Jazwares surprised me recently with their new toy line of Hanna Barbera action figures. I had no idea that it was coming, and only found out about it when I walked into my local Toys “R” Us, and saw them on the pegs. They had three inch figures, 6 inch figures, and multi-packs on a two inch scale. I thought it was actually a pretty neat idea. Then, I found out they had a 6″ super posable Space Ghost figure and HAD TO HAVE IT. I mean, it’s Space Ghost. So with the help of a friend, I was able to obtain one.
And I have to say, all the coolness is in the character alone. That’s about it. Read on to see what I mean, because you’re really not gonna believe this.
|PACKAGING- The packaging is incredibly retro. Everything about it feels old school, like you could actually picture toys being in packages like this back in the 60′s and 70′s. The front tells you who’s in the package, and has the name “Hanna Barbera” on the card behind the blister. The back is just a collage of all the different Hanna Barbera characters that are available now as figures, and some that we can no doubt expect to see from Jazwares in the future, as well as their various logos. Not the best packaging ever, but certainly not the worst. I actually kind of dig it. It certainly gets your attention on the pegs.
SCULPT – Space Ghost’s sculpt is actually quite good. It’s never easy translating a 2D cartoon’s style into a 3D action figure, but this one turned out well. He has some muscle definition, but not too much, as to be accurate to the cartoon. All proportions look good, as does his flowing cape. His head sculpt is undeniably Space Ghost, with his mouth just slightly open, as he’s often seen. something that surprised me is his chest insignia is actually raised, instead of just being a decal or tampo. His left hand is sculpted into a fist, while his right hand is sculpted with his first two fingers pointed out, so as to pose him pressing the buttons on his left gauntlet and shooting his ray blast. Unfortunately, it doesn’t quite work out that way in practice. More on that later.
PAINT – He’s mostly cast in white, yet it’s easy to tell that he’s also been painted white as well, perhaps to make everything look uniform. At any rate, most of the paint is good. It certainly is on the white parts anyway. Although all of his joint pins are cast in an opaque white, they are unpainted and seem to stand out quite a bit. There’s a bit of slop on his gauntlets. Nothing as bad as over spray or the red seeping into the yellow, but it does seem quite thick here, when it shouldn’t be. His chest insignia looks great, and with the exception of some red on his cape, it looks great too. His head also turned out really well. No black on his face, no misaligned eyes. It looks good.
ARTICULATION – Space Ghost has a cut neck, ball jointed shoulders, single elbows, wrist hinges, ab crunch, waist swivel, t-hinge hip joints, thigh rotators, single knees, and hinged ankles. On paper, that’s a surprising amount of articulation, outside of Marvel Legends or DC Universe Classics…especially for Jazwares. However, he’s missing on key fundamental joint: bicep rotators.
Remember earlier how I said his hands were sculpted so you could pose him pressing the buttons on his gauntlet to look as if he’s shooting his ray blast? Well, you can’t. He has no bicep swivel, so there’s just literally no way to pose him arms with his left hand touching the buttons on his right gauntlet. It’s never gonna happen. Customizers could add this point of articulation with ease, but on the figures’ own merits, this is bad. Jazwares should have added the bicep swivel to give fans that opportunity for posing. Also, most of the joints are really loose. There’s only a couple that are appropriately tight, and I’ll get to why a little later.
ACCESSORIES – Space Ghost comes with one accessory, but it’s a good one: his space monkey Blip! Blip looks just like he did on the show, and is well represented in 3 dimensions. He’s one solid hunk of plastic though, so no articulation on him, but he’s in a good pose that’s appropriate for the character. There’s a bit of paint slop on his nose, but that seems to be it. Everything else looks good on him, though I wish they could have found a better place for the “CE” stamp. It’s right on his crotch.
QUALITY CONTROL – I’ve never felt a strong need to add this section to my reviews, but in this case I really felt I had to tell you all about this. First of all, the picture you’ll see to the right was accomplished completely by hand. No heating was done to it at all. You can completely take apart the Space Ghost figure (save for being able to separate the lower torso and hips from the pelvis) by hand and with minimal force, and in less than 10 minutes. I noticed that some of the joint pins were sliding inside the joint, and decided to try something. I took a small screwdriver and pushed the pin completely out of the joint. I was able to do this with every single pin in the figure, and was able to pop the head off, pull out the shoulder joint discs, and pop the lower thigh out easily.
The reason I was able to do this with such ease, is because all the pins are solid, smooth rods. Joint pins should not look like this. The joint pins in action figures should be two large mushroom shapes on either end, with a smaller rod connecting the two, and a section in the very middle that’s thicker than the rod. This variation in size helps add friction at the appropriate spots and ensures that the pins will stay where they’re supposed to and not fall out. Instead, what you see here in this Space Ghost figure is more akin to the type of joint pins used in prototypes. For prototypes, they use smooth rods as placeholders just to keep the figure together long enough to examine it fully assembled, before manufacturing the actual joint pins to be used in the figure.
This is why almost every joint in the body is so loose. The pins add no friction, and if they’re constantly sliding in and out of the joint, that is bad construction. The customizer in me thinks it’s cool that you can take the figure apart so easily, and it should make for some very co-operational custom fodder. But as something to be sold to collectors and even kids to display or play with, it’s pretty unacceptable. If you’re Space Ghost figure has loose joints anywhere, simply use the “super glue trick”, and make sure to follow and read each step carefully.
FUN – Space Ghost is a pretty fun figure, though it’s entirely due to the fact that it’s Space Ghost. Really, about the most fun I’ve had with him is posing with the old Toycom Space Ghost Coast to Coast accessories. He’s the perfect size to fit on the chair and sit at the desk, and looks great. That’s seriously the most fun I’ve had with him as a FIGURE and not just because of the fact that it’s Space Ghost.
OVERALL – Overall, this is a very poor figure. If the only thing wrong with him was the missing bicep swivel, it wouldn’t be that bad. But he’s plagued with horrible quality control issues with those terrible loose joint pins, that the thing is barely functional as an action figure. With his limited arm movement, you’re not going to get much poseability out of his upper body to interact with your other figures, if you can even get him to stand for any significant length of time.
If you have the Coast to Coast accessories, I’d recommend using them. Being such a poor figure, that’s about the best thing you’ll get out of him. With that being said, if Jazwares makes Blue Falcon and Birdman, I’ll most likely pick them up, if for no other reason than to make some really cool customs with them.
FINAL SCORE: 1.5 / 5
Where to buy: I have to be honest. I personally don’t recommend this figure, unless you’re just a huge Space Ghost or Hanna Barbera fan and want him as a display piece, or unless you’re a customizer who can fix the problems he has. If you still want him, the good news is he’s really inexpensive. He’s about $10 and you should be able to find him at your local Toys “R” Us. If not, You can find him at the following online retailers: