Doctor Who: The 11th Doctor Sixth-Scale Figure by Big Chief Studios, Part 2

Aaaaand I’m back to conclude my look at Big Chief’s 1:6 scale 11th Doctor figure. The guys at Big Chief packed The Good Doctor with a lot of accessories based off of items that we’ve seen featured in various episodes. Some are great, some are kind of cool, and some I could have done without. But first…

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I’m going to start out with the figure stand, only because the stand is easily the most disappointing thing about this figure, and I don’t want to end the feature on a low note. Rather than just a simple stand, Big Chief delivers a bit of an environment. They were going for a stand that looks like a section of the clear platform that surrounded the TARDIS console in Series 5, 6, and 7A. The look is certainly there, but the stand has enough issues to make me wish they hadn’t tried it. For starters, it feels rather cheap. The stand comes in two parts: You get the base and the post, which supports the figure. The base looks good, but it’s so light and flimsy feeling.

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The post snaps into the side of the platform and it features the same type of extendable wire piece that Hot Toys stands use to hold the figure’s crotch. The problem is that it positions the figure all the way in the back of the platform, leaving this large bit of empty floor in front of him. I suppose the idea here was that you could lay out all the accessories on the base in front of him, but I don’t want a bunch of little bits lying around like that, and so it’s just wasted space that pushes the figure back on my shelf. If the post came out of the middle of the base, I would have liked it a lot more. Actually, I would have been a lot happier with just a more functional figure stand and a cardboard illustration of the TARDIS for him to stand in front of.

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HANDS!!! The 10th Doctor was fond of carting about his spare hand in a bubbling jar, so why shouldn’t the 11th Doctor have a whole bunch of extra hands? “You Time Lords, you’re like worms. Lob a bit off and it grows back!” You get three pairs of mitts and they are replaced with the same post system as Hot Toys figures. The only difference is these hands are more soft and rubbery, so while the post sockets are actually smaller, I find the hands much easier to swap. I’m not a big fan of swapping hands on my figures, but some of these are definitely required if you’re going to pose him holding some of the accessories.

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As for the actual accessories… you get a whole bunch of stuff gathered from Series 5 and 6 episodes. Obviously the one thing The Doctor can’t live without these days is his trusty Sonic Screwedriver and you actually get three of these little beauties: The 10th Doctor’s Sonic and two versions of 11’s Sonic, one opened and one closed. They are simple enough pieces, as they are rather tiny, but the sculpts and paint on all three are pretty solid. I doubt I’ll have the 10th Doctors Sonic out of the tray much, but the other two will get a lot of use. The closed one will reside in his inside jacket pocket and the open one will likely remain in his hand.

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The “Lash Up” device is like a homebrew mobile phone. I have no recollection of this device in the series at all. Was it used in “The Girl Who Waited?” I just can’t place it. It’s a great looking little accessory, but I don’t have much use for it.

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Next up is the Nano Recorder. This is a gun-like device that The Doctor used to implant recorders under the skin of his team when going up against The Silents. It’s a device that didn’t have a lot of screen time, but at least I can remember it from the series context. Besides, if Character Options can make a roleplay toy based on it, I’m not going to harp on Big Chief for tossing it in as an accessory here. Once again, a cool little piece, but not one that I will likely ever display with The Doctor.

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And then we have his handkerchief and the bit of exploded TARDIS. I’m pairing these up because The Doctor used the handkerchief to reach into the crack in time and pull out the piece of TARDIS. “Hey, Moffatt, I’m still waiting on you to explain that one! Why the hell did the TARDIS blow up???” Anyway, the handkerchief comes folded neatly and looks great. The chunk of TARDIS is arguably the best looking accessory because the paint work on it is really impressive. It looks genuinely distressed. Very cool!

