#0328: The Rocketeer

ROCKETEER

ROCKETEER REACTION

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Yesterday, I defended the ReAction line in spite of its flaws. It might be easy for you, the reader, to look at the Jayne figure I examined yesterday and ask why I would try to defend a line that produced such a figure. That’s because I knew that today’s figure was up next.

1990’s The Rocketeer is one of my favorite movies. It’s a wonderful example of a super hero movie that predated the super hero boom by just a few years. Its director, Joe Johnson, even went on to direct Captain America: The First Avenger, another of my favorites. Sadly, The Rocketeer is at best a cult favorite, and it has been mostly left out in terms of toys. When Funko announced their list of ReAction Figures, the Rocketeer was the one I wanted the most. Now it’s here, so let’s see how it turned out!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

RocketeerWilsonThe Rocketeer was his own release under the ReAction banner. He’s really the only figure I could see Funko offering, so that’s fair. I’d still like a Lothar figure, but I’m weird. The Rocketeer is roughly 3 ¾ inches in height and he has the same 5 points of articulation we’ve seen on the rest of the line. He’s based on the movie version of the character, but this is one of those rare instances where it works just as well as a comic version. The sculpt on the figure is overall very impressive. It’s not perfect. The decision to make the helmet removable goes against the Kenner style, though it’s hard to say if they would have stuck to that in the case of someone like Cliff Secord, who did take his helmet off a lot. The underlying unmasked head seems a bit vertically squashed, but it’s not terrible. I doubt anyone is planning to display him without the helmet. The helmet is a very nice sculpt, even if it is a little bit oversized. The Rocketeer is one of the few ReAction figures not to have any issues with the sculpt being too flat, which is definitely a good thing. The details on the costume are quite nice, and they fit the style very well. The jetpack is another separate piece, and it’s a really great sculpt. There’s lots of nice details, and they even sculpted the little piece of gum on the back! The paint work on Cliff is okay, not amazing. It’s mostly clean, but there are a few areas of bleed over here and there. There’s also a small issue with paint transfer from the hands to the thighs. It scratches back off, but it’s annoying. The Rocketeer includes no extra accessories, but since the helmet and jetpack are packed separately, that’s not really a bad thing.

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THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When I first heard about the Rocketeer figure, I was instantly on board for getting the figure. The figure’s release actually ended up sneaking up on me a bit. I ended up getting him along with the remainder of the Firefly ReAction Figures from Amazon. Of the figures I received in that shipment, Rocketeer is far and away my favorite. After the bit of a descent in quality seen with the Firefly figures, this figure is a real pick me up for the line. He has his flaws, but I think he really shows the true potential of this line. If Funko can manage to make more figures in the vein of this one, I think the ReAction line can really take off.

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#0327: Jayne Cobb

JAYNE COBB

FIREFLY REACTION

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Of all the Firefly toylines out there, Funko and Super 7’s Firefly ReAction Figures line is certainly the one with the most characters. It is certainly the best Firefly line in the 3 ¾ inch scale that imitates the vintage Kenner style. This line’s versions of Wash, Zoe and Kaylee can’t be beat! Ummm….okay, so I may be reaching for things to say here. So here’s the sad state of affairs, guys: as I continue with the reviews of the Firefly ReAction Figures, I find the quality to be on a bit of a downward slope. Let’s continue that slope with Jayne Cobb, who is hands down the best hired gun on board the Serenity!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

