Battlestar Galactica Series 1
Apollo, Hotdog, Six and Caprica Six

Diamond Select Toys announced that they were releasing Battlestar Galactica action figures several months ago, and since, fans have been anticipating the first wave.  That wave will be hitting shelves in the next couple weeks, and as Ebert and Roeper say, 'this is an early review'.

There are three figures in the regular release, including the sexy Six, Lee "Apollo" Adama, and Karl "Hot Dog" Costanza.  The fourth 'regular' figure is a Previews exclusive version of Six, called Caprica Six.

Along with those four, there are three more exclusives.  Chief Tyrol is exclusive to the DST website, Samuel Anders (exclusive to Big Bad Toy Store), and Helo (an Action Figure Express exclusive).  Although they are exclusive to other sites, you can also get Helo and Anders at Time and Space Toys.  I'll be reviewing these three exclusives in the next week or so, but tonight let's start with the original four.

Expect to pay around $15 each for these guys, and they should be hitting stores in early December.


Packaging - **1/2
The packages are quite similar to the Stargate SG-1 packages, with very basic designs. They are cardback/bubble style, so they're easy enough to get into, but there's no personalization outside of the small logo and name on the front.

Sculpting - Apollo, Hotdog, Caprica Six ***1/2; Six ***
The figures were sculpted by Jean St. Jean Studios, a quality studio that does excellent work.  The sculpt work on all four are solid, although I had more issues with the regular Six than the rest.

Both Six's have well done, attractive faces.  In fact, the head sculpts (right down to the hair) are identical between the two figures.  The hair has a fine texture, while the features are very clean and feminine.  This is one of the most attractive female head sculpts we've gotten so far this year.

The body work is a bit better on the Caprica version than the regular, red dress version.  The dress interferes with the articulation (which is quite a bit better than the Stargate figures, more on that later), and the sculpt makes it difficult for her to stand, even with the knee and hip joints.  And you know how much I hate it when a figure can't stand on it's own.

But the Caprica version stands great, and the body proportions are very realistic with the exception of the hands.  The poor girl has a bit of the 'man hands' thing going on, but this is partly due to skinny wrists, which make the hands look a bit larger than they really are.

While the two female figures share the same head sculpt, the two male figures share the same body.  They are wearing their uniform, and as the name implies, it's uniform.  There's some excellent texture work on the vest, and wonderful details included on the clothing.  The vest is made from a softer rubber too, giving it a slightly different feel than the rest of the body.  Again, this sculpt works well with the articulation, and these guys both stand great on their own.

The head sculpts are clean and neat, but I'm not sure that either is a perfect match for the actual character.  They're close, but there's something slightly off on each that keeps them from perfect four star grades.

Neither Six has any accessories, but her hands are sculpted to hold them anyway.  Both sets of hands that come with Hot Dog and Apollo are sculpted in various poses/grips to hold their accessories as well.

The line is done in a 7" scale, and fit in well with other 7" scale figures.  The guys stand about 6 3/4 inches tall, while the ladies (in their high heels) stand just a hair over that.  They'll look excellent with the Stargate figures, if you decide to display them that way.

Paint - Six, Caprica Six, Hot Dog ***1/2; Apollo ***
The paint can make or break a sculpt - thankfully, the paint ops here support the excellent sculpt work.

Hot Dog and both Six figures have the best work on their faces.  The eyes are clean and straight, and even the hair lines are proper and clean.  There's no clumping or stray marks, and the paint work adds a nice realism.

While the paint work on the bodies of both Six's is pretty basic - no real details - it's a bit weaker than the face work.  The thin straps on both tops is a little sloppy, and the black color on the clothing of Caprica Six has some variation in color from the top to the pants.  The issues aren't major, but enough to hold them back slightly.

Hot Dog has the very best overall work.  The beauty on the two guys is the work on the uniform, both in sculpting and paint.  The paint is extremely clean here, including the small tampos used for the patches.  Even the brass colored buckles on his vest look realistic and worn!

While these three figures have some minor issues, only Apollo has anything major wrong with the paint.  It looks like they tried to use the paint to give him a bit of a five o'clock shadow, and it doesn't work particularly well.  Of course, in person it's not as noticeable as it is in these close up photos.  But even then, it looks more like dirt or slop than it does a beard.

And for the pervs in the audiencel - and you know who you are! - the regular Six likes to go commando.

Articulation - Apollo, Hot Dog, Caprica Six ***1/2;  Six ***
I assume most folks figured these would have the same articulation as the Stargate figures, also from DST.  I'm happy to report that it's even better than that, with new joints added that give the figures great posability without too many ugly joints.

