Halloween II: Ultimate Michael Myers by NECA

Happy Halloween, Toyhounds! And what better way to celebrate than with a review of a Michael Myers figure, eh? I was really hoping to be able to do a look at NECA’s new Halloween Kills version of Michael, but I haven’t found it and I’m not even sure it’s officially out yet. Luckily, I was able to pluck the Halloween II version of Myers from my backlog… I mean.. I’ve been saving him for just this occasion! Yeah, that’s it!

And that’s works out well, considering yesterday was this film’s 40th Anniversary! Not to mention, that by every imaginable standard of measurement, Halloween II is an infinitely better movie than Halloween Kills. I enjoyed Kills, but when I saw it, I was digesting a 22oz steak and was well lubricated with alcohol, so I was in a very agreeable mood. But, as the direct follow up to Carpenter’s original, Halloween II was a great ride, and still has some of my favorite Myers moments. I still get chills every time he effortlessly walks through that plate glass door without even flinching. I actually did a re-watch of this flick last night and had a great time doing it. So, let me grab a few more Fun Size Snickers from the bowl by the front door and bust open this figure!

The film begins exactly where the first one ends, so we get more or less the same version of Michael for either movie. The one big difference here is the bullet holes where Loomis “SHOT HIM SIX TIMES… SIX TIMES!!!” The Shape dons his dark blue jumpsuit with all the little sculpted stitches that I’ve come to expect from NECA’s plastic tailors. And the rumples! Oh, the rumples! Someone at NECA is just a master at sculpting rumples and wrinkles in plastic clothing. He has a pair of matte black work boots, and his collar is worn up. The jumpsuit that covers the torso is cast in soft plastic and conceals the articulation there. Otherwise, you get plenty of rotating hinges, including doubles in the elbows, which is just fantastic for the stabbing!

You get a whopping three heads with this figure! The first is the standard mask and it looks amazing. This appears to be an actual mask that is permanently attached to the head, which gives the eyes a nice sense of depth, as does the way the neck of the mask sticks out over the figure’s actual neck. The texturing on the pale mask is masterfully done so as to look like vinyl and not real skin. The hair also appears to be sculpted separately, giving it a clean hairline. I really liked the look of the modern, damaged mask in Halloween Kills, but this original will always be my favorite.

The second head is the poor bastard who just happened to be out on Halloween night dressed just like Myers and wearing a similar mask. Loomis mistakes him for Myers, hounds him into the street, and a cop car plows right into him, setting him on fire. Boy, took about shit luck! This head is certainly not essential, but boy it’s a really nice bonus. The face sculpt appears to be the same, but it’s mostly left unpainted. There are no visible eyes in the eye holes, which makes it super creepy. The hair is newly sculpted to look more disheveled, and it’s painted blonde.

The final head features the bloody eyes from the end of the movie. After Myers stabs Loomis with his scalpel, Laurie Strode demonstrates an incredible degree of marksmanship by recovering a gun and putting a bullet straight into each of Michael’s peepers. Two shots and they’re both all net! There isn’t any damage to the mask at all. Wow! This appears to be the exact same sculpt as the regular head with the blood trails painted on. The eyes are still visible too, just painted red. Yeah, that bit could have been done better, but I’m not going to nitpick it. OK… let’s go to the accessories, and just like last time, we’ll go chronologically by kill!

Knife! Myers acquires this piece of kitchen cutlery early on in the film by letting himself into an old couple’s house. He then goes next door and puts it right into Alice’s chest. At this point, I own a surprising number of butcher knives in this scale, and this one actually stands out a bit. It’s got a cool serrated blade!

Claw Hammer! What happened to the kitchen knife? Who knows!?! I guess, Michael doesn’t like his act to get stale. He puts the claw end of this accessory right into the hospital security guard’s melon, and I’m pretty sure that’s the last we see of it.

Syringe! Oh boy this one makes me cringe. He sticks the syringe right into one of the hospital nurse’s temple and pumps air right into her brain. I really dig the work NECA did on this one. It’s possibly a little oversized, but I don’t think that could be helped. The transparent tube is cool, and the business end is nasty. There’s a hand that fits this accessory perfectly.

