SEARCH REVIEWS    LIVING WITH LATE FEES    FEATURES    LINKS    BIO    MISSION    EMAIL    MAIN PAGE >


Caesar - Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Hiya Toys

Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys


Best movie of 2011? That's an easy one for me - Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It was one of those rare occasions - like Abrams Star Trek - that they pulled off a terrific reboot of an already great story.

While Hot Toys and Sideshow have done some nice sixth scale representations from the original films, it looked like no one was going to do figures based on the new movie. Then Hiya Toys stepped up, announcing a 6" scale Caesar.

At least I think he's supposed to be 6" scaled, since he comes in at about 5 3/4" standing upright. However, he takes up enough volume that I think he can fit in with 7" figures as well. I included a photo with both a 6" Captain America as well as a 7" version, to give you some perspective.

This guy is now shipping, and will run you around $25. Not a lot of U.S. distributors picked him up though, so finding him might be a little tricky.

They haven't announced any other figures yet, but I can live with that. I don't really need any of the humans from the movie, and while a couple of the apes were very recognizable, it's not a necessity to have them on the shelf. Better than that, perhaps if this guy does well other companies will take notice and give us another Caesar in a bigger scale. One can always dream!

EDIT: Turns out they have announced Kobia!
Click on the photo below for a life size version
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Packaging - ***
The figure comes in a nifty box, completely collector friendly and sporting a big window to show you the figure and accessories. While there's not a ton of text or graphics, I like the general design, and I particularly like the shape. A box like this is easy to store for the MIBers, and since it's collector friendly, you can remove the figure and return it to the package without any damage.

Sculpting - ***
I haven't watched the film in awhile, but I have to say that both head sculpts - thoughtfully intense and totally pissed off - look very much as I remember Caesar. There's some nice detailing in the face and skin, and the eyes are quite life-like.

There's also some decent texturing in the fur, although there's something about it that's not quite as realistic as I'd like. It might be that around the joints - like the ball shoulders - that he's less 'furry'. It's a bit of a weird contrast, and makes the joints seem a bit awkward.

The design of some of the joints (like the ball hips) doesn't work great with the sculpt either, but that's a fairly minor nit. Some of the proportions seem a little off as well, like the chest (which seems a little undersized) and the hands (which have the opposite problem).

All of these are minor issues, but there's enough of them that he ends up at solid B work.

As I mentioned earlier, Caesar stands about 5 3/4" tall, and he stands terrific on his own in plenty of poses.

Paint - *1/2
It seems like I can't get a decent paint job lately.  And this time, it's just inexcusable.

Let's talk about the 800 pound gorilla in the room. It appears as if Caesar got caught in a poo flinging fight and was on the losing side. And forgot to wipe up his face after. There's a huge, brown, gloppy spot right on his face, where even Stevie Wonder would see it.

It doesn't help that the lip line looks terrible, or that the head is much, much glossier than the rest of the body. The transitions between the fur and skin are poor as well, much too toy-ish for a figure like this.

The screaming face is better - the head is still too glossy, and one of the eyes is a tad lazy - but at least the lips, gums and teeth look good. He also has the mark on his chest, an nice nod to his look in the film.

Articulation - ***1/2
I have to hand it to them here - this is a tough character design to make very posable, and yet they've pulled it off fairly well.

The ball jointed neck works very well, and the pin/disc style ball joints at the elbows, ankles, wrists and knees all have a very good range of movement. As mentioned earlier, the ball hips (true balls) don't move forward and backward very well, and end up operating largely as a cut joint would. There's also cuts at the biceps, and a rocker at the abs, and they combine with the rest of the articulation to make a pretty damn posable ape.

I did want a slightly better 'all fours' pose than I could get, but the fact that I could get one at all was still better than usual.

Accessories - ***1/2
He has a ton of extras, especially for this scale.

There's three sets of hands - he comes wearing a pair designed to hold the accessories, plus a relaxed pose set and a closed hand set, designed for knuckle walking. While they seem slightly too elongated to me, they do swap easily and succeed at their intended purposes.

He also has his cool knife on a stick invention, with a good sculpt and paint. There's also his larger spear-like staff, and both of these fit in the gripping hands well.

He wouldn't be complete without a vial of the magic of modern science that gives him his brains - and causes the ruination of humanity. It's complete with small tampos on each side, including the company logo.

Finally, there's that second screaming portrait. Obviously, I like this one better, but part of that is due to the awful paint on the other head sculpt. If you get one without the errant splotch, you may find it difficult to choose between the two.

Fun Factor - ****
While he might have some issues, he's still an excellent toy. He's extremely sturdy, as much or more so than any mass market figure. The heads and hands swap easily with little chance for breakage, and the articulation works well. He stands great on his own, and can take a ton of poses - any kid into the film or apes in general would love him.

Value - **1/2
He's running around $25, which is just slightly higher than a Masters of the Universe Classics figure (they run $22). He has multiple sets of hands, three movie specific accessories, plus a whole second portrait - I can live with the price tag with that many extras, and he's certainly worth the extra $3.

Things to Watch Out For -
Not a thing!

Overall - ***
Hopefully, the major paint issue here won't be a consistent problem. There's still the other paint issues of course, and the sculpt is a B at best, but the articulation and accessories are top notch.

Of course, the fact that you COULD get a figure with a huge brown splotch is a big issue in this situation. It is very unlikely that you'll b able to pick this guy up off the shelf at a local retailer. That means online is your only option, an option that doesn't allow for easy returns when there's an issue like this. Companies that want to take advantage of online sales have to also understand that the paint quality has to be consistently good. The risk of getting a bad figure can scare off customers - never a good thing.

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

Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Big Bad Toy Store has him for $25.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Other Ape related reviews include:

- Hot Toys did a few excellent apes based on the original films.

- Sideshow did a Premium Format figure of Dr. Zauis.

- I reviewed Sideshow's Ape Marauder and Enforcer, Zira and Cornelius, and both the regular and exclusive versions of Dr. Zauis.

- I also looked at a couple of the smaller figures for the bad remake.

- here's a guest review of Sideshow's General Ursus, Caesar, prisoner Taylor, Astronaut Brent, slave Brent,

- and the first guest review ever done at my site, way back over 8 years ago, was on the Medicom POTA figures.

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

Enjoyed this review? Be sure to head back to the main page to find thousands more just like it!

KEEP SCROLLING DOWN FOR MORE PHOTOS!



Share this review with others! 
 Google +1
 
Digg it!
 StumbleUpon Toolbar
Stumble It!
 
Reddit

Rise of the Planet of the Apes Caesar action figure by Hiya Toys


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

This page copyright 2000 - 2012, Michael Crawford. All rights reserved. Click here for copyright permissions! Hosted by 1 Hour Hosting.com