Abigail Whistler - Blade
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
|I've stayed away from the Blade
figures by Hot Toys, but Jeff's review tonight is making me think twice
- tell us all about Abigail, Jeff!
Something strange has happened with my expectation and indeed
allegiance to certain figures. About six months ago I received my DX02
figure of Batman, a very much anticipated figure, but then he arrived
at the same time as my Blade figure from Blade 2
and I found myself slightly blind sided, unexpectedly my affections
shifted toward the Daywalker over the Dark Knight. And yesterday I had
a whole bevy of beauties arrive in a single package, there was Jill
Valentine, Sarah Connor (T1000), Black Widow and Abigail Whistler. I
have to admit I was looking towards the arrival of Black Widow, perhaps
a little too much, nothing ‘unnatural’ you understand… but once again
it was the character from Blade that managed to blow me away!
So, here we have Abigail Whistler,
the daughter of Blades oldest and most trusted confidant and indeed
mentor; Abraham Whistler. Blade knows about the deaths of Whistlers
first ‘legitimate’ family at the hands of a vampire horde, but is kept
unaware of Abigail, his child from a later relationship. So, knowing
nothing of her existence, Whistler secretly trains her to lead her own
group of Vampire hunters ‘The Nightstalkers’, they are specially
equipped both mentally, physically and with the right hard-ware to
offer back up and technical assistance for both Whistler and Blade when
their backs are against the wall.
In the movie the character
of Abigail was played by Jessica Biel in one of her earliest roles, but
it was a portrayal that was to leave quite an impact… especially on the
male members of the audience, could it be anything to do with those
skin tight vests and leather trousers with bondage straps… noooo, of
Anyhow, we’re not here to shoot the breeze over the
reason Abigail Whistler stood out as a character in the movie, we’re
here to discus whether or not she was a good choice from Hot Toys as
the shelf companion for the Daywalker. But as I already said, she was
the one that stole my heart in my most recent haul of lovely 1/6th
ladies, so I guess you kind of already know that!
|Packaging - ***3/4
this is a companion piece to Blade it makes sense that it follows the
same look. So it’s a simple lift off lid with deep edges, like a
traditional shoebox design.
It has a silver metallic finish and
bears a large photo of Biel on the front in character as Abigail
beneath the Blade: Trinity logo, while the back has a pic of the figure
and a full list of the Hot Toys production credits. Lift off the lid
and we are met with a full colour printed card overlay, which features
another photo of the figure and a brief bio. Under this is the fully
constructed figure in a vac-formed tray alongside her alternative hand
In a shallower tray, fixed to the inside lid are all her other accessories, it’s quite a haul, but I’ll cover that later.
giving Abi here the same score as Blade, as the box is virtually
identical, and manages to look cool while containing a good selection
of goodies without becoming oversized and bulky.
Sculpting - ****
This is another sculpt from So Young Lee, she also worked on the Silk Spectre
and indeed Blade figures, showing she is quite a talent to watch. Here
she has done a great job of capturing Biel when she was a mere 22 years
of age, OK, I know she’s still only 28 now, but six years in Hollywood tends to change a person… a lot!
still has that fresh faced ‘younger’ look here, she’s a very beautiful
and toned lady, so I’m resisting the urge to use the term ‘puppy fat’
because she is about as far from fat as one can get, but you know what
I mean, as younger people tend to have softer ‘puffier’ faces before
they become self obsessed neurotic Hollywood gym bunnies. The facial
expression is kind of passive but with a determined edge, it works well
for general standing poses (which is what she’s best for… more on that
in the articulation section) and a few good power-bow poses as
well. I think the expression is based on something like it is HERE so you’ll get what I mean about bow-poses.
So now we know the portrait is strong, what about the rest?
the hair is most impressive; they describe the technique they use as
‘stereoscopic’, meaning it is highly detailed, very intricate and
layered so you can see second and third level details through the
sculpted gaps in the higher layers. I love how HT are using more real
rooted hair these days, and it’s getting better with each new release,
but for Abi here, with her wavy, tousled hair style this is a great way of not only getting the look right, but also allowing it to stay consistent and have longevity.
also has a selection of six hands, the bow holding set are on the
figure when she arrives, then here are a pair of pistol grip and a pair
of fists. All the right hands are sculpted in their leather archery
glove whilst the left hands are sculpted bare. Take care when swapping
over the left hands as the thumb has to pass through a loop at the end
of her leather forearm gauntlet, it’s an easy task (well apart from on
the fist) but take care as you don’t want to forget and pull the hand
off too hard and rip the gauntlet.
So, to some up, I love the
portrait, the expression works well and the hair is fantastically
carried out. The hand selection is well thought through to work with
her accessories and all in all this is a definite full score figure in
terms of detail and design, love it!
