I’ve been living with a life-size Baby Yoda – CNET

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Hey, roomie!

Sean Keane/CNET

Ever since the world first glimpsed the adorable Baby Yoda (aka The Child) in that first episode of The Mandalorian a year ago, many of us have been united by a single question: How can I get one of these beautiful wee Star Wars lads?

Unfortunately, the fanciest version of the puppet seen in the Disney Plus show cost a reported $5 million, so you're probably not bringing that one home. On the other end of the scale, there are plenty of lovely Baby Yoda plush toys and collectibles that capture the essence of his on-screen cuteness while taking a few liberties with his appearance.

Then there's The Child life-size figure from Sideshow, a company that specializes in superfancy pop culture collectibles. This 16.5-inch (42 centimeter) piece costs $375, the kind of price most people would balk at, but it's the closest you'll get to having a physical Baby Yoda in your life.

'You are a clan of two'

Sideshow sent one of these figures over so I could spend time with him -- I've been riding out much of the coronavirus pandemic alone, so the prospect of having some company was a surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.

Read more: The Mandalorian season 2 episode 3 recap: Baby Yoda and Mando meet watery terrors

Like most collectibles, this one comes in a massive, beautiful box that makes you think it's going to take up way too much space. Opening such an expensive item always freaks me out (what if I drop it like an idiot?), but it turned out to be pretty easy. Slipping open the box, I found the neat little Baby Yoda sandwiched between two pieces of polystyrene, along with his chunky plastic base and the shift knob he cheekily grabbed from the cockpit of Mando's Razor Crest.

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Baby Yoda, as he appears in The Mandalorian

Lucasfilm

The first thing that struck me were his big, beautiful brown eyes. They're utterly hypnotic, making this little guy feel like an astoundingly lifelike presence in my home (partially because I've moved him around depending on where I'm sitting). I couldn't stop staring at those eyes, and Baby Yoda and I obviously watched the first three episodes of season 2 together -- his wee heart was warmed when his on-screen counterpart bonded with Frog Lady's newborn.

He also has a light fuzz of white hair on his hard plastic head; Sideshow's detailed instructions warn you to be gentle if you're fluffing the fuzz, but it makes him seem even more lifelike.

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The baby and the base.

Sean Keane/CNET

'Stop touching things'

Articulation is extremely limited; his arms and legs don't move (so no "magic hand thing"), but his neck moves left and right a little to offer a few display options. His head is permanently tilted up just a little, so he's always looking up at me (and judging when I grab another bar of chocolate). It's also just nice to arrive at my desk to find this guy waiting for me each morning.  

His hands and feet are beautifully sculpted -- the nails look sharper than they are -- with a magnet in the right hand to securely hold the shift knob (which is just a plastic ball) and a hole in his left foot so he can stand securely on the base (which looks like the Razor Crest's deck and features some cool art on the bottom). He's also pretty steady on his own two feet, so I occasionally let him stand free.

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Don't let the sun go down on our friendship, Baby Yoda.

Sean Keane/CNET

He's a little heavier than he looks, so I usually picked him up by holding the base and his arm lest he hit the floor. Damaging my little buddy would've been too much for me, but I wanted him to join me as I played Animal Crossing or watched a classic Simpsons episode at the end of the day (he's a low maintenance companion).

The coat feels thick and tough (he's ready for winter), with a wire running through the fluffy collar that lets you tweak how it sits. Collectors know that the slightest change can dramatically alter how a figure looks on a shelf, so this is a nice inclusion. There's also a zip that lets you open the coat and see his plain green plastic body, which is a weird sight. I didn't remove it completely though; that's always a no-no with these high-end collectibles.

Yes, Sideshow's lifesize Baby Yoda is pretty darn pricey, takes up a chunk of shelf or table space and suffers from articulation limits that hinder his posing potential. However, he's among the most spectacular Star Wars collectibles I've seen, and he's been a delight to live with for the past few weeks -- he's warmed my heart every time I've looked at him.

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