Scarecrows have been around for hundreds of years and are a most basic element of crop farming. In pop culture a scarecrow has come to be known for a few things:

1. Batman’s enemy, Dr. Jonathan Crane dawns the outfit of a Scarecrow.
2. There were a series of C-Level slasher movies in the late 90’s-early 2000’s with a scarecrow as the lead killer…
3. And then there are the Scarecrows in Doctor Who.


There have actually been a few scarecrows in Doctor Who lore, but these figures from Character Options come to us from the Family of Blood saga in which the Family of Blood themselves animate scarecrows to do their evil bidding. The plot is one that some Who fans are mixed about as the Doctor becomes human to hide from the Family, only to eventually show that he didn’t really have to hide from them at all. I quite liked the story but up until recently haven’t bothered to get any scarecrows. As an admitted compulsive army builder I knew it would only be a short amount of time before I tracked down some scarecrows for myself. Today I’m looking at two of the several scarecrow variants, the regular Scarecrow and the “blue tie” Variant.

Packaging:
Although I refer to these two figures by different names, all the Scarecrow variants are just referred to as “Scarecrow”. Don’t look for a package that says a different name, because the names used are all the same. There is also another Scarecrow that is wearing a blue shirt, but he too is just known as Scarecrow.


The packages are basic bubble cards but as I’ve mentioned in the past I am a fan of the shape of the bubble. It’s done in the style of the Tardis and looks quite good. It also stands out from other packages and I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a neater shaped bubble.


As you can see the front of the package is almost identical for both figures with only the actual figure inside being different. This can be confusing when ordering online, but I have found that most online retailers do tell you which Scarecrow variant they are selling.


The back is pretty basic showing off the other figures in the series. I do like the colorful look of the back of the package, but it’d be nice if they told us about the character himself. Instead you have to watch the TV show or make up your own backstory.


One of the things I really wanted to highlight is the cool artwork behind the Tardis shell on the inner card. It’s a minor thing, but it’s full of cool space spirals and such that help raise the card art from being just minor to fairly neat. This is on most all the packages, so it’s not super exciting but it is pretty cool the first few times you see it.

Articulation:
One of the things I love about Character Options’ Doctor Who line is that the figures are always evolving. Some earlier figures have minimal articulation while later ones employ more. The Scarecrow is sort of the middle where he’s got plenty of articulation but doesn’t have the bicep swivel that some later figures have.


There are plenty of joints here and both figures have the exact same range of movement. The head is a separate piece even though it doesn’t look like it, so the cut is there to give him some extra range of motion. His hands might have a cut on them, but I can’t seem to get them to turn. The “stuffing” may be impeding it or it may just not have any cut at all.


The articulation is basic but all very useful. Character Options does a good job blending between useful articulation and sculpting. The sculpt is never really broken up by the articulation, especially on these scarecrows. The added feet swivel is quite nice too. Ball jointed shoulders wouldn’t hurt but I understand leaving them out.

Sculpt:
Through the years we’ve gotten a handful of different Scarecrow figures in different lines. I quite like the Four Horsemen’s Batman Scarecrow, but these Scarecrows from Character Options might be my all time favorite. Their design is simple, scary and yet faithful to the Doctor Who program.


In the show the Scarecrows had a pretty creepy look and definitely one scarier than the slasher flick with the same name. Each Scarecrow looked dead and empty and that’s fulfilled here in the figure. The figures remind me of my favorite incarnation of Batman’s Scarecrow, which is how he appeared in the FIRST episode he was in during the Batman The Animated Series run. Later incarnations during the show I felt looked too hokey.


You might think that since these are two seemingly identical figures that they use the same sculpt. That’s actually not true. While their body sculpt is the same, their head sculpt as well as the sculpt of their tie and top of their shirt are different. It’s not super noticeable at first, but the more you look at it the more it becomes apparent. Their heads have quite different shapes. As an army builder, I can really appreciate these subtle differences.


The “blue tie” version also has a different paint scheme overall. It’s not super noticeable in every light, but his outfit has much more red in it. It’s more of a dark maroon, whereas the other outfit is a pretty basic brown. It’s nice to have different colors in the Scarecrow and when you factor in the other blue version of this figure you can have a nice little army of different Scarecrows.

Accessories:
Like most Doctor Who figures, this guy is short on accessories. By that I mean, neither version comes with anything. That’s definitely a bummer as these guys would look killer with some crosses to hang them on or a sickle. However none of them really used much in the TV show so I understand the reason for leaving it out. But if you have a spare pitchfork, these guys could use it.

Additional Notes:
As I said before, I’m a big fan of army builders and while I love it when everyone has one identical look, for something like the Scarecrows it’s really better to have some diversity. If you don’t army build, you could still buy all three versions of the Scarecrows and pretend they are the Family of Blood.


Whether you liked the episodes that these guys came from or not (I happened to like them and the Master’s return that the arc set up) you have to appreciate the hard work in making these figures that CO has done. These are some of the finest Scarecrows ever made for any line. There aren’t a ton of Scarecrow figures out there, but these are definitely generic enough to fill any void. Perfect for Batman’s new Dark Knight line and way better than the figure they sell in that line as the Scarecrow.

Value:
I didn’t list a price on these guys up top because every store seems to have these fellas at a different price. On average you’ll pay about $7-$10 here in the US for these guys. That’s not a bad price at all because these are quality figures. I still find that the Doctor Who figure line is one of the best quality figure lines on the market anywhere, but your mileage may vary. These guys have an added value in that they could be used for lots of different Scarecrows and not just the ones from this particular story arc that they are intended.


Score Recap:
Packaging – 7
Sculpting – 8
Articulation – 7
Accessories – Nothing
Value – 8
Overall – 7.5 out of 10


Both of these versions of Scarecrows are not must haves nor are they incredible figures. Instead they are well made, good and logical variants. For army builders they are a worthy addition to your cannon fodder and for Who enthusiasts they make great additions to the collection. Character Options could have cheaped out and simply repainted the figure but instead they gave it just enough to be unique. I quite like these.

Leave a Reply