Doc Savage mini-review

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Rann's picture
Joined: 2012-01-04

I read that back in the early 60s some Hollywood visionary got the idea of a Doc Savage movie...with Chuck Connors starring as Doc, the role he was meant to play, but never got a chance. At one time Arnold was in line to fill the Doc's shoes on the silver screen...thank goodness he ran for Governor instead! And of course, we all remember Ron Ely's odd Doc movie...George Pal's last film. Ron's wig looked more like cotton than hair, and his prominent belt buckle was labelled "Doc Savage" in case he forgot his name.

Almost 2 years ago I read that GoHero was planning a "deluxe" set, including both the Golden (pulps) & Silver (paperbacks) Age 12" Doc figure. Even though I had to pay in full, in advance(!), I had already purchased GoHero's previous Buck Rogers & The Shadow, so I had some confidence in the eventual product...which arrived in the mail last week. Here is my take...

The two head sculpts are excellent. Most are not familiar with the pulp magazine portrayal of Doc, but this likeness seemed spot on to me. The paperback Doc is the one most might be familiar with. Despite his oddly exaggerated widow's peak, the covers of these Doc Savage paperbacks, featuring Doc in his ubiquitous ripped shirt & jodhpurs, sold these books to a new generation or two of Doc Savage fans. This paperback Doc head sculpt was also excellent...better looking than the prototype pix I saw, pre-release.

The set also includes one body, one ripped shirt, one non-ripped shirt, jodhpurs, boots, guns & holsters.

The guns are all diecast: One Luger (with flimsy holster), two ray guns (no holsters), and Steranko's vision of Doc's rather silly Supermachine Pistol. This was more like an Uzi, with multiple clips that held different kinds of (mostly, non-lethal) bullets. The gun can be disassembled into its component parts, in fact...too easily disassembled...I had to glue mine together (and fashioned a sling for it).

The worst costume bit would have to be Doc's babyfied leather boots with zippers up the back of each. I quickly replaced these with more realistic brown leather boots.

However, the most disappointing thing about these Doc figures would have to be the base figure GoHero selected. Sadly, these elbows seem to have been fashioned to accommodate double-joints. However, since the elbows turned out to be only single-joints, the placement of the elbow joint on Doc's arms is off by about half an inch! This means that if his elbows are bent AT ALL, Doc's forearms seem freakishly long and his bicep way too short. This alone would have ruined this figure for me...

I did, however, forecast this oversight, and substituted a Hot Toys base figure. (Probably the one used for the Star-Spangled Cap figure.) I also considered one of those recent bodies with most articulation points concealed by a rubber skin. Although this idea has come a long way, the skin tone of these bodies didn't seem to match the skin tone of either Doc head.

My biggest beef with these newer sixth scale bodies involves the way the heads are connected to the necks. I much preferred the head/neck connector design Dragon uses. It's easier to find adaptors that facilitate mixing/matching different headsculpts. The Dragon heads/necks also seem to allow for a far greater range of motion & poseability. I'm also not wild about the fragile-looking ankle joints...

At any rate, if you get a chance to purchase JUST the Doc heads & JUST the Steranko pistol design, you should be able to locate a better base figure, clothing & accessories than the ones GoHero has included in the Doc set.

I do appreciate the fine figures GoHero is producing, which seem to get better & better. They have a Steve Reeves Hercules figure coming out (with rubber skin body) that I may have to order, as well...