JayneWilsonJayne Cobb was released in the first series of Firefly ReAction Figures. The figure is about 3 ¾ inches in height, and he features those very familiar 5 points of articulation we’ve all seen before. Like the rest of the series, Jayne has been given a look that sort of epitomizes his look from the show. Here’s where things go off the rails. I’m not going to say that the sculpt is bad per say. It’s just that Funko’s sculptors seem to have based their sculpt on some alternate universe where Jayne was played by David Schwimer instead of Adam Baldwin. I can see the confusion, though. I mean, Adam and David are both… tall, and uhh… Okay, they aren’t really that similar. All joking aside, Jayne has been saddled with the worst sculpt in the series. His proportions are odd, his arms stick out weirdly, his torso’s too flat, and his head is just wrong. Jayne, who should be a rather big and imposing guy, has been reduced to a scrawny, silly looking toy. That hardly does the character justice. To give Funko some credit, the detailing on the boots, gloves, and belt are actually really nice, but they aren’t enough to save the sculpt. The best that can be said about the figure’s paint work is that it’s clean. That being said, it’s not terribly exciting, and the work on the face doesn’t really do much to help the unfortunate sculpt. Jayne comes packed with both a handgun and his very favorite gun, Vera. These are cool, but, like Mal, Jayne has some trouble properly holding them.

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THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Just like the rest of the “post-Wash” Firefly reviews, Jayne was acquired via Amazon. Cutting right to the chase, Jayne’s not a very good figure. That being said, as I pointed out with Kaylee, I can’t bring myself to hate this figure. For all its flaws, it fills me with just a bit of joy to even have these figures on my shelf. Jayne may not be a great figure, but Wash was. It wouldn’t feel right to only have part of the crew on display, so Jayne becomes necessary. It’s also important to keep in mind that this style of figure doesn’t mesh with every character. Jayne’s mean to be a cool looking, big, imposing guy. Let’s all keep in mind that Kenner turned this into this. That’s not a complaint against Chewbacca, it’s a statement that these figures will always look a little goofier than their counterparts. Jayne is not one of my favorite figures, and the first series of Firefly ReAction Figures are not without flaws, but I don’t regret the purchase of a single one of them. Take that for what you will.

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#0326: Kaylee Frye

KAYLEE FRYE

FIREFLY REACTION

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You have to give some credit to Funko. They somehow have the ability to get every license ever. Is there some property you’ve been dying to see some toys from? Because odds are good that Funko currently holds the license for that property. I think part of the reason they are able to secure so many licenses is just the sheer amount of product they are able to put out. When they announced their partnership with Super 7 to produce the ReAction line, which is a line of figures done in the style of the 80s Star Wars line from Kenner, they didn’t hold back. They announced over 50 figures from numerous properties, all in one shot. Amongst those properties was fan favorite Firefly. The figures certainly aren’t for everyone, but I was rather excited. Today, I’ll be taking a look at the ship’s every cheerful mechanic, Kaylee!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

kayleeWilsonKaylee was released as part of the first series of Firefly ReAction Figures. She stands just shy of 3 ¾ inches tall and features those same faithful 5 points of articulation as the rest of the ReAction line. She’s dressed in her typical jumpsuit with a colorful shirt underneath look, sort of the inverse of Wash’s look. Kaylee is unfortunately a character that is a bit let down by this particular style of figure. Putting it lightly, the figure isn’t as pretty as Kaylee was on the show. That being said, this isn’t entirely the fault of the sculpt. The sculpt is far from perfect, but it doesn’t do a terrible job of capturing Kaylee. One notable thing: Kaylee is far too skinny. It’s a fairly known fact that Joss Whedon had actress Jewel Staite put on a little bit of weight so that she would, in his words, “look like she enjoyed a cheeseburger occasionally.” Making her too skinny sort of robs the figure of character. At first glance, the worst aspect of the sculpt is the head, which bears next to no resemblance to actress Jewel Staite. Further examination reveals that it’s not the sculpt that is the issue, but rather the paint. The head’s still a little off, but it’s not as terrible as the paint would leave you to believe. The main issue with the paint work on the figure, particularly the head, is misalignment. Looking at the figure’s face, it’s pretty clear that the eyes are meant to sit down a bit lower. The misplacement ends up making her look rather strange. The rest of the paint isn’t terrible, but there are numerous areas where it seems the paint has just slightly missed its mark. Like Zoe, the paint on the figure looks alright as a whole, but examining each piece it looks pretty bad. Kaylee’s only accessory is a small wrench. I guess it makes some sense, since she’s a mechanic, but she wasn’t actually seen carrying a wrench on many occasions. What’s more, the figure can’t even really hold it, making it even more pointless. I can appreciate Funko’s movement to give the figure a little more value, but I feel like something like the box with the strawberry or her paper umbrella from the pilot might have made for more appropriate pieces.

