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Leonard Nimoy

The Simpsons 25th Anniversary
by yo go re

Look, it's one of the Little Rascals!

Science fiction icon Leonard Nimoy narrated Season 8's "The Springfield Files," which saw Homer seemingly encounter a glowing green being from another world. The "alien" turned out to be a deliriously drugged Mr. Burns, but Leonard saved the day anyway by joining Mr. Burns in a happy song.

Indeed he did. And yet, there's more to this figure than there seems: of all the characters in the released so far in the first three series of NECA's The Simpsons 25th Anniversary line, Leonard Nimoy is the only one who's appeared on the show more than once. Yes, he narrated "The Springfield Files," but nearly four years to the day before that (January 14, 1993 vs. January 12, 1997), he appeared in Season 4's "Marge vs. the Monorail" - although that role was originally supposed to be George Takei, who turned it down because he was a big advocate of public transportation.

And on top of all that, he also appeared on two episodes of Futurama as a head in a jar, so thanks to the excellent sculpt NECA delivered, you could customize that if you pop this head off its shoulders! It really is a good caricature of Nimoy - credit goes both to the sculptors and the original animators who Simpsonized him.

Conveniently (for our purposes), Leonard Nimoy wore the same basic outfit both times he was on the show: a black turtleneck under a beige suit coat, and brown pants. NECA has opted to keep the pants the same, but interpret the rest as a golden jacket and a pine green sweater. An unusual combination, to be sure, but close enough to the source material that it doesn't look particularly out of place on the toy. Depending on which screenshots you look at, and how they've been color-corrected, it's possible to make out some color on his shirt, so it's possible he really was painted in green and merely turned black by the photographic (or broadcast) process - if that's the case, then NECA was probably given art masters to work from that still showed the original intended colorscheme.

It still doesn't explain the golden jacket, though.

Leonard's pose is nicely simple. He has a bit of a contrapposto stance, with his weight resting on his left leg, and his right leg slightly bent at the knee. Rather than hanging straight down, his arms spread slightly; there's a bend at the elbow - more on the right arm than the left - and they attach to the torso at an angle, so when you move them, they go even wider. Sadly, he doesn't come with any accessories: no book of mysteries, no hot dog with green slop on it, nothing. It's a missed opportunity.

In order to make sure that their figures integrate as seamlessly as possible with Playmates' World of Springfield line, NECA has only given these toys four points of articulation: a swivel at the neck, swivels at the shoulders, and a swivel at the waist. Since they're not including the Intelli-Tronic voice chips, the legs are separate, rather than joining together at the ankle, and the majority of the figure is made from (relatively) flexible PVC instead of rigid ABS.

There have been any number of Spock action figures, but this is the first time there's been a Leonard Nimoy. NECA did a great job honoring this nerd legend. And so, the cosmic ballet goes on. Goodnight, and keep watching the skis!

Uh, skies.

-- 09/28/14

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