Saturday, May 2, 2015

Playmates' Classic Star Trek Bridge Set (1993)


Playmates began releasing Star Trek: The Next Generation action figures in 1992.  After a year of success with the Next Generation figures, they expanded their reach in to other TV and movie figures from the Star Trek universe.  When they released their first figures for the classic 1960s TV series, they did it in a big way, with a box set featuring all seven of the main Enterprise crew members and a cardboard diorama of the Enterprise bridge.  For a Classic Star Trek fan, this gave you an instant collection and display piece in one box, making a must-have item for any original series Star Trek toy collector

Read all about it and see my photos after the break...





The Enterprise Crew

The set comes with 4.5 inch action figures of Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Dr. Mcoy, Lt. Uhura, Mr. Scott, Ensign Chekov, and Lt. Sulu.  Also included are a phaser, communicator, and action figure stand for each figure, as well as the cardboard Enterprise diorama.  The figure are all very nicely painted and sculpted, and are instantly recognizable as their characters and the actors who played them.  Each figure has a very decent 12 points of articulation. A few years later Playmates would also issue individual Nurse Chapel and Yeoman Rand figures, so you might want to pick them up as well to supplement your crew. 

"Set your phasers to stun!"

Spock and Uhura with their Communicators

The phasers and communicators are both sculpted nicely.  They are molded in black and have silver and gold paint details.  This is a nice bonus because most Playmates accessories are just molded in a single, often brightly colored plastic with no paint applications.  So these pieces look really nice.  Unfortunately, even though there is one phaser and communicator for each figure, not every figure has their hands sculpted properly to actually use them!  Mr. Scott can hold a phaser in his left hand.  Sulu and Chekov can hold phasers in both their right and left hands, so if you need any characters to get into any John Woo style two handed firefights, they are your guys.  Mr. Spock and Lt. Uhura can both hold a communicator.  Kirk and McCoy can't hold anything.  So while the phasers and communicators look nice, the actual play value for them is limited since most of the hands on the figures can't hold them.

Phasers Detail

Action Figure Stands

The figures each come with an action figure stand shaped like the Starfleet insignia.  The stands are marked with an emblem for either Command, Operations or Sciences, corresponding to the emblem worn by each action figure, which is a nice touch.  The figures stand nicely without the stands, but the stands are probably a good idea if they figures are going to be standing on a shelf for a long period of time, or if you want to pose them in a off-balanced position.

Cardboard Enterprise Bridge Diorama

The cardboard diorama is a lot of fun.  It's a great piece for displaying the figures.  The one I have was kind of warped, and not fitting together perfectly.  I reinforced the pieces with some glue and tape, but it's still not perfect.  I bought this set off of ebay in the original box, but the box was really beat up, so I'm not sure if my diorama just got bent out of shape, or if they were all a little bit off.  The Captain's chair is a bit oversized, and the figures are not articulated to sit in a chair (their legs bend out at an angle), so while Kirk can sit in the chair, it looks a bit awkward.

Kirk in the Captain's Chair
As a group the Playmates Classic Star Trek figures are probably my favorite representations of these characters in toy forms.  Their have been a variety of Original Series Star Trek figures over the years.  Mego had 8 inch cloth outfit figures in the 1970s, and those have a very strong nostalgia value for me, as I remember them from when I was really young.  Art Asylum and Diamond Direct have done some really nice modern style figures with realistically detailed sculpts.  But the Playmates figures have a really strong "toy appeal" for me.  They are just really fun to look at and play with.  They aren't super realistic, but they are still instantly recognizable, and they did a pretty wide variety of crew members, aliens, and interesting variants.  Plus they are really affordable, as they are at the point were they are old, but not quite "vintage."  As a result you can find most of these figures for really good prices.  So it's a really nice line to collect if you are a Star Trek fan.  

Spock, Kirk, and McCoy

The Crew

I've got some more posts I'm working on with some Playmates Classic Star Trek aliens, as well as a look at the one vehicle Playmates made for this line, the Galileo Shutllecraft.  I've also got some Mego and Diamond figures coming up as well.  But for my next post, I'll be going from Star Trek to Star Wars...  look for that on May 4th!

Kirk

Spock

Uhura

Scotty

Bones

Sulu

Chekov

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