Stranger Things has become a phenomenon. Ask just about anyone whether they have seen or heard about the show and 9 out of ten will likely say they have. The series is one that evokes the classic feeling of the 80’s nostalgia in tone, story and setting and that is just one reason why it is so great. Today we talk about something that became a huge hit in the 80’s, Action Figures. With a franchise like Stranger Things, you knew they were coming and so, here they are.
Today we are reviewing the two McFarlane Toys figures based on season one of Stranger Things, Eleven and Chief Hopper. McFarlane is known for their precise sculpts, fairly solid paint jobs and abundance of articulation. Recently the latter has suffered with some of their releases but I am pleased to say, the articulation is back and not in bad form.
These both actually come in the classic Blister Packs of old. Each figure comes in a standard designed pack but the package itself holds some fun easter eggs. The art itself is reminiscent of the classic Drew Struzan paintings that we got for many of our favorite movies in the 80’s and 80’s. One cool note on the artwork is the McFarlane Toys reverted back to their classic logo on these packages in order to keep with the nostalgia factor. Well done indeed.
As Blister Packs are designed to be, they are not ‘collector friendly’ so opening them up will destroy the package in some way. If you want to keep a set mint, I recommend buying one for show and one to go
Inside you will find exactly what you see from the blister. Each character comes with a nice assortment of accessories and, in Eleven’s case, extra hands. For the price, you really get what you pay for in quantity of stuff so no complaints there.
Eleven’s sculpt is passable but a little bit too mature for the season one Eleven. She looks more like Furiosa from Mad Max than Eleven but, even so, you can tell who she is supposed to be. Although is is possible that these are scans of the actors, but if that is the case then this is a scan of the actors from season two and Eleven has aged a little since then.
Another odd bit for this one is the sculpting around her right ear. It looks like she got caught in a fire or had some serious damage to her skin behind the ear. not sure what is going on here but it really takes away from the figure. Other than that, the body and accessories are sculpted well and really look great.
Chief Hopper is the superior of the two sculpting wise. His portrait is spot on and everything looks terrific. My one single complaint are his hands. His gun hand CAN NOT hold his gun without risking his fingers or the gun breaking. The only thing he can hold is his coffee cup and even that he can’t hold very well.
The paint apps on both are decent with Hopper, once again, the superior of the two. It appears that they are using a digital painting method and it is VERY apparent with Eleven’s hair as some of it looks very pixelated. See the photo above where I talk about the ear issues and the scratch, see if you don’t notice it. Another factor for Eleven is her dress. She is supposed to look dirty but instead it only looks like a dog may have peed on her instead. I really don’t think that was the look they were going for. Outside of the pixelated Hair, the rest of her portrait is painted well and they even gave us the little bit of blood under her nose.
Hopper on the other hand is great. Literally zero complaints in the paint department for him. Even the paint apps on the badge is spot on. The gun and holster look terrific as well!
This is where both of these are a little weak. Weaker than they should be. I remember McFarlane toys of the past always being well articulated and of superior sculpts. Lately they have been experimenting with their articulation and it has not been good. I particularly hate the hip joints as they are VERY apparent and take away from the overall look of the figure. Personally a ball joint would have been a much better solution in my humble opinion.
Where these figure REALLY fail are with the ankles. Hopper’s is decent and only work as well as they do due to his sculpt and the size of his feet. Eleven however has some of the weakest ankles I have seen on a figure in years. The feet will not stay where you want them and good luck getting her to stand for long on her accompanying stand by herself. She will fall over in no time or her foot will simply fall off when you try to fit her on her stand. It is sad really.
Her knees are also a huge issue as they simply don’t line up! I mean, at all. she looks like she’s a robot and that is not a good look for Eleven!
With Eleven you get an extra set of hands so you can do the classic psychic look, the aforementioned wig, a large Walky Talky and of course her Eggo. All of the accessories look and work great except the wig that you can place on Eleven’s head. The problem here is that A) it looks funky when you put it on her and B) it will scratch the head sculpt when you remove it. This is a huge miss and they really should have either gave us a second full head sculpt or just had the wigged version be a chase figure.
For Hopper you get less. You get a gun and a coffee cup. They both look great but don’t serve much of a purpose as you cant use the gun and he can barely hold the cup.
So this part is a wash.
For the first in this new line of figures based on Stranger Things, these aren’t horrible but they’re not great either. They do happen to be the best offering on the market at the time so take that as you will. I am not disappointed to have them on my shelf but I am also not fully satisfied with them either. If you are a fan, grab them as they are the best available. If you just like collecting figures, you are better off with something else.
Where To Get:
If you still want to grab these you can still get them.
You can get Eleven here from Entertainment Earth for $17.99
And Hopper from them as well for the same price.
Late To The Game 1/9/2018
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