I can't say there aren't any ugly joints, since both Six's have bare arms and show the ball shoulder, cut bicep, pin elbow and cut wrists.  However, that's acceptable to me, but those who are less fond of articulation may be harsher on them in this category.

The ladies also have a ball jointed neck, cut waist, and pin knees.  They also have the unusual style of pin hips that allow the legs to move forward and backward, as well as way out to the sides.  We've seen these joints occasionally (including some of the Mattel DC Superheroes), but they work better here than I've seen in the past.

The Caprica version also adds a cut joint up on the upper leg, and ankle articulation.  This makes her able to hold some very deep stances, although she's not nearly as attractive in that pose.

The two male figures have ball jointed necks, ball jointed shoulders (only jointed on the torso side), cut biceps, pin elbows and knees, cut wrists and ankles, cut waist and thighs, and those cool hips.  These hip joints allow for the leg to move out a full 90 degrees to the side, and in combination with the cut thigh, pin knee and cut ankle, gives you a huge range of leg poses.

Accessories - Apollo, Hot Dog ***; Six's Bupkis
Neither of the Six figures have any accessories.  The regular Six really needs a small display stand (and her feet have the holes for it), but they didn't include one.

Apollo and Hot Dog have some of the same accessories, but at least there's a number of them.

First, there's the very cool helmet.  The face mask comes off, allowing the helmet to fit over the head.  It's still a tight fit, but the helmet looks great on the figure.

There's also an extra set of black gloved hands for each guy.  These are identical (as are the flesh colored hands), but that's a minor nit.  A bigger nit for me is that my Hot Dog figuire came with two right hands, which is why you won't see any photos of him with the gloved hands.

Both guys also have their weapon, which fits nicely in their right hand or in the holster glued to their side.

Apollo has one more accessory: a very, very small gold doohickey.  I have to admit that I have no idea what this little item is, and you'll probably lose it about 10 seconds after you open him up, but it's still nice to get extra goodies.

Fun Factor - ***1/2
The excellent articulation, in combination with the great sculpt and paint, make this whole series well above average in this category.  I considered knocking a half point of the regular Six - she's a girl in a dress - but hey, that'd sounded sexist to me.

Value - Apollo, Hot Dog **1/2; Six's **
The $15 a piece is a pretty average price, and while there's a fair amount of reuse with the two male figures, at least there's enough extras added in to make them a normal value.  The two Six figures come with nothing additional though, and you'll feel the pain of paying $15 or more for these.

Things to Watch Out For - 
I'd take some time with the swappable hands, since the posts are a little soft.  Forcing them on and pulling them off could result in a snapped wrist.

Overall - Apollo, Hot Dog, Caprica Six ***1/2; Six ***
I've only caught a few episodes of the show (although I regularly watched the original when it was on TV), but I can certainly understand the appeal.  These figures are as good in terms of sculpt and paint as the Stargate stuff (and in some cases, like the head sculpt for Six, even better), and they have improved on the basic articulation.  These should make most fans quite happy, and I'm looking forward to series 2 when the modern Cylon will be released.

Score Recap:
Packaging - **1/2
Sculpt - Apollo, Hotdog, Caprica Six ***1/2; Six ***
Paint - Six, Caprica Six, Hot Dog ***1/2; Apollo ***
Articulation - Apollo, Hot Dog, Caprica Six ***1/2;  Six ***
Accessories - Apollo, Hot Dog, ***; Six's Bupkis
Fun Factor - ***1/2
Value -  Apollo, Hot Dog **1/2; Six's **
Overall - Apollo, Hot Dog, Caprica Six ***1/2; Six ***

Where to Buy -
Online sources include these recommended Sponsors:

- Amazing Toyz has all the singles for the $13 - $16 range (including exclusives), and package deals for 3, 4 or 5 figures.

- CornerStoreComics has the singles for around $13, with package deals on the figures as well.

- Alter Ego has the regular set of three figures for $48.42, or the Caprica Six for $13.59.

- Time and Space Toys has a deal on the set of 5 (no Tyrol or Andors) for $60, or a set of 6 (just excluding Tyrol) for $75.  You can get Tyrol free with the purchase of a $100 gift certificate, and you can get the exclusive Helo or Anders for $16.

- Related Links -
Other Battlestar Galactica reviews include:

- there were several 12" figures from Majestic Studios. 

- they also did sixth scale modern Cylons.

- there was a small scale Viper and Raider.

- there's also several small scale figures based on the original show, including this Cylon.

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Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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