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THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got Kaylee from Amazon, at the same time as the rest of the first series (sans Wash). Kaylee was my second favorite character on the show, after Wash, so this was a figure I was kind of looking forward to. Sadly, I think Kaylee is the figure I was most let down by in this first series. She’s not the worst in the series (I’ll get to that tomorrow), but she isn’t as good as she could be. To be fair, a decent coat of paint would do a lot to redeem the figure, so it could be possible to make the figure a little better if you want to put the effort in. All that being said, I can’t help but enjoy the figure. It’s irrational, but there it is.

 

#0325: Zoe Washburne

ZOE WASHBURNE

FIREFLY REACTION

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The vintage 3 ¾ inch style has recently come back into fashion. Leading the charge are Funko and Super 7, with their ReAction Figures. They started the line off by releasing the unreleased Kenner Alien figures, and have moved onto their own unique sculpts based on other properties. Among the first properties to be released in the style was Joss Whedon’s Firefly. So far, I’ve looked at the ship’s captain Malcolm Reynolds and the pilot Hoban “Wash” Washburne. Today, I’ll be taking a look at Mal’s right-hand (wo)man and Wash’s wife, Zoe Washburne.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

ZoeWilsonZoe is another figure from the first series of Firefly ReAction Figures. She’s roughly 3 ¾ inches tall and features the classic 5 points of articulation. Like Mal, Zoe had a fairly consistent look over the course of the series, with mostly just the colors changing from episode to episode. Zoe features a totally unique sculpt. It’s a pretty decent sculpt, and it probably captures the Kenner style the best of all the figures in the series. The figure bears a passing resemblance to Gina Torres, which I suppose fits the style of the line. The face does seem just a slight bit too thin, but it isn’t terrible. It would also be nice if the hair allowed for a bit more movement, but this is actually a complaint about true vintage Kenner figures. The paint on Zoe is where things fall apart a bit. Viewed as a whole, it’s not bad, but it’s not great. Close examination brings out some serious issues of bleed over as well as a bit of slop here and there. The biggest issue is the figure’s hairline, which is a total miss. It looks like the paint app for her skin was just totally misaligned, which leaves it bleeding pretty heavily into what’s supposed to be her hair. Her eyes and eyebrows seem to be shifted a tad upward too, which means they don’t quite line up with the sculpt. Another issue, which I didn’t even notice at first, is that they’ve painted the upper part of her torso incorrectly. It should be done in a flesh tone to match the rest of her skin, but they’ve accidentally painted it the same color as her leather vest, making it look like she’s got another shirt underneath the green one. If you don’t know it’s supposed to be that way, it’s not too bad, but it looks odd once you’ve seen what it should look like. Otherwise, the paint is fine, I guess. Zoe includes a shotgun, which is pretty signature to the character. Her grip isn’t quite right to hold it, but it’s no worse than how Mal holds his revolver.

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THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Zoe was purchased along with the rest of the series from Amazon. Zoe’s definitely in my top three for favorite characters on the show (after Wash and Kaylee), so I definitely wanted her to be a good figure. The sculpt isn’t bad, but the paint work is a serious letdown. With a better paintjob, I really think this could have been one of the best figures in the line. As it is now, I think it’s still the second best, after Wash, but it’s nowhere near the quality of that figure. She’s not a bad figure by any means, but she could be better.

