Angel, Cordelia and Faith

Moore Action Collectibles have been doing a decent job on the Buffy figures for quite some time now, and I have a whole shelf full of them.  I was quite happy to hear that they'd be producing figures based on my other favorite show, Angel.

The first series has just been released, and includes Angel, Cordelia and Faith.  Prices range in the $10-$13 area.  I only opened up Faith - this review of Cordy and Angel is based on packaged figures.  Hey, I already have loose figures of both of them on display, and I really don't need that many more.

Packaging - **1/2
All the required elements are here, including decent artwork, and pictures of the other characters on the back with appropriate text.

The reason the score isn't better is because while they elements are there, they don't do much for you.  It's not particularly eye-catching, and the photos of the figures on the back are rather bland.  The bases are very hard to see in the bubble, which is important since the bases are a large reason to buy these.

I do like the photo portraits on the front though, and each capture the actor/character nicely.

Sculpting - Angel **, Cordelia **1/2, Faith ***
It's extremely tough to do real people.  I'm betting that if David had been a real guy, someone would have complained that his nose was too big.  Or something.

Some of the Buffy figures have been fantastic, particularly Spike and Oz.  Others, like Willow or Cordelia, weren't nearly as nice.  This set is a mixed bag.

Faith is the nicest sculpt of the set, and looks the most like the actress.  Add to that an excellent body sculpt with just the right amount of action to the pose, and you have the best of the series.  She's not up to the level of detail of Spike, but she's certainly better than many of the others.

Cordelia is an improvement over her Buffy version, but there is still something wrong with the face.  It seems to me that her eyes are too close, and mouth too wide, giving her face a longer look than it has in reality.  The body sculpt isn't bad, but is standard Moore style.

The Angel sculpt is the poorest, and I honestly prefer the original sculpt.  With too much forehead and certainly too much hair, he looks like he has a huge head.  Compare the head to the photo right next to it and you'll see what I mean - they tried to capture that look, but missed.  When you're dealing at this scale, just millimeters can make the difference.

Angel's body sculpt doesn't do anything for me either.  Think Giles with a new head.  And I'm not sure why so many of the recent Buffy/Angel figures have been caught by surprise - Angel, Giles, and Xander all look as they are leaning back suddenly.

Paint - **1/2
The paint work on this set is a mixed bag as well.  Angel is actually the best of the set here, although with a rather bland facial expression, the ops can't improve much.

Faith's eye work is great, but she and Cordelia have a major face issue - no sculpted eyebrows.  It's not a major issue for Faith, who has her's painted low as you'd expect. With Cordy's being so high on her forehead, it's very obvious, and they end up looking like the old 1950's version where they plucked them all out and painted them on again.

Most of the paint work on the outfits is good, with one notable exception.  On my Faith, the area on her lower back, above her paints but below the waist joint, is heavily over-sprayed with black.

I had one other issue with the paint ops, and that is because the right hand was painted shut.  I had to cut the figures loose from the thumb to fit another accessory.

Articulation - ***
There's certainly plenty of points of articulation here, and they've even added a couple from previous Buffy figures.

There's neck, shoulders, bicep cut, elbow, wrists, waist, hips, thigh cut, knees and now ankles, at least on Faith.  Angel does not have ankle articulation. *CORRECTION*  Angel DOES have ankle articulation!  Just Cordy is missing it.

The only real problem here is one I've mentioned before - the joints are very tender.  The shoulders, elbows and especially wrists are susceptible to breakage, and you have to be very careful posing them with their weapons, or at least getting the weapons into their hands.

Accessories - ****
Each figure is well equipped with monster fighting gear, and each also comes with a display base.

Angel has five blade weapons, including a neat little short sword that fits in a sheath.  Cordelia comes with an axe, purse, mega-stake, and what looks like a mag flashlight.  And Faith has a cross bow, compound bow, and mega-stake as well.

The nicest accessory though is the base.  Each comes with a very detailed base, similar to those in the later Buffy assortments.  The sculpting and detail are excellent on all three, but of course my favorite was Faith's - check out the little doll in the garbage!

Value - **1/2
If you can find these for $10, that will help this value score.  Since I paid about $12 each for them, the value isn't quite as good.

Overall - Angel **, Cordelia **1/2, Faith ***
This isn't a bad set for a first Angel wave, although with all the Buffy figures behind them you would have expected a little more.  These aren't up to the quality of the Spike or Oz figures, and I prefer the original Angel to this version.

I also wish they had chosen other figures for this series.  If Angel had been better, that would have been fine, and I can understand Cordelia although I already have two, but I would have preferred to see Faith (which is a must have of course) in the Buffy line, and one of the million cool villains from the Angel series here.

Where to Buy - The only bricks and mortar store that I've seen these at so far is Media Play. On-line:

- Comics Infinity has them for about $38 plus shipping for the set of three.  I've always been happy with my many purchases from them. 

Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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