Pawnee Indian
Dog Soldiers

I'm a big fan of the little guy.  And one of those little guys in the world of sixth scale is Dog Soldiers.  While they might be a small company, they've been doing big things for several years now.

They specialize in sixth scale historical figures, outfits and accessories.  In the past I've reviewed their Viking, Apache and Cheyenne warriors, and their Buffalo Soldier.

The companies focus is on historical accuracy, developing figures that look great and are respectful to the traditions of the subjects.  Before companies like Sideshow, Dragon and bbi were doing early American figures, Dog Soldiers was on the scene.

The figures run in the $30 range, fairly good in today's market of $40 12" action figures.  What's also great is that you can purchase most of the weapons, clothes, heads and other accessories individually for kit bashing your own characters!

The Pawnee prided themselves on the fact that they had never fought a war against the U.S.  Of course, even with their successful alliance with the government, their people were decimated by forces both natural and human, dropping from a tribe of 10,000 during their height to less than 2,500 today.

Packaging - ***1/2
The packaging produced by Dog Soldiers isn't quite as sturdy as perhaps the stuff from the big dogs, but what it lacks in toughness it makes up for in text.

There's a long and detailed history on the Pawnee tribe, designed to give you some great background info and sparking further interest in learning more.  The figure is also shown off well, and the package is fairly collector friendly.  There's twisties to deal with, but you can put them back if you so desire.

Sculpting - ***
The sculpts on Dog Soldiers figures tend to be soft, as the heads are hollow.  They are also generic, similar to what companies like bbi or Dragon do for their figures.

Of the five figures they've produced so far, I have to say that this head sculpt is my favorite.  The expression is stern and serious without looking constipated, and there's no "zombification" to the eyes.  The sculpted and rooted hair combination, with the attached feathers, looks great.

Paint - ***1/2
The only real paint ops on the figure itself is on the face and head.  The blood red face paint is clean and consistent, and the work on the hand over his mouth - a Pawnee symbol - looks excellent, with clean lines and a perfect design.

The eyes on mine are nice and straight, glaring forward.  The small detail work in the earrings is perfect, and the hair line is spot on.  While there aren't a lot of paint ops, what's here is great.

Articulation - **1/2
One of the areas that Dog Soldiers uses to keep costs low is the body.  They've gone with a fairly generic sixth scale body, that lacks some of the articulation collectors have gotten accustomed to.

The Pawnee has neck, ball jointed shoulders, elbows, wrists, waist, ball jointed hips, knees and elbows.  This was a lot just a few years ago, but with all the advances in neck, elbow, and knee joints, and the inclusion of bicep and thigh cuts, along with other innovations, make this generic body a bit dated.  Still, it holds poses well, with very tight joints, and stands nicely on its own without the help of a display stand.

This body is a little shorter than the bodies we've gotten with recent Sideshow and Drastic Plastic western figures.  I've included a comparison shot at the end.

Accessories - ***
I'm counting the war club, shield, knife and buckskin bag as his accessories, while the other items will fall under the Outfit category.

The war club is an excellent sculpt, and certainly an imposing weapon.  With both a club and a blade, this bad boy would cut a swathe through any opposing force.

The shield is a very stiff plastic, with stretch straps in back to attach to the arm, and has a cloth/feather attachment to spice it up.  There's a wonderful bear print and star field design painted on the front that looks terrific. 

The scalp knife fits nicely in the sheath, but is a tad small to be held by either hand.

Finally, there's a faux buckskin pouch, with a strap that fits around his neck.  The pouch has a velcro closure, and you can put small goodies inside.

Outfit - ***1/2
One of the areas that Dog Soldiers always excels in, especially for the price, is the outfit.  The Pawnee is no exception.

The outfit starts with several bead necklaces, which include some sea shell attachments.  Below this is a bear claw style chest covering.  There's a black plastic band that helps hold this in place in the package, which I left on.  However, you can pull it off and tie the covering up in back.  It will ride a little lower on the body though.

There are two arm bands on either bicep, and the usual leggings and loin cloth.  The design is extremely accurate though, with the leggings and cloth wrapping up over an internal belt.  These are all separate pieces, with a final external belt wrapping around the outside.  This outer belt also has the knife sheath, and a great printed design.  Their are additional feathers attached to the leggings, matching with his hair and shield.

Finally, we wrap up with his moccasins, which are a soft material, yet fit well and don't get in the way of his ability to stand.

Fun Factor - ***
For kids who find the story of the American West fascinating, this would be a great figure.  It's extremely accurate, especially in terms of the outfit and accessories.  They'd have to be a little careful with it, because some of the pieces could break easily.  It's not going to stand up to the kind of play I gave my old Best of the West figures, but it looks a whole lot better.

Value - **1/2
Most sixth scale figures are pushing $40, sometimes $50 each.  While the body is smaller and less articulated, and the head sculpts a little soft, the price point matches up nicely with what you're getting.

Overall - ***
This figure is very accurate, with a great outfit and nice accessories.  It fits well on the shelf with my many other western figures, although it is a little smaller than some of the other recent releases.

It's also a solid value for the money, something that is getting rarer and rarer.  I'm all for supporting the little guy as well, especially when they're doing quality figures at reasonable prices.

Packaging - **1/2
Sculpt - ***
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - **1/2
Outfit - ***1/2
Fun Factor - ***
Value - **1/2
Overall - ***

Where to Buy - 
The Dog Soldiers web site it the place to pick these up.  Check them out for the other historical figures, along with the outfits and weapons that can be bought individually.  The Pawnee runs $32 direct from the company.

Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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