Black Box Toys BBT9006 Spectre Girl (Madeleine Swann/Lea Seydoux) Review - Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:21 pm
In the grand tradition of Bond Girls (should really say Women), Spectre featured established or rising European actresses, including Monica Bellucci and Lea Seydoux. The latter played the part of Dr Madeleine Swann, and Black Box's set purports to provide what is necessary to kitbash that character in sixth scale. With so much time having passed and so many other films having been seen, I barely remembered Spectre, but the promotional images for this set caught my attention. I ordered it even after I saw a brief review/caution by an eBay customer that the product does not match the promotional images exactly. And I am happy I did. The product is quite nice, even if it is not an exact replica of either the onscreen appearance of the character nor the promotional images; rather it is like one of those Hollywood epics that are "inspired" by a true story (or an actual piece of literature). Given that this is not a complete action figure set in the normal sense of the word, I am foregoing any ratings for the various categories.
The set comes in a basic white rectangular box. The head sculpt is carefully tucked inside a little plastic bag and an inner, smaller rectangular box within; the larger box also contains the dress and the handgun. Everything is safe and collector friendly.
In and of themselves, the sculpt of the head and the accessories (handgun and detachable box magazine) are excellent, with plenty of precise detail (including an inscription on the gun handle). Whether or not the head sculpt is a spot on likeness of actress Lea Seydoux is harder to tell. Certainly, Black Box got plenty right, including the characteristic shape of the nose and the specific curved edges of different parts of her face. While I assume it is mostly an impression caused by the paint application, it is possible that the eyes have been sculpted a little too big/open and just a little too close together. The hair is rooted and generally pretty fine. In the promotional images it was darker and I liked that look even better, but the product comes with a mid- to dark blond hair that was more accurate to the appearance on screen. The hair style is a bit longer than what we saw in the film, perhaps because of the difficulty of making it look right if it were a bit shorter. I don't know if this is an issue limited to my own set, but the hair wig has been placed in such a way that if you brush the hair back over the right ear (as seen in the film), you would end up seeing the way the wig attaches (or not quite) to the face.
Here is where things get a bit trickier. The paint job is fine and precise, which is generally a good thing. The gun and its box magazine don't look weathered, but the first bullet in the box magazine looks metal and brass-colored, and the chamber (?) looks metal and silverish-colored. The eyelashes and eyebrow hair strands are painted individually which, combined with the large eyes and eye shadow give a doll-like effect. It is the eyes that throw off the likeness, as far as I can tell. The actress rarely opens her eyes this much, and she rarely wears this much eye shadow. As a result, the likeness suffers, although the visual effect is beautiful. On the head sculpt that came with my set the eyes are painted a little misaligned, but you have to look carefully to notice.
The set comes without a body, so the articulation would depend on whatever body you use for your kitbash. I tried the head and dress on both a TBLeague/Phicen S17B and an Jiaou Doll 3.0 detachable feet KT; the head worked fine with both, but I stuck with the Jiaou body because it happened to have a fuller bust that looked better with the cut of the dress (see below). There is no restriction on any of the articulation except the degree to which the legs can spread sideways (because of the dress, wide stances would be impossible).
Depending on how you count, the figure comes with only one or two accessories: the handgun and the detachable box magazine. They are sculpted perfectly well and painted very well, perhaps too cleanly (if you like your guns weathered). But she is a neat lady dressed to kill, so we can only assume her gun would be kept in perfect condition. The box magazine can slide in and out of the gun's handle just fine, and the first bullet at the top is sculpted and painted perfectly. The slide of the gun is also articulated.
The outfit consists of a single item, the slinky white dress the character wore in the film (HERE ). While the fabric does not quite move the right way and the proportions are not quite right, it is a brave effort and conveys the general look. The dress opens and closes with a velcro section along the left seam. For the most part it works well and nearly seamlessly, but at times the seam turns and becomes more apparent, looking like the dress is about to rip open. Another problem is the way the back of the dress drapes (or rather fails to drape naturally) over the small of her back. Perhaps some water treatment might overcome this problem, but it will not work right straight out of the box.
Whatever body was used on the promotional images appeared to work better with the dress than the ones I tried. The main problem is that the high waist is a bit too low and the dress appears to be designed for a taller and larger-busted body than would have been appropriate for the character/actress. My Jiaou Doll's 3.0 KT body worked reasonably well, but it is hardly perfect for the reasons mentioned above. The taller female bodies, especially on heels, fit best; but in terms of screen accuracy it may help to leave her without the shoes (which would not really show because of the long flowing dress anyway). If you are getting this set, remember to have one of the taller and larger-busted bodies available for it; the petite and middle-busted bodies will not work well with the outfit.
In the image below she is not wearing shoes and the kitbashed James Bond uses a Soldier Story body:
Fun Factor and Overall
The set has all the fun factor that a stunningly beautiful elegant female figure could bring to your sixth-scale collection, complete with its intended compatibility with a Daniel Craig James Bond (or any other of your choice). But if you wanted a perfect representation of Madeleine Swann or of Lea Seydoux, you might be somewhat disappointed.
As always, I hope this has been useful and am curious what you think.
Things to watch out for
Not a thing, provided you know how to handle high end action figures and accessories reasonably well.
Where to buy
You can try various eBay sellers (search for Black Box and Lea Seydoux or Spectre Girl) or the following (they might still be at the preorder stage):
Cotswold Collectibles - $58
Timewalker Toys - $60
#blackbox #blackboxtoys #bbt #spectregirl #leaseydoux #female #jamesbond #007 #danielcraig #spectre #film