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Wraith Queen

Stargate Atlantis
by Artemis

Guess who's coming for dinner?

Thought to be the leaders of most Wraith operations, a Wraith Queen serves aboard each Hive Ship as a telepathic overseer. Though solitary and untrusting by nature, Wraith Queens have been known to band together to ensure a successful culling or to face powerful threats like the Ancients and the Replicators. Massively outnumbering the human defenders of Atlantis, the Wraith continue to search for the location of Earth and the billions of humans in danger of becoming the Wraith's next meal.

According to Stargate lore, Earth is the most densely-populated human planet in the whole universe, which explains why the Wraith want it. According to rudimentary mathematics, that's bollocks - put a couple of hundred humans on any more or less habitable planet with adequate food and defence against local carnivores, and you'll get a meteoric population boom before you know what's what. Why the Wraith never settled down to planned livestock management I can't understand - you'd think it'd be a hell of a lot easier than having to mount military raids just to get a bite to eat. But perhaps (as the more poorly-written SG:A episodes indicate) they're just not very bright.

Still, many would consider it better to rule in lukewarm-IQ hell than serve in genius heaven, so I guess the Wraith Queens have a cushy spot by their standards - at least they don't have to wear those silly gimp hoods.

The Wraith Queen figure stands just a fraction under 7" tall - bet she's kicking herself for not going for platforms over single soles - and is garbed primarily in white. That's about the level of subtlety you get from Stargate these days - see, normally villains wear black, so let's us have one in white!

She's rocking a very disco chic outfit of what looks like faux crocodile skin pants over high-heeled boots with curly toes, a white robe with an eccentrically-designed sky blue collar, and a corset held on with a belt. I don't know where the Wraith get their ships and weapons from, but it's pretty obvious their wardrobes are just whatever random junk they pick up during raids - Queenie's probably grateful they found the Aladdin booties, otherwise she'd be stuck trying to dominate the Pegasus galaxy in sheepskin slippers or something.

To its credit, this fashion nightmare is sculpted and painted decently - there's a bit of unwanted casting flash on the left side of the robe's skirt, just above the bottom, but you tend to get that more often with soft plastics, and aside from that all the sculpting is clean, and quite detailed. There's studs holding her vambraces and spats on, lots of little creases around the seams of the costume, fine textures on the blue areas, and even tiny stitching visible in the tightly-stretched seams passing over her chest (it's not really a big chest, so who knows why the robe's so tight there - maybe she nicked it from a guy).

The fingers of her left hand are slightly webbed, which I think is accurate (unless I'm just making things up due to poor memory) - the right hand is clenched, so there's no way of seeing what's between her fingers there. The paint is all clean and consistent, with the exception of the belt, only the front surface of which is painted - there's a thin but noticeable width of the top of the belt left plain white.

Her face is long and aristocratic, with prominent high cheekbones and the Wraith's slightly enhanced brow and sharklike secondary nostrils - bar the prosthetics, there's a bit of Anjelica Houston there if you look hard enough, and as a face she stands out decently from the crowd among most action figures. Her hair is semi-soft - it'll bend, but it's a bit stiffer than usual, and all in all it's best to leave it where it wants to be rather than forcing it to get the head turning. There's a loose partial ponytail in the back, but overall the hair isn't big on detail.

Augmenting her appearance a bit, though, is a spiky tattoo, which her hair is pulled back far enough to reveal on her left cheek, and which continues down her neck and over her chest. Her appearance is also spookified by very dark red lipstick, and pink shading in her eye sockets, giving her a slightly unwell look - I forget if this is something that comes and goes depending on how recent a Wraith has fed; possibly she's on a diet, in the hopes of one day not needing the corset. Without studio lighting, her actual skin tone, aside from the eyes, is rather healthier (by human standards) than normal, but it's not that big a deal overall.

Queenie has a smattering of articulation, but it limited in some crucial ways. Her hair keeps her head from doing more than little tilts, but that can be enough to enhance a particular body language. She has peg shoulders and biceps, pin elbows and swivel wrists, giving her a fair bit of arm flexibility. The legs let her down though, with just peg hips and pin knees - with no ankle articulation there's no way to stabilize her in all but neutral poses (her feet have peg holes, but she comes with no pegged base to use them on), so much of the potential of the arms is lost because the legs can't match it. On the plus side, a swivel waist is hidden inside the corset, completely invisible.

Diamond Select doesn't generally skimp on accessories, and Queenie gets a nice little handful to call her own. She has two weapons: a short pistol - a simple black-drybrushed-silver piece with a murky yellow paint app picking out a fluid reservoir, or something along those lines - and a long blaster, which looks like a stick (boomstick?) with a handle and a couple of teeth poking out the business end. Hey, at least you can't say it's not alien.

As part of her series's build-an-acccessory she gets one half of the Pegasus-model Stargate dais, which is just a flat brown surface, with a lighter brown drybrush giving it a modicum of visual interest. She also gets a pet rock, with concentric gold circles on it - I'm sure if I paid more attention to the show (or didn't keep ignoring it in favour of Cowboy Bebop DVDs) I'd know what the heck it's for. Her right hand is molded specifically for the weapons, with the grip of her fingers heavily tilted - the pistol fits in very nicely, although a bit loosely, so it'll tend to turn in her grip if you bump her, even a little.

So that's the Wraith Queen - if you see one in your house, try bug spray or roach traps, and if all else fails get a hotel room for the night and fumigate the place. She's not really an exciting figure, but if you're collecting the Atlantis range you won't want to miss out on their primary foe, and she's well made for what she is.


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