The paint is
as always perfect. I swear that unless you are unlucky enough to get a
duff one that slips through the net (I guess it might happen) then you
are generally guaranteed a virtually faultless paint app from Hot Toys
every time. I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but it’s
hard to find fault with flesh tones and fine details like we have here.
The face is just sublime, once again JC Hong does the business, the
skin shows just enough texture to be convincing but without detracting
from the attractiveness of the source material, even her slight moles
are delicately picked out.
The mouth is painted in a tone that
says Abi is more concerned with Vampire slaying than hanging around the
make-up counter at Macy’s, but they still manage to make the lips look
full and luscious. Her eyes are crisp and glossy, looking wet and
reflecting light beautifully. Her eyebrows are gently feathered so as
to look natural rather than scrawled in with an eye-line pencil (never
a good look).
The hair has lots of sculpted details as I said
above, and to help give them definition the paint is more pronounced
here than I’ve seen it on a Hot Toys figure for quite a while. But it
really does help to enhance the parting, adding to the sheen that the
hair naturally picks up from light reflecting upon its surface. It also
helps to amplify the depth of the ‘stereoscopic’ wavey layers at the
back of head. Virtually faultless!
Abi is one sassy lady, she can slaughter a whole hive of
vampires without even breaking a sweat, and to aid her in their
‘extermination’ she has a wardrobe that is more work ’a’ day chic, than
It consists of two skin-tight vests, one worn
over the other. The bottom one is plain red and cropped to be virtually
a bra top, while the outer one is a grungy spray-paint pattern on the
front, with a tailored lace up detail on the back, over this she can
wear her cropped leather jacket, this has red panels on either side of
the torso, and zips running the full length of the arms so they can be
flapped open and pushed out of the way when doing some impromptu
archery (a necessary requisite for all vampire slayers working in the
field), sadly the zip on the front here is just for effect as it
doesn’t ‘actually’ work, it should if you want to fully achieve this
You can even get a pretty good replica for the lady in your life right HERE
(and sorry, I should have said for yourself if you are a lady reader…
or cross-dresser, tick as appropriate). Her left arm has a lace up
gauntlet to protect it from the bow-string when getting all Legolas on
peoples ass’, this gauntlet also has a loop at the cuff that needs to
hook over the thumb of the left hand.
From the waist down she
has a pair of Hendrix/Morrison inspired leather jeans. These are
tailored beautifully to the shape of the figure and have inverted V
shaped panels at the bottom of the inside leg, as can be seen HERE.
Over these she wears a kind of leather harness/bondage belt that has
twin straps that circle under and between her legs. To this she straps
her collapsed bow-holster on the left leg. She also has a brown leather
belt with a classic Western style buckle and her gun holster is
attached to this on the left. Her boots are quite clumpy, but true to
the source material, they look like a cross between a work-boot and
walking-boot but with some fancy white Western stitching, the front of
the sole on the right boot even has a small slot to insert the
boot-knife. It’s cool that it was remembered here, yet strangely
overlooked on the DX Joker. Lastly there is the small cord tied around
her neck, not so much part of her wardrobe, but more adornment, but
it’s there anyway. If I was gonna be pernickety I might take away ¼ of
a point for the non-functioning zip on the front of the jacket, but
everything is so damn well put together I feel an unexpected bout of
generosity coming on. Top marks, awesome outfit!
Accessories - ****
Just like Blade, Abi has a great haul of goodies, and also like
Blade, parts of her outfit kind of cross over into accessories as well,
as they come packed separately.
The official list of accessories is-
- UV bow
- Regular power bow
- Regular power bow (collapsed to fit in leg holster)
- Six arrows for quiver
- 3 tubes to store arrows in quiver
- Three arrows with arrow heads
- One Smith & Wesson magnum pistol
- One projecting knife with gauntlet for right forearm
- Knife blade for boot
- Jacket with zip seams on arms
- Classic black figure stand
hand-gun is just about one of my favourites from Hot Toys so far, it’s
a great 1/6th representation of a Smith & Wesson (Magnum) model 686 you can see it HERE,
it’s constructed of plastic, but the metallic paint used is very dense,
shiny and convincing, it has a formed ergonomic handle, the bullet
chamber can flip out to the side and is free spinning and the hammer
can be cocked back… small but perfectly formed, much like Abi.
