James Bond - Dr. No

Last February at Toy Fair, there were three upcoming lines that had everybody talking - Muppets, Peanuts, and these figures from Sideshow Toy, James Bond.

Sideshow has plans to  produce a total of 14 figures so far, covering every actor who played Bond, and at least one villain for each.  Hold on for the list - Sean Connery and Joseph Wiseman from Dr. No (reviewed here); Sean Connery, Harold Sakata (Odd Job), and Honor Blackman (Pussy Galore) from Goldfinger; Pierce Brosnan from Die Another Day; Roger Moore and Christopher Lee (Scaramanga) from The Man With the Golden Gun; Roger Moore, and Julius Harris (Tee Hee) from Live and Let Die; Timothy Dalton and  Robert Davi (Sanchez) from License to Kill; and finally, George Lazenby and Telly Savalas (Blofield) from On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

*whew*  With a total of 24 films, and five different actors playing Bond, there's plenty of material for Sideshow to choose from!

Packaging - ***1/2
The boxes are the usual beautiful Sideshow work.  The artwork appears to be from the movie posters, and each box (Bond and No) are different.  The box includes info on the characters, cast list, and general movie info.

The only negative here is that they aren't the usual collector friendly style.  The stands are bubble sealed to the back of the cardboard inserts, and Dr. No's ultra-cool radiation suit is also attached to the back of the insert.  Of course, you can still cut the covers off the boxes and display them behind them.

Sculpting - ****
These figures are both done by Mat Falls.  Once again, Sideshow is the king of sixth scale sculpting.  McFarlane may have it all wrapped up in the smaller scales, but no one does actual people in the 12" format better than Sideshow.

This is Sean Connery, toupee and all.  He has a slightly wry, sarcastic look on his face, as if he's about to spout one of his trademark wise cracks.  The wrinkles are just right too - it's crucial to get the wrinkles in the face just right for the expression and look.

Joseph Wiseman as Dr. No looks excellent as well.  I believe one of the keys to Sideshow's success in this area is the non-zombie look.  Other companies like bbi and Dragon have trouble at times capturing a look on a face that isn't too zombie, and actually has some liveliness to it.  Looking at these sculpts you can see what I mean - you expect them to speak any second.

Wiseman's hand sculpts are also new of course, as they were mechanical devices in the film.  They look true to the source material, and are sculpted in a nice pose.

Paint - ***1/2
Another reason the heads look so good is the paint ops.  Great ops on great sculpts means perfect figures.  The skin tone on both of these is great, and the eyes, lips and eybrows are very clean and accurate.  The lips look just right, without that annoying lipstick look that many companies end up with.

The only reason it's not four star is the hair line on Connery.  It bleeds down too far on to the forehead.

Articulation - ***1/2
The standard Sideshow body is in effect of course.  If you like it, you'll like it here .  If you don't, guess what - you won't.

There's the ball jointed neck, ball jointed shoulders, cut biceps, double jointed elbows, special wrists (which really add quite a bit to the number of poses Bond can have with the guns), chest, waist, ball jointed hips, cut thighs, double jointed knees, and ankles.

The joints were all tight, and I found no reason to have to use the stands, although the work as well.

Outfit - ***1/2
Of the Bond figures, the basic tuxedo is one of the less exciting.  But while it might not be exciting, it's very well executed.

The shirt has full length sleeves, and snaps.  The jacket and pants are well tailored, and fit tightly.  The tux has the shiny black stripes on the coat and pants as you'd expect, but there's no belt.  His tie looks great, defying the seemingly natural law that all ties on sixth scale figures have to look to big or simply goofy.

Dr. No has a light cream colored suit, matching the style of the film.  Again, it fits nicely and uses snaps everywhere rather than velcro.  The pants are a little high water, but that's not surprising considering the source material, and he has calf length black socks.  The socks tend to bag up around the ankles though, so you'll want to grab a couple of those tiny rubber bands you've been getting with your Star Wars toys and wrap them around the tops of the socks.

Oh, and let's not forget the shoe sculpts - I'm pretty sure Bond's are a re-use (can't place which figure off the top of my head, but I'm pretty sure), but Dr. No's loafers are brand new.  They look great, and there's even some paint spray to make them appear slightly dirty.

Accessories - ***1/2
Here's a category where they almost out did themselves.  Almost.  If it weren't for that shoulder holster...

First, they've given us more accessories than usual - most Sideshow figures these days have one or two, or the some might have 4 or so if you're really lucky, like the Young Frankenstein stuff.

Bond blows those away with eight cool accessories.  Okay, seven cool accessories and one total piece of...well, you'll see.  There are two silencers for the two guns - the Walther PPK and Beretta. Both guns appear small, but they ARE small handguns.  He has a tough time holding the PPK though, and I liked the Beretta better.

Bond also comes with a bottle of vodka, glass, and martini shaker, all perfect compliments to the tuxedo outfit.  But here's the odd ball accessory - he also comes with a shoulder holster.  What in God's name happened here?

The shoulder holster itself is a hard plastic, glued to a stretchy blue cloth belt.  There's a white elastic band that ties around his chest.  I've never seen this bad of an accessory from Sideshow - it really is that bad.  It seems cheap, and the awful color combination is just atrocious.  I certainly never remember Bond wearing anything this ugly.  The only thing I can figure is that they ran out of budget before they had the holster figured in.

Wiseman comes with his extra outfit as his only accessory.  But what a cool accessory!  This clear plastic radiation suit is simply perfect.  It comes in two pieces, the hood over his head and the body suit.

The two pieces snap together with clear rubber snaps.  I don't think you want to take it on and off too many times, because I don't now how well these will stand up to repeated use.  The body suit fits on easily, and is made of a relatively thick and sturdy material.  Exercise a little caution tucking him into it though - it goes on over his legs and up his body through the large neck hole, and it might be possible to rip it at the neck if you aren't careful.

There's also a pair of white boots to complete the ensemble, and they look pretty damn snazzy all together.

Oh, and let's not forget that both figures come with the now standard Sideshow stand, with the Dr. No graphic emblazoned on the base.

Value - ***
The one category that Sideshow always takes a hit is value.  At $35-$40, depending on where you pick these up, they are at the high end of the sixth scale market.

We get some really terrific figures though, and considering the license and the number of accessories this time, I gave them a slightly better value than usual .

Overall - ***1/2
As I mentioned at the start, this was a very anticipated line.  It's great to see Sideshow get a great start.  These two figures are very nicely done, and (ignoring that shoulder holster - let's pretend it was some sort of Twilight Zone aberration) I couldn't ask for much more.  I can't wait to see the future lines, and I'm particularly excited about the Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnon and Odd Job figures.

Something that's also possible with this line, and has been mentioned to Sideshow by myself and many others, is accessory packs.  Once we have the main players out, there's a huge variety of cool outfits and accessories that they could produce in packs to sell to outfit Bond.  I hope the explore the possibility, so that we can get a wider variety of looks for Bond without having to buy another figure every time.

Where to Buy - 
You may find these at Media Play or Sam Goody stores soon, but I haven't seen them there yet.  I'm betting they'll be around $30.  On-line:

- Sideshow has them for $80 for the pair, or $40 each for them individually.  (MROTW Affiliate)

- Entertainment Earth has them individually at $38 each - Bond and Dr. No.  (MROTW Affiliate)

- Big Bad Toy Store has a great price at $60 for the pair, but the site says Sold Out.  You might want to call to confirm.

- Aisle Sniper has them at $33 each, but they are still showing as a pre-order.

Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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