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The Governor mini-bust - The Walking Dead
Gentle Giant

The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant


He might be history, but the Governor will remain one of the most memorable 'villains' in the Walking Dead television universe. It's therefore very appropriate that Gentle Giant selected him for their latest mini-bust treatment.

There's two versions of this bust, the regular release and the online exclusive available through the Gentle Giant website. This is the one I'm reviewing tonight, which includes an additional head and removable eye patch. The exclusive is limited to 1264 pieces.

These have just started shipping, and you can expect to pay around $75 for the regular release or $80 for the exclusive. 

Packaging - ***
The box is pretty basic, and the same pre-production photo used in the marketing is used on this box. And it looks nothing like the final product, selling it short on the likeness. In hand the bust is much more accurate - more on that in the Sculpting section.

It is collector friendly though, keeps the bust safe and sound, and includes the uber cool baseball card style Certificate of Authenticity.
Click on the photo below for a life size version
The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant
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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant

Sculpting - ***1/2
These busts are intended to be about sixth scale, with the height coming in at 7 inches tall including the base.

When I saw the photos of this bust online, provided as marketing material from Gentle Giant, I was not happy. The same photo is used on the box. And it looks nothing like the character or the actor. The face appears much too wide, especially at the eyes, and there's a blank expression that really doesn't capture the character's personality.

However, when I popped the final product out of the box, I was VERY pleasantly surprised. The likeness is great, especially the portrait that comes with the standard release, sans eye patch and bloody eye. The exclusive head sculpt isn't quite as good, and it actually looks like it's been altered slightly from the standard head. Obviously they added the damaged eye, but it seems as though the head is tilted a little more forward, the chin and jawline slightly smaller. I didn't make any exact measurements though, and part of this might be an illusion caused by the difference in the painted eyes - the good eye in the  exclusive head is peering upward more than the regular release - but looking at both portraits in hand, the undamaged head was my clear preference.

The heads pop on and off easily, and the head and neck are all one piece so there's no visible seams. I've included multiple shots of both heads to try to make the quality of the work a bit more clear.

The detail work on the textures is great, especially the facial hair. Small touches, like including the top half of his pistol and knife on his belt, add even more realism to the final look.

Paint - ***
The paint is good, but not perfect - there's some slop here and there, and the overall effect is a bit heavy handed.

Slop is most obvious around the gun and fingers, where the cut line is pretty rough. Facial details are good, although the eyes aren't quite as lifelike as we've started to expect with higher end collectibles. And some details, like the graying of his hair at the temples, looks just like what it is - paint. 

On the positive side, there are some details that really shine, particularly the watch face.  While this is normally not a critical detail, because of the way his body and arms are positioned the watch becomes a front and center visual, and having such clean detailing really adds some pop.

Value - ***
Gentle Giant should be praised for keeping these busts at prices consistent with releases from 5 or more years ago. While this guy most often retails for around $75 (and the exclusive is $80), you can find him with just a little digging for closer to $65.

Things to Watch Out For -
The patch is removable, but you want to take care with the elastic band.

Overall - ***
I almost went ***1/2 on this guy, and that's saying quite a bit. Before I opened him up, I was already assuming the sculpt would disappoint. The final quality of the production portrait was a very pleasant surprise, but it's better - for me - on the regular release, rather than the special exclusive head. Had I been reviewing the regular release, with it's lower price point, I suspect that extra half star would have been in the bag.

But the beauty of the exclusive - along with the low production run - is the ability to put your own spin on the look of the bust on the shelf. I'm a huge fan of extra heads, especially on mini-busts where they are traditionally not customizable.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ***
Value - ***
Overall - ***

Where to Buy 
The online exclusive was available through the Gentle Giant website, but is currently sold out. Online options include these site sponsors:

- Things From Another World has the regular release for $64, a terrific price.

- CornerStoreComics comes in at $72.

- Big Bad Toy Store is at $72 as well.

- Entertainment Earth has him for $79.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Other Walking Dead merchandise includes the recent figurs from McFarlane of the Charred Zombie and TyreeseGlenn and MaggieCarl 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.

Other busts from Gentle Giant include Sophia's Stalker, Daryl, Michonne, Rick and the Well Walker.  Mcfarlane also did a cool blu-ray case, 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 walkers, Michonne's Pets.

Discussion:
Want to chat about this review?  Try out one of these terrific forums where I'll be discussing it!

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The Governor Walking Dead mini-bust by Gentle Giant


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

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