Ghostbusters is my favorite movie, period. So when I heard last year that Mattel was doing an online-only Ghostbusters line, I was ecstatic. I’ve wanted a proper Ghostbusters line since I was a kid and, honestly, did anyone see this coming? Sure, NECA put out some very good product a few years ago (which I’m happy to have bought, because the Ebay prices on Stay-Puft, Slimer, and the Terror dogs are INSANE), but a company like Mattel doing toys based off a 25 year old movie with only a video game and an anniversary as a tie-in is practically unheard of.
Sadly, theres been a number of factors that put me off buying the figures. Off of Mattycollector.com, each figure will end up costing you about $30 with shipping and you’d better move fast because they sell out within a day or so. On the after-market, the figure’s go for about double that. The cost, plus the fact that I haven’t been blown away by most of the sculpts, made me pass. Meanwhile, Diamond’s Ghostbuster Minimates are available at Toys-r-us, about a quarter of the price, and are just really fun figures.
However, I broke down when I saw the latest figure up for sale: Slimed Peter Venkman. Venkman’s my favorite character, and it’s a cool, stand-alone variant, so I went ahead and got it. And having it in hand, I’ve gotta say…this is a really cool figure.
Generally, I don’t really care about packaging, but the packaging for Venkman is really impressive. The carded figure comes in a simple white box with the Ghostbusters logo, the name of the figure and the fact that it’s a “adult collector” figure (so many gross connotations with that phrase).
Inside that box is the carded figure and, I’ve got to say, Mattel really out did themselves on this. The Terror Dogs and the Stay-Puft in the background look great and I love the embossed logo on top of the bubble. It makes a cool little diorama, so much so that I was almost tempted to just keep it in the box. But, for $30, it’s kind of silly to just keep it in the box, right?
The bio on the back is fun and the little background details are amusing enough. The “Six Inch Ghostbuster Figures Subject to Availibility on Mattycollector.com” is pretty hilarious, very enticing ad copy.
Out of the package, I was pretty immediately impressed with the figure. I’d heard some complaints about likenesses and articulation in the past, but I don’t think that’s the case with Venkman. It’s not a perfect likeness of Bill Murray, but it’s a good one and well above average for this sort of figure. Other sculpted details, like the proton pack and the jumpsuit details, are impressive. Little things like painted zippers on the jumpsuit really make the figure. I LOVED that, unlike the previous three ‘busters, they gave Peter gloves and untucked pant cuffs. They’re so essential to capturing the look of the character.
There’s around 15 points of articulation on the figure, which keeps it at a nice balance. It isn’t a statue like a NECA figure, but at the same time, they avoided interrupting the great sculpting by giving Venkman an ab crunch or waist articulation. I will say that, while I love the new pant cuffs, the ankle articulation suffers for it slightly. Regardless, I was pretty astounded by the variety of poses the figure can hold.
Paint-wise, there’s a lot I like. The metal detailing on the proton pack is beautiful and the slime is subtle enough that it’s clearly there, but doesn’t interfere with the sculpt. It’s reasonably accurate to the specific scene but not overwhelmingly so.
The real draw of the figure to me is, besides the fact that it’s Peter Venkman, the proton pack and neutron wand. It took me a minute to figure out how to affix it, but the wand attaches to the pack very securely and looks great attached or in hand. I don’t know if this is the case for the non-gloved hands of the previous figures, but Venkman’s gloved hands and the hand holds on the wand are made of a rubbery plastic, which makes putting the wand in his hands/removing it from his hands really easy. It’s a smart move on Mattel’s part and makes me feel better about the $30 price tag.
Peter comes with a Slimer figure and he’s a nice add-in. A few reviews I’ve read complained about getting yet another Slimer figure (the previously released Egon comes with similar one), but he’s kind of a must for a Slimed Venkman figure. It’s a nice little figure: six points of articulation, including a balljoint, and I love the “licking his lips” head sculpt. I’m not sure it’s nicer than NECA’s version of the character, but considering that it’s A. a pack-in with a regular figure B. in-scale and C. actually translucent, I think they both stand well enough on their own merits. The clear flight stand’s nice too.
All in all, Slimed Venkman’s a really well executed figure and, while it’d be nice if I could’ve picked this up at retail, it’s worth the extra hassle. It’s criminal that these figures don’t come with proton streams or atleast a walkie talkie. Still, it makes me want to track down that Walter Peck/Ecto-Containment unit set…