More dreadful shots of the Rubies Supreme Stormtrooper costume are surfacing. Here's one from Celebration Japan which shows that you, too, can have an Imperial mannequin that does "The Robot" for the price of 90,000 yen ($837 USD):
An out-of-costume 501st member approached the Rubies booth at San Diego Comic-Con 2008 and had an interesting conversation with a sales associate:
The Rubies guy actually told an interested party ahead of me that the armor they see on most people costs $4k to complete and this is licensed and only $1k. When I came up, he answered some assembly questions (mostly velcro and elastic) and told me that most other suits run $6k to complete and this is only $1k. He asked if I'd seen the other suits, I replied politely that I have one, he hesitated and asked me how much it cost to complete, I told him about $800. He said well, considering the work it must have required, the two are about the same.
And here's some shots from Comic-Con (where the sales price is shown as $1000 US):
Among the costuming community, there is great disappointment in the quality. Among the 501st, there is great concern that newcomers may believe that a set of armor like this is acceptable for Legion membership and unwisely drop $1000 in "off the shelf" armor. While no official statement has been released, I feel confident in telling potential 501st recruits that the general consensus is that the Rubies Supreme Stormtrooper is not eligible without considerable modification. Furthermore, the Rubies armor does not come with boots, blaster, neckseal, and other components which are needed to complete the costume. Trust me when I tell you that you can find a more complete and more accurate set of Stormtrooper armor for less money. And I'm still waiting for Museum Replicas to unveil their take on Stormtrooper armor at Dragon*Con 2008. Click here for other related Rubies posts on my blog.