Scalpel! The final kill accessory is the scalpel he picks up, which is admittedly a pretty small and unimpressive piece. That’s not to say it isn’t a great sculpt, but you can only do so much with a scalpel. He does, however, come with a hand that is specifically designed to hold it, which is very nice. The scalpel is a must, since it’s featured in the end scene where he’s blind and slashing away at the air. That scene always gives me the willies.

The final accessory is not a weapon, but it is very much welcome! It’s the jack-o-lantern from the beginning that opens to reveal a skull inside. This is such a cool bonus accessory, and I love how meta it is. Too bad they couldn’t put a sound chip in there to play Carpenter’s chilling theme.

While NECA’s Jason releases may be a lot more prolific, I’m thrilled to have the two Michael Myers figures they released in my collection. The modern version is an excellent figure, but this one is the one that really hits the spot. I was pretty young when I saw Halloween and Halloween II for the first times and while these films are pretty tame by today’s standards, they scared the living shit out of me in ways that few films have since. And I still felt some of that impact while re-watching Halloween 2 last night. What else can be said, other than the folks at NECA clearly have a passion for these 80’s Slashers, and it comes across loud and clear in these figures.

And that brings this Halloween Horror Month to a close. It’s the first time in ten years that I attempted it, and it was a lot of fun. I hope you enjoyed it, and if you didn’t I hope you’ll be back as regular content resumes next week. Speaking of which, I am going to be at a Horror Movie Marathon today, so I’m not going to have time to complete a review for tomorrow. I will, however, be stopping by to post a little administrative business, and then I’ll be back on Wednesday to review something decidedly Un-Spooky!

Halloween (2018): Ultimate Michael Myers by NECA

Since I’ve been back to semi-regular content, I’ve been trying to spread the love around to the offerings I collect from various toy companies that are piling up on the floor of my Toy Closet. I’ve also been trying to combine some reviews when possible to help me not be so far behind. This week, I thought a return to NECA was long overdue. I’ve got tons of new NECA figures to look at, so today let’s open up the Ultimate version of Michael Myersfrom the recent 2018 film. I had originally intended this to be a dual review of both Myers and Laurie Strode, but I found that I had a fair amount to say about each of these figures, so I’m breaking it up into two reviews, which will hopefully both post this week.

I’ve been a dedicated fan of NECA’s Ultimate line, so it should come as no surprise that I was beyond excited to get this figure. As always, these Ultimate releases come in what appear to be enclosed boxes, but actually have opening front flaps to show off the figure and accessories inside. The front panel looks fantastic, there are lots of pictures of the goodies inside, and the box is collector friendly. Yup, these are some of the few figures that I keep in their boxes, not only to keep all the accessories together, but also because NECA’s Ultimates look great lined up on bookshelves. And oooh, look at that sticker! There’s a flickering pumpkin inside!!! As for the film? I really enjoyed it. I don’t think it was mind-blowing, or in any way exceptional, but it was refreshing in its simplicity, especially when you consider what a shit-show the Halloween franchise had become. It’s been a long time since I cared about these movies, and I feel that the new one set things back on a positive track. So let’s get this box open and check out The Shape!

I have to imagine that even people who didn’t care for the movie, would still have to concede that Myers never looked better. And as usual, the same can be said of NECA’s version. Granted, from the neck down, this isn’t a terribly complex or flashy sculpt, it’s a just a dude in a boiler suit, but it’s still loaded with details. You get wrinkles and rumples, pockets, stitching, and all that jazz. Exciting? Maybe not, but it sure looks great, right down to the meticulously sculpted work boots.

The high collar of the suit gives way to the iconic mask and this portrait is fabulous. The expressionless visage of the Shatner mask has chiseled creases and wear making it look as frighting as ever. As time wore on, the mask began to take on more detail, which lends itself well to the HD age of film. I also really dig the way the shock of hair is swept back and the mask ends high enough so you can see Myers’ real neck protruding from it. And then you have what might be a sticking point for some classic Halloween fans, and that’s the eyes visible through the holes in the mask. There’s some wonderful depth here that really makes the mask feel like it was layered onto the head and there’s a face sculpt under there. And let’s not forget, this is Myers as he appears in the 2018 film. A film that dared show a glimpse of Myers unmasked.

