Jade - Dead Cell
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
|Jeff is back with a look at the latest Dead Cell figure from Triad Toys - what's the scoop, Jeff?
A little under a year ago I reviewed my first figure from Triads original property Dead Cell. She was Dakota Jennings one of an elite group of vampire killers and occult detectives known as the Dead Cell. They were originally founded by Abigail Van Helsing
(the granddaughter of the famed Professor Abraham Van Helsing), to do
battle with the forces of evil, most notably the Prophets. A shadowy
army of satanic occultists, hell bent on unleashing all manner of
demons (here known as the Ragnoraks) to enslave humanity.
is Abigail’s great granddaughter, and as the families demon killing
gene seems to run strong in the family, she now finds herself leading
Dakota and the rest of the Dead Cell team in an on going war against
the Ragnoraks and their diabolical unhallowed hordes.
As I said,
this is all based on an original back story created by Triad, but so
far there are no books, comics or movies to flesh out the Dead Cell
universe any further. It’s really just a springboard to let your
imagination do the rest.
For those that don't know, Triad are a
relatively small company, but growing in quality with their recent
releases. I guess if you thought in music terms they are to Sideshow
what Rough Trade are to EMI. Meaning they still have that cool indie-vibe and manage to keep doing what 'they' want.
And even though they are independent their list of official licenses is also ever growing, check out the website here to see more.
now to the matter at hand, in the world of 1/6th we have more and more
product coming from more and more manufacturers. So with peoples
pre-orders getting increasingly stacked out, is Jade one you want to
add that list?
follows exactly the same construction as Dakota’s box. So it’s a
traditional 5-panel design and is full colour throughout with plenty of
photos of the figure. And like the Dakota packaging the reverse even
has detailed back stories of the Dead Cell group and a biography of
The inside of the front flap holds the collector
friendly vac formed tray which houses her accessories and coat while
the main box holds the figure held securely down by no less than 5
twisties, yes you read that right 5 TWISTIES!
We live in
enlightened times, and I hope that some day in the future our children,
or perhaps our children’s children will live in a world without the
tyranny of the twisty tie!
However, that is my only real gripe, as the box is robust, colourful, informative and pleasingly compact!
PRESS- As an aside, I did get a small leaked snippet of information,
those twisties, which caused me so much vexation and indignation are
soon to ditched… Triad have seen the light!)
Sculpting - ***
face sculpt here is quite similar to Dakota’s, but there are subtle
nuances and differences. Kind of like the old Cy-Girls, they all looked
different but were very much from the same stable.
explained in my review for her fellow Dead Cell member, this is not
even trying to be a Hot Toys wannabe. Triad know their core audience
and collectors well. They feed a fan base that enthusiastically soaks
up the cool stuff they deliver. And lets face it, there is a rabid
fan-base left wanting since the Cy-Girl line dried up years ago.
either get it, or you don’t. If original figures with rooted hair, that
are unashamedly toys don’t float your boat, then you’d best move along.
If however you like a well designed, well accessorised and wonderfully
articulated fem action figure every now and then, you have just hit pay
dirt! And the fact it’s way below the increasingly standard $150 is a
big fat bonus too. But more on price later.
The face is
relatively passive, but has that ‘ice maiden’ quality that means she
could be thinking anything. The general sculpting is all crisp and
smooth with some sweet detailing on the nose and around the eyes. The
hair is rooted and has a 2-tone detailing. Meaning the main body of her
black asymmetrical sharp bob has longer sections that hang down to
frame the face, with the right hand side having a blond top layer to
add detail and definition to her look.
She also comes with a
selection of six hands, all are a re-use of the ones that came with
Dakota, and seem to be the standard issue with the Alpha female base
body in the Dead Cell series. All are well sculpted and hold the
I gave Jade
the same score as Dakota in sculpting as they are very much two peas
from the same pod. But the painting is a definite improvement here.
what’s to like? Well the lips are more refined than Dakota’s, showing
greater detail and shading. As does the eye make-up, which is far more
realistic and subtle. The eyes themselves are also glossier and wet
looking, but on mine she does seem to have a very slight wandering left
eye. It points into the nose by a whisker too much. It is however me
being an anal reviewer, as from most angles it doesn’t show, and the
quality of the app is the best I’ve seen from Triad so far on a female
figure. If this were a $150 figure I’d perhaps be a little harder on
it. But for a figure of this quality in this price range it deserves
Like Dakota, Jade is built around the Alpha female base body as seen here
it doesn’t quite have the aesthetic of some of the very hi-end fem
figures in terms of disguising joints. But I’ve always been a big
articulation junkie, so it more than makes up for any shortcomings by
displaying an absolutely awesome degree of mobility. It has all the
best features we expect from hi-end figures, so you can expect double
knees and elbows and a full range of movement at the shoulders and
hips. The waist and the mid torso also have a good degree of movement
and the wrists are a pegged ball-joint (a little hair-dryering or dunk
in boiling water will make swapping infinitely easier) and the ankles
can both tilt and point. Last up is the neck, which has a peg
inserted into the head, while the other end has a cup and ball joint
that snaps into the top of the neck post.
I also found the
body on this figure to be much firmer than Dakota’s, so she gets an
extra ¼ star, taking her up to a full marks. The only irony being that
this time round there are no magnetic boots!
