T-850 (coffin) and T-X

Earlier this week I reviewed the regular T-850 and the Terminatrix version of the T-X figures from McFarlane Toys, based on the film Terminator 3. That review is up over at Movie Poop Shoot. Tonight I'll talk about the Endoskeleton version of the T-X, and the special version of the T-850 that comes with the full size coffin.

There is also a deluxe set hitting stores soon, including both another T-850 and another endoskeleton T-X. That 'battle' set may be the best release of the bunch, but it's got some stiff competition from at least one of these figures. The figures are showing up at specialty stores, and in the Mid-west you can find them at Meijers. They retail for $10-$13 each, depending on the retailer.

Packaging - ***1/2
The clamshell style packaging, all the rage with McFarlane Toys, has it's fans and enemies. I'm in the fan's camp, and I like the sturdiness, the creative use of the attractive inserts, the small size, and the ability to see the figure and accessories. For MOCer's, storing these away is much easier than standard carded figures, and they hold up much better in storage as well.

They aren't without their problems though, as are most things in life. You will need a sharp, pointy weapon to open them, which I'm sure makes retailers happy, since it reduces in store theft. That means fewer twisty ties though in general, which most folks won't mind.

Sculpting - ****
It's not possible to complain about the sculpting on these figures. Arnold is Arnold, still perfectly recognizable even with the slight battle damage. Every wrinkle in his clothes, every rip from a bullet, every buckle, zipper or blemish - it's all there. And while he's in a fairly static pose, that's pretty much required to hold the coffin. Unlike the the Terminatrix version of the T-X, this is a pose I can live with and enjoy on the shelf.

One of the interesting extras on this sculpt that the regular T-850 didn't have is the gun sculpted on to the body, stuffed into the front of his pants. Obviously, Terminators aren't worried about accidentally shooting anything off.

The endoskeleton version of the T-X is exceptionally detailed. With soft hoses and wires running through the joints, and fantastic realism in every chunk of faux steel, this figure stands out as some of the finest work McToys has done. Just look at the detail work on the joints and couplings in the fingers! The endo isn't a completely perfect figure overall, the her sculpt is nothing short of amazing.

Paint - ****
I have nary a paint issue on either figure. They've complimented the excellent sculpting with excellent paint application, and the level of detail and quality are both top notch. I'm particularly impressed with the wounds on Arnie's face, where flesh, blood and steel are all clearly seen, even in the tiniest area.

They could have scammed with the endo, and used far less detail colors and much more silver, but they didn't. By giving us all the various detail colors, they've made the figure much more realistic, matching the film and reality in general much better.

Articulation - T-850 **1/2; Endo T-X ***
The T-850 was designed to do two things - hold up the coffin, and look good doing it. That meant less articulation, and while I can live with the decision, it doesn't mean they'll get a good score in this category. He has neck, shoulders, wrists, waist, thighs and a right cut elbow. That's not as bad as it could have been, and better than the  other T-850, but certainly well below the usual for a good score.

Interestingly enough, the endo version of the T-X has lots more articulation - a cool ball jointed neck, ball jointed shoulders, elbows, chest, waist, hips, knees, cut thighs, and a unique foot joint that allows the foot to turn left to right. On top of that, the forearms and calves turn at the knees and calves. That's a ton of articulation for a McToy, and it required some rubbery, creative wiring and hoses at the shoulder, knee and back to give him any real range of motion.

So why wasn't her score better? With all that articulation, it's almost impossible to get her to stand up without the display stand. The design of the feet really won't allow it, and while you can eventually get her to balance, it's like balancing a quarter on it's side - it won't last for long. The other issue revolves around the strength of the plastic they've used, because within a week, my T-X was suffering from wilt. Fortunately, all the articulation means that as she starts to wilt in one position, you can rearrange her legs slightly and bring her back to center, countering the wilting effect, but it's still unfortunate that such a great looking figure would be plagued by weak legs.

Accessories - T-850 ****; Endo T-X ***
I racked my brain for awhile trying to think of another McToy single packed figure that provided the level of cool accessories that the T-850 with coffin does, and couldn't come up with a single one. This thing is simply amazing!

Obviously, the T-850 comes with the coffin, which has the same terrific sculpting and paint ops as the figure. The detail on it is excellent, and it fits perfectly on Arnie's shoulder. Not only that, but he stands fine carrying it over the long
haul, although I have to admit that's with him standing on the base. The interior sculpting includes a variety of guns, ammo, and explosives, all with detailed sculpting and clean paint ops.

The T-850 also comes with five loose weapons - two rockets, two automatic handguns and one submachine guns. All the sculpts are great, and they all fit in with the permanent fixtures inside the coffin. Finally in the weapon department, he has a drum fed heavy machine gun, with a strap to go over the shoulder. Unfortunately, the hook on my strap is so soft that it would stay attached, but the gun looks great, and the chamber even opens to show off the rounds.

The T-X has a couple swappable arms, each with nasty weapons on the end. These go on and off just fine, and look okay, if not as spiffy as the originals.

Last but not least, both figures come with a nice, though small, stand. They both have very good sculpting, but I had the same problem with these two as I did with the Terminatrix and the regular T-850 - the pegs are too big to fit in the bottom of the feet easily. You'll really have to force them, so be careful to avoid breakage.

Value - T-850 ****; Endo T-X ***
There's no doubt that the T-850 with the coffin accessory is a great value at $10. Sure, if you end up paying the extra three bucks at Gamestop, take off a half star, but for the regular retail of ten bucks you can't beat it with a stick. The T-X isn't quite as good - while the sculpting and paint are great, the lack of accessories hurts her slightly in this department. Then again, just about anything would fall short on the value score when compared to this version of the T-850.

Overall - T-850 ****; Endo T-X ***1/2
The T-850 with the coffin is my hands down favorite of the bunch. He's a winning combination of sculpting, paint, and accessories, and the articulation isn't as horrendous as it could be. The regular T-850 and the Endoskeleton T-X come next, with solid attributes but a few minor issues. My least favorite is the Terminatrix, and McToys has her short packed. Odd thing is, many readers are telling me just how much they love her - to each his own!

Where to Buy - 
Specialty stores like Media Play and Gamestop already have these in, as do Meijers stores in the mid-west. On-line options include:

- Beans Toys has the set in stock for only $40. Look under the Mcfarlane section.

- Killer Toys has the set of four for $43, or individual figures for $12 (including the T-X's). They also have a pre-order for the deluxe set for $22.

- Aisle Sniper has the T-850's still in stock at $11 each, but are out of the T-X versions.


Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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