Star Trek (2009): Six-inch Figures by Playmates

I really was dead set against buying any of the figures based off the 2009 Star Trek movie. Its not that I didn’t love the movie, but aside from the 1:6 scale collection, I just wasn’t impressed with the figures. It seems like every one I picked up had something wrong with it. There were bad paint apps, questionable sculpts, and at least two I saw with joints popped out right in the package. I just wasn’t willing to invest in these things. Well, clearance being the great equalizer, I had an opportunity to pick up an entire set of the 6″ figures online for $3.50 a piece and God help me, I went for it.

Buying these figures sight unseen was a risky move, because the paint apps were notoriously bad. It wasn’t uncommon to have to flip through numerous examples of any given character before finding one that was acceptable. Getting them online was a complete crap shoot. I could have easily wound up getting a Scotty with one eye painted on his forehead. Amazingly enough, I wound up with a set with absolutely no paint problems. Either these figures were produced late in the game after Playmates fixed the issues, or I just got really, really lucky.

The 6″ assortment consists of ten figures. You have Kirk, Spock, Scotty, Sulu and Pike all in their duty uniforms. Then there’s McCoy, Uhura and Chekov in their cadet uniforms. Lastly, you have the older Spock and Nero. I appreciate Playmates trying to mix things up vis-a-vis the uniforms, but it really irks me that all the crew weren’t available in their duty uniforms. Besides, I’ve seen the movie quite a few times, and I’m pretty sure that Chekov never even wore the cadet outfit, so why release his figure like that? I realize that Playmates was planning to release the remaining figures in their proper uniforms in the next wave, but hey, tell that to all the collectors still waiting to complete their bridge playset.

The body sculpts on these figures reuse a lot of parts, but that doesn’t bother me much. Both the duty uniforms and the cadet outfits are decently recreated. I’m still undecided as to whether I like the texturing on the uniform tops. I realize its trying to recreate the pattern in the cloth, but it doesn’t quite do the job. The boots are also a bit bulkier than they should have been.

The headsculpts range from horrible to excellent. Ok, actually there is only one that I would rate as horrible, but unfortunately that’s Kirk himself. Not only does he look nothing like Chris Pine, but he looks like he’s twelve years old and his head is ridiculously small for his body. Pike’s head sculpt looks ok, but it really doesn’t resemble the actor at all and the same is true for Scotty. The rest are actually pretty good, with McCoy and Spock being pretty spot on.

Articulation is pretty standard throughout the line. The heads swivel, their arms have ball joints in the shoulders and elbows and swivel at the wrist. Their legs rotate at the hips and are hinged at the knees and they swivel just above the boot. Old Spock’s leg articulation is hampered by his robe, but technically its still there. Swivel cuts in the biceps and thighs would have been welcome additions, but all in all the articulation on these figures is pretty solid.

All of the male figures in the duty and cadet uniforms come with the same set of accessories. They each come with a belt, a phaser and a communicator as well as a gold or gray figure stand. Uhura comes with the phaser and communicator, but no belt, and Chekov and Uhura each come with a PADD. Both Spocks come with an interchangeable hand giving the Vulcan salute, Nero comes with his staff-harpoon thingy, and both Old Spock and Nero come with a black disc stand.

The equipment belts are a nice touch and they actually hold the phasers and communicators, but the catch on the back is pretty weak and they are constantly popping open and falling off the figures. Its also a given that the thin plastic around the catch is going to weaken and break if they’re handled a lot.

Overall, I had really low expectations for these figures, but in the end they surprised me a bit. They are definitely worth the clearance prices, although I would have been decidedly less satisfied with them had I paid full retail back when they were released.

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