But, let’s say you don’t like the visible eyes, and you just want a pair of vacant black pools where his peepers should be? That’s right, you get an alternate head to suit your preferences. It’s actually a completely different sculpt, with subtle changes in the mask itself, and the hair is a lot less unruly. And the eyes are actually still in there, they’ve just been painted over to make them harder to see. Normally, I would prefer the blacked out eyes, but to be honest, I think the first mask just looks loads better, and it’s probably the one I will go with for the display. It’s certainly the one I went with for a majority of the pictures in this review.

The articulation here is very good, and it even holds a few surprises in the elbows. NECA is usually content with giving their figures rotating hinges in the shoulders, but Myers here has double-rotating hinges! Yeah, they’ve done this before, and it’s nice to see them doing it again. It allows for a much tighter bend in the elbow, and overall better posing. As for the rest, the shoulders are rotating hinges, and the wrists are ball jointed… or so I thought! They’re actually pegs on tiny ball joints, similar to what we get with a lot of Sixth-Scale figures these days. Not bad! The legs have rotating hinges in the hips and knees, and the ankles have hinges and lateral rockers. I’m not sure what’s hiding under the rubber boiler suit in the torso, but it does feel like there’s some movement in there. Finally, he has a ball joint in the neck. Let’s move on to the accessories!

First off, Myers comes with a modest assortment of killing tools. These include a bloody hammer, a fireplace implement, and his rather iconic butcher knife. He also comes with extra hands to help him hold each of these. Actually, you get both a right and left accessory holding hand, so he can dual wield if you like. Extra weapons are always nice, but there’s only so much I can say about these. The very iconic butcher knife is my favorite. To me, it’s as much a part of Myers, as Jason Voorhees’ machete is to him, or Leatherface’s chainsaw is to that demented freak. As for the others, the poker is very thin and frail, and I probably won’t be pulling it out much just for fear of snapping it. The hammer is great, and I appreciate the bloody paint apps, but it’s still just a tiny hammer.

Myers also comes with a left hand with two of the fingers blown off. God bless ya, NECA. You really do think of everything!

Also included in the box is the severed head of the police officer from Laurie Strode’s protection detail that Myers decapitates. And wow is this a delightfully gruesome piece of work! I’d dare say that this is one of the most grizzly accessories I’ve seen included with a horror figure. I dig how it’s been hollowed out and carved up like a Jack-O-Lantern, complete with the eyes taken out. Yup, this is pure nightmare fuel cast into plastic and lovingly painted.

Next up is the grave-marker of Judith Myers, which is a nice addition to the little collection of headstones that NECA has been giving to us with some of their Ultimate horror figures. This one is very thin and lightweight, but it looks fine, and will make a nice addition to the display when off-set behind him on the shelf.

And finally, you get the accessory that’s so damn good, they had to call it out on the package with a sticker. At first, I assumed this would be the iconic Jack-O-Lantern from the credits, but in a really nice callback, it’s actually Vicky’s pumpkin with the heart-shaped eyes and nose. You know, the one that wound up in the fishtank! The lighting effect is activated by pushing down ont he top of the pumpkin and it really is superbly done.

Who doesn’t love Halloween in August, eh? Finally seeing Michael Myers done by NECA feels so right and this is yet another Ultimates release that they knocked right out of the park. The sculpt and articulation on the figure itself are both great, and the entire package is elevated by the wonderful accessories. There’s enough here for plenty of fun, as well as some great display options.¬†And to think, when I pre-ordered this figure, I imagined it was going to be the only Myers that we get out of NECA because of licensing issues. Of course, they have since shown off the Halloween II version of The Shape, and that one has me very excited. But hell, even if they couldn’t swing that deal, I still would have been perfectly happy with this figure representing Myers on my Slasher Shelf! And what could possibly be cooler than this? How about a figure of Laurie Strode from the 2018 movie as well? Yup, we got that too, and I hope to be back by the weekend to have a look at that figure!