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by yo go re

Somebody call Monty Python and tell them we've finally found it.

Call me fishman.

Really? That's his tagline? They couldn't even get a little creative with it and say "call me Fishmael"? Think, team! Moby-Dick is like the go-to reference for aquatic-themed whatnots, and throwing that in there would give Fortnite's target demographic (schoolchildren whose parents will buy them V-bucks at GameStop) the thrill of understanding a subtle literary reference. Just imagine them, seeing Leviathan pop up in the Item Shop for the first time (April 15, 2018), seeing that joke, getting it, then running to tell their English teachers... (sorry, make that their "Literature" teachers; we don't want to exclude any of our non-English-speaking fans, because we love you just as much as we do the Anglophones) at school the next day! Monday morning, first thing, teachers across the world getting assailed by dorks talking to them about videogames. Living the dream!

Leviathan is, like the character of Minion from Megamind or Dr. Ghoti from Supermegatopia, a fish in a glass ball on top of a humanoid body. That means this is so far the only Jazwares Legendary Series figure to not have swappable faces. The fishbowl can be removed from the body, but it can't be opened to let you get at the fish inside. A clear post keeps him "floating" in the middle of the bowl. The fish himself is an angry little icthyian, with heavy brows and a slight underbite that suggests he's meant to be a piranha, maybe? His body is very round and his fins are small, to help keep him looking like a head.

The body the fishbowl rests on is a retro "spaceman" suit, the sort of thing you'd see as a story illustration in some 1950s sci-fi magazine. The outfit was part of the Space Explorers cosmetic set released in Season 3 (the "here comes a meteor!" season), so that's obviously right on target. It's a slightly baggy suit, as evidenced by the wrinkles, with a big zipper right down the front and quilted panels around the ribs. It has chunky boots, rectangular kneepads, and fairly normal gloves. Various straps and devices are worn over the suit.

The colors are designed to sell this design as a "good guy," even if Fortnite doesn't really have or need any such thing - it's a 1-vs-99 game, with your goal being to kill everyone who's not you, just as everybody else's goal is to kill everyone who's not them. If you play Tomb Raider, you've got Lara Croft fighting thugs, but if they succeed in getting rid of her, those thugs aren't then going to turn on each other; they're a team, not competitors. But in Fortnite, it might as well be 100 exceptionally small teams, like a large sports league where everyone is trying to win the championship for themselves. So, no bad guys, really. But back on topic, Leviathan's suit is a metallic baby blue with off-white accents and golden accessories, a very soft and thus friendly colorscheme. So he may not be human, but he's also not some evil alien. The blue has several different shades, from pale highlights on the front to darker bits on the sides.

The Fortnite Legendary Series figures have good articulation, and while Leviathan's fishbowl head means he only has a swivel neck with no hinge, the rest of the joints are all here: hinged toes, swivel/hinge ankles, swivel boots, double-hinged knees, swivel thighs, balljointed hips, a very tight swivel waist, a balljointed chest, hinged fingers, swivel/hinge wrists, double-hinged elbows, swivel biceps, swivel/hinge shoulders, and hinged pec joints that only move a tiny distance and thus don't really feel like they add a lot of playability. Some, sure, but not a lot.

Since we don't get extra faces with this release, we instead get one more accessory than usual. We've seen the Hand Cannon pistol before, and the submachine gun is fine, but the more specific things for him include the "Fish Tank" backpack and the "EVA" Harvesting Tool. Clearly the Back Bling is designed specifically to go with this skin, judging by the name and the fact it's got a translucent blue jar of water strapped to one side. The Extravehicular Axe looks like a tool arm ripped off of some space vessel: it has loose wires dangling at the end, while the head is a grabber claw on one side and a drill on the other. There's a translucent blue Hop Rock, a piece of space flotsam that came from the meteor and allowed the user to ignore gravity for a limited time. And finally, a bucket of popcorn, allowing you to re-create the emote where the character stands around spectating while munching on some tasty treats. Don't worry about that not making sense for a character in a fully enclosed dome: even on bareheaded characters, the emote is more about throwing handfulls of popcorn generally in the direction of your face than about actually consuming it. If anything, wearing a helmet makes it even funnier.

Leviathan doesn't have any alternate styles, so there are no obvious repaints that would allow Jazwares to reuse this mold. However, the Chapter 2 "Slurp Legends Pack" introduces several skins that show existing characters seemingly made out of Slurp Juice; one of those characters is Slurp Leviathan, who wears this same outfit but in black instead of blue, which would make for a really cool variant. Maybe make the blue Slurp portions of his body glow in the dark?

-- 05/29/20

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