Ever since CO abandoned the release of Classic Who figures in single carded waves, we’ve been getting story-specific sets. That’s fine with me, but now CO has opted to go right for the jugular and bundle different enemies of a specific Doctor together. Personally, I’d rather get classic companions bundled with my baddies, but this formula works ok for me too. This one is based on three no-good-niks that have plagued The Doctor in his third incarnation. You get the original vintage style Auton that appeared in The Third Doctor’s inaugural episode, “Spearhead From Space.” You get Omega, who was admittedly a bastard, but as we learned in “The Three Doctors” he got a pretty raw deal. This was the first story where we learn that the Time Lords are kinda dicks. Then we get the showpiece of the set, the giant Drashig that appeared in that surrealest of episodes, “Carnival of Monsters.” You might say one of these turned up again later in another episode, but that was actually just a projection playing on Jo Grant’s fears and not a real Drashig so i doesn’t count. Ahem, sorry, nerdgasm.
Holy smokes, the box is huge. It obviously had to be big to hold that Drashig, but at the same time, there’s a lot of room in there for the other figures. As with “The Chase” set, there’s no backdrop insert, but that’s to be expected here since the figures all come from different episodes. Instead the tray is designed to mirror the diamond deco of the box and the overall effect is gorgeous. The figures are held in place with the string, which is easily clipped away to get at the goods.
Starting off with the Auton. You didn’t think you were going to get away with buying a CO figure set and not get some reuse, did you? HA! The Auton is a heavy reuse of the original Captain Jack Harkness figure, and I don’t care one bit because the end result looks fabulous. Basically the entire body is the same, save for some minor resculpting of buttons and a beltbuckle. Some have complained that the new scarf makes the neck look unnaturally elongated, but I think it adds to the figure’s creepiness. It is afterall an animated maniquin so it doesn’t have to be proportionally correct. I’m particularly happy with the paintwork on this figure. The deep blue of his outfit looks great and the silver detailwork on the buttons and belt buckle are immaculate. Whoever painted this figure should start doing the Dalek figures. Snap!
Thanks to the reuse of parts, the Auton’s articulation is a throwback to the older figures. The head rotates, the arms rotate at the shoulders, swivel at the wrists and have hinged elbows. The legs have universal movement at the hips and hinged knees. It’s not a hell of a lot, but in fairness, he is a friggin animated plastic mannquin so we don’t need a lot of poseability for him to lumber along and shoot people.
The modern Auton figures were a little disappointing as you merely pulled off their fingers to reveal a hole that was supposed to be their gun. It wasn’t really screen accurate. Here, you get an actual replacement hand with the fingers flipped down and the gun clearly sculpted. This is how it should have been done in the first place, CO! I don’t want to take away from the modern Autons, but to me this guy is much scarier, much cooler looking, and overall a better figure even with all the reuse of parts. I love him and I really wish CO would do a two-pack of these guys. I would definitely buy a couple more.
Next up, let’s check out Omega. I’ll admit I was a little leary about CO going with softgoods on this figure. Sure, we saw softgoods on the Sea Devils, but I thought the use of it here might look out of place in the line. I mean, why do softgoods on Omega’s robes and not the decayed Master figures? Well, I’m prepared to eat those words now, because this figure turned out to be visually stunning, mostly thanks to the shimmering whispy cloth robes. Even more surprising is that the glitter doesn’t come off in my hands when I play around with him. The sculpted parts of the figure look equally amazing. I’ve always loved the design of Omega’s mask and it looks outstanding here and the chunky sculpt and bronze finish make it look weighty and antiqued and oh, so cool.
Omega features all the new articulation seen in CO’s recent releases, including those wonderful new ball jointed shoulders. The only main difference here is that the swivel in the forearm is located higher up, rather than at the wrist. One cool little extra is that Omega’s head is removable. It’s a nice nod to the scene where Omega removed his helmet and there was nothing underneath. The head is attached with a heavy socket joint that lets the head rotate without pulling off too easly. CO, I adore this figure!
And then there’s the Drashig. It’s not exactly a figure, and yet it’s not the static piece that the Fendahleen was. It’s a hand puppet! Hell, I guess you could say its a prop replica since the original one in the series was some kind of puppet. This one looks as good as the one used in the series, too, although that’s not saying much since the Drashig were not the most convincing of Doctor Who monsters. In any event, this thing is sculpted in soft rubbery plastic with some very nice paintwork. It’s completely hollow, so you can just slip your hand right into it to work its toothy mouth. It’s big enough that it can scoop up other Doctor Who figures in its mouth. I was pretty sure that this thing was going to be designed for a kids hand and that I wasn’t going to be able to use it, but even my meaty paw can get in there to operate it without a problem.
As with “The Chase” set, this one retails at just under fifty bucks. Yes, its a premium, but these are action figures based off of a science fiction series in the 70’s from another country, so I’m willing to pay that premium. The Auton and Omega turned out great, and while I was a little leary about the Dreshig, I think it turned out to be a pretty cool item. I applaud CO for taking risks like this and producing unconventional things like the Drashig. Especially since the Drashig isn’t exactly a high profile Doctor Who monster. I just hope it pays off for them. Keep cranking them out, CO, and I’ll keep buying them. I do like this format, but I do hope you get back to doing some new companion bundles too. I just know you guys have that Jamie & Yeti set hiding back there somewhere.