Reviewer Scott Rubin writes in with an in-depth look at what finally completes the trio of badass main characters from the Appleseed: Ex Machina CGI film which hit DVD and Blu-ray earlier this year...
Take it away Scott...
Masamune Shirow is a legend in Japan and has millions of fans thanks to his amazing work in the anime and manga industry. Among his fantastic works include the original art for Ghost in the Shell and, of course, Appleseed.
Appleseed tells the story of a post-apocalyptic world in which the high-tech city Olympus
stands a bastion of civilization. In the first modern Appleseed film
(2004) audiences were introduced to Deunan Knute and the cyborg Briareos
Hechatonchires, former freedom fighters and current members of the great
city’s ES.W.A.T. (Extra-Special Weapons and Tactics).
In 2007 came the incredible sequel Appleseed Ex Machina. Fighting a global domination plot, main characters Deunan and Knute join forces with a face both new and old: Tereus.
The civilization of Olympus flourishes in large part due to its population
of Bioroids, artificial humans bred without anger or violence. To help
combat growing global threats government officials create a prototype
“battlefield” Bioroid, Tereus. In order to create the most efficient
fighter, they use genetic material from Briareos making the Bioroid, in
essence, a clone. He is a formidable combatant, both unarmed and with the
various weapons of ES.W.A.T. Tereus looks like Briareos did before he
became a cyborg, and even begins to act like him and pursue the same
interests. This turn of events is fortunate, as he plays a major role in
saving the day with Deunan and Briareos!
In conjunction with the film’s
release last year, Hot Toys produced two amazing 1:6 scale action figures:
Deunan and Briareos. Finally, the trio is complete!
Tereus comes packaged in a truly stunning box. The first (and not the
last) thing that catches the eye is the sheer size; it’s fully 16 inches
tall, 9 wide, and 4 ½ deep! It’s a monolith of a toy box. After you get
over the shape and size and take a closer look, it’s apparent how much
attention to detail was put into it. What you see first is actually a
slip-sleeve sheathe, covered in reflective metallic decoration. Adorning
the front panel is a full-size image of Tereus, gun held at the ready (above).
The CG is crisp and bright, and the reflective background throws off
rainbows. The sides of the sleeve show the figure in full-length and
detail, with a description of the character. The back of the sleeve
displays the figure in all its glory, with multiple photographs.
Slide off the sleeve and you’ll find another impressive package, a window
box with folding front flap. There are more images of the Tereus figure
here, along with photos of Deunan and Briareos, as well as a detail shot
of the included weapons. The back panel is designed to resemble a film
poster, with Hot Toys “credits” at the bottom. Open the front panel to
see the figure inside, oddly dismembered. Clearly visible is the main
body, surrounded by the head, feet, several pairs of hands, and guns.
Pop out the pieces and you’re almost ready to go. Almost, because there’s
a bit of assembly required. First, pop on Tereus’ feet. This step caused
me a fair amount of trouble, due to the extremely tight fit of the ball
joints there. But, once I got them in everything was good. Next, slide
on the forearm armor and pop on a pair of hands. Finally, insert the long
neck piece to the ball joint deep in the chest and Tereus is ready for
Like his fellows, Tereus is 1:6 scale, standing just over 12 inches tall
in his huge boots. The Bioroid is dressed in ES.W.A.T. finery, consisting
of a bodysuit with armored plates. Also like the other Appleseed Ex
Machina figures, the suit here is made of a soft rubber that covers the
solid figure inside. For government issue, Tereus’ suit is pretty damn
cool. The limbs and chest covering accentuate the musculature of the
figure, and the armor looks cool and doesn’t get in the way. Everything
is layered nicely without looking too bulky, except a little in the
shoulders. All over the ensemble are tiny details to make the figure more
screen accurate, something that was clearly a priority for this line.
Thanks to improvements in construction and materials, Tereus does not come
with the warning included with the first two figures. His assembly is
very straightforward, and the bodysuit seems quite resilient, suffering a
full review without any noticeable wear.
Tereus’ sculpt is excellent. The bodysuit’s texture varies, with bulkier
muscles and thinner, more flexible sections around the joints. Each armor
piece, from the shoulders to the forearms and lower legs, has its own
details including indentations and other accents. Most impressive are the
tiny Olympus ES.W.A.T. badges on the upper arms (below)
Tereus wears an open
jacket/harness piece designed to carry equipment. It is decorated with
straps and connectors, and features real metal clips. The belt is the
same. The Bioroid’s head looks perfect, capturing the character’s angular
facial features, distinctive headband/ear protection, and long overhanging
hair. No detail has been left out.
The color palette of the ES.W.A.T. troops is military drab, mostly in
grays and blacks. Tereus’ bodysuit is comprised of different shades to
represent the many layers, with lighter padding over darker sections. The
armor components are black, with bright gold highlights. The harness and
belt are black, and the jacket’s accoutrements spice up the figure with
dashes of dark red. Tereus’ face and neck are a dark flesh tone, with a
reddish tinge to the lips and piercing brown eyes. The Bioroid’s hair is
black, just slightly lighter than his headband.
Articulation on Tereus and the other Appleseed Ex Machina figures is up to
Hot Toys’ amazing standards. The inner body is super-articulated, with a
ball-joint neck, ball-joint shoulders, biceps, elbows, ball-joint wrists,
torso joint, waist, ball-joint hips, thighs, knees, and ball-joint ankles.
Even with the somewhat restrictive bodysuit Tereus is fairly flexible,
capable of cool action poses. Also like the others, Tereus is clearly
built for display purposes rather than rough play.
Tereus doesn’t have a lot of accessories, but what he lacks in quantity he
makes up in quality. Included with the figure are three pairs of hands:
fists, open hands, and hands posed for holding guns. The open hands are
sculpted in soft plastic for flexibility, and have reinforced armor
plates. The hands attach to the figure by way of small ball-joints at the
ends of the arms. You’re probably best off picking the ones you like the
most and leaving them on instead of wearing down the balls by pulling them
on and off. The best part, though, are the guns.
Like Deunan, Tereus has small arms. He comes with three guns (above). The
largest is the ES.W.A.T. Rifle – HECATE STG 1002, a weapon that somewhat
resembles the real-life FN P90. The large silver pistol is the ES.W.A.T.
Hand Gun – HECATE P-08, while the smallest is a generic pistol. Each
weapon features an absolutely stunning degree of sculpted detail, down to
removable magazines in the pistols complete with a tiny (non-removable)
bullet. In addition, both the 1002 and P-08 have spring-loaded slides.
All three guns fit well into Tereus’ hands.
Also included with the figure is an Appleseed Ex Machina display stand
that matches the ones belonging to the Deunan and Briareos. At the front
is the Bioroid’s nameplate. The stand is great for holding up the weighty
figure, although he stands quite well without it.
OVERALL IMPRESSION & COST
Tereus is an awesome figure, and a great example of the high quality
products being released by Hot Toys right now. He’s not cheap, retailing
for around $150, but fans of Appleseed will find him well worth the cost.
Tereus looks like he stepped right off the screen, and he can be used to
represent either the Bioroid or Briareos before he became a cyborg! The
figure should also appeal to collectors of 1:6 military figures, and
anyone looking for a very high-quality and great looking light trooper.
Be sure to check out over 70 photos of this figure HERE!