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Tony & Nunzio Scoleri

Ghostbusters Minimates
by yo go re

In the Courtroom Peter and Washington Square Ghost review, we bemoaned the fact that we didn't get the ghosts who actually showed up in the courtroom. Obviously, patience is a virtue.

Half of a murderous duo, Tony Scoleri and his brother Nunzio were sentenced to death by electrocution in 1948 and returned as poltergeists to seek vengeance against Judge Waxler thanks to the Mood slime.

Judge Wexler, not Judge Waxler. The other bio on the packaging calls him "Judge Wezler," so somebody wasn't paying any kind of attention when that one was put together. Also, the front of the packaging calls them "Scolari" Brothers instead of the correct "Scoleri" Brothers. Looks like it's time to repeat our offer: free copyediting in exchange for toys. And look, the mix-up continues with Brother Devon Nunzio:

Along with his brother Tony, the Scoleri Brothers utilized impressive electrical powers after their ghostly resurrection in Judge Waxler's court. Only the Ghostbusters could stop this rampaging duo and save the day.

The Scoleri Brothers were murderers sentenced to death at Ossining Prison by Judge Stephen "The Hammer" Wexler. When he was sentencing the Ghostbusters for creating a citywide blackout, his screaming histrionics summoned the brothers' ghosts. Way to go, loudmouth.

Tony is the taller, thinner brother. In fact, to play up the difference, he uses the oversized Sinestro head - after all, the ghosts need to look inhuman, and a super-sized cranium does just that. He has pointed fangs, and blank yellow eyes. His shirt (a new piece) is open to reveal the dried-out skin beneath. He has the clawed hands that have been used for Venom and a few others, as well as studded bracelets - presumably part of his electrocution gear, since that's what the "headband" is.

The short, fat brother is Nunzio, and Art Asylum really worked hard to set him apart from the crowd. He has a new "fat" chest cap, which almost looks too big for the 2" body, and a new head piece that is just as bulbous. He shares his brother's yellow eyes, but his mouth is open, showing off his rounded teeth. Finally, he also gets the "short" feet James Howlett and a few others have used. Like Tony, Nunzio is wearing studded bracelets.

Tony and Nunzio are based (loosely) on Tony and Eddie, the real-life Scoleri brothers who worked as thieves in the midwest and all along the eastern seaboard in the middle of the last century, including, at some point, robbing and assaulting Harold Ramis' father, a storekeeper. In the early '60s they were convicted of murdering a shop owner in Philadelphia, and would have gone to the electric chair if Pennsylvania hadn't abolished the death penalty in 1972 (they reinstated it in 1974, abolished it again in 1977, and drafted a new version in 1978 that's still active today; damn flip-flopping Dutch!)

The figures are semi-translucent, giving them a decidedly spectral look. They were played in the film by Tim Lawrence and Jim Fye in latex suits with animatronic masks, then composited into the scenes to achieve the same sort of transparency. If you compare the movie masks to the Minimate heads, you can definitely see how right they are! The ghosts' bodies are light gray, and their skin has a purple tint. Their shoes are dark grey, and their bracelets are brown.

When the Scoleri Brothers first showed up in the film, they were still strapped into phantom electric chairs. Sadly, these ghosts don't include any seats - it's hard to imagine how they'd work in Minimate form, anyway. And in the movie, they were only in the chairs for a few seconds before breaking out and rampaging around in a standing position (or as "standing" as you can get when you're actually floating in mid-air). Still, it would have been nice to get some electric crackle accessories for them: everything in the sets belongs to the Ghostbusters themselves.

Yes, the brothers are included in separate sets: Tony with Egon, and Nunzio with Ray. Both the boys are in their courtroom suits, and surprisingly, neither of them use the same mold as Peter, meaning they're all dressed appropriately. Ray is wearing a brown coat with a dark green shirt and a tie with sculpted stripes. Egon, who has a smirk on his face that suggests that he just pulled his "do-re-Egon" joke, is in a grey suit with a sweater vest and a red tie. Ray's proton pack is fully strapped on, while Egon's waist belt is undone: they even though to mold the straps hanging off the chest cap.

Ray's face looks better in the art than on the figure, but this is the best Egon yet. Like we said, both figures come with Ghostbusting equipment: their proton streams, of course, but beyond that, Egon has an open ghost trap and a giga meter, and Ray gets a closed ghost trap (which could hang on his belt if he had one).

It's quite clearly the Scoleri brothers who are selling these respective sets, but the Courtroom versions of Ray and Egon are nothing to shake a stick at, either. They complete a specific subset, but still rock new sculpts. If AA had packaged the Scoleris together, I never would have completed the courtroom costumes, and that would have been a shame. No surprise the Brothers are the hardest figures to find in this newest TRU series, but they're definitely worth tracking down.

-- 05/22/10

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