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Glenn and Maggie - The Walking Dead
McFarlane Toys

Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane


Did you see last Sunday night's The Walking Dead? Talk about your intense television. Don't worry, this review is spoiler free.

Since the winter break, they've managed to pull off the worst episode of the season (I'm hoping) and the best episode of not just this season, but perhaps all four (it'll be hard to top). Let's just hand that Best Actress Emmy to Melissa McBride, and while we're at it, hand the Best Supporting Actress right on over to Brighton Sharbino.

With the independent story lines that they've ran since the break, I've realized something interesting. Interesting to me anyway. While we all know that any character on this show is open game, I still always assumed that Rick was safe, due to the style of television itself. He has remained the central character that the story has really been built around, and it was hard to imagine the show without him.

But now that we've seen them do a masterful job with other characters, developing their personalities and yet keeping the plot moving forward (with that one episode exception), I see a future for the show that could actually be Rick-less. Not that it has to be, or that it's something they are actually planning, but because of the well crafted development of characters over the last few weeks, even some that we thought we already knew, they've at least allowed for the possibility, making the show that much more tense and entertaining. Truly, nobody is safe.

It seemed fitting to hit up a couple of the newest figures from McFarlane tonight - Glenn and Maggie, the show's bright light in an otherwise bleak, solitary world. When something bad finally happens to this couple - and c'mon, you know it has to eventually - there will be some serious tears flowing in fandom.
Click on the photo below for a life size version
Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Maggie Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Maggie Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane

This wave also includes Tyreese, a scorched walker, and a walker version of Merle. There's an added bonus of a deluxe figure of Daryl, who comes with his motorcycle. I found them at Toys R Us, but there are reports that they can be found at your local Walgreens as well, and cheaper too.

Packaging - ***1/2
There isn't anything super fancy about the packaging, but the design is very clean, and a step above the usual basic cardback/ bubble packaging. 

The front has the prison theme, and I have to wonder if at some point this year the style will switch to something more Terminus inspired. There's a nice overview of the rest of the wave on the back, and these are actually sorta kinda collector friendly. The bubble wraps around the card on two sides and the bottom, and then is taped in place. Slit or remove this tape, and you can lift up the bubble and remove the inside plastic tray without tearing it at the top. There's still a twisty or two to remove, and some annoying tape holding in the accessories, but it's still quite a bit more collector friendly than the usual design. You can pop everything back in the tray, slide it back in the bubble, and re-tape the edges if you so desire.

Sculpting - Glenn ***; Maggie **
Glenn comes with not one but two head sculpts - always a big plus in my book.

Other than Rick, I can't think of another character who's been beaten up as many times as poor Glenn. Seems like there's always someone looking to smack this guy around. It only makes sense that his second portrait should show off the damage from one of those beat downs, complete with swollen eye, bloody nose and damaged lips.

While getting two head sculpts is great, sadly neither likeness really is. They aren't awful, and you will recognize Glenn within the plastic, but it's not the spooky real they managed to pull off with a character like Merle. The clean head has a very characteristic pouty expression, especially in the lips, and the detailing on the physical damage on the beaten visage is very good.

Worse overall is poor Maggie. We all know the trials and tribulations that companies have with capturing pretty women in action figure form, and once again, we see it in practice. The sculpt on her body - the proportions and the clothing - is actually very good, and I'd recognize the character if the head were missing.  But the likeness is at best cosplay close.

The work on Glenn's body and clothing is solid as well, and it's important to keep the scale in mind when considering the sculpt detail. Glenn is just 5" tall, and Maggie is about 4 3/4". It seems to me that Maggie is just as tall - and maybe even a little taller - then Glenn on the show, but they went with a traditional male/female scale difference here.

Paint - ***
Like the sculpts, the paint work tends to be better from the neck down. There's lots of subtle details on the clothing, and the dirt and wear is fairly well done.

That's not to say all is perfect in paradise. The biggest issue on the body is the weird wrists, which are cast in the pseudo flesh tone that's also used on some of the pegs. It doesn't actually match the skin of the painted arms and faces, and is even a bit translucent. It's a weird look, even in person with the nekkid eye.

The faces are more of a mixed bag. While Glenn's eyes and hair are well done, the damaged face sports a bloody bruised eye that's obviously been painted with some sort of sponge applicator - you can clearly see the pattern.

Maggie has some blood - not hers - on various areas of her body, especially her right hand and arm. In fact, pair her up with the whipped Glenn, and it looks like a social worker needs to make a house call. She has the oddly colored wrists and pegs as well, which are all the more obvious on her bare arms.

The one issue for both figures is what appears to be dirt or clumps in the paint used on the clothing. While I get that they are supposed to be dirty, actual dirt in the paint is not the way to go.

