#1347: Space Ghost

SPACE GHOST (w/ BLIP)

ONE:12 COLLECTIVE (MEZCO TOYZ)

SPAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACE GHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOST!!!!!

Hey, can you guess what I like a lot?  If you guessed the incredibly obvious answer of “Space Ghost,” then good for you.  You might just yet have a career of solving the world’s most solvable mysteries.  As someone who loves both Space Ghost and action figures, it should be of no shock that I’m always intrigued by the possibility of more Space Ghost action figures.  The Toynami figure from almost two decades ago is still the gold standard for me, but when Mezco announced they’d be doing a new version of good old Tad Ghostal as part of their fancy One: 12 Collective line, I was definitely interested, especially since I’ve been looking for the right figure to give this line a trial run.  It’s taken quite a while for him to get here, but I finally have him!  Let’s see how he measures up to his predecessor, shall we?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Space Ghost was released in late May/early June of 2017 as part of the One: 12 Collective line of figures.  Like Hot Toys’ Movie Masterpiece Series, the figures from all of Mezco’s various properties have been intermixed in this particular line.  Space Ghost is the first Hannah Barbera character we’ve seen released, though time will tell if there are any follow-ups.  I’d personally love to get a Blue Falcon or a Birdman.  Anyway, the figure stands a little over 6 inches tall and has…a bunch of articulation.  I don’t know how much exactly, because that you require removing the non-removable costume, and I’m not about that.  I’m gonna take a shot in the dark and say “more than 30.”

There are two heads included with Space Ghost: calm and “expressive.”  While Space Ghost is almost exclusively depicted in his original, Alex Toth-rendered animated style, this figure opts to add a more real world touch to him.  The heads do a pretty decent job of meeting in the middle; offering a realistic looking character, but still keeping the important hallmarks of the character.  It does definitely lean a little more to the cartoony side of things than prior figures in the line, though.  He comes wearing the more calm head, which is good for a lot of poses, and generally seems to be the “default” piece.  The more expressive head has his teeth showing, in something go a grimace.  Exactly what the expression is supposed to be is a little hard to tell, but it works for a number of different poses.  While general consensus seems to prefer the calmer head, I actually like the more expressive one just a bit more.  In the show, and especially in promotional images, Space Ghost rarely had his mouth completely closed the way it is on the basic head.  The nice thing is, though, that both heads are there, so no one has to settle for one over the other (well, unless you got the exclusive…)  The paint work on both heads is generally pretty clean, and I quite like the variance in finishes between the various different parts, especially the slightly metallic finish of the eyes.

Space Ghost is built on the basic mid-sized One: 12 body.  This is my first experience with it, but it seems pretty well designed.  The costume hangs well on it and it poses well, and those are really the most important things.  I do wish there were a little more side to side motion in the upper arms, so that he had less trouble pressing his power bands, but you can make it work.  Space Ghost’s outfit is made up of several different pieces and of varying materials.  He’s got a cloth bodysuit, which is fairly nicely tailored, and has a small enough weave so that it’s not too distracting.  It’s a little prone to snags, though, so you have to be really careful.  It’s held in place at the bottom of his feet by a pair of sculpted soles.  I gotta say, I’m not super into these; they just have too much detailing for my liking.  I think the tread is just too much.  At the top of the torso, the suit’s held in place by a neck piece that matches up with the head, and also features his communicator/emblem, which is very nicely sculpted.  Attached to that is a cloth cape.  I’m not always big on cloth capes, but this is a really nice one; it’s got a wire sewn into the lining, allowing for some really fantastic posing options, and the wire’s sturdy enough that it doesn’t feel like it’ll break at a moment’s notice.  The costume is topped off with sculpted pieces for his belt and power bands.  The belt can be a little tricky to get seated right, but the power bands fit perfectly, and look super awesome to boot.  I like the slight transparency to the buttons; that’s a cool touch!

This guy comes with a pretty amazing selection of accessories.  He’s got the previously mentioned extra head, as well as four pairs of hands (in fists, open gesture, flat, and button pressing), 6 different effects pieces, and a display stand that can be configured for basic standing or flight.  The most prominent extra, of course, is his sidekick Blip, who’s a whole separate figure in his own right. Blip’s about 3 1/2 inches tall and he has 28 points of articulation.  He’s a little on the tall side for Blip, but not horribly so.  Remember how they made Space Ghost a little more “real world?” Well, that goes double for Blip, who’s been made to resemble an actual, real-life monkey.  The end result is certainly well sculpted, but also a little bit frightening.  Still, it’s cool to have gotten him, I suppose.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I discussed in my last Space Ghost review, I’ve been a huge Space Ghost fan since I was four.  As soon as this figure was announced, I knew I was definitely getting him.  This guy was given to me by my parents.  He was *supposed* to be here for Christmas, but he missed it by about six months.  Story of my life.  So, after all that waiting, was he worth it?  That’s a very strong affirmative.  I still love my Toynami figure, but this guy’s definitely the new definitive Space Ghost figure.  He’s just a whole lot of fun, exactly like a Space Ghost figure should be.  Now I desperately want a Jan and Jace to go with him!

