Guest Review #0041: Harry Potter



Hey! So it’s that time again, that super rare time where Jill has a review to write for the figure in question (because Ethan is not in a state to write this in time!). Harry Potter is back, and he’s got an awesome backpack because he’s a high school drop out. This figure, like the Sirius Black figure from The Order of the Phoenix was a Christmas gift from Ethan when he and Tim were trying to convince me to be interested in toys and action figures. (Unfortunately for my wallet, they have been successful).


This figure of Harry from The Deathly Hallows has 8 points of articulation, none of which are in his legs, like all my other NECA figures. He also comes with a removable backpack and a wand. I thought for a few minutes that his glasses were removable, but after some careful tinkering, I have discovered that they are just precariously attached. He stands about 8 inches tall, and has a passing likeness for Daniel Radcliffe during part one of the Deathly Hallows movies. It’s not perfect, but it’s ok. He’s recognizable. It is a little frustrating that his legs do not have any articulation, it makes it so he only really has one pose that makes sense, which is a battle pose, but his facial expression definitely doesn’t look like he’s in battle.

The backpack is fun, I like being able to pose him with or without it, and it’s accurate for the movie. The wand is both my absolute favorite and my least favorite part of this. This tiny, 1 inch strip of plastic is actually very close to what Harry’s wand looks like in the movies (I should know, I won the fancy prop version in a Harry Potter trivia contest my freshman year of college) and I think the effort that went into making this teeny-tiny little prop is exceptional. However, it is a teeny-tiny little strip of plastic that bends easy and is not held securely in his hand, which means that my greatest fear is that I’m going to lose it. If it falls out of his hand, there’s no getting this back. (My complaints about Sirius’ wand were very similar).


This was my second Christmas present from Ethan, and it helped to establish the trend the boys have started of getting me action figures and toys as presents until the completionist in me had to start looking for the entire series of multiple toys. This figure is one of the first action figures I actually owned, and since I have gotten him I have bought several figures (including Rue) and established other collections thanks to Tim and Ethan (I own most of the Alex figures in the minecraft lines, and several other series, including some composers). My collection is not as vast of broad as Ethan and Tim’s, but it is growing, and this Harry Potter figure is part of the reason why. He’s not perfect, but he is important to my collection journey.

#1034: Tom Riddle




Welcome to The Figure In Question, where I refuse to let any of my guest reviewers have an area of coverage all to themselves.  Tim covers Metal Gear?  So do I!  Christian has AmiiboMe too!  Super Awesome Girlfriend has some Halo?  I’ve got that covered!  The only guest reviewer with something I hadn’t covered was Jill, over there with Harry Potter.  Well, now I’m doing that too!  That’s right, I bought this figure new,  11 years before starting the site  and 10 years before meeting Jill, all to upstage her.  That’s all it could possibly be!  *ahem*  So, here’s this Tom Riddle figure.  Let’s have a look, shall we?


TomRiddle2Tom Riddle (better known as Voldemort) was released in the second assortment of Mattel’s Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets figures.  He’s based on Christian Coulson’s portrayal of Tom from the second movie (in case the name of the line hadn’t clued you in).  The figure stands just over 5 inches tall and has 13 points of articulation.  That may not seem like a lot of articulation, but Tom here was actually one of the best articulated figures in the line, believe it or not.  Tom featured a sculpt that was unique to him.  It’s….well, rudimentary would probably be a good way to describe it.  The proportions are rather off, with poor Tom getting quite the melon of a head.  And, while the face doesn’t look too unlike Coulson, the hair isn’t even close.  It’s a totally different style entirely.  Also, with the upper half of the figure is sculpted very dynamically, the legs just sort of hany there, and, deapite their incredibly obvious joints that are not in the slightest bit worked into the sculpt, there are pretty much no poses that help them match the rest of the sculpt.  The robe has a very nice texturing to it, but none of this texture translates to the rest of the figure, which just make him look even further imbalanced.  The hands are actually not bad, what with the cool sculpted poses.  Of course, the poses mean that he has to have a peg hole in his palm to be able to properly hold his accessory, but it could be worse.  On the plus side, the paint work on Tom is actually pretty decent.  There’s some nice, subtle work, especially on the robe, which looks quite realistic.  Easily the best paint of any of the figures in this line.  Tom was packed with a single accessory, but it’s a good one: the diary that brings Tom “back to life”.  He can sort of hold it, thanks to the peg at the base of the book’s spine.


So, I never really had a lot of the  Harry Potter figures, but, as noted in the intro, I got this guy new.  Chamber of Secrets was my favorite book, and I quite liked the Tom incarnation of Voldemort.  I ended up finding this guy at the KB Toys that used to be near my family’s summer vacation spot.  He, like the rest of Mattel’s output from the movies, hasn’t aged particularly well.  He’s not awful, though.

Guest Review #0031: Sirius Black




The following is a guest review by Jill Mardesich.  For more from Jill, check out her blog Future Music Educator Rambles on Life.

Hey there! It’s Ethan’s resident book nerd friend, Jill! Ethan got me this figure of Sirius Black from the movie version of J.K. Rowling’s book Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for Christmas this year. It’s been a while since Christmas… I’ve been busy. Anyway, Sirius Black, in case you do not know, is the God Father of the main character, Harry Potter. He was best friends with Harry’s father, James, and was framed for the murder of the character Peter Pettigrew, so spent the majority of Harry’s life in the wizard prison, Azkaban.


Sirius2Sirius is designed off the look he has in the fifth Harry Potter movie, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. He stands approximately 7 inches tall and has 6 points of articulation. He comes with one accessory, his wand, which is about 1 inch long and surprisingly detailed for such a small stick. It actually does look like the prop wand that they gave to Gary Oldman in the movie. He also has a black stand, but is fairly well balanced and can stand up without it. His jacket is molded from a very flexible, rubberized plastic, so his movement isn’t restricted by it, which is good because it isn’t removable. His face is quite life like and there don’t appear to be any paint flaws. His hair, which is a solid piece, is well placed to not interfere with the motion of Sirius’ head. My only complaints about Sirius are that his legs are a solid piece beneath the waist, which Ethan tells me is fairly standard for NECA figures at this time, and that his wand is loose in his hand. It’s very easy to lose such a small, dark piece of plastic and it is my greatest fear that the next time I look at him he will no longer have it. He also only has one “good pose” to place him in because his legs are locked and his elbows don’t bend, but at least it’s a cool, “magical fighting,” action pose. I’m not sure if his face is quite a “magical fight” expression, but he is still really cool in this position.


Sirius Black was my Christmas present from Ethan this year, and he is the first action figure that I have ever owned. I was so excited about it. Sirius is one of my favorite characters in the Harry Potter books, which will always hold a special place in my heart. I grew up reading them, and even skipped school to see several of the movies growing up. I was touched that Ethan would get me such a perfect figure to begin my collection. I think he looks really cool, and very accurate to the movie look.  I wish his legs were posable, but I like the pose that he sits in, so it’s okay. Overall, I love this figure and hope that future Christmas presents include more from this line! (hint, hint)