These girls are so cute, I literally squealed a little when I opened the shipping box! That’s probably not the reaction Four Horse Men were going for but I think they’re so cool. These two figures are part of the 6th and 7th series of a line called The Outer Space Men, apparently based on a 1968 toy line that I had never heard of before. The women, introduced to the line only recently, are brand new characters as they were not among the original toys. Originally I only wanted to buy Terra Firma, because astronaut with awesome hair duh, but the Four Horse Men store has a $20 minimum order. These figures are small and cheap, only $13, so I threw in Horroscope not expecting to like her much (there is a third female, Ohpromaten). Glad I did get a her, because I think she might be my favorite!
Company: Four Horse Men
Back Story: Horroscope
Of all the Seers on the Plant Saturn, XODIAC’S daughter, HORROSCOPE is the most all-seeing. A “Third Eye” in the middle of her forehead enables her to scope out intergalactic events, not only “in the here and now,” but also in the distant future. Nothing escapes her penetrating gaze. Her powerful intuition enables her to predict the course of Destiny, month by month, and day by day. Her nose for news, and other people’s business, can sniff out scandalous behavior, not only on her native planet Saturn, but also on far distant Worlds, light years away. Tuning her Crystal Scepter to the vibration that resonate from the biggest satellite dish in the Universe, Saturn’s Majestic Rings, HORROSCOPE can “ring up” her interstellar friends, to hear the gossip of the Stars, from Jupiter to Mars, and “dish the dirt” across the Gulf of Outer Space.
It’s a little disappointing the only story line for Horro is as a gossiper when she’s supposedly “the most all-seeing.” I feel like they could have given her a more important place in society, but undercurrent sexism is difficult to get rid of.
Moving on to Terra Firma, who I believe has the exact same story line as her male counterpart Jack Asteroid (great names by the way)
As the 21st Century began, America was in decline, struggling beneath the crushing weight of Bureaucracy, its air polluted by vast quantities of Methane Gas, emanating from Washington DC. When, suddenly, the Founding Fathers changed everything by discovering the Element “Puranium.” Invisible to the naked eye, which makes it difficult to see, Puranium proved to be a source of boundless Clean Energy by generating “Levity,” the polar opposite of Gravity
See, now that is a good story line, even though it doesn’t say much at all about Terra or Jack.
Packaging: The packaging is really nice on these figures, no tape used at all. You can just slip the heavy cardboard back off and pull out the plastic tray without breaking anything. There is only one twist tie holding the figures in, but it’s not needed because the tray is molded to keep everything in place. And everything can be put right back for display if you want. I also like the old school styling.
Here they are compared to a few other figures of various sizes so you can see how small they are (I was surprised).
Number of Joints: 12-13 (Horro has an extra cut joint above her tentacles), all the joints are cut/swivel only. The hip joints are the only part of the body that bends. This is a little disappointing because their legs are so overly straight, they have a hard time balancing on those tiny feet. If their knees weren’t locked they might not tip over so bad (holding something in their hands seems to help the balance). But it is fun that the arms and legs pop off and apart so you can switch out a bent arm for a straight arm. The two women can share parts too (the whole toy line is supposed to be interchangeable) and they share the same base body so it wouldn’t even look strange if they mixed outfits. I don’t think anything else pops off but I didn’t want to break anything either, some of the joints are very stiff.
But I think we have to talk about the elephant in the room. These ladies have very large busts. From the front, it doesn’t actually look that unnatural, they just look like healthy, curvy women. But from the side you see how unnatural those things are. Must be a side effect of that “levity” stuff.
Hair and Face: I think the heads on these two is really where the figures shine. Terra’s sculpt is obviously 60s inspired and I love her short bob, very practical for an astronaut. The paint detail on her tiny face is pretty amazing. Horro’s head is just as awesome but much harder to describe. She’s kindof squid like but not quite, her tentacles are a separate piece from the head and are painted purlescent blue. Her head is cast in a clear orange plastic with most of it painted the same blue except for 3 eyes and the majority of the back. Light can enter the back of Horro’s head and make her eyes look like they’re glowing, very cool effect. Horro is not pretty, and I think that’s why I like her so much, she puts off a very strong vibe, like she could take down anyone with her mind powers.
Clothing: Since Terra and Horro share the same base body, they are basically wearing the same outfit in different colors except for their weird belly decorations (I think I read a review where someone called them belt buckles, but there is no belt so that’s seems weird, they’re like bellybutton decorations). Terra has an Earth on her belly and Horro has a Saturn. They both wear gloves, high heeled boots, and helmets. Although there’s something strange about Terra’s black gloves…
The helmets are nice accessories. Terra’s helmet locks into the grove of the collar of her suit and has a visor that can come down over her face. Horro’s helmet is a little more confusing, it just sits on top of her head loose (so it falls off if she is moved at all) and the way it fits best (pictured) is not the way it’s shown on the package. I feel like I’m right though.