#0324: Malcolm Reynolds

MALCOLM REYNOLDS

FIREFLY REACTION

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Back in the 80s, the toymakers at Kenner made a serious impact on the action figure market when they introduced their line of 3 ¾ inch figures based on Star Wars. The scale proved to be a huge hit, maintaining itself as one of the industry standards for over 30 years. Moreover, the style of the vintage Star Wars figures is quite popular with many collectors, those being the figures that brought many of them into the collecting world. Funko and Super 7 have recently joined forces to try and recapture that style and bring it to just about every property imaginable. One set of figures I was most excited for was the figures from Joss Whedon’s cult favorite Firefly. I recently reviewed plucky pilot Wash, and I liked him enough to pick up the rest of the first series. I’ll be kicking things off with Captain Tightpants himself, Malcom Reynolds.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

MalWilsonLike Wash, Mal was released as part of the first series of Firefly ReAction Figures. He is 3 ¾ inches tall and features the old-faithful 5 points of articulation. Mal had a fairly consistent look over the course of the series, though it should be noted that Funko have chosen to depict him without his signature Brown Coat. There is an exclusive version that features a cloth one, but the regular release is sans coat. Mal features a sculpt that is completely unique to this figure. It’s an alright sculpt. He bears a passing resemblance to Nathan Fillion, but it wouldn’t be very easy to place him if he weren’t in the typical Mal get-up. The weakest point of Mal’s sculpt is definitely his torso, which is too flat to properly capture the Kenner style. It really throws the rest of the figure off, which is a shame. It seems odd to say this, but the legs are actually the best work on the figure. I can’t help but look at those and see a set of vintage Kenner legs, so kudos to Funko for that. The paintwork on Mal is in keeping with the Kenner style that Funko’s going for, which is certainly good. It’s simplistic, but it’s nice and clean. All the paint apps seem to be right where they should be. Mal’s sole accessory is his signature revolver, molded in a brownish yellow.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

After I picked up Wash, I pretty much immediately went ahead and ordered the rest of the first series from Amazon. Being totally honest, Mal isn’t quite up to the standards set by Wash. He lacks a lot of the character that was present in that figure, which makes this figure a little more bland overall. That being said, he isn’t a bad figure. If you’re into this style, you could do a lot worse than to pick up this figure.

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#0323: Herman Munster & Muster Koach

HOT ROD HERMAN WITH MUNSTER KOACH

THE MUNSTERS MINIMATES

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I must admit, I don’t actually know a whole lot about The Munsters. I understand the basic premise, which is essentially just the reverse of The Adams Family, and I’ve seen an episode or two. I think, if pressed, I could probably name most of the family members. But, other than that, my knowledge is limited. One thing I do know a whole lot about, however, is Minimates. Specifically, how awesome they are! The Musters Minimates weren’t a very expansive line. They were limited to just two separate releases: two variants of Herman Munster and the Munster Koach. Regular Herman and the Koach were released at Toys R Us, while Hot Rod Herman and the Koach were released in various specialty stores. I’ll be looking at the specialty set.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

HermanMunster2Herman is presented here in his “Hot Rod Herman” get-up. Based on what it says on the back of the box, “Hot Rod Herman” is an episode of the show where Herman takes up drag racing. This figure is based on the gear he wore during the episode. Herman is about 2 ½ inches tall and features 14 points of articulation. He makes use of the standard Minimate body, with a new head sculpt in place of the standard one, as well as a pair of extra tall feet, and add-ons for the character’s jacket and neck bolts. The feet and neck bolts were previously used on the Universal Monsters Minimates Frankenstein’s Monster. Given Herman’s similar nature, it’s a sensible re-use. The jacket and head are the new pieces for this figure, and they both look pretty good, and accurately represent the character’s look from the specific episode. Herman’s paintwork is pretty great. Everything is clean and sharp, and they’ve done a nice job translating Herman’s likeness to the ‘mate form. I should also point out that the figure is in Black & White, meaning all the paint is done in shades of gray. This is done very well, and the figure does genuinely look like he’s in Black & White.

