I’m not one for New Years Resolutions, but I am going to try to up my efforts when it comes to Hot Toys and other Sixth-Scale reviews this year. It seems like I’m always behind on these, some of which have been waiting years to get their turn in the spotlight here. Marty hasn’t been sitting around for years, but it has been a while, and now that Doc Brown has come in, I have new incentive to have a look!
Marty comes in a standard shoebox, which I like a lot more than the crappy window box with sleeve that Hot Toys has used in the past, particularly for their Marvel MCU figures. Sure, the box could be a little more durable, but it gets the job done. The artwork on the box is very nice and features the iconic logo at the top of the front and again on the spine. The OUTATIME TOUR 85 on the side panel is kind of cheesy, but that’s fine. This one was an unusual release, as it comes only about seven years after Hot Toys’ last release of Marty in this outfit and yet almost everything appears to be brand new. He doesn’t require any set up and comes out of the box all ready for display.
Here’s Marty McFly out of the box and relieved of his plastic wrap, and I’ll tell ya, since most of my Hot Toys are space people or super heroes, it’s fun to get one wearing regular clothes now and again. Or at least regular clothes from almost 40 years ago. Marty is sporting a lot of denim, with both blue jeans and a jean jacket. He’s got a checkered, button down shirt over a red undershirt, suspenders, and his life preserver! Everything about the figure’s costume is beautifully tailored, from the stitching on the jacket, to the pattern on the inside liner. The fit is also quite good, and I’m really impressed at that, considering Marty is wearing so many layers. Making clothing in this scale not look overly puffy is hard enough without doing four layers of it. And if the jacket does look a little bulky on his right side, it’s because his Walkman is tucked into the inside pocket of his jacket. If I had one nitpick about the outfit, it’s the way the suspenders pull up the sides of the pants and make the middle dip. You can adjust it, but it’ll always return to the dip in the middle. Eh, but that’s not a dealbreaker.
Of course, you can take the vest off to appreciate more of what they did with the jacket, and doing so makes it easier to sling his backpack over his shoulder. They recreated the pins on the left side of his chest and he even comes with his calculator watch, which we all wore in the 80’s, unless you were posh enough to wear a Swatch. Yeah, it’s kind of a shame to cover up those pins with the vest, but I’ll still likely be displaying with the vest all the time.
The head sculpt is pretty amazing to me. I passed on the 2015 release because of the portrait, which I thought at best looked like a much older Michael J. Fox, or maybe Alex Keaton on drugs from that one episode of Family Ties. The solicitation photos for this one looked much better and I’m happy to see the production head came out pretty damn close to what we were originally shown. As with many of these portraits, there are a few angles where the likeness loses something and others where it excels, but overall I’m extremely pleased. And comparing the old and the new is like night and day. As usual, the paint is absolutely exquisite, recreating all the little nuances of the skin tone, the lips, and the lifelike eyes. The hair sculpt is also fantastic. Well done, Hot Toys!
Running through the accessories… I’ve already shown off the backpack, which looks bang on for one that I carried in High School, only mine was green. Other than some more beautiful tailoring, the only thing worth noting here is that the straps are positioned on top of each other to make it easier to have it slung over the shoulder or carried in the hand, and they cannot be separated and worn on each shoulder like an actual backpack.
The detail on the Walkman is out of this world for such a tiny accessory. At some point, I’ll have to bust out my Hot Toys Star Lord’s Walkman for a direct comparison. I never had a Sony Walkman as a teenager, but had to make due with an Aiwa, but this looks pretty damn good. Sadly, you cannot pop it open and put in a tiny Huey Lewis tape. Also, the headphones aren’t adjustable, so they’re best suited to hang around his neck. Best I could do to get them on his ears is to have the band across the back of his head. Naturally, they’re also very delicate so I wasn’t about to force the issue.
As long as we’re talking AV equipment, Marty also comes with the JVC Camcorder he used to document Doc Brown’s DeLorean experiment. And oh boy is this an impressive little bit of kit! I’ve never owned one of these babies, so I can’t vouch for its accuracy off-hand, but the detail is outstanding. It has a strap on the side for him to hold it while filming and a carry bar on the top. It does omit the JVC branding, which is surprising because I didn’t know they were still in business.
Next up is Marty’s skateboard, and like the camcorder, I don’t know anything about these things, but it looks pretty good to me. My friend gave me one of his old ones once to try out once and let’s just say that didn’t go well. This little board rolls well and I was even able to get Marty to balance on it fairly well with little cursing involved at all! I really like how they gave him a left hand with splayed fingers that perfectly conveys, “I’m balancing on a skateboard!” There’s some realistic weathering on the wheels and some colorful graphics on the top and bottom. Also like the camcorder, this piece omits some of the lettering, presumably for copyright issues, which surprised me because I believe NECA’s retains them.
Getting down to the nitty gritty, we have the ephemera, (that’s paper goods for you non book collectors!) Yes, Marty comes with the Clock Tower pamphlet! Flip it over and it has Jennifer’s love note along with her Grandmother’s phone number! I don’t know why I think getting paper accessories like this is so cool, especially in light of the other highly detailed goodies, but I think it’s a hoot. The printing on the front is great, so long as you don’t want to read the actual article, and the sheet of paper is folded into four quarters.
Is Einstein an accessory or a figure? Well, I’d say he’s an accessory because he’s small and only has one point of articulation at his neck. I remember seeing a lot of criticism of this piece when the figure was first teased, and I never really understood it. No, you don’t get the same level of realism in the sculpt as you do in the figure’s likeness, but it’s kind of apples and oranges. I’m not sure if they were expecting a fully flocked Einstein with rooted hair, but I’m actually pretty pleased with how he came out.
As usual, our last stop on the Hot Toys review train is the figure stand. This is a standard black oval base and post, but we do get the BTTF logo printed on it, and I love it! What I don’t love is that Hot Toys went with the wire waist ring as opposed to the usual wire crotch cradle, and I can’t really understand why, as they hardly ever go with this style of support. It still does a fine job of securing the figure, and with the jacket it isn’t that visible, but it’s a pain in the ass to get it off the figure, whereas the crotch cradle allows you to just pick the figure up off the stand and place him back without any problems. And just before wrapping up, I wanted to point out two omissions in the accessories department. First off, Marty doesn’t come with his sunglasses, and I think that’s pretty outrageous. All Hot Toys had to do was look at the front of their own box and realize, “whoops, we goofed.” It doesn’t seem like tossing some shades in there would have broken the bank, and it’s a pretty important piece to completing a very iconic pose for the character. Secondly, he doesn’t come with a guitar. This one is easily forgivable. It’s a much more elaborate and expensive accessory to create, and it’s not like Marty walked around the whole movie with one.
As it happens, I was able to pick up a really nice looking sixth-scale guitar off of Amazon for $12. It’s not the one he had in the movie, but he looks good holding it, so why not!
Back to the Future is on a very short list of what I consider to be a perfect film. I don’t say that lightly, and I will die on that hill. The sequels are fun and all, but I really regard the original as damn near flawless. It hits all the beats that it’s shooting for, with wonderful performances and a magical soundtrack. It’s a stone cold classic. There was never any doubt that I wanted Marty McFly and Doc Brown in my Sixth-Scale figure collection. I’m just glad Hot Toys took a second shot at this one. Unlike the movie, this figure isn’t quite perfect, but it’s amazingly good and I’m thrilled to have it up on my shelf. Now, so long as I can make the time, I hope to be checking out Doc Brown in the next week or so!