7" Reservoir Dogs:
The various action figures based on the Quentin Tarantino film Reservoir Dogs have had an interesting year. Both Mezco Toyz and Palisades showed their "Res Dogs" at Toy Fair 2001, with Mezco's figures being seven inches and Palisades' being a larger twelve inch scale. When we asked about a Mr. Brown figure, the answer was that Quentin Tarantino did not want to be made into an action figure.
Shortly after Toy Fair, after the prototypes were shown, he changed his mind, he wanted in. Due to a decision to create new head sculpts, Palisades was able to work Quentin Tarantino as Mr. Brown into their first series of 12-inch figures.
Mezco initially planned for Mr. Brown to be part of a box set with a re-issue of Series One (Mr. White, Mr. Blonde, Mr. Orange and Mr. Pink) for the tenth anniversary DVD-release of the film. It was then decided that this wasn't fair to collectors who would have previously purchased Series One, so "something else" needed to be done with Mr. Brown.
ClubMez, Mezco's collector club, was the solution: Mr. Brown would be an exclusive figure to ClubMez. By late Fall of 2001, Mr. Brown was no longer an exclusive to ClubMez, but was an exclusive to Marz Distribution. Marz is not a retailer, but is a distributor (like Diamond Comics or Georgia Music), effectively making Mr. Brown a "shared exclusive" to the customers (online retailers) of Marz. Whew. And you thought that some of Tarantino's film plots were complicated.
Please keep in mind, this film has an adult nature, and as such, these figures are marketed towards "mature collectors" and are clearly labeled as such. You may want to think twice before getting these for younger children due to the nature of these toys. They are for ages 15 and up.
Let's take a step back for a moment: Aside from size, what is the difference between the Mezco figures and the Palisades figures? Palisades has a focus on the characters, while Mezco is approaching the license with a focus on the scenes, so that there will be some characters produced more than once. After Series One, which recreated the "walking scene" from the opening credits, Mezco produced a box set of Mr. Orange and Mr. White, repainted and bloody, to recreate the scene in which they enter the warehouse. An upcoming box set for 2002 pairs Mr. Blonde with Marvin Nash, also inside the warehouse.
Three more things of note for ResDogs collectors, just to make things even more complicated: (1) Medicom will be producing two sets of Kubricks block figures based on Reservoir Dogs, adding a third size/scale into the mix. (2) Palisades pulled their 12-inch Marvin Nash figure from stores when controversy erupted over him being a beaten cop in a post-9/11 world. (3) Actor Steve Buscemi requested that his Mr. Pink action figure NOT come with a gun. What do a third size of figures, overreaction in the marketplace, and a confusing actor have to do with Mr. Brown? Nothing, but it all adds to the drama of these toys and makes things more interesting for collectors.
Mr. Brown is an add-on to Series One: each figure comes with a small circular stand for posing the figure by itself, and also a rectangular stand which interlocks with the other characters' stands so that the walking scene diorama is formed. Mr. White's stand has an extra slot on the unused side, so that Mr. Brown may be added later.
Mr. Brown is a limited edition of 3,000 figures, and comes carded on the same packaging as Series One. He's not mentioned on the cardback, but does have an insert in the bubble to identify and describe him.
Good news and bad news... the "bad" news is that Mr. Brown's body is the same as Mr. Orange's body. The "good" news is that of the five characters, there are still four different bodies. Each body has 20 points of articulation. - neck, shoulders, bicep twists, elbows, wrists, waist, hips, mid-thigh twists, knees, mid-calf twists, and unique shoulder joints which work like ball-joints but look better. The shoulder joint has one portion which allows the arms to move backwards and forwards, and another portion which is a cut shoulder joint to allow the arms to move up and down.
Quentin Tarantino apparently doesn't mind guns the way Steve Buscemi does, because Mr. Brown comes packed with two guns (and automatic and a revolver), an extra right hand, cool sunglasses, and the script for the movie. Not a real script, but a Mr. Brown-sized script - he can hold it. (The extra hand allows him to hold one of his guns.) While the character Mr. Brown would not actually have a script of the movie he is in, this is a clever accessory for this figure to have, because Quentin Tarantino wrote and directed the film. Get your magnifying glass out if you open this figure: the script is not just a chunk of plastic, it is a tiny paper booklet with most of the first scene printed inside. (Certain words have been replaced with less-offensive synonyms, a responsible nod to that the fact that this is a toy, even if not one marketed to kids.)
Click to see more pictures of Mr. Brown
|Where to buy Mr. Brown: This figure is a Marz Distribution exclusive, so it is only available via retailers which purchase inventory from Marz, including at RTM sponser AisleSniper.com. He retails for $12.99 to $15.99 USD, depending on card condition. (The Mr. Brown figure shown in this Spotlight is courtesy of AisleSniper.com.)
Additionally, the four figures in Series One may be also be purchased at AisleSniper.com, or at stores such as Electronics Boutique, Musicland, Suncoast, Toys'R'Us, comic book stores and a variety of online toy stores, including Amazon.com.
Our apologies if reading about Mr. Brown and Reservoir Dogs has made that song run through your head. You know, that catchy one from the "walking scene" from the opening of the film, while the credits are shown. The song is Little Green Bag. Here are the lyrics, that should help. Now, if you'll excuse us, we have to go listen to it about 50 times to get it out of our own heads. ("Out of sight in the night...")
Reservoir Dogs Links