Terminator 2: Pescadero Escape from NECA
I will admit it. I enjoyed Terminator: Salvation.
It is what it is; a popcorn movie. Something to watch when you need to kill 2 hours. I like it much the way I like Michael Bay's Transformers; it's not the original, but if you separate it completely from the franchise and treat it as a completely seperate quantum reality where logic is not necessary and canon isn't the rule of law, then you're golden. You can sit back and enjoy the fluff.
Watching McG's little action movie didn't so much as make me want to see more of THAT universe, it made me want to go home and watch James Cameron's original one. Those were the old days, the bad days, the all-or-nothing days. The days when terminators were Terminators, and not slow slabs of junk with bandanas. When effects were state of the art and supported the story. When T-800's walked over a field of human skulls, and Arnold schwars... Arnold Shwarzeb... The Governator straddled that Harley like there was no tomorrow...
I digress... Anyway, those are images that stick with you when you mention Terminator. "I'll Be Back", "Hasta La Vista", and every scene with Robert Patrick in it. After seeing the new MickeyG version, I had a time trying to remember anything at all.
The new Playmates Terminator: Salvation toy line is much the same. They look nothing like their movie counterparts, plastic quality looks cheap, and the paint applications are basic. I don't know why they bothered with the bigger scale at all as it just makes the flaws that much easier to see. About the only thing I wanted from their line was the new Terminator costume pieces, the ones that you stick to your face and arms? I know you were thinking of buying them and going to a meeting with those on your face and a pair of red contacts.
Thankfully, the new movie has one shining silver lining. It allowed NECA to do a couple more figures that do justice to the classic Terminator. So far, I've only seen three of the 5 figures slated to be in this line. 2Rats (and by extension Toy Kingdom) is selling wave 1 of the series; the "T-800 Endoskeleton", "Pescadero Escape", and "Man and Machine". I'm still hoping that the "Cyberdyne Showdown", and "Final Battle" will be brought in since I really REALLY want that mini-gun and grenade launcher.
Even if they don't get the second part of the line, I'm completely satisfied getting one nice Arnold Schwarzenheimer figure at this scale. The 6" scale is great, but the 7"ers are good too. There's a ton more details that are added into that extra inch, but there is a corresponding price. NECA figures in the Philippines go for about p1,200.00, while DC Universe Classic (near enough to 7" scale) figures go for about p1,300.00. They're also a lot harder to find since only 2Rats brings them in and only a few Toy Kingdom branches get them. I got mine at TK Megamall.
I know that there are the 1/6 scale adherents, but even if I HAD the money to really go that route, I'd rather have toys that were meant to be handled and played with. The Model 101 is a great example of the kind of detail you can smoosh into something this size.
The package is like most NECA movie lines. The squarish clamshell is great for guys who collect toys "Mint on Card", and for loose collectors, it's easy enough to open with a knife. This is still my favorite kind of packaging since you can just cut along the bottom, slide the tray out, undo a few twisties, and about 30 minutes later, you have your toy. Slap it's bottom to make sure it's breathing and you're ready to go.
It's also easy to keep these packages and return the figure to them for storage. Or, if you decide you don't want the figure, you can sell it at minimal loss by advertising it as "Loose on Card". Sweet.
The likeness on this sculpt is superb. I saw the pics on Poe Ghostal's blog and just had to have him. NECA has been putting out some great figures based on movie licenses and they've got a nice selection in their cult classics, but this is Arnold Shcwarmenschalager. If you live in Antarctica with the penguins you probably know what he looks like. The sculptor did an excellent job giving this little guy the face of Arn.
He's got some excellent poseability as well. In the upper half anyway. Balljoint shoulders, balljoint elbows, and wrist swivels. These allow a nice range for the arms. His head is on a balljoint as well. It's really a nice one that is different from anything I've seen. Instead of a joint a the neck and one at the base of the skull, they've sculpted the head and neck together and it connects to the torso at a ball and socket joint. This looks a hell of a lot more natural than anything before it and I seriously hope Hasbro adopts it for future use.
His only accessory is his Winchester shotgun. It looks small, but I'm guessing it's actually perfectly scaled. My perception is probably just warped from the constant oversized superhero guns of the 90's. I'm thinking it would look great with my 6" Punisher since he IS a comicbook superhero. It's got amazing details on it and fits right into his hands securely. You won't need to worry about losing it at all if you display him with it in both hands.
His jacket's torso is a seperate piece, but it's not removable. It is however speckled with lots of little bullet holes. How's that for an eye for detail? Excellent.
He has a few extra points of articulation; A cut waist which is functional, ball jointed ankles, which are just about useless and one cut joint on his left thigh which is MORE than useless. Don't get the idea that he is any kind of poseable from the waist down. The thigh cut is best left alone since his legs don't look right if you do move it, and it's pointless to move his ankles since the legs don't move. Why they bothered is a mystery, but it's a small complaint considering the rest of the toy.
Bottom line: NECA's Pescadero Escape figure from their Terminator 2 license is all it's cracked up to be... for collectors and fans. If you're a dilettante, forget it. You'll probably regret spending for it and are better off sticking with the mass market toys.