Her main bow has lots of articulated elements, I remember being hugely impressed by the power-bow that came with Krauser
from Resident Evil a couple of years ago, but this one is far more
sophisticated. It has a sliding adjustable scope and also two working
fly-wheels feeding the string through a cross over mechanism to add
tautness, this may need some construction on lining the string up when
it arrives, but it’s pretty straight forward. Being elastic it’s fair
to say the string will perish over time, but it will be an easy repair,
in fact I’m tempted to replace it straight away with red cotton thread
(I’ll use a black marker-pen to do the black stripes) as that should
stay taught much longer when displayed.
There is also a
collapsed version of the bow that fits in the holster on the left leg,
this looks like it is able to unfold, but the instructions inform us
not to try it, this is purely for effect.
The three black tubes included may have you scratching your head for a while… they did me, then I found this pic
showing they just fit inside the quiver to help separate the arrows
when inserted. Note, you just use the plain headless arrows to go into
this. The three arrows with metal effect tips are for displaying when
the bow is being drawn, two have the same ornate heads while one has a
vial of red liquid (this is just clear red plastic, but it approximates
Next up is her UV bow, now we all know how those vampires
hate a dose UV, so this weapon harnesses an intense UV light-beam that
cuts through the undead like a hot knife through butter,
all the details look pretty spot on here and the UV beam is made of
flexible clear blue plastic and can be removed if you want, but sadly
the bow can’t be folded to clip on the back of her belt. She also has
the projecting knife strapped to her right arm and the boot knife that
were both seen in that Youtube clip being used to great effect, the arm
knife is actually able to flip open and project forward, whereas the
boot knife needs to be inserted into a small aperture at the front of
the sole, and removed again when not in use.
Lastly we have the
figure stand, it has the movie logo and character name as always, but
Abi can stand just fine without it, so mine never even made it out of
Definitely a four star selection in any language!
Sadly Abi ain’t ever gonna be posed doing any extreme deep stances or hi-kicks which is a pity, but I guess we have to be realistic!
Michael’s guest reviewer Brandon did a good low-down on all the actual joints for the basic Female True Type HERE
so you can get a detailed breakdown if you read the articulation
section there. But because Abi has bare arms she has the new silicone
covered arms, this means they look great, but sadly the articulation
does suffer, I also noticed a little tell tale scar at the top of the
left arm/shoulder, which leads one to believe that the arms are a
re-use from the Sarah Connor figures.
I would love for Abi to
be able to get into a really dynamic and convincing bow drawing pose,
but it’s just not 100% doable! You can get a decent approximation, and
some great poses drawing arrows from the quiver or general standing,
just posed with the bow lowered. But just be aware that the limitations
of the body mean you’ll have to be creative and realistic in the poses
the full RRP of $150 then you may not feel like you are getting quite
as much ‘bang’ as you do if you pay $135, but if you check the prices
below and shop around, then there’s no reason why you won’t get her for
that lower figure.
But whatever you get this figure for, she
is an awesome looking edition to any collection, and it sure don’t hurt
that she comes with such a great array of well put together
So basing my score on a price of $135 I have no
hesitation in giving her just shy of a full score. She is quite simply
one of, if not the most attractive female figure from Hot Toys to date,
and it’s her understated ‘tom-boyish’ appearance that makes her so
remains to be said? I was surprised at just how much I loved this
figure, I was looking forward to the Black Widow and indeed Jill
Valentine but it was Abi that stood out as the queen bitch of the
batch. But she’s still a whisker short of that full score…Why?
it’s that damn articulation. Like Blade, Abi is a real actioneer, and
as such needs to be posed in some real kick-ass deep poses. But the
combination of those skin-tight (and it has to be said ‘quite thick’)
leather pants, coupled with the limited articulation of the base female
TT, has left poor Abi as something of a wallflower.
personally haven’t found a female figure as attractive since the very
cool Chacha from Goemon, and when you take the great portrait, AMAZING
hair sculpt, faultless paint, beautiful outfit and bounteous
accessories then this is an instant classic in my books.
tells me that this might have been a bit of a pet project for Hot Toys,
and I find myself wondering if someone high up in the company might not
have something of a soft spot for the Blade films… why else would two
of the best figures of the year be from movies that few people are that
passionate about… well I say that, I really like Blade 1+2, but Trinity
was a little weak?
At the end of the day I don’t really care, if it
means we get two amazing figures, and the fact that one is a cult
Marvel comics’ character and the other is an incredibly hot actress
means regardless of the movie, it’s a win-win situation.
Where to buy
Abi is still available from Sideshow on pre-order at the full RRP of $149.99
Urban Collector have her up for £133.99
Fanboy Collectibles have her for $134.99
Alter Ego also have her for $134.99
Ozie goods have her for sale at AUS $200.00
Or you can try eBay where prices are at present between $127 to $160 (remember to check those shipping prices before you commit to buy!).
This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer.
Photos and text by Jeff Parker.