Danger Girl: Premium Format Abbey Chase by Sideshow

If you come to my home enough times, chances are eventually I will pour you a glass of Jameson and take you on the mandatory tour of my J. Scott Campbell collection. You’ll see books, art prints, action figures, statues, and I may even make you play a level of the PlayStation game. It’s OK. Just act interested. Oooh and Ahhh a few times, and you will be free to leave and go about your business. What can I say? From Danger Girl to Gen13 to his work on exclusive covers for any number of comic book companies, I love this man’s work and I love to share it with people I know. And as I was reorganizing some pieces of the collection this past weekend, I thought I might as well showcase Sideshow’s Premium Format of Danger Girl star, Abbey Chase!

This is where I usually show off the packaging, but the box for this gal is so damn big, that I had to put it in storage and it is not easy to get to. So instead, I’ll just show off some of my different editions of the original Danger Girl series. Signed Treasury Editions? Check! Signed Deluxe Edition? Check! Signed Ultimate Collection in both Hardcover and Trade paperback? Check and Check! As for the figure, she’s roughly quarter-scale which tends to be the standard for Sideshow’s Premium Formats, measuring in at just over twenty inches including the base, and sculpted in polystone with some mixed media elements. Abbey requires just a little bit of simple assembly before she’s ready to go, and I’m happy to report that everything fit well, which isn’t always the case. Sideshow offered two versions of this piece: A regular edition of 1,000 and an Exclusive of 500. Naturally, I had to get the Exclusive!

The composition of this figure sees Abbey caught in mid stride, half action hero… half runway model. Her right foot in front, her right hip thrust to the side, her left hand resting on the other hip. Her right arm is cocked at the elbow as she holds aloft her trusty automatic pistol, while flames lick up around her feet. Our hero cuts a perfect compromise between a museum-style pose and a whiff of action.. While not a perfect match, the design here looks like it was influenced by Abbey’s appearance on IDW’s Danger Girl: Gallery Edition, which collected a series of covers and pin-ups. And a mighty fine choice it was!  And I can’t help but appreciate those wonderful stylized proportions! I can practically hear the self-righteous Social Media Mobs screaming, BUT WHERE ARE HER POLYSTONE ORGANZ?????

When it comes to her outfit, Abbey has donned a few different looks over the years (sometimes not wearing much of anything!), this figure showcases the look that I would consider her most iconic. It’s simple enough, and starts with an extra-tight white t-shirt. Or maybe that’s half a t-shirt. Moving down we get a pair of tight pants fashioned from a mix of black leather, green spandex, and mesh, and finished off with a pair of high black boots. Abbey sometimes wore a matching jacket, but I’m not sorry that they left it out here. The t-shirt is part of the sculpt, and the paint really needs to be called out here, especially on the back where it gives off the effect that the material is so thin that her skin is showing through it. Man, that is a cool effect!

The pants introduce the mixed media element to the statue, as they are fully tailored out of three different types of material and sewn onto the figure. Once upon a time, it seemed like all Premium Format figures were required to have some element of mixed media to them, but that hasn’t been the case for a while. Indeed, of the four PF figures I own, Abbey here is the only one that showcases some aspect of tailoring in the costume. If her pants were all just black leather, I would have been fine with them sculpting it, but they really took the opportunity here, especially with the mesh panels, to make this aspect of the costume shine. And I can’t even imagine how difficult it is to stitch pants onto a polystone statue with that level of perfection. The final aspects of her costume worth pointing out ar ethe sculpted gloves and the DG-branded belt buckle!

Taking a look at the portrait, I think Sideshow did an excellent job bringing JSC’s stylized likeness of Ms. Chase to a fully fleshed out 3D form. This can be a tricky portrait to display, since her hair casts a shadow over the left side of her face. Ultimately, I have her displayed on a shelf which brings her eyes nearly level with my own, which helps to appreciate all the beauty hiding under there. I dig Abbey’s expression, which is about 90% business and 10% playful smirk. The paintwork on the face is very clean, the eyes have a bit of a lifelike sheen to them and the lips are painted with a luscious gloss coat. The hair is sculpted separately from the head, which gives her a razor sharp hairline, and I like the way the ends lick off to the side above her shoulders.

The gun is nicely detailed, and features a silver brushed finish that makes it look like it’s a bit weathered and well used. And shame on Abbey, for not practicing proper trigger discipline! On the other hand, I do love how she holds her pinky extended. That’s class!

Our next stop on this review is the base, and what a beast of a base it is! It’s sculpted and painted to look like it’s made from a solid iron ingot, and believe me when I say it weighs about as much too. The steel finish has a luxurious satin finish to it and the Danger Girl logo really pops on the front with the red and purple paint and the silhouette of Abbey over the D. The semi-translucent plastic flames attach firmly to the base with some powerful magnets, making for an especially nice effect. The bottom of the base has the Danger Girl logo again as well as Abbey Chase Premium Format Figure and mine is hand numbered 212 of 500.

And lastly we have the Exclusive incentive, which is a generously oversized metal art card and stand, showing off the concept art that was used for the creation of the statue. This is my favorite kind of incentive. Often, Sideshow will go with optional swap-out parts as the incentive, and those are nice, but they aren’t something I usually take advantage of, whereas I have this art card displayed beside the statue at all times.