THE VEHICLE ITSELF

HermanMunster3The Munster Koach serves as an accessory to Herman in essence, though it does overshadow him a bit in the packaging. The Koach is about 5 inches in length and about 3 ½ inches at its tallest point. It features moving wheels and a hinged roof. The sculpt for the Koach is unique to the Koach itself, though the two versions are identical in sculpt. It’s a good sculpt. There are a fair share of details, but not too many so as to make it stand out from Minimates aesthetically. The detail of the sculpt is truly impressive, right down to the fringing on the interior curtains and the stitching on the seats. The dashboard is even fully detailed, with a clutch, steering wheel, and several buttons. The paintwork marks HermanMunster4the key difference between the two versions of the Koach offered. This one has been done in a Black & White color scheme to match Herman. Obviously, there aren’t as many differing colors on this version, but the paintwork is still nice and clean, and the variance of the grays is really well done.

 

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked up this set from my favorite Minimate retailer, Luke’s Toy Store, along with the Kill Bill sets. Mostly, I picked the set up because it was $4, but I have to admit it is a pretty nifty little set. The Koach is a nicer vehicle than a lot of the others offered in the Minimates line. It is a bit odd to see a Black & White version of a figure there is no color equivalent for, but Hot Rod Herman is a pretty solid Minimate. All in all, a fun set that I would highly recommend.

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#0322: Biker Scout

BIKER SCOUT

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

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To make matters of confusion worse in regards to the two separate scales for Hasbro’s Star Wars: The Black Series, I’ve opted to go through with reviewing the lone figure that I own in both scales. The key difference here is that this time around, it’s an Original Trilogy character. But, wait, wasn’t I sticking to the larger scale for OT characters? Quiet you! Today’s figure is the Star Wars equivalent of George of the Jungle, the Biker Scout. Watch out for that tree!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

BikerScoutSmallWilsonThe Biker Scout was released as figure #07 in the first assortment of the 3 ¾ inch scale Star Wars: The Black Series. Like the Clone Sergeant and the Clone Pilot before him, this isn’t any particular character, but rather one of the basic Scout Troopers, seen in Return of the Jedi. The Biker Scout is roughly 3 ¾ inches tall and has 25 points of articulation. At first glance, I thought this figure might just be a straight rerelease of the Saga Legends version of this design, but it looks like Hasbro’s given this one a pretty thorough re-work. The articulation isn’t quite there just yet, but Hasbro’s definitely making some serious strides. The Biker Scout’s sculpt appears to be all-new [EDIT: A little bit of looking around shows that this figure is the same sculpt as the Biker Scout included with the 2012 Toys R Us exclusive Speeder Bike. Since I don’t have that set, this sculpt is still new to me]. There are quite a few similarities to previous versions, but that’s to be expected. On its own, it’s not a bad sculpt, and does a pretty decent job capturing the various elements of the design. The only real negative of the figure is the helmet. The Goggles seem to be too small in relation to the helmet, and the helmet itself seems too small in relation to the rest of the body, which makes the figure look like a bit of a pin-head. The paint work on the Biker Scout is mostly straight forward, but there are a few issues. There are a few areas with some small scrapes and smudges, as well as a decent bit of bleed over on the elbow and knee pads. Also, the shoulder and ankle joints have been molded in black plastic, which makes them stand out unnecessarily. Had they been molded in white plastic, this could have been avoided. Lastly, the pouches on his mid-section, while cleanly painted, have been painted a solid tan, which seems like just a bit too much of a contrast from the surrounding areas. The Biker Scout is armed with a small blaster pistol.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Biker Scout was gotten at the same time as the Clone Pilot and the Clone Sergeant. As I mentioned in my review of his larger scaled counterpart, the Biker Scout is my favorite Trooper design from Star Wars. That being said, I think this figure would have been better served had I gotten it before the 6-inch version. It’s not a bad figure on its own, but it pales in comparison to the truly impressive Biker Scout from the larger line. The point is, this is a good figure. It’s probably the best version of the Biker Scout in the 3 ¾ inch scale. If you prefer that scale, than this is the figure for you!

