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by yo go re

Some say all his unexpected maintenance issues are taken care of by a surprise mechanic, and he's really pushing the limits of how closely you can skirt intellectual property law without getting sued. All we know is he's called Fortnite's Overtaker.

Take over the competition.

For every Fortnite skin that's a cool original design, there are plenty of others that are just pop culture references with the numbers filed off. Not that there's anything really wrong with homaging existing properties, but do recall that sort of thing is what got SLUG Zombies cancelled. It's a fine line to walk between "recognizable" and "litigable." Overtaker's name may be a reference to both being an undertaker (as in this is a battle royale game and the point is to cause your enemies' death) and overtaking someone (as in passing them, like you need to do to win a race), but his design makes it clear that he's a weaponized version of The Stig.

As most easily seen by comparing Rex and the Skull Trooper, the intention with a lot of Fortnite's designs is a simple basic design (cf. Jonesy) that's been dyed, accessorized, and genrally customized by its wearer - the in-game character who's put on the physical clothes, not the real-world player who's selected a digital skin for their avatar. So even here, the boots and pants look like they came from the same rack as everyone else's; there's no mistaking that shin armor. But then, he's got a pouch strapped to his right thigh and no patch sewn onto the left, so this isn't just a case of reusing identical molds.

His jacket is very distinct, however. He may be wearing the wrist-mounted computer thingie and have a bandana tied around his right bicep, but that's as far as the similarities go. These are racing leathers, sturdy and protective with quilted padding down the center, plus a few little plates on the shoulders and elbows. The jacket has a tall collar, with a white scarf poking out, and while there's a strap running diagonally across the chest, like the basic design requires, his has small black spikes as it nears the shoulder.

The game skin has an alternate look with no helmet, but that would be silly to make into a toy - the white helmet with the solid black visor is indispensible to the Stig-ness! While the real Stig wears pure white, the suit here is a very pale gray, with actual white reserved for the scarf, the padding on the jacket, the pouches, and the shin armor. There's also a lot more black than an official Stig would have, but the parallels remain obvious.

The Overtaker skin is part of the "Vanishing Point" set, which (thanks to its White Squall glider) makes clear that he's meant to be a biker, not a car driver. That also explains why the Back Bling is called the "Lane Splitter" - the term for riding between the lanes of traffic, rather than sitting there stuck like everyone else. It looks like a hard-sided courier backpack, and has a non-removable katana slung across it to allow the wearer to "cut through the crowd." McFarlane's site claims the toy comes with the Burst Assault Rifle, but that's not the case: this is the Suppressed Assault Rifle, which was removed from the game for being too powerful. The Harvesting Tool comes from Fortnite's other motorcycle-themed set, RPM: it's the Lug Axe, which is basically a couple of vehicle maintenance tools duct taped together. Totally appropriate!

It doesn't take a ton of articulation to drive a car (or ride a bike), but Overtaker isn't actually doing either of those things, so he gets all the joints McFarlane Toys is giving all their Fortnite figures: he's got a balljointed head and neck, balljointed and swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, double-hinged elbows, Revoltech-style swivel/hinge/swivel wrists, a balljointed chest, a balljointed waist, swivel/hinge hips, swivel thighs, double-hinged knees, Revoltech ankles, and hinged toes. We've already reviewed one cross-property car this week; I wonder if Stig would like to drive that smashable WWE car?

Even though I've already got this 7" Overtaker from McFarlane Toys, I'm kind of hoping Jazwares will do one in their 6" Fortnite Legendary Series line, too - paint it solid black and it could easily be Overdrive, the only member of the Superior Foes of Spider-Man who doesn't have a figure yet! A guy in a colorless racing suit and an anonymizing helmet doesn't sound very exciting, but when else are we going to get a highly articulated Stig action figure?

-- 09/12/19

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