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Review of Six Million Dollar Man action figures

BifBangPow
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Overall Average Rating: 2.5 out of 4

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Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Introduction

BifBangPow has been using their retro style 8" line of action figures with a number of licenses over the last few years, sometimes with greater success with certain lines than others. One of the more unique licenses is the Six Million Dollar Man, a classic action sci-fi television show from the 1970's.

I'm always amused when I hear people lament for the good old days of television in the 70's and 80's - most of it was truly awful. But the Six Million Dollar Man, and the spin off Bionic Woman, were a couple of the better attempts at sci-fi. They'd still be laughed off the air by today's standards, but they are watchable if you keep in mind the standard during the time they were produced.

BifBangPow picked up the license and has produced several figures so far. Tonight I'm checking out the Steve Austin, as well as Oscar Goldman, Bigfoot, and the Fembot. These sell in pairs at Entertainment Earth for around $40.

Click on the image below for a Life Size version
Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Packaging - ***1/2
The card backs incorporate many of the logos and graphics from the original series. The large card backs and bubbles can be easy to damage if you're not careful, but they do show off the figure nicely and can be stored in a small space by the MOCers in the crowd.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Sculpting - Bigfoot ***1/2; Oscar, Fembot ***; Steve **
These figures are done in an 8" scale, similar to the Mego figures of the 70's. That means both Steve and Oscar are about 8" tall, but the Fembot comes in at the slightly shorter height of 7 3/4", while Bigfoot is a whopping 9" tall.

Bigfoot gets that extra height in his legs, where they've added some length. It works well, especially with the padded costume.

No matter how I squint at Steve Austin, I'm just not seeing Lee Majors. The actor has a very distinct look, and I'm not picking up on any of it here. This is a nice, generic head, but they could have thrown it on a Captain Kirk figure and been about as accurate.

Oscar is much closer to the original actor, given the basic style of the figures.The shape of the head, the cut of the hair, even the general expression, all bring to mind the head of the OSI.

Fembot is decent as well, with a reasonable amount of detail work in her exposed circuitry. The rooted hair is thick, and holds its shape nicely.

But the best likeness overall is with Bigfoot. The character was originally played by a young Andre the Giant, and they've done a reasonable job with this portrait, again given the limitations of the retro style.

He also has uniquely sculpted hands and feet, with rough skin texture and claws. That's another addition that puts him a head above the rest.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Paint - Bigfoot, Fembot , Steve ***; Oscar **1/2
The paint work on Steve and Oscar isn't atrocious, but it is very basic. The lip color on Steve looks a bit too lipsticky, and the eyes on Oscar are too small and beady. There's also something about the unpainted skin tone that I'm really not digging.

What boosts Steve up over Oscar is something you can't see initially. His lower legs and left arm are cast in clear plastic, with printed circuity patterns on each. This is a really great nostalgic touch that I hadn't expected.

Fembot does better, due in large part to the extra detailing and color in her exposed mechanical face. There's also less skin tone, since most of it's missing.

Finally, there's Bigfoot. He wins again in this category, due to the variation in the dirty skin, great looking eyes, and well defined hairline. He would have pulled another half star here as well, but mine has a stray dark brown spot on his nose, and the work on the lips could be a smidge better, even at this low price point.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Articulation - ***
Obviously, the idea with these base figures is to play off the nostalgia of Mego. That's a workable idea - lots of people love Mego, and with good reason - but I'm a big believer in taking the best of the old and combining it with new innovations of today. One of the best places to accomplish that is with the underlying body.

I'm not a huge fan of this one though, due largely to the reliance on the band design that was also a down fall of the old Mego body. These rubber bands run through the torso, connecting the arms and legs. While the shoulders and hips are sorta like ball joints in many respects, the bands tend to pull the limbs out of many poses.

The rest of the arm and leg articulation is a big step up, however. The pin elbows, knees, wrists and ankles all are tight and well built, certainly capable of holding up to real play. The torso and waist joints work well too, and this figure can take better poses than the Mego of old.

The one other joint that could really use an upgrade is the neck - it's still a cut joint. However, I'm going to cut them some slack here, because the base price on these figures is low enough to compensate for a minor short coming or two.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Accessories - Oscar, Steve, Bigfoot **1/2; Fembot Bupkis
This is one area where this series is lacking.

