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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear
Hot Toys

Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys


Sometimes, Hot Toys selects characters that have never - or rarely - gotten the sixth scale treatment. Other times, they go with well worn, tried and true characters, but do them so well that all previous attempts pale in comparison.

The latter is the situation with the iconic Bruce Lee. We've gotten many action figures of the actor as various film characters and as himself over the last 15 years, but none have quite reached the quality of the fairly extensive set of releases from Hot Toys.

To round things out a bit, the folks at Hot Toys decided to step away from the usual characters and portray the man as himself, hanging out in casual clothes. They also went with a smiling, happy sculpt, giving serious fans a very distinct look for their shelves.

Expect to pay around $140 - $150 for this version, depending on the retailer. As usual, I have plenty of suggestions at the end of the review.
Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys
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Packaging - ****
As usual, Hot Toys does a beautiful job packaging the figure and accessories.

The exterior blue box is very, very thick and sturdy, complete with the metallic 'icon' series top corner. The lid is folds back to reveal two layers of foam, one for the figure and hands, and a lower layer for the chair and display stand. The foam is very thick, and the figure and accessories extremely well protected.

Everything is customer friendly of course, with no tape, twisties, bands or any other encumbrance to freeing the figure. You can pop it back into the box for storage or sale at a later date without any damage.

Sculpting - ***1/2
While Lee is best known as the action star, he also had a terrific sense of humor, and was often photographed smiling on and off screen. Going with a casual, laid back expression is a nice change of pace, although if I could only own one version, I'm not sure this would be my preferred.

It certainly looks just like him, especially in the eyes. The nose and smile are quite good too, and the overall realism of the portrait is right up there with the usual Hot Toys work.

I do think the jaw is a bit too Leno-esque though, with too much space between the mouth and the tip of the chin. Hot Toys has raised the bar so high on their own work, that even minor issues can be more obvious.

Paint - ****
It's pretty much a done deal at this point. Hot Toys = amazing paint. They occasionally have an issue here or there in other categories, but their production paint applications are about as good as it can get. I wonder just what they can do to up their game here.

The skin tone looks very realistic, as do the eyes, lips and eyebrows. The overall black hair doesn't have any highlights or wash added, and yet it still looks amazing.

The hands match the face tone as well, with no glop or slop. The work on the cool brown and white shoes is great as well, with clean cut lines and a realistic appearance.

Articulation - ***1/2
The usual slender TrueType works great of course, and is one of the finest bodies on the market.

I did find that limbs seemed to pop free a bit more than usual - elbows, and ankles in particular. Nothing broke though, and the pop right back on.

I docked this one slightly only because I had a very time getting the chest or ab-crunch joint to work, although after awhile it did get a tad easier. Still, it was odd for a Hot Toys body to have an issue like that, and it's quite possible that your mileage will vary.

Accessories - ***
There's not a ton with this figure, unlike the earlier, more expensive, DX version.

However, he does have his uber-cool shades, right out of the 70's. The arms are very short, designed to fit into small holes in the hair. They look good, and the scale is right on - they might look large, but that was the style.

He also has two sets of additional hands: one set of fists, one peace sign (or V for victory) right hand, and one thumbs up left hand. They swap pretty easily, and there's extra pegs, just in case.

There's also the nifty beach chair, with plastic frame and cloth seat. Be careful when you're unfolding and folding the chair, as it seemed a tad easy to break. On mine, the cloth seat is stuck at an odd angle at the top between the slats, and I haven't figured out how to free it up and adjust it without breaking the chair.

Finally, he has the usual black display stand with Lee's name on it. For those that use the stands regularly, it's a pretty important addition.

Outfit - ***
For a Hot Toys figure, the costume is a bit on the simplistic side. There's shoes, socks, pants and shirt, as well as a cool gold watch.

The entire suit screams early 70's fashion, from the tie front shirt to the tight jeans. The shoe sculpt looks great, and the material quality overall is the usual top notch stuff.

I'm not thrilled with the tailoring of the pants, as they tend to ride a bit weird on the TrueType hips, but it's really just the belt that seemed below their usual standard. The leather seems a bit cheaper than we usually see from them, and the fit isn't quite as good.

I mentioned the watch, which looks great and is hidden up under the sleeve of his left arm. Be sure to remember it's there when swapping hands, because it's easy to lose.

Fun Factor - **1/2
This isn't a figure for a kid, and for good reason. They are unlikely to know who Bruce is, particularly in this funky 70's outfit. This is a figure for the Lee afficionado, and for putting on the shelf in a relaxed pose.

Value - **
The figure seems a tad expensive to me at $140 - $150. I think with this level of accessories, it should have been closer to the $125 range, and I'm dinging them a half star for it. Consider that the DX version was almost two complete figures, with two dioramas, for only $60 or so more. Still, die hard Lee fans are unlikely to be wavered in their determination by the price.

Things to Watch Out For -
As I mentioned earlier, be careful folding and unfolding the chair, as it seemed pretty easy to snap something with too much force.

Overall - ***
The paint and sculpt are the usual exceptional quality, but this is really a figure designed for the extreme Bruce Lee fan. At $140 or more, I'm betting the more casual fans will want to go after the more action oriented releases. But if you have one or more of those and are looking for something to offset them, this casual, fun look is ideal.

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

Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Fanboy Collectibles has him at just $140.

- Alter Ego Comics has him for $140.

- Big Bad Toy Store has him at $145.

- or you can search ebay for a bargain.

Related Links -
I just recently reviewed the DX-04 version of Bruce. Other Bruce Lee goodies include:

- Enterbay has done a lot with the man, including this 1/4 scale statue, this Kato version, the Fist of Fury version, the Game of Death version, and the Way of the Dragon version.

- Sideshow also did a 14 scale statue in their Premium Format series.

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

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Bruce Lee in Casual Wear action figure by Hot Toys


This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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