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Steel Clan Robot

Gargoyles
by yo go re

I've been reviewing these Gargoyles toys in the order I got them, but I read my list wrong and messed up! The Steel Clan robot should have come before Brooklyn.

Ruthless businessman David Xanatos created the Steel Clan robots in the image of the Gargoyles to be his personal army.

For a guy who insists he's his own man, that he's built everything he has by himself, Xanatos sure does love making secondhand knockoffs of the Gargoyles. The first came almost immediately after the Manhattan Clan refused to work with him, and they were all 100% direct visual copies of Goliath. Like, geeze, we get it, David, you have a little boy-crush on your new monster friend.

The robot is definitely shaped like Iron Man armor built for a Gargoyle: layered plates of armor that are meant to mimic a semi-inhuman anatomy. In much the same way Djordje Djokovic has been sculpting all the Gargoyles with more musculature than the cartoon ever had, Marty Henley and David Giraud have done seams and panel lines on the robot that are much more complex than Disney's animators would have been able to draw back then. It looks mechanical, but sleek and finished, which is a great combo that serves its place in the story well. The frame of the body is silver amd grey, with a little bit of teal for accents and red eyes.

Articulation is on par with the flesh-and-blood Gargoyles: barbell neck, swivel/hinge joints where the wings meet the body, hinged pauldrons, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, double-hinged elbows, swivel forearms, swivel/hinge wrists, a balljointed torso, swivel waist, balljointed hips, swivel thighs, swivel/hinge knees, swivel/hinge ankles, and swivel/hinge toes. It also has a bendy tail that plugs into the body with a swivel/hinge joint. The tail's sculpt is segmented, so it could have been done as a series of balljoints, but this works fine, too. There's a hinge in the middle of the wing, but the direction the swivel/hinge plugs into the body means you can't have the wings stick out behind the body, only to the sides.

The Steel Clan robot doesn't have an alternate head, though it would have been neat if they'd done a battle damaged one like so many other robot characters get. We do get flame effects to fit into its backpack jet booster and the soles of its feet, plus swappable guns that pop out of the forearms - they're specifically shaped for the left and right arms, so if you try to put the wrong one on the wrong side, it won't fit properly. There are several alternate hands, open or closed, but all of them have five fingers, not just four; that's inaccurate, and it's an important inaccuracy. We'll talk about why some other time, but for now trust us when we say every one of these hands has one finger too many, and it matters.

NECA's site said this figure was supposed to ship in May of 2023, but by September it hadn't shown up anywhere. Luckily, Target has a clearance eBay account, and they had it listed - for less than retail! Nice! I was absolutely ready to pay normal price for this figure if it had ever been available in stores, but it wasn't and so I got a discount instead. Okay by me! It has shown up since then, which is good news for anyone hoping to armybuild a bunch of them for Xanatos to order around.

-- 02/08/24


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