I reviewed Dakota I pointed out that her outfit wouldn’t look out of
place as a back up look for Abigail Whistler, and here young Jade
sports an ensemble that readily brings to mind Milla Jovovich as Alice
in Resident Evil.
Now obviously it’s very far from a carbon copy, but you have to admit
they at least shop in the same store. And like Alice she has a penchant
for twin side-arms and the occasional machete
(OK, so she uses Gurkha knives, but go with me on this!). It’s a kind
of apocalypse chic meets combat catwalk, and yes, that is a good thing!
So, what do we actually get-
- Leather Wrist Gauntlet
- Two-toned coat with concealed wires in the tails for posing
- Gold Satin front-laced top
- Shorts with suspender leggings
- Leather Wrist Band
- Leather Shoulder Band
- Black Biker Boots
- Leather belt
the parts of her wardrobe are well tailored to fit the base Alpha body,
and even though designed to be close fitting they don’t hamper her
poseability to any great degree. Mine had no noticeable loose threads
and the general quality of finish on the seams and edges was all sharp
and well defined. I have to admit I would have preferred her top to
have been more ‘tactical assault’ and less ‘Saturday Disco’, but as we
are strictly in the arena of hot fantasy kick ass babes, I’ll cut them
For me the standout garment is the coat, it’s cut to
be worn tight and doesn’t meet around her front, but the design and
finish are all well thought through, with full lining and strategically
placed wires concealed in the seams to aid in those dramatic action
poses. So, again, don’t expect the very pinnacle that hi-end companies
offer, but for the asking price here it’s all good quality stuff. And
her biker boots are pretty rad as well, with some cool steel
highlighted details, not dissimilar to ‘New Rock Planet’ footwear, they
don’t however have magnets in the heels like Dakota.
Jade comes with the tools she needs to get the job done, consisting of-
- One pair of special custom revolvers
- One machete
- One leather effect gun holsters and harness
- One leather effect machete harness and scabbard
- One pair of gun grip hands
- One pair of sword grip hands
- One pair of gesturing hands
if she should happen upon one of the legions of the un-dead I’m sure
she wouldn’t have too big a problem dispatching them to the depths of
Hades. However, like her Dead Cell sister in arms Dakota, I do wish she
had just a little more weaponry at her disposal. Maybe a rifle,
crossbow, shield or even the Spear of Destiny would be cool. But enough
of the wants, lets deal with what we get.
The brace of custom
pistols are groovy; they have quite a steam-punk thing doing on and
have an antique distressed steel and copper paint finish. Sadly none of
the parts are articulated, but they certainly look the part. They also
fit nicely into the leather holsters supplied. It does say on the
website that they intend for you to customise and adapt the base figure
as you see fit. So I removed the holsters from belt as they were in a
side-by-side position to be worn at the base of the spine with the
handles pointing outward, like this whereas I wanted them worn traditionally at the hip pointing backwards.
also comes with a rather vicious looking machete/meat cleaver. It’s
constructed of plastic and like the guns it fits into the sheath well.
Again the positioning of the sheath belt can be altered, to be worn
either around the waist or across the torso ‘bandoleer’ style.
the accessories are a cool and pertinent selection, and what we do get
is well made, I just wish she had a little something extra.
On a side note I did also get the two ‘Zombie survival packs’, these offer a few extra options to hack/beat your least favourite monster to a pulp, and I’ll cover them soon.
Factor - ***3/4
she’s more expensive than her comrade, but she’s just as much fun to
play with. In fact, for some inexplicable reason I find her just a
little bit more fun. Perhaps its because I find her just a tad easier
to pose in her skimpy outfit, and lets face it, who doesn’t have a
thing for hot assassin babes packing twin pistols… yeah, NOT just me
for money - ***
was a very reasonable $89.99, which I consider something of a steal in
these days of $150 to $200 figures. Jade here however costs another $30
more, and I can’t really see where that hike comes from. I admit her
paint app is stronger, and her coat is a more refined garment than
Dakota’s jacket, but when you consider Dakota had a metal sword
compared to Jades plastic machete… well it had me scratching my head.
So she doesn’t score as highly as Dakota in this category, but $120 still seems like a reasonable deal in the present climate.
As I already
went over above, she is a little dearer than Dakota. But even taking
that into account she just feels like a better overall figure. I can’t
100% put my finger on why, its just one of those intangible mysteries
of the universe. The thing I do like however is the fact that Dead
Cell’s ranks are swelling. Soon we’ll have Iris (with her glam biker
girl chic) who will then be followed by the lady that started it all
Abigail (dressed in a 1940’s inspired military outfit). So if Triad
keep pumping them out, we’re going to end up with quite a comprehensive
little squad, kind of like ‘Sucker Punch’ but with Vampires.
Where to buy
You can buy her direct from Triad for the RRP of $119.99 and there is also the limited edition SDCC exclusive version still available for one cent more at $120,00
Or you can try some of Michaels sponsor BBTS who have her in stock for $114.99
Alternatively you can hit eBay where I’m seeing prices of between $124.99 up to $135.00.
Did you enjoy
the review? Plus 1 it!
This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer.
Photos and text by Jeff Parker.