The Fembot doesn't have any extras, but Oscar Goldman does come with his trademark briefcase. A middle aged dude in a bad suit with a brown briefcase might not look all that exciting but...well, he wasn't all that exciting on the show, either.

Both Steve and Bigfoot come with a key chain fob that plays various lines and sound effects from the show. They are a different color from one another, and work fairly well with the included batteries.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Outfit - Steve, Bigfoot, Fembot ***; Oscar **
Let's get this out of the way right up front - Oscar's suit is awful. The tie is way over sized, the jacket and pants fit horribly, and even the collar is a ridiculous size. These things didn't have to be - for proof, just compare the collar on Steve's track suit to the collar on Oscar's shirt. I get their desire to stay true to the original style, but upgrades in some areas are necessary, and Oscar's suit was one of them.

The other three fair much better here. Steve has his classic red track suit, and rather than try to give the jacket a zipper, they used white paint to give the impression one is there. It works perfectly, and at this price point, makes excellent sense.

His shoes look great too, and the fit is better than I had expected overall. The material is a decent quality too, and I'm glad they went with this rather iconic look.

The Fembot has her basic dress, which fits well for the style. The belt is a little long, but you can get it to work, and while the scarf is a bit over sized, it's not as crazy as Oscar's tie.

Finally, there's Bigfoot. Remember, this was a big dude in a hairy suit, which is actually what the toy is. They've got extra padding in the torso to give him some bulk, and it looks quite good. In other words, it looks very much like he did on screen, which was pretty goofy.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Fun Factor - ***
These aren't high end collectibles - they're retro toys. They can be played with just like any toy off the shelf in 1975, and the quality of the articulation makes them a better action figure than the original.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Value - ***
You can pick up Steve and Bigfoot for less than $20 each - how many action figures are there in that price range these days, let alone in this scale. A MOTUC figure, designed for a nostalgic collector's market as well, will run you close to $30.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Things to Watch Out For -
Not a thing.

Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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Overall - Bigfoot, Fembot ***; Steve **1/2; Oscar **
This retro style of action figure works best when used with retro licenses. When you try to apply it to modern characters, it's always going to seem out of sync. But with a license like the Six Million Dollar Man, it's an excellent fit.

Out of these four, Bigfoot is easily my favorite, so much so that I wish I had a sixth scale version to go with my Sideshow Twilight Zone and Outer Limits figures. If not for the minor paint issues with mine, he probably would have pulled another half star overall. Yea, he's goofy and silly looking, but that's exactly what he's supposed to look like, and they melded the style of the show with the Mego style perfectly.

Unfortunately for Oscar, they went completely retro with the quality of the suit and tie, and it's just not swinging it for me. A slightly smaller tie, a slightly better fit on the suit, and whammo, he's a much better figure.

Steve Austin has a nice track suit, and I love the clear plastic pieces with the printed circuitry. But the portrait is way off - the original Steve Austin action figure back in the day had a much better likeness.

Fembot doesn't have that problem, and the creepy pre-Terminator face really sells her. While I'm not thrilled with Oscar, I will say that Fembot makes it worth picking up the pair, just so you can have her in the display.

Score Recap (out of ****):
Packaging - ***1/2
Sculpting - Bigfoot ***1/2; Oscar, Fembot ***; Steve **
Paint - Bigfoot, Fembot ***; Oscar, Steve **1/2
Articulation - ***
Accessories - Oscar, Steve, Bigfoot **1/2; Fembot Bupkis
Outfit - Steve, Bigfoot, Fembot ***; Oscar **
Fun Factor - ***
Value - ***
Overall - Bigfoot, Fembot ***; Steve **1/2; Oscar **

Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Entertainment Earth is the place to pick these up. You can get Steve and the Bigfoot as a set for just $38, and the set of Fembot and Oscar Goldman for $44.

Related Links -
BifBangPow uses this retro style with a number of other licenses, including the Venture Brothers.

You should also hit the Search Reviews page, in case any other applicable reviews were done after this one was published.

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Six Million Dollar Man & Bigfoot action figures by BifBangPow

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This product was provided for the review by the manufacturer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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