collaboration comes together with such amazing success and Kevin J. Walter and Hannes Tscharner team up once again to do justice for Jango Fett’s Slave 1. Technically this isn’t their first ride on the Slave 1 as they have teamed up before to build the more famous version. While the difficult groundwork was already done with their last one, aside from a recolor, this newer version features laser guns along the side panels and a remodeled interior to accommodate Jango Fett and his young son Boba.
The technical specs for this one include 5001 pieces, with a weight of 2447 grams or nearly 5.40 pounds. They tell us this won’t be their last collaboration and when a joint effort goes this well, we’re quite happy with that prospect.
As Disney+’s The Book of Boba Fett comes to a close, it’s a fitting time to stop and take a look back to our first introduction of the bounty hunter who began our love affair with the Mandalorians – The Empire Strikes Back*. And who better to be our guide than Hannes “Marshal Banana” Tscharner? Hannes has previously brought us amazing renditions of other Star Wars vehicles like the Millennium Falcon and the Jawa Sandcrawler. But this time, Hannes teamed up with builder Kevin J. Walter aka Skywalter with the goal of creating the most accurate Slave-1 model ever built in LEGO. Kevin is no stranger to IP spaceship builds himself, and has previously wowed us with his Stargate and Star Trek work. The Slave 1 took the pair a year and a half to complete. But, like any bounty hunter worth the price, they delivered on their goal with stunning results. So, without further ado, let’s take a tour of this Empire-era Firespray-31.