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Movie Maniacs 7
by Artemis

"What's wrong with you f&#$ing people?"

Honey, I've been asking the same thing for years, but they just keep making more Saw movies. Anyway.

Erin is made up of three competing factors: 1) Jessica Biel, 2) a standard McStatue, and 3) a character from a slasher movie. The good, the bad, and the ugly, in fact, although I don't think as poorly of McStatues as most - after all, I buy real statues on occasion, so it's not like I can't do without articulation. But basically Erin's purpose is to look hot so that teenage deviants can get their jollies when she's threatened by a big mean guy with a phallic weapon of some kind - although Texas Chainsaw Massacre has pretensions of quality, so she keeps her top on.

McFarlane's Erin stands, or skids sideways rather, on a 9¾" tall base representing a meat locker. The girl herself is about 5¾" vertically - maybe 6½" if she were standing upright - and clad in nondescript designer jeans and a tied-off tanktop, and obviously she's running for her life, having just gotten a glimpse of the script. By way of a solid metal rod deeply set into both her foot and the base she's perfectly stable in her vertiginous lean, and unlikely to sag or come adrift over time; I've had her quite some time, and had no trouble with her at all. She's painted cleanly enough for the most part, though the stains on her top - dirt and sweat and so on, I guess - are applied rather haphazardly.

The base is a bit strange, for various reasons. Obviously you're meant to display the based figure facing forwards (well, off to her left, but you know what I mean), yet the base has a missing corner at the rear left, where it slopes inwards - it kind of throws off the footprint of the whole set-up, and makes it really difficult for the illusion of this being a chunk of an enclosed room to work. Two frames extend up the right side and then out over Erin, with a variety of hooks and pulleys hanging off them, all glued at angles to indicate them swinging about as she barges her way through. A side of beef forms the main bulk of the scene, supported by a black metal rod from beneath, but supposed to be hanging from one of the hooks, swinging sideways after having been bumped. A metal chain hangs from one of the hooks - glued at that end, but free at the other.

Erin's face is something of a legend in action figure circles for missing its likeness. I wouldn't go that far - it's not like she looks like a man or anything - but even accounting for Erin being running, with her mouth open, panting (probably hyperventilating) in panic, and not having had a chance to touch up her makeup recently, it's not a good face. There are elements of Jessica Biel there, as she appeared as Erin, but... well, this is McFarlane, they can do much, much better. Between the botched likeness and the inherent unattractive factors - even for a hottie like Biel, running in panic isn't the best photographic angle - it's not a pretty face. Her hair doesn't help - it's meant to be splaying out as she whips her head around, but since she's not sporting shampoo-advertisement-perfect hair the sculpt has to try and make it look messy and uneven, which in turn means it can't be as fine as it should be. End result, it looks like plastic.

Her butt's wrong, too. Again, accounting for the situation - she's running with a severe forward lean - it's not like her backside should look its best, but you don't go from Jessica Biel's sensational arse to this figure's flat nonentity just by having a bit of a spring. I've included a comparison photo so you can see for yourself - and because I don't like how the figure looks that much, so I thought the review could stand some eye candy. She's also got a weirdly flat stomach - I don't mean flat as in fit, I mean that the middle of her torso is literally twice as wide as it is deep, and that's not good.

Articulation, you ask? Permit me to laugh, mon cher. Swivel neck, swivel biceps, and a swivel left thigh, all utterly pointless - she's sprinting and veering off to her left, and nothing short of intervention from the Almighty herself is going to change that. I suppose the foot peg technically counts as articulation, if you regard the whole set as a single unit - you can turn her to whatever angle you want, although obviously you'll have to account for the way the hooks and whatnot are swinging.

She doesn't have any accessories besides her overblown base, but that at least is decent work. The side of beef - or maybe it's just a previous victim who was one of those guys who eats McDonalds every day - has the kind of hyper-detailed sculpt you'd expect from McFarlane, with all manner of minutiae faithfully reproduced. Not that I'm an expert on what chunks of cow look like (so far as I'm concerned, the food chain starts at the supermarket), but it has a plausible look to it. The paint lets it down a bit, although it's quite good on the skin side - apart from what I guess are meant to be dried bloodstains but actually look like stripes, it's got a solid, leathery feel to the skin, and sharp definition on the tears where the dark flesh shows through. But the insides - which face forwards when the thing's in place - are lackluster, with half-hearted dried blood red slopped around any old how, and the edges of the skin, where the tattered flesh shows through, are drybrushed particularly poorly.

So that's Erin for you. I'll give them props, they started with a good idea: "Let's make an action figure of Jessica Biel." But the ball got dropped from then on - the figure's hampered by a design that makes her look her worst, sculpt which makes her look slightly worse than her worst, and an over-ambitious base that winds up being more of a drawback. And it's neither here nor there, but I wouldn't say she's a "Movie Maniac" - sure she's a bit messed up by the end, but who wouldn't be? Shame McFarlane didn't continue with TCM though, or maybe there'd have been a Jordana Brewster figure - then again, they'd probably just have mucked that up as well.


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