8 Inch Scale
Field Major Styre of the Sontaran G3 Military Assessment Survey is a character in the infamous 4th Doctor adventure, The Sontaran Experiment. It was a rather unique story for Doctor Who at the time, as it was shot entirely on location and mostly featured Styre and his little “Epcot Center” spaceship. In the serial, Styre is experimenting on astronauts, at least until he runs into the Doctor.
BifBangPow presented this figure as one of the first villians in their “Re-Mego” 8 inch line. Often this figure is sold in a “2 pack” with the 4th Doctor. Both figures come single carded and aren’t a real 2 pack, they’re just simply bundled together for sales. Apparently ol’ Styre isn’t as hot of a seller, despite more or less being an army builder since most Sontarans look the same anyway.
So is this figure worth picking up in bulk? He has some awesome pros and a few disappointing elements as well. We break down the whole Sontaran, after the cut.
BifBangPow have done a nice job on the packaging, with a certain brightness that makes it stand out on the shelf. At the same time, there’s a very retro Doctor Who feel to this package and it certainly isn’t out of the realm in general for Mego packages either.
This card is pretty much my favorite of the modern “Mego” cards from the various companies producing them. I would have liked a little art, but I understand why they went with pictures of the figures themselves. All of Wave 1 is pictured here.
The likeness of Styre is pretty good. It doesn’t scream Styre to me necessarily, but it does scream Sontaran and that’s good enough. I mean, these guys are all supposed to more or less look the same anyway, right? But Styre’s face was a bit dirtier than this figure’s.
He also looks a tad too happy. The Sontaran mask did sort of make the actors look like they were smiling, but it’s just too apparent on this figure. It makes him look like a friendly Uncle Fester with pockmarks. Space Humpty Dumpty or something…
The head sculpt is still one of the best to come down the pike in a long time in this format, though. Even with the minor issues, the amount of sculpting here and the general size and such, just feel right. It’s a really nicely done head sculpt.
“Pay no attention to the hole in the back of my costume! It’s totally not my weak spot!”
The neck collar is equally well done. It doesn’t ride up on the costume and it even has the little Achilles’ Heel on the back. BBP did a tremendous job in that respect.
The costume is quite nice with a metallic look to it. He also has a tad bit of padding, to make him have a bit of a pot belly, as Sontarans tend to be a bit pudgy. The hands and head are both painted in a sort of cream-yellow color, which is accurate enough.
The whole thing looks nice enough… At least from the front. The back is fastened with velcro, but the big issue is the pants of the jumpsuit. They just aren’t long enough and it ends up looking like Styre is wearing Capri pants. It’s just odd.
Further complicating things, the Doc Mego/EMCE body underneath isn’t painted to match the skin. Which means those legs look really off since they’re a different color than the head and hands. The pants can be pulled down, but they tend to ride back up rather easily. I have no idea why they cut the material so short.
Thankfully he looks great from the front because of the boots. As best I can tell, these are reused (at least in terms of sculpt, not mold) from the Mego Knights line, but they work perfectly for the Sontaran.
Mego and Mego clones tend to have a decent amount of articulation. The one area that they’re really lacking is a swivel joint for the arm. Of course, ball joined heads and thigh swivels would help as well. What you’re left with is a cut neck, some rubber band ball joint shoulders and legs, as well as swivel hinge wrists, hinge knees, elbows and ankles.
No complaints from me in general, but he does seem strung a little tight. I’ve noticed that in a lot of EMCE figures lately. I didn’t seem to have the issue with the older Star Trek lines, but maybe there’s some major differences with the runs being put together by the BBP crew.
These “Retro cloth” figures need accessories to help justify their price point, in my view. Styre does quite well in that regard.
Most importantly, he comes with his helmet. Not only is it removable, but it also snaps on and off without any issue. That’s certainly an improvement over the old Modern 5 Inch Sontaran figure from Character Options.
You also get his gun deal, which is nicely painted and colorful.
Styre also gets some sort of communication device… Or something. I can’t recall if this was spelled out in the show or not. Maybe it was part of the stuff he was using to do hallucinogenic studies. Whatever the case, it’s a neat accessory that unplugs from his belt and has really nicely painted details.
$20 for a single figure in today’s toy market used to seem like insanity, but now it’s practically the going rate. I generally think these figures aren’t always the greatest value, but Styre is one of the better values I’ve found in the Re-Mego scene.
Packaging – 9
Sculpting – 8
Paint – 8
Articulation – 9
Accessories – Helmet, Space Gun, Transmat Device
Value – 8
Overall – 9 out of 10
I actually think Styre’s just as good, if not better than the BBP 4th Doctor. My only real complaint is that the painted elements on the hands do chip some and the pants just aren’t proper length. It’s not big enough of an issue to be a deal breaker, but it’s a tad frustrating.
Still, this is arguably the best Mego inspired line on the mass market today. BifBangPow have done a really nice job with these figures. They feel like they’re right out of the 70′s, but also can stand toe to toe with a lot of the modern toys of today.