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#0321: Clone Pilot

CLONE PILOT

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

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Sure, having two different scales of Star Wars: The Black Series operating under the same name is a bit confusing, but you have to admit they both have their merits. While I still prefer the larger scale figures for the Original Trilogy characters, I don’t mind picking up the few Prequel figures here and there at the smaller scale, and by extension, the smaller price point. In particular, I’m a decent fan of the Clone Troopers, which has led me to pick up a few of the line’s offerings on that front. Today, I’ll be looking at the Clone Pilot.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

ClonePilotWilsonThe Clone Pilot is figure #08 in the first assortment of 3 ¾ inch-scale Star Wars: The Black Series. The figure is based on the “phase I” version of the pilot, initially seen in Attack of the Clones. The Clone Pilot is 3 ¾ inches in height and features 26 points of articulation. From a sculpt standpoint, the Clone Pilot is the exact same figure as the Clone Sergeant in all areas but the helmet. Aside from the un-helmeted head being a bit on the small side, it’s a really well sculpted figure and it captures the basic clone look quite nicely. Hasbro obviously wants to get their mileage out of this new clone mold and I can’t blame them. The figure’s new helmet is in keeping with the quality of the rest of the figure. It’s got nice, crisp detail lines, and all the proportions and such look right on the mark. The paintwork on the Clone Pilot isn’t quite as nice as that on the Sergeant. For starters, there’s no accent work on the body, which is less interesting. It’s true to the design, but it’s a bit bland. The figure also has some odd red staining on his left shoulder and right knee, which is distracting. The skin tone on the face is also a lot paler and makes him look lifeless. That being said, the rest of the paintwork is nice and clean, and this figure doesn’t have the same eye issues as the Sergeant. The Clone Pilot’s only accessory is a small blaster rifle, which is a bit disappointing after seeing the two rifles with the Sergeant.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got the Clone Pilot at the same time I purchased the Clone Sergeant. It’s not as good a figure as the Sergeant, but it’s still a pretty great figure in its own right. I’m glad to see Hasbro making strides to improve the smaller scale Star Wars line. I’m sure we’ll be seeing more clones appearing on the new base body as well. All in all, not a bad figure!

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#0320: Clone Sergeant

CLONE SERGEANT

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

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So, remember how Star Wars: The Black Series was supposed to be a deluxe 6-inch line of figures, sort of as Hasbro’s big move to please the fans? Yeah, well apparently, that was just a little too un-Hasbro of them. It was a move that wasn’t confusing at all, and that didn’t work. So, to make up for this, they decided to simultaneously release a 3 ¾ inch line under the exact same name, to the detriment of fans and ill-informed retail workers everywhere. On the plus side, the line does promise a more diverse line-up than the larger scale figures, as well as some improvements over the previous 3 ¾ inch figures. Today, I’ll be taking a look at the line’s version of the Clone Sergeant, who interestingly enough was just announced for the 6-inch line as well. Prepare for the confusion everybody!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

