THE PRINCESS BRIDE (MCFARLANE TOYS)
Providing the natural pair-off to Princess Bride’s dark and brooding Inigo, is the large, jovial, and friendly Fezzik. Fezzik is the classic jolly giant, portrayed by a real-life jolly giant, Andre the Giant. Did I say “giant” enough? Though author William Goldman wrote the role of Fezzik specifically with Andre in mind, he was not the first actor cast in the role. When the film first went into production, Andre was unavailable, so the role was initially given to a relatively unknown actor by the name of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Production stalled, and by the time it picked back up, Schwarzenegger was, well, not so unknown, and Andre was available. But there exists an alternate reality where The Princess Bride starred Arnold Schwarzenegger, and, by Last Action Hero rules, a corresponding reality where Fezzik was played by Sylvester Stallone. Crazy, huh? Also weird to acknowledge an example of us being in the objectively better reality. How about that?
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Fezzik is a Megafig release from McFarlane’s The Princess Bride line, designed to correspond with the standard Series 1 figures. For those of you playing at home, that means that McFarlane actually gave us the whole core cast in one shot. No weird oddball choices or obviously missing characters. Are…are they aloud to do that? Well, I guess we’ll give it a try. Fezzik stands 9 1/4 inches tall and he has 23 points of articulation. Right off the bat, the biggest issue with this figure is…well, how big he is. Andre the Giant was 7’4″ tall, which, given that Cary Elwes and Mandy Patinkin are both right about 6′ tall, that should make this figure about an inch shorter than he currently is. Hey, nobody ever said McFarlane was any good at scale. In fact, it’s usually the opposite. It’s a shock the other three were as well balanced as they were. Ultimately, Fezzik is noticeably larger than the rest of the cast, and so is this figure. So, he should be smaller, but he’s not, and we’ll just have to make the best of it. Speaking of “the best of it”, despite the larger than it should be stature, the sculpt on Fezzik is probably the strongest of the figures so far. The detailing, especially the texturing on his clothing is really top notch, and the bulk of the body matches well with Andre’s real-life build. The head sculpt isn’t a spot-on recreation of Andre’s likeness; the hair’s a little too tidy, and the face seems a touch elongated. That said, it captures a lot of the important elements in terms of quick recognition, and I’m especially pleased that they’ve gone with a more jovial expression for the face, as that feels far more in keeping with Fezzik as a character. The real down turn for this figure winds up being the paint work. It’s not terrible, but there are some notable issues. Like the rest of the series, he’s got the side-eye going on, which is annoying. On top of that, he’s got some fairly heavy shading on the eyes, which makes him look a bit like a racoon, as well as on the lower face. Andre was fairly clean shaven in the film, and didn’t have any odd shading on his eyes, so the choice to do this extra shading, especially coupled with his general skin color feeling a bit paler than it should, makes him look a little spooky and sickly, which I don’t think is the intent. Fezzik is packed with a rock (specifically the one meant to be thrown at Westley’s head), a peanut, and a display stand. So, umm, about the peanut? Yeah, Fezzik never actually has one. Nor does anyone, at any point in the film. This is a no-peanuts film. It’s obviously a reference to Fezzik’s “Anybody want a peanut?” line, during the rhyming sequence. But, the thing is, he doesn’t actually have one, and he’s actually just using the question to annoy Vizzini. It’s a great scene, but, well, again, there’s no actual peanut. Also, this peanut is, like, three times the size it should be, and looks downright ridiculous. Why is it here? Mostly to justify pushing the cloak off to a second release, which honestly feels rather weak. I’d have much rather had the cloak. I mean, what am I gonna do with this on the shelf?
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
There was no way I was going to miss out on completing this particular set, and the Fezzik was included right from the get-go, with no weirdness surrounding likeness or anything, was a definite plus on getting me on-board for the whole thing. Inigo’s my favorite, and the strongest of the set, but I think Fezzik’s a pretty strong second. There are still some definite issues with the final release (it wouldn’t be a true McFarlane release if their weren’t), but ultimately, the good of the figure shines through them. All-in-all, it’s a stronger set of figures than it has any right to be, and at this point, I’m just happy to have them. I’m on board for more and will be picking up (most of) Series 2, but if the line stopped right here, I’d still be pretty happy.
Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review. If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.