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Captain Toy/Michael's Review of the Week

Review of Pinhead - Hellraiser
Exclusive Premium Format Statue

Sideshow Collectibles
Date Published: 2016-03-11
Written By: Michael Crawford
Overall Average Rating: 3 out of 4

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Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Introduction

Long before we had the sadomasochistic splatter porn of directors like Eli Roth, there was Hellraiser. A terrifying tale of obsession with the sensory experiences of the flesh, and how badly that can end, it introduced a new icon to the world of horror - Pinhead.

The Cenobites were secondary antagonists in the film, and their leader was Pinhead.  It's pretty clear where he got his name (all of the Cenobites were pretty obvious in their names), and the unique 'acupuncture gone wild' appearance allowed him to stand out in a pretty crazy looking crowd.

A number of collectibles have been produced based on the character, and Sideshow has just released their quarter scale Premium format statue to add a higher end option.  This guy comes in two varieties - regular and exclusive.  The exclusive includes an extra accessory, and is limited to just 600 pieces. Both are available through Sideshow - links in the Where to Buy section - for $450.

Click on the image below for a Life Size version
Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Packaging - ***
The box is pretty straight forward stuff, but the graphics are attractive and there's the additional 'exclusive' sticker on the front.  The edition size and number are also included on the bottom, but there's no Certificate of Authenticity.  The head, body, base, and boxes are held between two high quality Styrofoam shells, and everything should arrive safe and sound.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Sculpting - ***
There are any number of good shots of Doug Bradley as Pinhead, making comparisons to the final product pretty easy.  I used this one, this one, and this one for my assessment.

Let's start with the elephant in the room - the pins. In person, they seem a little big...but not too bad. In macro photos, it becomes clear that the scale is off. It's not the length, but the thickness that's the problem here. These are more like nails than pins, and while the ones in the movie were long enough to be obvious, they were certainly thinner than what we have here. These are metal, however, a big plus when it comes to their sturdiness.

I have to give them a bit of slack on this one, however. As I said, in person they don't seem quite as far out of scale as they do in closer photos, and you know that the process of inserting these pins required some sturdiness.  It also required that the scale couldn't be too small for people to easily work with them, and they had to withstand basic handling without bending. You certainly don't want to pick the head up to put it in place and have a pin bend or come loose. So while the thicker pins aren't perfect, I can understand the issues involved.

My other nit to pick with the sculpt is around the perfection of some of the cuts in the face, particularly on the forehead. They are so clean, so machine cut, that they lose that appearance of damaged flesh. Again, looking at stills you can see they were rougher at the edges, giving the makeup a more realistic appearance. Some of that is lost with this portrait.

However, the portrait itself is quite good, and easily looks like Bradley and the character. From the nose, to the shape of the chin and head, to the placement and size of the eyes, it's a solid match. I suspect some folks would have preferred an angrier, more menacing look, but for this particular pose, I think the expression works well.

The other highlight is from the neck down, where the sculpted clothing and the actual clothing match extremely well in texture, style, and flow. In hand, you can't tell the difference between the sculpted upper body and the lower flowing robes until you touch them, a testament to the quality of the work.  And yes, the lower robes are a leather like material, and hang beautifully around his legs.

The tools attached to his midsection are permanent and not removable. The strips of peeled skin on the chest look reasonable realistic, and there's a nice contrast between the texture of the sculpted skin and the sculpted material.

Without the base, Pinhead stands a full 18". The base itself is a smart design, looking like the top of the puzzle box once it's solved.  He attaches to the base with a metal post and a separate square resin block on the bottom of his left foot, providing maximum stability.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Paint - ***1/2
The paint work is quite clean, and the weird skin tone of the Cenobite allows for a better rendition than usual in polystone.

The eyes are the best feature, with a super glossy black giving them a wet, life-like appearance. They pulled of the darkening around the eyes pretty well, and the lips look very good.  The skin tone matches the film well, and even the darker lines within the cut grooves are decent - not excellent, but decent. I've seen some photos where the wrinkles in the forehead are quite dark, and whether you like that - or get one like that - is going to be a YMMV situation. I prefer the lighter wrinkles.

