Time for more Simpsons catch up. This round, it is another series of NECA's Greatest Guest Stars line that has been collecting
dust in my dining room waiting for me to write this review. As with the previous series, this one provides us with an
interesting mix of celecbrities who have shown up in the show over the years. This series includes Buzz Aldrin, Wierd Al, Tom
Jones, Elvis Costello and all five members of Aerosmith as well as versions of Otto, Homer and Marge. That's a nice mix of characters,
but it does make for a very large series of figures, the largest one yet at twelve different figures. So lets not waste time
talking and get on to the review.
Packaging - 5/10Series Four uses the same package design as the previous three series. It's simple, but the back side provides all of the information about the character and their appearance in the show.
Sculpting - 7/10The sculpting for all of the figures in the series is very well done. The only complaint I have is that while most of the figures are sculpted with their feet spaced wide enough apart to provide a solid base of support. But that isn't true of Marge and Elvis Costello. I can understand that of Marge given the limitations of her dress. But Costello has no reason for being sculpted with his feet next together.
Paint - Homer & Steven Tyler 9/10, others 8/10The paint work for all of the figures is well done. There are very minor stray marks here or there, but nothing that you would notice without looking closely. I'm particularly impressed with Homer and Steven Tyler who both have more intricate designs on their clothing which would have been fairly easy to mess up.
Articulation - 4/10As with the previous figures in the line, all twelve figures here have four rotating joints: neck, shoulders and waist. The articulation doesn't allow you to do much beyond minor adjustments to the same basic pose. On the plus side, the articulation is all fairly tight to hold poses well.
Accessories - Buzz 2/10, Marge, Tom Jones & Joe Perry 4/10, Steven Tyler 5/10, Elvis Costello 7/10, others 6/10This series is the first to include accessories with every figure. Buzz Aldrin comes with a removable, clear face plate. A removable helmet would have been better. Tom Jones comes with a microphone. Marge comes with a stand and a hard hat. Joe Perry comes with a pair of drumsticks which are removable. All are fairly simple with no real paint detail. But it is nice that no one has to go empty handed. Steven Tyler comes with a microphone in a mic stand, complete with a scarf wrapped around it. More than half of the figures in the series come with instruments. The guitars all look great. And as with previous figures, they are removable and plug into each figure's back. The one exception is Elvis Costello. His arms are positioned to hold the neck of his guitar but not hold it as if he is playing it. They sort of make up for this by giving him a removable hat and glasses as well. Though, to be honest, I prefer the non-removable glasses since they won't fall off and get lost.
Value - 4/10NECA's Simpsons figures sell for $12 each. That still seems like a very steep price for realitivly simple figures with only four points of articulation. It is even worse when they are releasing figures a dozen at a time. The one saving grace is that this is the type of line where you can pick or choose which figures you want and pass on the others.
Happy Hunting:The NECA Simpsons line isn't carried in many stores. The only major retailer carrying the line seems to be Toys R Us, which is where I bought my figures. They still have a couple of the figures listed on their web site. And they still have a few at the local store. The series is also available online from several specialty stores such as Big Bad Toy Store and Entertainment Earth.