I've come to not expect a whole lot from toys and their packaging. Oh
sure, sometimes you get some nice ones that are too beautiful to open.
But it seems more likely than not, companies skimp on the packaging.
Well, in this case it's a yes and a no. It is a simple box with high
gloss, cover to cover photos. It has a simple opening panel that
reveals the figure inside. The inside cover has a nice history/bio
about Lara. Curiously enough, so does the back. Like they say, less is
more, and this is very effective. Unfortunately, the only full body
shot is the inside cover, and that is mostly obscured by text. That's a
downside as you're about to understand.
Why so glum, chum? Well, a couple of reasons. The sculpt by itself
isn't instantly recognizable at Lara. At least not TR:L Lara. The nose
is too sharp, and the eyes strike me as a bit small. The lips
suffer but only because of paint. I would have been happy with an
Angelina Jolie inspired head. Heck, I'm sure a lot more people would
have. As it sits, I can only say that Lara has a head.
I think I would have been happier with plug hair as opposed to
sculpted. Normally I hate plug hair; it wild and unwieldy, and it
brings back memories of my sister's My Little Ponies. In this case,
however, I think having hard hair hurt more than helped. I'm sure the
sculptors did it so they could catch Lara in her classic look. However,
her ponytail is not articulated, on top of being the same hard plastic
as the rest of her head sculpt. Ergo, it gets in the way of her
backpack and clothes. Plus you can't put it up in any style you want.
The lack of a ponytail joint means her hair hangs straight back when
she's upside-down or jumping.
I like her hands though. They managed to get the nails sculpted on
there, and they look just like they should. Kudos. They are a bit
closed though, so it's difficult to push anything into them, even after
heating them up.
This is probably the most
disappointing aspect of the entire figure. I could have forgiven
everything else for 4 stars in this category. It makes me sick to even
write about it.
Like her little NECA cousins before her, Lara's facial paint is awful.
Unlike her cousin however, which suffered from too much paint in the
wrong spots, SSC Lara suffers from lack thereof. Here eyes have this
empty, hollow, zombiefied look. They aren't even close to the in-game
model, which should be the standard for this figure. The eyes are small
to start, but the paint just adds to the problem. The whites of her
eyes are in my opinion too large, and also, get this, not white.
They're tan-ish red. (again, I'm looking at you, NECA) The pupils also
seem too small. Maybe if they'd been painted larger the eyes would seem
better done, but I guess we'll never know. On mine her left eye seems
to be looking away ever so slightly. Maybe it's just my imagination.
The lack of paint on the rest of her face is subtracted points as well.
It's just the plastic that's skin colored. No rosey cheeks, no
highlights. In fact, there is no muscle definition of any kind on her
where it is so desperately needed. Her belly looks bare, her legs look
plain. Is it so hard to get a little airbrushing on a 1/6th scale
woman? It is? Oh.
The hair is plain copper-brown
washed in black. At this point I'm just as sick of writing about the
comparisons to NECA as you are of reading about it. However, it's the
exact same paint job, essentially. They could have come with a
transparent copper and highlighted it in paint, but they didn't. They
put a flat color on it and washed it. Not even any
Again, the hands stand out. The nails are a transparent rose color,
just the way nails should be. Maybe it's just mine, or even my self
delusion saying "you are not a loser!" but the tips of her nails seem
yellowed (like mine), like she'd been digging in the dirt or working
with her hands. Then again, maybe I'm giving them too much credit.
The lips are sculpted right, but they're colored too skinny. I know
from experience how hard to is to paint lips. But when they redesigned
Lara back in '05/'06, they gave her these beautiful pouty lips. That
just doesn't carry over here. They are also not even remotely glossed.
It's a shame, really.
The shining exception is the SSC exclusive piece. Excalibur has
oxidized copper highlights (or are they Jade?) just like it should.
It's weathered with a blackwash. But the paint is sloppy. I have spots
where the green bleeds over.
Correct me if I'm wrong, Mike, but I do not believe this is the new SSC
body. The BBI bodies have more articulation it seems like. I know the
2.0 Cy Girls do for sure. So let's count. Double ball jointed neck, but
she loses one of them because it's so deep set. Shoulders, biceps,
double elbows, forearms and wrists. Torso, waist, hips, upper legs,
double knees, ankles. That's 25. Standing that up to
that-by-which-I-measure-all-articulation, my Super POA SM2 Spidey, she
doesn't fare so hot. Nor so even when compared to Cy Girls. I will say
here that I about died when put her shirt on. The arms just plain out
would not cooperate. An inner shoulder POA might have helped insanely
there. Also, maybe it's just mine, but she's very, very loose.