CloneSergeantWilsonThe Clone Sergeant is part of the first assortment of the 3 ¾ inch scale Star Wars: The Black Series. The figure is just a basic Clone Sergeant, not any character in particular, and the figure is in the clone’s original “Phase I” armor. If I recall correctly, the Sergeant rank is not seen in Attack of Clones, so this is officially a Clone wars figure. The Sergeant is about 3 ¾ inches in height and features 26 points of articulation. While the articulation is still a little bit stilted in a few areas, the level present in these new figures is incredibly impressive. Hasbro’s done quite a few Clone Troopers over the years, with lots of shared parts between them, but I think that the newly engineered articulation means this figure sports an all-new sculpt. The details of the sculpt are nice and sharp, and the figure’s proportions look pretty good. The helmet is removable. The helmet is properly scaled, but in order to make it fit properly, the head had to be a tad under-scaled. The underlying head also bears little resemblance to actor Temuera Morrison, which is too bad. However, I can’t see many people leaving the helmet off, so it’s not much of a loss. The paint work is basic, but also key in differentiating the Sergeant from the other Clones. The Sergeant has an olive green accent on his armor, which looks really great, and definitely makes the figure stand out. The paintwork is all nice and cleanly applied. The unmasked head has some slightly odd eyes, but they aren’t horrible for the scale. The Sergeant includes both long and short blaster rifles, which allows you to add just a touch of customization.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Clone Sergeant was purchased at a Walmart, nearby my girlfriend’s college campus. I don’t usually shop at Walmart, but she needed to get a few things and I went with her. Me being me, I took a look in the action figure aisle, where I found this guy and a few other SW:TBS figures. I hadn’t initially planned on getting any of them, but Super Awesome Girlfriend is a terrible influence on me (okay, not really. She’s just incredibly supportive!) So, I ended up getting a few figures from the line. I really like the Sergeant, mostly due to the green accents, which are just really cool!

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#0319: Bruce Lee(s)

BRUCE LEE(S)

BRUCE LEE’S TEMPLE OF KUNG FU

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I’m not the world’s biggest fan of Bruce Lee, but I certainly have an appreciation for him. I first learned of him thanks to Playing Mantis’s re-launch of Captain Action in the mid-90s. Green Hornet and Kato were among the selection of characters available, and I happened to come across a Kato figure at KayBee toys. I was intrigued by the figure, so my dad tracked down a few episodes of the 60s Green Hornet show. I thought that Kato was just the coolest and was delighted to find out that Bruce Lee had made a large selection of other movies.

In 2012, Round 5 put out a selection of block figures based on Bruce Lee’s career, entitled Bruce Lee’s Temple of Kung Fu. The figures were sold in a blind box format, meaning you don’t know what you’re getting until you open the box. Today, I’ll be looking at Kato, Formal Wear Bruce Lee, and MMA Bruce Lee from that line.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

BruceLee2The three versions of Bruce Lee were released in the first series of Bruce Lee’s Temple of Kung Fu. Kato was 1 in 35, Formal Wear Bruce was also 1 in 35 and MMA Bruce was 1 in 80. The figures each stand about 3 ½ inches in height and feature a whopping 3 points of articulation. They have sculpted lines that make it look like there might be more movement, but nope, it’s just cut joints on the shoulders and a ball joint for the neck. I had no idea what the articulation would be going in, so I wasn’t disappointed or anything. Each of the figures is built on the same basic body with a few additional pieces. Kato is the lightest on the sculpting, with just a hat/mask combo. It’s a good piece though, and suits the character well. The other two each feature a hairpiece and two pieces for the hands. Formal Bruce gets shirt cuffs and MMA Bruce gets padded gloves. The rest of the detail is handled via paint. All three feature relatively clean paint apps, with nice crisp lines and no real slop. Once again, Kato is the simplest, with all of his detail being on his face and torso. Still, he looks pretty sleek, so no complaints. Formal Bruce is the next most basic. He’s got detailing for the face and the basic outlines of his outfit, but not much else. MMA is easily the most detailed, with some pretty nice detailing for his muscle tone and such. I should also point out that while Kato gets his own face, the other two are forced to share the same one. It’s like they’re the same guy or something. Yeah, I know, so’s Kato. Shut up!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While helping move my girlfriend (of Super Awesome fame)into college, we decided to visit the nearby outlets, just to see what was there. We came across an overstock store by the name of Oops!, and they had these guys. I wanted the Kato figure, so I figured I’d buy one and see how my luck worked out. However, my girlfriend pointed out that my chances of getting Kato would be better if I bought three. Because she’s a terrible influence. As luck would have it, Kato was in the very first box I opened. I’m happy to have Kato in any form, and the other two are fun enough, so I consider the purchase a win.