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Ah, the Psychic Paper! We haven’t seen a lot of it lately. I know some fans complain that he uses it too much like a Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free card, but I think it’s a clever way to bypass a lot of explanations as to why he turns up where he’s not supposed to be. Besides, it isn’t nearly as annoying to me as the new Sonic Swiss Army Knife that somehow functions like a tricorder. That really, REALLY bugs me. I think it’s time to bring the Terileptils back to destroy that thing. Wait… where was I? Oh yeah, the Psychic Paper is just a cool little rubbery piece of plastic. I’ve been trained against the use of it by the Headless Monks, so mine is blank when I look at it.

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Moving on… we have the Time Lord Consciousness Cube as seen in “The Doctor’s Wife.” It’s basically just a little frosty transparent cube. Originally, it was inferred that it might light up, but it’s so small that would have been pretty tough to do. There’s not a lot to it, but it is a cool piece, and one that I may actually display with the figure from time to time.

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Last, but not least, is the invitation from “The Impossible Astronaut.” It’s just a tiny little envelope with a card inside, and yet it’s possibly the most impressive accessory here. It’s so damn tiny and yet all the little printing on it looks so great. The fact that it even opens and has the invitation inside is all the more amazing.

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And that wraps up the inventory of accessories. Cyberman not included! Honestly, after all the trepidation on my part, in the end I’m extremely happy with this figure. The quality of the figure’s body, the articulation, and most of all the likeness, are all well worth the money and as you see, you get a ridiculous number of accessories and extras. Sure, the tailoring on the costume can use some tweaks and bobs, It’s easily the figure’s weakest point, but even still, it’s a very solid effort for a first figure. I think Big Chief established themselves quite well with this initial offering and I’m very anxious to see what else they have coming. We’ve already seen pictures of the 10th Doctor and Amy Pond figures and we’ve seen lots of teasers from the upcoming 4th Doctor figure. I do believe I’m on board and I won’t be as hesitant to pull the trigger next time.

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With Apologies to Big Chief…

So, I know what some people are thinking. “Hey, FigureFan, where’s the review for Big Chief’s 11th Doctor figure? What, you got monies for the Milla Jovoviches but no scratch for the good Doctor? WTF?”

Yes, it’s true; I’ve had two hundred bucks squirreled away for almost three months waiting for the launch of Big Chief’s first figure: Matt Smith as the 11th Doc. The early proto shots of the figure looked great, but I still had quite a bit of trepidation over dropping two hundred dollars on the purchase. Big Chief is an untried company and no one actually had any hands-on time with a finished version of the figure. So, a pre-order was out, but I planned on buying it once pictures of the final product surfaced. It eventually became available from a few sources and I was all ready to do it, when a poster threw up a slew of pictures on one of the Who collecting forums that I frequent. Alas, those pictures were just enough to knock me off the fence in favor of not buying him.

Keep in mind, the poster was very happy with the figure, and I still think the likeness and the quality of the figure itself were solid enough. But in the end, it was the tailoring on the outfit that swayed me. The shirt collar looked all puffy and would not stay down, the bowtie was a mess, and that’s not cool! Messy bowties are not cool. The jacket didn’t seem to fit the figure very well and there were loose threads everywhere. I’ve since seen photos of the outfit looking much better, but the owner of those photos confessed to spending a lot of time fussing in order to get the outfit looking acceptable.

I wanted to buy this thing. I really did. If it were $150 I probably would have. But if I’m blowing two hundred bones on a figure, I have to be totally happy with it right out of the box. I want to applaud what Big Chief is doing with the license and I really wanted to support them in their endeavors, but the final version of this figure just wasn’t where it needed to be for me to justify the purchase. So, there you have it. A number of retailers that I frequent still have plenty on hand, so there is a possibility he’ll become available at a sale price and possibly that will make me bite. I’m not saying I wouldn’t be happy with him, but I just can’t take the gamble at that price. I’m still probably willing to go for him in the $150 neighborhood, but until then don’t expect to see him featured here anytime soon.