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Captain Toy/Michael's Review of the Week

Review of Travis action figure
Fear the Walking Dead

McFarlane Toys
Date Published: 2016-09-02
Written By: Michael Crawford
Overall Average Rating: 2.5 out of 4

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Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Introduction

Walking Dead fans are happy - Fear the Walking Dead is back on television!  I do have to temper that slightly, however.  Lots of Walking Dead fans are less than thrilled with the show overall, myself included, and while it has moments, it has yet to reach the quality of the writing or acting of the original series.

Travis Manawa is the show's 'Rick', at least in terms of leading man. McFarlane Toys has started including characters from the show in their new 7" scale line of figures, and going with Travis first is no real surprise...although they better get Madison out soon. She's been announced as being in this first wave of Red figures (the theme is 'color tops', with each series having a different color), as has Carl, Daryl, and Abraham.  We already have Rick and Michonne, and there should be 8 figures in this initial wave...I don't believe we've heard what that final eighth figure is yet.

These will run you around $20 at stores like Target - yes, the are there - but you can find them for a couple bucks cheaper at some online retailers.

Click on the image below for a Life Size version
Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Packaging - ***1/2
The boxes are similar to what you'll see with most other 6 - 7" collector series these days, although they did use one twisty tie around the waist.  That's a no-no for me, and it's done largely to avoid shifting during shipping, since it's not going to stop theft or figure swapping.

The box shows off the color tops concept, and has a large enough window to see the figure and accessories.  I do wish they'd done a better job with the interior tray though, turning him a bit more toward the front so you can better see his face. Package designers need to remember that the facial sculpt and paint are THE selling points with something like this, and highlighting it is critical to convincing unsure buyers at the store.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Sculpting - ***
The likeness is quite good this time around, not quite as good as Michonne, but several levels better than the atrocious Rick.  The clothing is also well done, with proper wrinkles and folds following the design of the stance and pose.  There's a couple mold lines, but they are in hidden areas.

My biggest problem with the figure's sculpt is a recurring issue from Rick - he has a huge goiter. The neck is sculpted with a very high jawline and an obvious Adam's apple. The neck is also leaning forward.  Turning the head even slightly exposes the top of this sculpted neck, making the figure look weird in pretty much any pose but one. It wasn't quite as bad this time around as it was with Rick - you can see I did get a few reasonable minor head turns and tilts out of him - but it's still more limiting than normal.

I'm also not a fan of the stance. This walking pose could have worked with a little more articulation or a better design around his center of gravity, but as it is I couldn't get him to remain upright for any period of time without using the display stand. That's a big negative for me.

He stands about 7" tall without the base.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Paint - **1/2
McFarlane was a pioneer in action figure production paint work, and introduced the 'intentionally sloppy' method.  Throw enough dirt, blood, and crud at a figure and collectors will have a tough time finding any slop or poor quality paint work. Surprising, that's not the case here. For a walker survivor, Travis doesn't have much in the way of blood or dirt. There's a little, and there's a wash to bring out the details in the clothing, but it's really pretty subdued.

The best paint work is from the neck down, although there isn't a lot of detail. The clothing has a nice realistic look, and not going over the top with blood and gore worked well for this release.

The face has some good points - the eyes are straight, and the five o'clock shadow looks good - but it has some real slop too.  The eyebrows aren't quite where they are supposed to be, and the hair line is a mess.

The skin tone on the neck and face is pretty good, but the hands are a bit gloppy, with the application looking a little too thick.

Again, it's better work than we saw with Rick, but not quite as good as Michonne.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Articulation - **
McFarlane gets unwarranted hate over articulation, often painted as a company that only makes statues. That's not true, and they've done some great work with articulation on several lines in the past.  Their current Halo line has some very inventive and highly useful articulation, so they can do it when they want to.

Unfortunately, this is not a situation where they want to, and the statuesque nature of the figures will only further add fuel to the fire. Travis has a ball neck, but it suffers from the same problem as Rick. The sculpted neck is leaning forward, and any turning of the head, even slight, will expose a weird goiter looking protuberance.

He also has rotating shoulders - what we used to call 'NECA' shoulders because they made them popular - which have just the slightest amount of inward and outward movement as well. The rotating hinge elbows provide the greatest mobility, and with the cut wrists (there might be hinges up in there too, but the long sleeves only allow the hands to turn) you can get some decent one and two handed gun holding poses.

The waist seems like it should turn, but I put quite a bit of pressure on it and got no where. He does have one - just one - cut thigh, so you can adjust the left leg slightly.  Again, I tried turning the right as well, but there was no give whatsoever. It's possible that the second leg is painted tight and you can break it free with the freezer trick, but even with some ability to turn, the legs won't be particularly useful in posing.

The stance is designed to only work with the base.  There is no way to keep him upright for any period of time, even by turning the legs, thanks to the design of the walking stance and the off set center of gravity.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Accessories - **1/2
There's not a ton here, but it follows the same pattern as the first two. One accessory plus a base.

The base is pretty important this time, and it has a single peg that works with the right foot. It also has the Fear logo on the front.

His one accessory is what appears to be an over and under shotgun. The sculpt and paint are decent, and he can hold it in one or both hands. The scale is also better than usual, as too often guns in this size are produced too small.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Fun Factor - *1/2
With the limited articulation, this isn't a particularly fun figure for kids or adults.  Think of it as a Nerd Hummel.

Value - ***
While there are nits to pick, I'm not complaining about the price.  With most 6" figures coming in at $20, and the 7" Game of Thrones statue figures hitting $22 - $23, it's a welcome relief to see these below $20 at many retailers.

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Things to Watch Out For -
Not much. If you get a figure with locked up thighs - I'm betting both of them are supposed to turn - take some care freeing them up. Otherwise, you should be good to go.

Overall - **1/2
This is only the third figure in the new ColorTops 7" scale series, and let's be honest - the 5" series had some serious growing pains as well. While I'm not a huge fan of the lack of articulation, it's not unlike what Dark Horse is doing with their Game of Thrones series, and once you accept the statuesque nature, you can get on to the more pressing issues of sculpt and paint.

In both of these areas, Rick was a mess and Michonne was much, much better.  Travis falls somewhere in between, and I'm hoping that we see a bit more consistency in quality as the line matures.  I have the rest of the Red series on pre-order, and my fingers are crossed.

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

Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- has them for $18 each.

- Entertainment Earth has them at $18 as well.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
I covered the other two already released in the red 'colortop' set - Rick and Michonne.

McFarlane has also produced quite a few figures in the 5" scale for Walking Dead, including Carl and the Mud Walker, the Bungee Walker and Abraham, Carol and Herschel, the series 5 Tyreese and charred walker, as well as Glenn and Maggie.  The previous series included Carl and SWAT walker, the Governor and AndreaMerle and Michonne, the RV and Well walkers, Shane and the Bicycle Girl, Walking Dead figures series 1, the two humans in series 2, as well as the first series of comic based figures.

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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Travis Fear the Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane Toys

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

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