There has been news on the Farscape front about a new TV movie being made. I’m not jumping for joy yet, but it did give me a
lame excuse opportunity to trot out another Farscape figure that has thus far escaped the spotlight here on FFZ. I’ve already looked at several of these figures, and you’d think that John might have been among the first, but truth is he’s tough to find for a good price, and a month or so back I stumbled upon a carded one for under $20 and I jumped at the chance.
The packaging here is a pretty solid effort. You get a big organically shaped card and bubble that I presume are patterned after Moya’s bio-architecture. The large bubble gives you a great look at not only the figure but also the accessories surrounding him. I’ll also point out the odd notation on the insert that this figure is limited to 30,000 pieces. Ok, that’s not much of a frelling limitation there, chief! The back of the card uses screen grabs to show the other characters that are available in figure form. The packaging here is not at all collector friendly, so you mint-on-card collectors better avert your eyes, because I’m about to rip this baby open.
Now is as good a time as any to point out that I collect these figures because I love the show and these are all we got. Some have been quite good, some not so much, but it’s a line that really bugs me because of its inconsistencies and Commander Crichton here certainly does nothing to buck that trend. This figure represents a pretty versatile version of the character, and I’m thankful Toy Vault didn’t go with some ridiculous episode specific variant like they did with Aeryn Sun. Later variants of John followed, but if you want one Crichton for your shelf, this is the one to go with. There’s nothing at all remarkable about the sculpted outfit, it’s just a white shirt and khaki pants, although the occasional use of softgoods in this line does make it rather unique and I do think the cloth jacket looks pretty good on the figure. For a 7-inch scale figure, it’s pretty nicely tailored.
The portrait here isn’t a bad one. I think these companies have an easier time with aliens than they do humans, so I’m willing to cut them some slack. I think the cheeks are a bit puffy, but it’s a serviceable likeness to Ben Browder and the paintwork is certainly clean enough.
Crichton’s articulation is right in line with D’argo in that he is totally static from the waist down. Beyond that his arms can rotate at the shoulders, his wrists can swivel, he can swivel at the waist, and his head can turn. That’s it! He’s not terribly pre-posed, although his right arm is perpetually cocked at the elbow. You can stand him on the shelf, you can tweak him a bit, but that’s really all the “action” you’ll get out of this figure.
You get a decent handful of accessories with Crichton. First off, there’s his astronaut helmet. I like this piece a lot and it fits over the figure’s head quite well. There’s a soft plastic chinstrap and a clear eye mask. The deco includes some fine red and blue striping and a tampo of the Farscape project emblem. The white paint is a little blotchy, but I think that just adds some realism to the helmet and makes it look a little beat up.
Next up, Crichton has a pair of goggles, which I believe are the ones he wore on the planet surface in “Til The Blood Runs Clear.” They fit snugly onto the figure’s head and just like in the episode, they look absolutely ridiculous.
Now that we have the optional headwear behind us, we can get to the good stuff. DRDs! Yes, Crichton comes with a pair of the Diagnostic Repair Droids that always felt to me like a direct rip-off of the Scutters on Red Dwarf. Either way, these little guys were prominent in the show so it only seems right to get little plastic versions of them. The sculpting and paintwork on this pair is really nice, even if you flip them upside down. Sure, getting 1812 would have been a welcome treat, but let’s not forget this is “Series 1” Crichton, so 1812 was still a few years into his future.
Last up, you get Crichton’s carbine. It’s worth mentioning that while Toy Vault included the same model of carbine with Chiana, Aeryn, and now Crichton, each weapon has been a unique sculpt with some kind of modification. Crichton’s feels like the best sculpt of the bunch as it has a bit more detail and some extra doo-dads. He can hold it in his right hand and it comes with a strap so you can sling it over his shoulder. I’ll point out here that I’m disappointed he didn’t come with his trusy blaster, Winona, but I suppose I could let him borrow the one that came with Aeryn.
In the end, Crichton is what I’ve come to expect from this line. He’s not great, he’s not terrible, and he’s more statue than action figure. It would have been really cool if Diamond Select had secured the Farscape license, especially since they wound up doing likenesses of Ben Browder and Claudia Black for Stargate. We would have certainly had a more cohesive and consistent assortment of figures and possibly even saw figures of Stark, Sikozu and Jools.
And that’s where I wrap up my Farscape features. The two remaining characters, Scorpius and Crais, are way too expensive for what they are. I’m not willing to drop $50-60 just to complete a set of mediocre figures no matter how much I love the show. There are still a ton of variants of the characters I’ve already looked at, and maybe one day I’ll pick up some of those for cheap and revisit this line. Unfortunately, even if the new movie goes through, the characters will be different so there’s not much chance of new action figure treatments. Although, if Funko’s Legacy Collection takes off, and they do wind up doing Firefly figures… Maybe something like Farscape could be a possibility down the road.
What I want to know is, why aren’t there any Red Dwarf action figures? I don’t expect them to come from the likes of Neca, but if, say, Character Options was to do a set in any scale, I would be all over them like white on rice!
Yeah, I’d be all over that too. CO could make it work as a one-shot boxed set.
I know someone has been trying to push a Red Dwarf into LEGO Ideas. I think someone put out some die-cast ships too.