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Chris Taylor - Platoon
Hot Toys

Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys


Platoon was a break through movie for many - Oliver Stone had success as a screen writer, but this was his first huge directorial outing, and actors like Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker were just getting started. It was the break out movie for even older actors like Willem Dafoe and Tom Berenger, and Charlie Sheen? Well, he wasn't much more than Martin Sheen's son at that point.

Platoon has gotten a set of sixth scale action figures once before, but it's been many years now. Sideshow produced Barnes, Elias and Chris Taylor back in 2003. They were nice, but they were 2003 nice, not 2010 nice - and we know how far things have come in the sixth scale market.

Hot Toys is now producing at least two of the characters again - Barnes (who is due out in the first quarter of 2011), and Chris Taylor (played by Charlie Sheen) is just now hitting.

Both of these are in the low to mid price range for Hot Toys, running about $135, depending on the retailer. I haven't heard if we'll be getting Elias, although it makes a lot of sense, and would be a good announcement for Toy Fair.
Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys

Packaging - ****
These packages have a camo fabric texture and feel that makes them stand out from even other Hot Toys boxes. There's the wrap around cover with magnetic closures, and separate trays for the figure and the accessories. Everything is safely in place, there's no twisty ties, and the box is completely collector friendly.

Sculpting - ***1/2
I've come to the realization that Hot Toys is no longer capable of a 'bad' sculpt. They have better and worse, but never bad.

This is definitely Charlie Sheen, and a young one at that. The funky hair comes in two styles - one more screen accurate and spiky, while the other is flatter to his head. The hair swaps by simply popping it off and on, and both fit fairly tight. The cloth head band is glued in place which keeps it from slipping off or being an issue during the swap.

The skin isn't quite as textured as some Hot Toys portraits, but that makes sense considering the age of the actor.

The hand sculpts work well with the accessories, but the oversized nature bugged me more this time than usual. Not sure why, but it was a bigger issue for me.

While the flatter hair is supposed to work with the helmet (or so the instructions say), I couldn't get it to work. The helmet still sat way too high on the hair and looked simply silly. Without any hair, I was able to get it to sit about right (that's how it is in the photos), but it tends to wobble around.

While this is clearly Sheen, I'm not sure the expression is the best choice. I think I would have preferred the more determined look that you see on the photo on the box rather than this open mouth look. Although if you're looking to do a Charlie Harper custom and wanted him to be puzzling over Allen or Jake's latest bizarre behavior, then this will work great.

Paint - ****
Hot Toys and excellent paint are like peanut butter and jelly. They've been a perfect couple so long now it's hard to think of one without the other.

While there's nothing here that's outstanding, there's also nothing to complain about. The eyes are clean and sharp, with that realistic wet appearance and no bleed. The eyebrows, lips and hair line are all perfect, and the soft skin tone looks great. There's not a ton of work this time around, but like a world class gymnast doing a complex routine, Hot Toys makes what everyone else finds difficult seem simple and easy.

Articulation - ****
He's on a standard TrueType body, which works extremely well for this sort of clothed figure. Nothing new there - and even the hands swapped without too much trouble. There's extra wrist pegs just in case, but I didn't need them.

None of the outfit or accessories restrict the articulation, and you should be able to get just about any pose you'd like. The real beauty of the TrueType is the natural hang and flow that the body has, allowing you to make the poses much more lifelike and far less stiff.

Accessories - ***1/2
There's a ton of accessories, which is a must for any military based figure. Working with them was excruciatingly frustrating though, and I spent a lot of time just putting things back in place or back together.

Let's start with the helmet. There's the outer helmet and inner lid, but these are glued together so don't attempt to separate them. As I mentioned earlier, I couldn't get the helmet on over even the flatter hair, so I just went without any top half of the head. The helmet looks great for the most part, and I think the did an excellent job with the print work on the inscription on the side, right from the film - "When I die, bury me upside down so the world can kiss my ass". There's also the stick woven into the band on one side, but this didn't want to stay put. In fact, I spent more time putting it back in place than attaching the other accessories. If I needed another reason not to use the helmet for my display, this was it. Glue is definitely an option.

There's a number of necklaces - his dog tags, the ankh, and a couple red strings. One is for his neck, but I wasn't quite sure what to do with the shorter one. As usual, better instructions included with the figure would have been a good idea. He also has his gold band on the left wrist.  It can fall off when you're swapping hands, so be sure to keep an eye on it.

I put the various items where they best fit, not necessarily where they were on screen. There are two large pouches, which I attached on the front of the belt, plus two canteens which I put around back. There's a smaller pouch that I put up on the shoulder harness, and of course, there's the extremely well made (and fully padded) backpack that fits tightly on his shoulders. While you can certainly adjust the straps, I found that it fit great just where they were right out of the box.

To the pack I attached the bag for the shovel (and inserted the shovel), as well as the machete. I placed one on either side, since these were the eyelets that were best suited for the metal attachments.

The shovel looks great, and has either a pick end or shovel end. Both of these fold down out of the way and the shovel slides into its bag. I couldn't quite get the small button to snap shut at the top though once it was in place.

