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The Twins

The Matrix Reloaded
by Shocka

While I enjoyed The Matrix Reloaded, I can't deny I was disappointed. As an enormous Matrix fan, there is no way that the new film lived up to any expectations after all the hype: the discussions, the trailers, the stupidity - the movie was a disappointment.

That's not to say the sequences weren't cool - I loved the Agent Smith fight, and the freeway was great, but the story didn't back them up enough to make us truely care about them, and if Neo is invincible why should we care whether he's facing 100 Agent Smiths or a 300' Ronald McDonald on stilts? Meh.

One of the highlights from the movie was the Twins, two henchmen of the strange character known as The Merovingian. They're the "ghosts" from the trailers, who can become non-physical in a nifty little special effect to avoid death, or to pursue the good guys - they play a major part in the now famous "Freeway" sequence and have the best line in the film, it being their only line overall.

In their new Matrix figure line, McFarlane Toys have released figures based on each of the twins, both with a base which goes together with Morpheus to form a diorama-like display from the garage in Reloaded, where Morpheus faced off with the Twins with his samurai sword.

The sculpt of the Twins is excellent - the facial sculpts are dead on, of the high standard we expect from McToys. The figures both have the same legs and midsection with different face sculpts (and expressions on the faces) and slightly different arms/hands to support the different weapons. As they are twins, this doesn't matter so much, although it shows a lack of effort by McToys, who could have done entirely different figures instead. They did the same thing with the Predators in MM6. Meh.

The clothing is excellent and the entire look of each of them is awesome, just like the film characters - I love the flowing dreadlocks, the nifty little glasses, the capes which drape onto the ground. The poses are excellent, which is essential due to the lack of articulation, but we'll get to that later - both of the Twins are posed in action, moving towards Morpheus to attack.

The figures have two accessories - their signature weapon, and a base. Twin 1 comes with his razor blade, which I have an affection for - it seems cute that a powerful demon-like program from inside the Matrix should be armed with something small like a razor (although the sequence in the car with the razor was incredibly awesome, but nevermind). The razor is small but with enough detail, and it fits easily in the Twin's right hand. Twin 2 comes with his machine gun, used in the film in the freeway sequence (did anyone notice that it followed Hollywood's rule of convenient ammo? Stupid plot holes). It's detailed nicely and looks nice wielded by the figure.

The bases are simple concrete pieces with concrete columns, slightly detailed and lacking pegs for feet, and although they go together with each other, they don't actually peg - they just touch. I like them, and I like the effect of the "diorama" with all the pieces together, the Twins versus Morpheus.

Articulation cuts down on the value of the figures - it should be expected, though, because none of these figures from the Matrix line are highly articulated, instead exchanging a dynamic pose for a playable figure. These are collector toys after all, but I still feel I have the right to complain, especially after the nicely articulated Movie Maniacs 6, but anyway - the Twins are articulated at seven points - neck (useless because of the sculpted dreadlocks), shoulders, wrists, waist and right elbow, which is mostly useless. You can pose the weapons a little, but not much - it's a shame too, because highly articulated Twins would be fun - in addition, some clear variants representing the Twins in non-physical form would be awesome as well, but we can only dream.

Overall, I like these figures - they're not flawless, but neither was the movie. Not by a longshot. More articulation is the real kicker - having these figures fight your Samurai Spawn would be great fun, but instead they just kind of stand there, looking menacing. Still, collectors will be satisfied, and I recommend them.

The other big complaint with them is the poor case arrangement - each case of The Matrix has 12 figures, the numbers seemingly varying for Neo and Trinity (seven and three, six and four, whatever), but there's only one Morpheus and one Twin in most cases. Seeing as though these are the only figures so far specifically based on the new movie, they should have expected them to be more popular and made the case more even, but no dice.

That's a shame too, because Morpheus and two Twins were the only figures I wanted from this line - will McToys ever learn from their bizarre casepacks? Either way, the Twins are very nice McToys - if you know what I mean from that, and you still want them, then you're getting your value for money.

Editor's note: the two blokes who play the twins apparently host a cooking show in London. Thanks to Bil for this tip.

-- 05/18/03

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