Night Gathers, And Now My Review Begins
He is a watcher on the walls. He is a shield that guards the realms of men. He is part of the FUNKO Legacy Collection. He pledges his life and honor to the Shelf’s Watch, for this review and all the reviews to come. The first figures from the FUNKO Legacy Collection – Game of Thrones have finally found their way north of the border. Today, we’ll be taking a look at Jon Snow, who according to some, knows nothing.
Funko is taking their first steps into the world of super articulated 6” action figures with this new series. To debut this format with such popular franchise is certainly a risk for the company, so let’s see how they did with Ned’s bastard.
FUNKO has created a very visually pleasing package for this series. Each figure and its accessories are fully visible in the window box. The packaging reflects the colours of the house each figure belongs to and features the appropriate house sigil as well. The back of the box features a character shot from the TV series as well as a list of the other figures available in series one. These characters have such interesting and rich stories; it would have been nice to see a brief character summary included on the back. I don’t know if it’s the size, shape or weight of the box, but to me it felt like I was picking up a book when I grabbed this off of the shelf. The overall design is simple yet strong, and executed very nicely.
With the Legacy Collection, Funko is looking to produce far more realistic versions of characters than what they have produced within the POP! line of figures. With Game of Thrones being the first line out of the gate, it’s somewhat understandable that there are some missteps.
From the neck down little Jon (*snicker*) is a pretty good representation of the TV show character. Jon is wearing the Night’s Watch gear that the black brothers wear while at Castle Black. The cloak is sculpted very nicely and has a good fur look to it, and the buckles and straps on the mid-section are excellent. The scabbard and belt around the waist have some quality detailing as well. The high point of the sculpt isn’t actually on the figure. It’s Jon’s sword, Longclaw, that really shines. The Valyrian steel bastard sword is recreated with everything from the real version, from the etching on the blade to the re-worked wolf’s head pommel. The sword is made of a fairly rigid plastic which resists bending.
The big issue is the face; the sculpt barely resembles Kit Harrington. The features are similar, but from no angle do you look at it and say “Oh, it’s Jon Snow”. Jon has the weakest likeness compared to the other two figures I’ve seen in the wild (Tyrion and Dany). Series 2 seems to have really strong actor likeness throughout the whole line, so Funko is improving quickly. Also, the figure suffers from a lack of bulk in terms of overall size. Jon Snow isn’t as large as The Mountain, but when he’s wearing his blacks he appears larger because of all of those layers. The figure looks undersized across the shoulders given what the character is wearing. This also seems to be addressed in Series 2; Rob Stark in particular looks much wider across the shoulders given his attire, and Drogo just looks like a monster of a man. It is wonderful to see a company show improvement almost immediately in their designs.
If this articulation were on a Marvel Legend or a NECA figure, it would be a slight letdown. I feel the community needs to keep in mind that this is the freshman attempt at such level of articulation in a 6” figure and it is very good. All of the joints are solid and the figure is very stable once posed. The double knee joints, ball joint mid-section, and a neck that is similar to an S.H.Figuarts figure are all fantastic. The lack of a hinged wrist is sorely missed and the ball-socket/hinged elbows do take some adjusting to get into the right position. The ball joint hips offer the ability to pose the toy in some nice wide sword-fighting stances and the soft rubber surcoat doesn’t restrict movement at all. The figure is curiously missing both a thigh-cut and a calf-cut joint. Either of these wouldn’t have impacted the sculpt and would have increased poseability. While the shoulders are a nice ball-socket/hinge, the range of motion is restricted. The soft rubber cloak allows for the arms to spread wide, but inward movement is hindered by the by torso. This can limit the type of poses that can be achieved. Adding a bicep-cut joint may resolve the issue but it’s unclear if any of the figures from Series 2 feature this addition. Overall, this is good articulation and considering it is first foray into this type of figure, it’s all the better.
Guess what? The figure is mostly black! Done. Seriously though, there is a lot of black on this figure. The nice part is that there is some variation on the surcoat, cloak, and pants that keep the figure from looking like a lump of coal. The black on the boots and the pants blend together a tad and give the lower half a rather flat look. The belts, buckles, and straps each have small details painted on them that are applied surprisingly well. The scabbard has a nice paint job and features clean divisions between all the colours. Longclaw also features solid paint work. Black and white paint apps often bleed together, but the white on the pommel and black on the grip are well defined and solid. A word of caution: some paint wear may occur on the pommel when inserting the sword into the hands. The grip is very close together and the plastic used for the hands is quite solid. You may need to bend the grip back before getting the sword in place to avoid any paint wear. Even though the face sculpt may not be a 100% likeness of Kit Harrington, the paint on the face is nicely done. The scraggly, uneven beard is applied with some nice brush work that keeps the paint on the correct sculpted beard section. The skin tone has a certain paleness to it that works well to represent someone who was raised in the North. To offset the amount of black, some accent paint applications have been added. Slight touches of a blue and white have been added to the boots, cloak, and surcoat to create the look of snow and ice sticking to the clothes. This creates some welcome depth to the overall paint scheme. Having a few more snow and ice spots on the arms and torso would have helped sell the effect even more. You could apply as much additional detailing as you’d like with a custom paint mix and a good dry brush. Paint can make or break a figure, no matter how good the sculpt or articulation is. Jon Snow features solid paint applications that are applied cleanly and highlight a very good figure.
Jon Snow is a solid figure and a treat for Game of Thrones fans or fantasy figure collectors. While not perfect, a good design, plenty of articulation, and a well-executed paint job make this figure a great addition to your collection. Funko displays a lot of promise with these first offerings in their Legacy Collection. Not only are we getting even more Game of Thrones figures (you’ll probably be seeing more reviews too), but we’ll be seeing even more franchises in this format. The Firefly Legacy Collection is coming soon and I’m guessing we’ll see them first at SDCC. With what they have achieved already and the improvements being made, we can all look forward to years of wonderful figures from the good people at Funko.