The machete is bizarre, at least for a Hot Toys accessory. It's practically paper thin, and flaps in the breeze like a cheap flag. I've never seen such a thing from this company, and was quite surprised.

It does fit in its sheath well though, and this sheath can attach to the other side of the pack. Again, this was a case where the small pin that holds the sheath to the metal clip constantly fell out, and I was struggling to keep it together. This is a very tin pin too, so losing it is a real possibility.

There are three grenades - two apples and one canister. I popped these on his rigging any where they'd fit.

Speaking of the rigging, it's fairly simple to unhook it at the front and remove the belt and harness entirely. I'd recommend doing this to attach the various bags.

Attaching these bags requires using a new sort of clip. There are small metal hooks on the back of each bag, and this go over the top and bottom of the belt. Then a small metal pin slips through the top of the clip and into the bottom. Pushing inward on the pin slightly makes it easier to pull out and also to fit into the bottom. It's a bit tricky to do this at first (and again, better instructions would have helped), but after the first couple you'll get the hang of it, and they are definitely sturdy.

I almost forgot his knife, which is much better quality than the machete. It fits in its sheath tightly, and I attached this to the side of the shovel bag. Again, this was mostly due to the lack of not too many other places to put it.

Along with the grenades, he also comes with a mine. The mine includes a sculpted roll of wire and a detonator. All of it can fit inside a bag, which has fold out instructions sewn in for the soldier to refresh himself on the use and deployment. I did have to pop the small articulated sensors off the bottom to get the mine to fit in the bag, and I'm not sure you're really supposed to do that, so take care.

Taylor has a couple weapons in his arsenal as well. There's the expected machine gun, with removable clip of course. It's properly scaled and looks great in just about any pose. They included some brown tape as well, so that you can cut a couple small pieces and wrap them around the gun to get that screen accurate look.

There's also the portable rocket launcher and one rocket. The launcher can be opened at both ends, and the rocket can be inserted. The sights flip up as well, or he can just wear the whole thing on his back.

That's a whole lot of goodies, but if you've bought military figures in the past from companies like DiD, 21st Century, or others, you'll be expecting a ton of extras. The quality is great, but as I said at the start, I ended up very frustrated by the time I had everything in place.

I already mentioned the extra wrist pegs, and there's the usual display stand. There are also three additional hands designed to work with the various items.

Outfit - ****
There's not a lot to the outfit, since I included most of his extras in the Accessories section. What's left though is top quality.

On top is the green fatigues, made from high quality but thin material so that they remain realistic in scale and appearance. Under these are the shirt and scarf, also made from great materials. The stitching and tailoring are right on the money.

The bandanna wrapped around his head is glued in place, but is a cloth bandanna nonetheless.

The real beauty here is the boots, which look fantastic. The combination of leather and cloth is done perfectly, and while the laces are a little long, it makes it easier to tie with chubby fingers.

Fun Factor - **1/2
While Hot Toys figures are generally not considered 'toys', some are pretty sturdy. This time though it was an exercise in frustration, something that hurts the overall fun you can have. Once you get him set up, you won't be swapping - or even touching - him a whole lot.

Value - **1/2
At about $135, Taylor is a good average Hot Toys price. He's a licensed figure with a ton of accessories, although we'll see some of these same accessories with Barnes.

Things to Watch Out For -
Hot Toys figures are always a bit on the fragile side, but here you'll find that there are a number of accessories that can be easily broken.

You'll also find yourself spending a lot of time hunting for small pieces that fell off - the little pins on the machete sheath, the stick on the helmet, the bracelet on his wrist, etc. etc. etc. Put on your patience pants before you get started.

Overall - ***1/2
This Taylor is certainly an improvement over the Sideshow version from 8 years ago, but you'll have to decide if the improvement is enough to warrant spending $135. He's certainly Hot Toys quality, with excellent paint, articulation and outfit, but I found him awfully frustrating to set up and keep intact. If you're a regular buyer of Hot Toys figures, you'll probably be a bit more immune to this than the person who is just a Platoon fan and picks this guy up for that reason, but it's worth noting that he was still more difficult to work with than the average Hot Toys figure.

He's also one of those figures that's pretty lonely by himself on the shelf, but since we already know Barnes is on the way, you won't have to worry about him being orphaned. Giving us Elias is pretty critical as well though, and I hope this line has enough interest to see that come to pass.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ****
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ****
Articulation - ****
Accessories - ***1/2
Outfit - ****
Fun Factor - **1/2
Value - **1/2
Overall - ***1/2

Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Urban Collector has him at $134, and Barnes at $130.

- Alter Ego Comics has him at $135, and Barnes at $132.

- Big Bad Toy Store has Taylor for $145, and Barnes for $140.

- Fanboy Collectibles doesn't have Taylor, but they have Barnes on pre-order for $132.

- Hollywood Heroes has Taylor at $200.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
As I mentioned, this is not the first time Platoon has been treated to the sixth scale treatment. Sideshow did Chris along with Barnes and Elias, and I reviewed them back then.

Discussion:
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Platoon Chris Taylor Charlie Sheen action figure by Hot Toys


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

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