Terra also has a jet pack like thing on her back, presumably has something to do with the levity discussed her bio, it looks neat. Since Horro and Terra share the same body, Horro has a hole in her back just like Terra, but nothing to snap into it unless she borrows Terras jet pack (it snaps off without breaking!).
Accessories: In addition to helmets and extra limbs, both women come with a gun and a staff. Terra’s staff is an American flag and Horro’s has a Saturn sculpted on it’s top. Neither seems to be able to fit the gun handles in their fists very well, and Horro’s staff only goes half way through her hand before getting stuck.
Overall: Love these girls, I might think about getting Ohpromaten too except then I’d have to buy something else to make the order $20 (and she had weird shining boobs…). The paint and sculpting is absolutely perfect and I would have no complaints about QC whatsoever if it wasn’t for Terra’s two right hands (I’ve emailed asking if I can get a left hand replacement, we’ll see what happens because I’m not sure I emailed the right address – their site confuses me). The only things I don’t like about the design are the floating boobs and the weird belly decorations, I think they could have done with one or the other, not both. The character back stories could probably use a little help too. In the end though, these are great figures and totally worth their price.
I shouldn’t have bought this because it’s probably overpriced, but I couldn’t resist, and I don’t regret it either.
Besides, there’s no way I would be able to recreate this sweater or the crazy cute shoes on my own.
Ah, Sailor Moon. So many memories. I honestly don’t remember a ton of the plot lines from the cartoon but I loved it. I’m sure if I tried to re-watch it now it would ruin the show for me because I bet it’s actually pretty dumb. Who cares, it was fun.
I was obviously very interested when it was announced that Sailor Moon merchandise would be made (too bad most of it is in Japan), and the S. H. Figuarts action figure was at the top of my wish list. The only problem was, which sailor scout to get? Mercury was always my favorite character, but she wouldn’t be a very exciting figure because she’s so monochromatic. I was only ever going to get one of the scouts so I decided Moon would be best, she’s the most color full, the most representative of the whole series, and on top of that she comes with a bunch of good accessories.
Name: Sailor Moon S. H. Figuarts action figure
Company: Bandai Tamashii Nations
Back Story: In a nut shell, all the sailor scouts are magical guardians of the solar system from a past inner planetary kingdom. When the kingdom was destroyed by an evil force, the Queen sent all the guardians into the future to be reborn and protect the Earth. Most of the show revolves around the teenage girls rediscovering who they are and defeating various evil beings.
Packaging: The box is very colorful and has a window showing the figure, but otherwise it’s just a box. All the pieces are held in with plastic forms and it very easy to get everything out. I have no idea what most of the box says because it’s in Japanese.
Height: About 5.5″
Number of Joints: 17, but nearly all are rotational and hinge. Basically she has amazing movement, she can even kneel all the way down and almost touch her face. Sailor Moon does not stand well on her own, so it’s nice that the stand she comes with is so versatile, but she holds poses very well.
Hair and Face: Everything about this sculpt is spot on in my mind, paint application is perfect. Sailor Moon comes with 6 different faces, you have to pop off her bangs to change out the faces which looks really weird (but effective). I love her hair too, it was cast in translucent plastic then painted so the tips of her pig tails gradate to clear (the bangs gradate to clear at the tips also). And the pig tails can move and pop off!
Clothing: Sailor Moon is wearing her standard scout uniform. The paint detail on the bows and skirt is great. The skirt and collar are made of rubber so they have a little more flexability than the rest of her.
Accessories: Sailor Moon comes with 6 different faces, 10 hands (5 pairs), 2 wands, a stand and her cat Luna. The hands have great expression and make this figure super versital, but some of them don’t pop on very easily (or come off too easily). Luna is super cute but only has one joint at the neck and is a little unstable.
Overall: I’m so glad I got Sailor Moon, I know I would have kicked myself later if I hadn’t. But knowing how great she is I wish I could get the other scouts, there’s just too many of them (Jupiter looks super cool too)!
This Smithsonian article on Frances Glassner Lee is definitely worth a read.
Frances Glessner Lee (1878-1962) was a millionaire heiress and Chicago society dame with a very unusual hobby for a woman raised according to the strictest standards of nineteenth century domestic life: investigating murder. And she did this through a most unexpected medium: dollhouse-like dioramas.
I haven’t been tempted by too many Monster High dolls lately. They are very interesting and pretty, but when it comes down to it, I don’t need them all. I like being very picky and selective with play line dolls because they can get out of hand fast with how cheap they are sometimes. But when I saw the first pictures of Honey Swamp, even before knowing her name or what kindof monster she is, I was pretty set on getting her. It’s really the hair that drew me in, but she’s very pretty and I love her colors.