The painted color of the upper sculpted clothing is important, since it helps create that flowing look between the sculpted material and the cloth material. There's a very nice realism to the torn flesh on the chest thanks to the red blood, and they've added just the right amount to the worn tools on his 'belt' as well.

The paint work on the two Lament Configurations appears worn as well, matching up pretty well with the on screen counterpart.  The designs are all different of course, as you'd expect.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Accessories - ***
The regular release doesn't have any 'accessories', although the statue does come in four pieces: head, body, base, and cube. I suppose you could think of the cube (or puzzle box, or most accurately, Lament Configuration) as an accessory since it is not permanently attached, but he'd look pretty silly in this pose without it in his hand.

But the exclusive includes the additional puzzle box, this one 'solved' and ready to bring in the Cenobites. You'll see this version in the very first photo at the top of the review, and below is A photo of both resting on the base. Both look great, with some nice detail sculpting and paint work. Every side has the different pattern, matching the film look. They are designed to fit in the hand at the finger tips, cradled by Pinhead. You'll have to get the solved version in just the right spot to align the fingers properly, but it's not difficult.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Outfit - ***1/2
As I've already mentioned more than once, the upper clothing is sculpted. While I'd prefer all cloth on a a Premium Format mixed media statue like this, I can cut them some slack when they do such a good job getting the two styles to mesh.

The lower skirts are a leather like material, and hang great off the hips. The pleating and folds at the top where the material tucks underneath the resin look great, creating a perfect flow from one to the other.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Value - **
At $450, this guy is running the same price as the Hot Toys Boba Fett I just reviewed on Monday. And while this is a very nice statue, there's really no comparison in the detail and quality between the two. I like Pinhead, and I'm glad I picked him up - he's going to look great as a contrast to other licenses I have in PF format - but he's a $300 - $350 statue tops. If I had to guess, I'd say the manual effort required in the placement of the pins is what drove a lot of the additional cost, but the average collector won't take that into consideration.

Because of that manual effort - which is well done - and the low edition size and extra accessory that the exclusive has, I only dropped them a half star here.  If this were the regular release, I would have dropped to *1/2 for this category.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Things to Watch Out For -
Don't get too crazy with the head, because while the metal pins are pretty sturdy, they can still be damaged. Otherwise, you should be good to go.

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Overall - ***
My nits are pretty few - the pins are a little too big for this scale, the cut lines on the face are a little too clean, and considering what you're getting, the $450 price tag is steep. But this guy will look great on the shelf, adding another horror icon to the ranks of Freddy and Jason. In fact, I have four LOTR PF statues on display right now - Aragorn, Gandalf, Lurtz, and the Urak-Hai - and one of those guys is going to end up in storage, replaced by Pinhead. I'm leaning toward Aragorn...

When it comes to large scale figures like this, I prefer a diverse display, covering as many different icons of film and television as possible.  Pinhead is going to look great with the likes of Freddy, Jason, Hellboy, and the Creature, and while he has his warts, overall he's a welcome addition.

BTW, if sixth scale is more your thing, ThreeZero has their Pinhead up for pre-order soon!

Score Recap (out of ****):
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - ***
Paint - ***1/2
Accessories - ***
Outfit - ***1/2
Value - **
Overall - ***

Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Sideshow was the place to get the exclusive, but you'll need to get on the wait list now.  You could also go for the regular release, and both are $450.

- has the regular release for $450.

- also has the regular version for $450.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Many years ago, NECA did a series of Hellraiser figures, including Pinhead, Barbie, Skinless Julia, Skinless Frank, Dr. Channard, Bloodless Twins, Butterball, Surgeon, Angelique, another Pinhead, Chatterer, Chatter Beast, CD, Wire Twin, and Stitch.

You should also hit the Search Reviews page, in case any other applicable reviews were done after this one was published.

Discussion:
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Hellraiser Pinhead Premium Format Statue by Sideshow

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This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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