An Exclu Review by Trevor Williams (@onesix_shooter)
I’ll preface this review by saying I’m not a regular collector of vinyl art figures. I do have a few here and there including POPs but I’m not a connoisseur by any means.
StarAce, probably most known for their 1/6th offerings including the Harry Potter line, has been producing some other scales as of late including the Defo-Real (short for Deformed Real) line of 6″ to 8″ non-articulated art vinyl collectible figures.
The style here is that of highly detailed caricatures. Some vinyl collectibles, like Funko POPs, go the route of simplification to create very stylized versions of their subjects, but with the Defo-Real line, StarAce goes for almost Hot Toys-level detail and paint on a fun-sized version of your favorite icons.
These two are available for pre-order now at your favorite retailer and should be shipping and hitting the shelves of your local shops in June 2019. Let’s take a closer look…
These being non-articulated vinyl figures, there are not many accessories aside from the figure themselves. Jason, however, comes packed with his removable mask and a separate axe piece. The deluxe version also includes a bear-trap and chain.
Pennywise does not come with any accessories but the DX version of this one will include an LED light in his mouth to simulate the “deadlights”.
Pennywise 9/10 | Jason 9/10
These figures are essentially all sculpted, so I’ll focus on the entire thing instead of just the head sculpts.
Jason actually has two looks as his iconic hockey mask is removable to reveal the scarred, bloodied visage behind it. The mask is the original appearance (Part 3), fully intact one with three chevrons. It has just the right amount of exaggeration in the straps and “rivets” around the mouth area.
The unmasked head sculpt is incredibly detailed. The scared skin looks great and the hair looks “stringy” and really gives the impression of individual hairs. It’s a perfect balance of realism and exaggerated features. The hands have some nice details as well with visible veins and some skin texture. The body is good too if a little less detailed, but there are nice, natural looking folds in the jacket, shirt, and pants.
This Pennywise is based on the very memorable, nightmare-inducing deadlights scene with Beverly. Mouth agape with razor sharp teeth (an these are actually pretty sharp in places.)
And what an insane piece of work this mouth is! A slight seam in the upper mouth reveals it was molded in at least two pieces, but it’s not noticeable. Overall, it’s a fantastic piece of head sculpture with detailed hair, skin texture, and wrinkles. But those teeth!
Pennywise’s outfit looks pretty good too, the ruffled collar and the costume’s details look authentic and even the red, oversized koosh-like ball-buttons have a realistic texture. The pose of the body is a little bland. He was holding Beverly by the throat in this scene so I thought at first having his arms out front with gripping hands might have worked better, but it also could have ended up looking like he wanted a hug.
Pennywise 10/10 | Jason 10/10
The paintwork on these is excellent. In some ways, especially the paint on the heads, it approaches the kind of paint you’d find on a more expensive 1/6th scale figure.
The skin on Jason is a very realistic dead-ish flesh tone with raw, reddish areas around the eyes and scars. The mouth is also very raw – and wet – looking with very nicely detailed teeth. It’s all perfectly applied with no spillover or splotchy, random-looking areas – it all looks carefully and deliberately done. The eyes are amazing! His normal left eye is very well done (might be water applied instead of hand-painted?) and the dead, right eye has a perfect, cloudy appearance and even a hint of the underlying pupil.
The axe and machete look very real, again just short of a Hot Toys level paint job. The mask itself looks great, with authentic weathering and chipping on the chevrons. Even the inside of the mask, which they could have easily left with just a base coat, has a great well-worn look. The body is well done too, if slightly more simplistic, with some of the painted highlights being a bit exaggerated to stand out.
Pennywise looks equally good even if the overall skin is less-detailed due to the white makeup and lack of eyes. There are still lots of great tones in the makeup that again gives it a very realistic look. The equivalent of Jason’s amazing eyes here is that mind-blowing mouth of teeth. When I first opened it I couldn’t believe the detail! I’m assuming they used a paint die/template which masks off parts of an item to allow a fast paint application but with the sheer volume of teeth here – well, it’s impressive! And it looks great. Every tooth is perfectly painted and visible against the red-pink, wet-looking tissue of the mouth interior and gums.
Pennywise 9/10 | Jason 8/10
There generally are not a lot of “features” to a vinyl collectible/statue, but StarAce has added a little fun factor to both figures here.
Jasons accessories include his trademark mask, which as mentioned is removable. He also comes with his well-used machete and an axe. The axe is removable and it actually comes not inserted in his right gripping hand. Getting this into his hand is a bit of a challenge, and I was afraid of removing some paint but by slightly wiggling it up and down it will go in and be fairly tightly held.
Two things I wish had been done here; it would have been nice if the machete was removable as well and while these are not meant to be articulated figures, a simple shoulder rotation – even if it was just on the right, axe-holding arm would have been a nice feature. If you don’t want him holding the ax (and again, it’s a separate piece) he looks kind of odd with his arm and open grip in the air. The axe looks great though so I’m not sure why you wouldn’t want to display it.
While the Pennywise I received is a prototype, the final version will include a light-up feature within the mouth (simulated in the image below). There will be a slightly less expensive non-lighted version as well. I’m told the switch and battery compartment will be in the back on the underside of the head (which I assume will be a small, watch/button-style battery). Assuming it’s nice and bright, this should look very cool with all the incredibly detailed teeth in the sculpt!
Some shoulder rotation would be nice on Pennywise too, although the design of his clothing; the ruffled collar and puffed shoulders, probably wouldn’t allow much. Also, unlike Jason, I’m not sure if a much better pose could be gained with shoulder rotation here.
Pennywise 8/10 | Jason 8/10
If I have one reservation about these figures, it’s the price. Jason (the standard version I’m reviewing) retails for $55 and Pennywise with the light feature goes for $65. Take this complaint with a grain of salt as I’m not a big vinyl collector. When comparing them apples-to-apples to similar offerings from a company like Kid Robot though – whose 7″ vinyl figures start at around that same price – they hold their own. Personally, I think those are overpriced a bit as well, though, but again, I’m not a big vinyl collector.
While I’m not a huge Ft13th fan (I do love IT though), I did weigh my interest in these specific subjects against my desire for one of the other Defo-Real figures that I’d be more personally interested in such as their Godzilla, Nazgul or 2001 Astronaut. Would I be willing to pay $50-$70 for something I’m a huge fan of? Maybe. Probably. That said, I’d be more inclined to get a few to several of these if they were, say $10 less. But listen, there’s a lot of nice detail here in the paint and sculpt to be sure. A lot of hand paint work goes into these which of course adds to the cost of production.
Pennywise 8/10 | Jason 9/10
If you are a big fan of any of the franchises they offer in this series they are a cool addition to a collection. The design is interesting and the paint is outstanding. There aren’t too many comparable figures out there that I’ve seen for these particular characters and they’d look great on a shelf by themselves, grouped with others, or with differently scaled versions of the same character.
For more from across the toy community, stay tuned to Exclu
Trevor is a New York-based Creative Director and owner of The Brand Counselors. He has a growing collection of 150ish 1:6th scale stock and custom figures (and more and more Lego sets). Toy photography melds his childhood dreams of comic book illustration and film directing with his design talents and – in his mind – justifies the ridiculous money he spends on these things. When he’s not shooting, he enjoys kayaking, catching up on good TV and building seemingly endless custom figures.
Last modified: May 10, 2019