TrueType 19 - Muscle Body
Hot Toys

   "The following is a guest review.  The review and photos do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Michael Crawford or Michael's Review of the Week, and are the opinion and work of the guest author."

Jeff is back tonight to check out one of Hot Toys new base bodies, available to collectors for upgrading figures or making their own customs. Tell us all about him, Jeff!

I’m gonna keep this brief, why? Well because it’s a body I have covered in various guises many times over the last few years. It was utilised on many characters from Wolverine to Indy with varying degrees of success.

This is however the first time it’s been available as an undressed base figure so it warrants a breakdown in its own right.

It also helps that we have a rather cool celebrity likeness, meaning any fans of Source Code out there may have just had their wishes answered.

Packaging - **
Base True Types always come in very minimal packaging; well the commercially available ones do anyway! So expect no frills here, what we get is a simple clear plastic vac-formed clamshell box with a sticker. It’s more than up to protecting it’s contents and has a simple purity to its design that though not thrilling is certainly pleasing.

Sculpting - ***1/2
As a base body this is not sold as having a likeness, however as past TT releases have resembled everyone from Prince Harry (not so good) through to Barrack Obama (pretty impressive) by way of Taylor Kitsch (lets face it, your best chance of bashing a movie based John Carter figure) we can pretty much guarantee that each new TT will now have more than a passing resemblance to someone in the public eye.

On this occasion we have Jake Gyllenhaal, and its pretty darned impressive, especially as it looks more like him than the official portrait that was on the Prince of Persia figure a couple of years back. The detailing and skin texturing is as good as many of their officially licensed sculpts and the hair is also expertly crafted to resemble his ‘off camera’ style, though I have to admit I would have preferred the cropped look he sported in Source Code just a little more.

The body also shows far more detail than an average TT, with skin texture and even nipples on the rubber sleeve that covers the torso and neck, and further texture being applied to the solid vinyl arms. He comes with four hands, two relaxed, one right gun grip and one left general grip/gesturing, all are sculpted to the usual high standard.

So, to sum up, it’s obviously not an official likeness, but still manages to dump on much of its competition.

Paint - ****
The portrait is just a bonus, so the fact it has a cracking paint app as well makes this even more of a steal.

You can expect all the usual subtle variations in colour on his skin tones and the eyes are as crisp and shiny as always. The hair is accurately applied with gentle feathering at the hairline… top job

There is also a deftly executed application on the upper half of the body, and as this is intended for shirtless or semi-clad bashes it’s a good job too.

Articulation - ***3/4
I’ve covered pretty much every version of True-Type so far and most can be seen here and here.

So here we find ourselves once again in the familiar territory of aesthetic versus function, and Hot Toys have hit the middle ground at just about the right note. From the waist down all is as good as on a classic TT, but from his hips up we have more limited range in favour of a more visually pleasing sculpt and use of materials that aide in disguising his joints far more effectively. There is some tilt forwards and backwards under the rubber torso, and the neck shows a good range also, allowing for some subtle posing (a tiny head tilt can make all the difference). The shoulders have a well-disguised rotating hinged joint that can shrug a little under the rubber covering this joint. The elbows can achieve about a 90-degree bend and the wrists have the usual pegged and cut fully rotating ball joint.

So spend just a little time familiarising yourself with its mechanics and weight/centre of gravity and you will have it standing… or even sitting, in pretty much any position you could wish for, and it hangs well too, even when fully clothed. Of course you need realistic expectations because this is a muscle bod, if you need extreme articulation go get a regular TT, but if your chosen character plans on getting his shirt of, or wearing some skin tight spandex, then this is the one for you.

Accessories - ****
I don’t really expect to get anything with a base body other than an extra set of hands, so the fact we get a figure stand as well is a nice touch… even if I NEVER use them!

Outfit - N/A
He’s naked as a Jay Bird!

Value - ***
I couldn’t find this on the Sideshow website so don’t know what the official RRP is in North America. I did however find it on the BBTS site for a reasonable $55. Admittedly not the bargain of the month, but for a non-too extortionate outlay you have a finely crafted Hot Toys muscle bod with a great celebrity likeness thrown in for good measure. But get it while you can because the eBay prices are looking much steeper.

Fun Factor - ***1/2
This is up to you, at the end of the day it’s just a base body, but the Gyllanhaal sculpt opens up a whole other board game. I’ve been a fan since Donnie Darko so for me this gets a solid score.

Overall- *** 3/4
Sculpt- very good
Paint- excellent
Articulation- solid and well engineered
Price- fair considering the quality of build and finish.

So, no problems to report, a great new addition to the Hot Toys stable of base bodies.

Where to Buy -
I couldn’t find this on the Sideshow website, but it is available with the sites sponsor BBTS  for $54.99.  

Or hit ebay where the BIN prices are between $60 to $80.

This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer. Photos and text by Jeff Parker.

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