For those of you wondering, I do still have the Classic Who “Claws of Axos” boxed set waiting to be featured, but it’s going to be the last Classic set for a while and so I’m holding off on opening it until the time feels right. Nonetheless, I felt like doing a Doctor Who feature today, so I’m digging into one of the other unopened figures on my pile. Late last year, Character Options began repackaging and reissuing some of their more popular figures and one of those included this version of the 10th Doctor that had so far managed to elude my grasp.
The figure comes in a sealed blister pack with a deco quite similar to what we’ve been seeing on all the most recent releases. The only difference here is the embossed Doctor Who logo has the pattern from the original credit sequence printed on the insert and it looks so cool! I don’t have anything else new to report about the rest of the presentation, other than it’s my favorite packaging for the line to date. I have several 10th Doctor figures in my collection, but they’re all the same figure. It’s the long coated version sans glasses that was originally released single-carded. I have another one of those still carded because a well-meaning friend gifted it to me. Finally, I have a third example of that same figure, which came boxed with the remote control rusty K9. After amassing three of the same version of Number Ten, it seemed like I was long overdue to add another version to my Who Shelves.
Once I availed myself of a sharp blade to open the package, I was treated to a nice whiff of plastic fumes and The Good Doctor was free of his prison. While the package may be new, the figure is still a repack and also shares a lot of tooling with the trench coat wearing version that’s already on my shelf. The basic body is the same only repainted blue and with newly sculpted sleeves to represent the coat’s sleeves. The suit jacket is layered onto the figure and it looks good, even if it does add a little extra bulk to the “proper skinny” Tennant’s body. The new paintjob is quite good, right down to the bright red used for his “sandshoes.”
The portrait is solid enough, but it’s certainly not one of the line’s best. I can see Tennant in there and while I won’t say it’s better than the other one, it is a bit closer to the look that Ten adopted as being more iconic by the end of his reign. The hair does it’s best to approximate the “all sticky uppy” (as the wonderful Wilf would have said) style, although it kind of just looks like a lump of plastic. The glasses, on the other hand, are pretty well done. While they aren’t removable, they are a separately sculpted appliance and it can’t be easy to do that in this scale and make it look this good.
CO’s Doctor Who line has never been known for being super-articulated, but going back to an early figure like this one certainly reminds me of just how many improvements have been made on that front over the years. While only a select few recent figures have earned the breakthrough of ball jointed arms, this figure is still missing the swivel cuts that eventually appeared in most of the figures’ biceps and thighs and they are pretty conspicuous in their absence. What you do get are rotating shoulders, rotating head, hinges in the elbows and knees, and hips that at least allow for forward and lateral movement in the legs. Honestly, there’s just not a lot you can do with him in terms of action posing.
The most irritating thing about this figure is the omission of the Sonic Screwdriver. It’s such a tiny little accessory and one that has already been sculpted, so not throwing it into the package feels like a blatant slap in the face to us collectors. I actually found myself giving the tray a careful once over just because I couldn’t believe that it wasn’t hiding in there somewhere. It’s doubly disappointing since The Doctor’s right hand is sculpted to hold it.
At $15 for this repacked figure with no accessory, it certainly feels like I’m back to paying a premium. That seemed fair enough back in the early days when the success of Doctor Who’s return was still a bit uncertain and the action figure line was untested. Now that NuWho has blazed through eight years like gangbusters and has supported a wide range of toys and action figures, one would think that we could have gotten a bit of a price break by now. Nonetheless, I’m very happy for another chance at this figure, and I’ll go ahead and admit that he will be replacing my other 10th Doctor on my main shelf right between Nine and Eleven. Or is that Nine and Twelve now? Whatever the case, this is a great addition to my collection, even if it does feel rather dated. I did pick up one more figure from this repack wave and that was Captain Jack Harkness to replace the rather mediocre first release of the character. I’ll try to get around to opening him next week.