Guns. Check. SMG. Check. Magic sword. Check. Shotgun? AK-47? Grenade
launcher? All big nopes around the board. She comes with the following:
Excalibur, 3 pairs of interchangeable hands, Backpack, Pistols, MP-5
SMG, belt /w holsters, grenades, light, 2 flares, Non-grappling
grappling hook, binoculars, attached headset, 12-inch Figure stand w/
the Tomb Raider logo. Legend gear, artic gear, artic jacket. Seems like
a lot, right?
Her pistols, while nice, would be even nicer if they were metal. They
just feel way too light. Same with her SMG. It needs more heft than
what it has. The stock especially feels weak. FAIRLY BE YE WARNED! The
little tab on the front of her MP-5 snaps off if you look at it funny.
I barely touched it and it came right off.
Also, her holsters DO NOT fit her guns. They're about a size too small.
You can get them in there looking very funny and too high up if you
struggle with them. The belt is not without woes of it's own. A proper
snap would have been much preferred to a pin sticking through pleather.
Her backpack is glued shut. I found that out the hard way as well. It
makes a good spot for holding her extra flare though. While I'm on the
subject, I do have to give props for taking the time to sculpt and
detail the flares and lights. Those just was easily could have been
sculpted on, but they weren't.
I would like to know why her grenades don't have any pins in them? Is
she about to blow up? Also, you don't attach grenades to yourself by
the firing handle. That's just not smart tomb
The stand, which I need to use on soft surfaces (hence the photos) will
absolutely 100% NOT stay attached to the base.
While I'm here, and have the moment to speak on the subject, let me
just broach the horrible clothes. They're awful. Really. I've never
been a fan of cloth on figures, as it usually looks fake to me. Once in
a blue moon something in the Star Wars line can pull it off. (even if
it is Hasbro) This, however, is not one of those times. Her jacket
looks like the front piece was just a piece of fabric sewn on the front
of it. Oh wait, it was. You know that nifty little flip back on the
front cover that she has in the pics? Can't do that here.
Now, this is just me. But I can't stand wearing pants without a belt.
Apparently I can't stand it on my toys either. Her pants kept falling
down and I just wanted to scream. But again, personal taste. I decided
to change her clothes (if only I could brush her hair my reversion into
a little girl would be complete) The pants came off just fine. The
jacket was snap on so it came off fine. A quick Nude Raider shoot and
on her the legend gear. Getting her clothes on took me a full HOUR. Her
shirt was nothing but trouble, and getting her boots on over her socks
took an act of congress. I eventually reverted to the age old method of
using my teeth. A toy that must suffer at my jaws has very low marks
indeed. Needless to say she's never changing her clothes again.
Also, I have to wonder about the costumes included. Legend gear makes
sense, but why not her Union Jack shirt, or her Tokyo dress? Her bare
feet could have easily pulled that off. But Kazakhstan? Really? How odd.
Accessories loses half a star for breaking within the first 30 seconds
of being opened and for over an hour of frustrating clothes changing.
Fun factor: **1/2
This one is for everyone. Feel free to hand this to your game loving
teenager. They can't really do more hard than I already did. There's no
paint to chip and nothing they can seriously damage. At least nothing
you can't use a can of crazy glue on. You should never have to say that
about a SSC figure ever.
A few more POA would have gone down with a smile, but I managed to play
with her just fine. I saw a 1/6th scale play set at Big Lots the other
day that I'll get and she can shoot through walls. I'll make the best
of it. I hope.
If you're a Tomb Raider fan, you'll be disappointed. If you're a SSC
collector, you'll be disappointed. At $80, you are losing money. Expect
to see her on clearance at online stores very soon. Save yourself a ton
of money and heartbreak, and but the 12" NECS Talking Lara Croft for
about $25 online (I've seen them as low as $12) It'll be just as easy
on the eyes, anda lot easier on the pocket book.
Horribly, horribly heart wrenchingly disappointing. Worst birthday
present ever, and that's including the socks I got one year. There was
so very much potential here from a company I've heard great things
about. I can only hope no one else makes the same mistake I did. I will
never buy anything from Sideshow ever again, this was such a terrible
experience. Toner has 2 TR: Underworld figures coming out soon. Too bad
they're 17". As for me, I'll be sticking with the NECA figures. Less to
invest, both monetarily and emotionally.
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - **1/2
Paint - *
Articulation - ***
Accessories - **1/2
Fun Factor - **1/2
Value - *1/2
Overall - **
Where to Buy -
You can find her at:
- CornerStoreComics has her at $72.
- Alter Ego also has her for $72.
- Showpiece Collectibles doesn't have this one, but they do have the 12" NECA talking version on sale for a limited time at $23.