Name: Honey Swamp
Back Story: Honey is the daughter of the Honey Island swamp monster in Louisiana, a humanoid cryptid. Pretty self explanatory I think, if not – look it up. Honey Swamp likes filmography, which is some of the premise of the next Monster High movie I think. She seems a little one dimensional, but most MH characters do, at least she isn’t another fashion designer.
Packaging: Same old, same old really. MH boxes haven’t changed much at all and that’s ok by me. The doll is well displayed so you can pick out any faults, it’s easy to open, and the graphics are nice. I actually don’t like Honey’s cartoon version that much.
Height: Around 11″
Number of Joints: 11. Honey has webbed hands and great molding details all over her body, I especially like the spines going down her back.
Hair and Face: Honey’s eyes are definitely what you notice first, they remind me of gem stones. The eyes are so reptilian that is pretty creepy looking on a humanoid, more so than the painted on fangs I think. Her make up is very nice in shades of pink and teal to match her overall color scheme. Honey’s crazy mess of curls is also super fun (not sure why she came with a brush because it’s useless). A couple strands of it are pulled back on top to hold down the front along with the headband/hat. She is also wearing simple pearl earrings.
Clothing: The clothing I’m a little less fond of, mostly the skirt is problematic. Honey’s dress has a knit top with cute lace collar and painted on buttons down the front. Then the skirt is made of a very stiff polyester that is almost dragging the top down. The print is very pretty though. Under the skirt is an attached layer of fake fur/hair. I like the idea of this but I don’t think it works out very well because of the fiber quality and the stiffness of the outer skirt layer. The belt is just weird and difficult to take on and off, it looks like swamp slime and doesn’t even fit in the right place (too high). A lot of MH dolls are pretty stable because of their shoes, but Honey’s shoes are rounded on the bottom so she doesn’t stand well at all on her own. Love the spines down the heal of the shoes, the details would have stood out more with a bit of additional paint.
Accessories: Other than the clothing, Honey comes with a typical stand (that actually clicked together properly!), a useless brush, a movie camera, and a slate board with moving clapper on top (not sure if those are the right terms but it doesn’t really matter). Both the camera and board have handles so Honey can easily hold them both.
Overall: I’m glad I’ve been selective of MH dolls because this one was worth it. I haven’t seen or heard of any other that compare to Honey so far. I’ve seen most of the MH movies when they air on regular TV and some of the webisodes so it will be interesting to eventually see Honey’s character on screen. I get the impression from her diary thing that she’s not especially likable, I could be wrong? Doesn’t spoil a great doll though.
When I was little, my Grandma made a dollhouse for me and now I finally have space to display it in my sewing/doll cave! It’s been living in my parent’s basement forever. It’s from one of those kits you can buy at hobby stores, she also made herself one and one for my little sister later on (that house is still in my parent’s basement. It was offered to me when I was packing mine up, but I don’t think Mr. Husband would have been too excited about suddenly having two dollhouses…). I’ve also got quite a bit of the furniture from Grandma’s dollhouse because some of it is really cool stuff from the 60s. The pictures are kindof grainy because I only have winter light right now, but they give a pretty good idea of everything. My furniture isn’t all the same scale, but that’s ok with me.
All the way from Russia even! My younger sister was in Vladivostok (like 50ish miles north of N. Korea, no big deal) for a semester abroad this fall and brought this beautiful doll back for me. It’s like she knows me.
Name: Anna Karenina, from the book Anna Karenina
Company: Unknown, if it says on the back of the box, there’s no way I could translate it. My sister just said the box was describing Anna Karenina.
Back Story: Haven’t read the book or seen the movies, but it sounds like a tragic love story infused with Russian aristocratic social and political culture. And being over a thousand pages, I’m unlikely to read the book any time soon…
Packaging: Anna came in a simple window box, the plastic lid is taped to the cardboard box. There is quite a bit of writing on the back of the box, but it’s in Russian, which I don’t understand.
Number of Joints: 5, Anna’s head is ball jointed so it moved very well (it also flops a little because it’s heavy). Her arms are permanently bent for her hands to fit inside the muff. Surprisingly, she stands very well on her own when positioned carefully.
Hair and Face: Anna has a pretty face, the eyes are decals (but very well applied) and the lips and eye brows appear to be painted. Her hair is a curly, dark brown wig and is pulled up into a sort of bun. She has a pill box style had attached to her head also.
Clothing: Anna wears a non-removable green dress with white fur trim and printed white detailing. The fabric feels a little cheap but I don’t think this was a very expensive doll either (she cost my sister 500 rubles, which converts to about $15). My sister said all the Anna Karenina dolls available when she bought this one were wearing outfits described by Tolstoy in the book, including this one.
Accessories: None really, the fur muff and hat at attached to her in some way or another and her shoes are painted on.
Overall: Anna is a very neat little doll, and extra special because she came all the way from Russia with my sister!