Articulation - Glenn ***1/2; Maggie ***
The one area that really shows the greatest improvement over the life of this series is the articulation. The early figures had almost none, while these new releases sport a nice selection of joints, all designed to work well.

There's a ball neck on both but Glenn's works a bit better than Maggie's, thanks to his shorter hair style. There's ball shoulders, elbows, pin/disc wrists, ball hips, ball knees, and even - on Glenn - pin/disc ankles. Maggie can't have ankle joints due th the tall boots, but she makes up for it a bit by having cut joints at the top of the same said boots.

Glenn tends to take slightly better poses, with a bit more of a natural flow, due in part to the better ankles and the greater movement in the neck. Both have plenty of arm articulation to hold their weapons convincingly, and both stand great on their own, even in deep stances.

The joints are all high quality too, and could handle sand box play with no more risk of breakage than a true kid's action figure.

Accessories - Glenn ****; Maggie ***1/2
Both of these figures come well equipped - it's just Glenn is a bit better equipped than the love of his life.

Glenn has an extra head sculpt, which I've already discussed at some length in the paint and sculpt categories. Suffice to say that when you give me an extra portrait as an accessory, you always boost this score quite a bit. The heads swap easily, making it easy to change your mind - and his.

He also has an assortment of weapons with which to kill walkers. There's a pistol, a small knife, an automatic rifle, and a length of pipe with a bloody, sharp end. The sculpts and paint work on all these is solid, with enough detail to get the point across.

To further protect himself, he has a flak vest that slips on over his head and snaps shut at the sides. At least I'm assuming that's what the posts and holes are for - I never did get them to stay put. It's not a biggie though, since it looks fine and stays in place even unsnapped.

Maggie doesn't have quite as much stuff, and it's the lack of a second head that makes it obvious. She does have a rifle, pistol and knife though, and the nice surprise is that none of these are the same as Glenn's. I haven't gone back through the entire run to see if there's any re-use here, but it was a nice enough surprise just to see that the guns didn't match between these two.

The pistols and knives that come with Maggie and Glenn fit nicely in the holsters and sheaths on their belts. They can also hold the weapons pretty well in one or both hands, but you will want to take a little care with the fingers.

Fun Factor - ***1/2
With a ton of accessories and some great articulation, these are really well done action figures. The subject matter is certainly too much for the usual 10 year old, but for those older kids that are still into action figures and horror, these guys are a great choice.

Value - **1/2
While these aren't cheap at your local Toys R Us (around that $15 price point depending on the location), they both come with a butt load of extras, making the price a whole lot more palatable. Better yet, find these at your local Walgreen for $12 and you can add another full star to this category score - that's value!

Things to Watch Out For -
The grips of the hands were a bit tight, making it tough to hold some of the weapons. Yet, when you stretch out the fingers, it felt as though they could rip or break - take some care with the hands.

Overall - Glenn ***1/2; Maggie ***
While Glenn doesn't have the perfect sculpt of some of the other figures, it's still recognizable work. Add in articulation that works well and a ton of useful accessories, and you get a better than average release.

Maggie doesn't fair as well, largely because the head sculpt and paint really let her down. The accessories are great, and while her articulation isn't quite as well designed as Glenn's, it still does the job. But if you handed me this head sculpt separate from the body, I'd never guess who it was supposed to be. It's the accessories and articulation that save her from dropping another half star overall.

I also picked up Tyreese, Undead Merle, and the Scorched Walker from this series, and you can expect a review in the next week or so.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***1/2
Sculpting - Glenn ***; Maggie **
Paint - ***
Articulation - Glenn ***1/2; Maggie ***
Accessories - Glenn ****; Maggie ***1/2
Fun Factor - ***1/2
Value - **1/2
Overall - Glenn ***1/2; Maggie ***

Where to Buy -
I picked these up at Toys R Us, but Walgreens has had recent waves for around $12 each, which is a heck of a deal. Online options include these site sponsors:

- Big Bad Toy Store is at $15 each.

- Urban Collector has them at $14 each.

- Things From Another World comes in at $18.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Other Walking Dead goodies include the recent Daryl Dixon mini-bust. Other Gentle Giant releases include Michonne, Rick and the Well Walker.  Mcfarlane also did a cool blu-ray case using his head, as well as the third season blu-ray case.

And if you're looking for something in the sixth scale market, check out Threezero's zombies, Michonne's Pets.

Also from McFarlane is the smaller action figures: Carl and SWAT Zombie, the Governor and AndreaMerle and Michonne, the RV and Well Zombies, 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.

Discussion:
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Glenn Walking Dead action figure by McFarlane


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

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