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Hudson

Gargoyles
by yo go re

Oh, I get it, he's named after the sixth borough!

Once clan leader, veteran Hudson now acts as Goliath's advisor. He may have passed his warrior prime, but in battle, Hudson is as fierce as ever. The least adaptable of the Gargoyles, Hudson struggles to understand modern life and finds he can learn what he needs to know from a chair in front of a TV set with a remote control.

Because NECA's still just putting generic copy on the boxes, that bio comes from the old Skybox trading cards.

One of the hardest things in fiction is to write a really smart character, but it's also hard to write the "cool old guy" archetype: you can research a lot of things, but the wisdom and confidence of age aren't among them. So the fact that Hudson, the oldest of the Manhattan Clan (four generations older than Goliath and Demona), is one of only two characters in the entire series to break Xanatos' famously unshakeable demeanor really shows how cool he is.

Hudson wears more clothing than any other Gargoyle, even the girls. Originally it was assumed that was just something he picked up as he aged, feeling he needed more protection to offset his aging, but recent comics have shown that he dressed like this when he was younger, too. He has a loincloth, like they all do, but he wears it over pants, plus he has a shirt and some shoulder armor. I know creator Greg Weisman has never stopped answering questions about the show since the '90s; I wonder if he's ever explained why Hudson was such a fashion plate? [yes: out-of-universe it lent the character a certain dignity, in-universe he was just older and a bit self-conscious about his physique --ed.]

The articulation here is good. Hudson has a barbell neck, swivel/hinge joints where the wings meet the body, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, double-hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, a balljointed torso and waist, balljointed hips, swivel thighs, swivel/hinge knees, swivel/hinge ankles, and swivel/hinge toes. The wings are very stiff plastic, not bendy, so don't expect much in the way of posing for them. The tail is full bendy, though, so you can deal with it bumping against the ground however you like. It plugs into the body with a swivel/hinge, just like the wings do, but it's far less a tight fit.

The figure includes two heads: one calm, one angry. They both feature his thick, mustacheless beard and his receeding hairline, plus of course the scar cutting through his left eye. The scar could be better: like, Djordje Djokovic is sculpting these figures more realistically than the cartoon style, so this scar is just a thin, hard-to-spot line rather than the wide tan stripe seen in the animation. The fighting head has glowing white eyes, but shouldn't one of them be a different color? Like his normal eye is?

Hudson is very light on extras. He has a bunch of alternate hands (two clawing/climbing, a loose left hand, and two holding right hands of different sizes), but his only actual accessory is his sword - he's the only Gargoyle to use human weapons, something he does to compensate for losing half his vision. It has an etched pattern that never existed in the animation, plus some deep notches in the blade. It can be held in his hand (one of the alternates, at least) or stored in the loop on his belt. Since he spent most his nights staying at home, there's not really much else they could have given this toy, considering there's no way to get his whole recliner into a box with him. A tv, maybe? They have a couple of existing molds for those already.

NECA's plan for the Gargoyles toys is that the Gargoyles themselves will come with their own big wings, and then smaller sets will include folded versions. Hudson is a case where the main figure should have come with the relaxed pair, with the active pair released later - it would have suited him better.

-- 11/16/23


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