The Exclusive has since sold out at Sideshow, but the tragedy is that the regular edition is still up for grabs. And keep in mind, she went up for pre-order back in 2017. Originally, I had hoped we might get a Sydney Savage as well, but I fear that the sales were probably not strong enough to support another one. Happily, JSC has continued to partner with Sideshow with both his Spider-Man and Fairytale Fantasies line, some of which I have reviewed here. It’s probably a pipe dream, but I’m still hoping that one day they may do a maquette with Abbey, Sidney, and Natasha. And you can bet that I’d drop a pre-order for a Caitlin Fairchild Premium Format figure the moment it got solicited. But that’s probably just a dream too. In the meantime, I’m thrilled to have Abbey here as one of the showpieces of my JSC collection.

Transformers Siege: Ratchet by Hasbro

With lots of Siege figures left for me to open, I’m trying to juggle these older reviews alongside the new Earthrise figures. Today I’m going back to one of my favorite characters from the G1 cartoon, Ratchet. It’s always a treat to get updates to Ratchet and Ironhide, because as a kid I was robbed of proper figures because their G1 toys were so damned weird. I was actually pleased with the CHUG versions when they came out, which just goes to show you how thirsty I was. I mean, Woof! Those haven’t aged well. Obviously Ratchet here is just a repaint/slight remold of Ironhide, which I reviewed a little while back, so some of this may feel like I’m covering old ground, but let’s take a look!

In kind of a dick move, Hasbro decided to make Ratchet a Walgreen’s Exclusive. Now, in fairness, he was pretty easy for me to find, so I probably shouldn’t complain, but I’m sure there are people out there who had problems because of the exclusivity. Bottom line, Hasbro… don’t be making important characters like my boy Ratchet an exclusive. Save that shit for Barricade. He was a cool figure, but not essential, IMHO. Anyway, despite being an exclusive, there’s no sticker or other indicator of that fact on the box. Naturally he comes packaged in robot mode, but let’s start out with his alt mode.

In vehicle mode, I expected Ratchet to be a straight-up repaint, but Hasbro actually did some reworking on his front bumper, as well as the area above and behind the tinted blue windshield, which is a welcome surprise. It’s not quite an ambulance light-bar, but it’s painted to resemble one. Maybe the Cybertronian equivalent, eh? The back panels are still kind of ugly and hollow, because they’re the bottoms of Ratchet’s feet, although if I try hard enough I can imagine that they’re supposed to be exhaust vents. Still, I’d rather it looked like he could open up to carry wounded Autobots. As for the rest of the vehicle, the white plastic looks good with the painted red panels, and the wheels are slightly more gray than white, which mixes things up a bit. The silver paint on the bumper head headlights looks good, as does the crisp Autobot insignia just under the windshield. You also get some brushed weathering near the back. It’s not an entirely different vehicle than Ironhide, but the subtle changes and the new paint job certainly sets it apart.

Hasbro also set Ratchet up with some new accessories, which can be used on Ratchet’s auto mode. He’s got a wrench-claw on an articulated arm, and a smaller gun, which can be part of the claw or mounted separately as a weapon. I dig both of these a lot, as it allows Ratchet to effect repairs while in his alt mode and laying down covering fire at the same time. I suppose the claw could also be used to grab hold of Autobots and drag them off the battlefield to safety.

As mostly a repaint, Ratchet transforms exactly the same as Ironhide. There is one nice surprise, however! The side panels don’t fall off like they do with my Ironhide EVERY SINGLE TIME I TRANSFORM HIM!!! Either way, Ratchet has a fantastic looking robot mode that’s well proportioned and just chunky enough to scratch my G1 itch. It’s not a dead-ringer for the original Sunbow character design, but it hits just enough points to make it work for me. Structurally, the only differences between him and his Autobot brother is the slight reconfiguration in the shoulders and the front bumper that rests behind his head. From behind he’s got a lot of hollow compartments, but he still manages to look rugged and sturdy. The deco doesn’t change much from his vehicle mode. It’s still mostly white with some red here and there.

The new head sculpt looks great, particularly with his rounded “helmet” and those big wings over his eyes. I like the features in his face, but I wish the face was painted silver to make it stand out a little more. There’s no light-piping in the blue eyes, but they still stand out remarkably well.

Ratchet’s weapon can be split up to give him a pistol, and you have some options if you want to attach the claw arm to him. I like pegging it into his back. It fills up that empty space a bit and it can be swiveled around to project up over his head or shoulder. What practical purpose it could serve? I have no idea. Maybe as an extra hand when he’s doing his repair work? Of course, you also have the option of just setting it aside when he’s in robot mode.

Ironhide was a great figure, so it should come as no surprise that Ratchet toes the line and also turned out fantastic. With display and storage space being what it is these days, I’m not that keen on buying a lot of repaints anymore, but with some of these old G1 guys, I have to make an exception. And with that having been said, we’re not done with this mold yet. It also got repainted into Crosshairs, and I wound up buying him too, so we will revisit the Ironhide/Ratchet mold again in the not too distant future.