Advertisements

#0329: Space Ghost

SPACE GHOST

SPACE GHOST: COAST TO COAST

SpaceGhost1

SPAAAAAAACE GHOOOOOST!

Once or twice before, I’ve mentioned my love of old cartoons. There is one old cartoon in particular that I love more than any other. That cartoon is Space Ghost. Space Ghost is simply put, one of the coolest cartoons ever. The characters were designed by legendary artist Alex Toth, who is the man responsible for most of the character design work on the original Super Friends, and they are all amazing examples of just how awesome his work could be.

In the late 90s, Cartoon Network was looking for some original programing that could possibly appeal to an older audience. They turned to Space Ghost, and through some re-editing of old animation and some new dialogue, they created Space Ghost: Coast to Coast, which re-imagined Space Ghost as a late night talk show host. I’ve never actually seen a full episode of the show, but toymakers Toycom put out a set of figures based on the show. Thanks to Coast to Coast re-using the original animation, this meant that they could work just as well as figures from the original. Today, I’ll be looking at that line’s version of the title character!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

SpaceGhostWilsonSpace Ghost was released a few times in Toycom’s Space Ghost: Coast to Coast line. Initially, he was released on his own, but he also shipped with the release of Zorak, Brak, and Moltar. The releases are pretty much identical. The figure was released in both normal and invisible versions. They both used the same sculpt, but the invisible one was made of unpainted clear plastic, while the normal one featured a full paint job. I’ll be looking at the normal one today. Space Ghost stands about 6 inches tall and features 16 points of articulation. Space Ghost features a unique sculpt, based on his appearance in both the original Space Ghost and Coast to Coast. The sculpt does a pretty great job capturing the essence of the character. He’s even got the proper little bit of flow to his cape, which is absolutely essential to Space Ghost. An argument could be made that the face is perhaps a little too smooth for Space Ghost, but there was enough variance in the character’s design on the show that this isn’t a very noticeable issue. The paint on the figure is basic, but that’s right for the design. He’s molded in white plastic for the body and yellow for the cape. Unfortunately, the white plastic doesn’t age well, so it’s yellowed over time. However, this is hardly an issue that the toymakers could have known at the time. The actual paint is all pretty well applied. There’s next to no bleed over, slop or fuzzy lines, which is certainly impressive for the time. One issue is the slight tendency of the black paint to chip, especially at the base of the neck joint. It might have been better to mold the head in black plastic to avoid the issue, but at least it’s not too obvious. Space Ghost is quite well accessorized, with an alternate set of hands (one for holding his cards, one for activating the power bands), a desk, a stool, four cue cards with Space Ghost logos, and a Space Ghost coffee mug.

SpaceGhost3 SpaceGhost4

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When I was about 4 or 5, a friend of my dad loaned me his copy of the entirety of the original Space Ghost (and Dino Boy!) on LASERDISC! If you don’t know what that is, don’t feel bad, it’s a format that never really took off. Essentially, it’s a precursor to DVD that was about 5 times the size and held a whole lot less. Anyway, I loved the show and would watch it all the time, prompting the friend to essentially give me the laserdisc on a permanent loan. When the Coast to Coast figures came out, I remember searching several places trying to find the normal version. I eventually got one from my faithful comicbook store, Cosmic Comix. I loved that figure to no end. Okay, I actually loved that figure to its end. By the time I was through with it, the cape was gone and a fair bit of paint was missing from the head and power bands. Eventually, I replaced him with an invisible version (bought years later, also from Cosmic Comix), but that wasn’t the same. A few years ago, I considered replacing him with the Jazwares version, but I never saw one with a paintjob that wasn’t atrocious, so I never got one. Just last month, Cosmic Comix got in a collection of loose action figures, and wouldn’t you know it, there was a Space Ghost. I should point out, I was actually travelling that week, so my Dad found him and got him for me, making this the third Space Ghost purchased for me by my Dad from Cosmic Comix. Which is actually kind of cool! I still love this figure, and I’m glad to have a proper replacement!