Points of Articulation

In this issue: Why do boys’ action figures have so many more points of articulation than girls’? Also, Hellboy and Wonder Woman.


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  1. February 18, 2012 at 12:59 pm — Reply

    Wauw this was an exelent episode. Like “good times with old friends”.
    To me the perfect action figure are the 80’s line GI Joe. The near to natural hypermobility og the shoulder and hip, the more limited range of motion of the elbow and knee made for solid realistic motion. And the lack of movement af the ankel and wrist made for stability.
    Matthew had them on his “Top 5 sequels” for a good, good reason.

    Once again thank you for making the best podcasts out there.

  2. Xian
    February 18, 2012 at 5:07 pm — Reply

    I’m for more articulation… I generally dislike action figures that might as well be statutes except AS statutes. That said, durability and portability are a concern so highly articulated figures tend to be larger- like the incredible 67 points of articulation on my 18″ Spider-Man 2: The Movie figure or the 12″ 1/6th scale soldier / counter-terrorist action figures- which can make them unwieldy for kids to play with or bring anywhere. So for actual kids, the increased durability and smaller size of less poseable figures makes more sense.

    For myself and my brothers, however, we loved being able to recreate action scenes, choreography, rappelling, splash pages, etc. with more poseable figures. Being able to stand is overrated. If you’re actively playing with your toy they’re hardly ever sitting still anyways and if you really need to make them stand there’s all sorts of near invisible support stands from Japanese toy / model makers which can help your toy look like he’s doing a flying kick, etc. Those poseable figures acted as the first mannequins for us to draw from and now my brother’s a videogame character artist.

    Addressing the topic starter, I think part of the reason “girl” toys have less articulation is the same reason McFarlane toys do- girl toys are more about aesthetics and an ideal sculpt… Barbie’s PoA are all hidden, providing a beautiful smooth and naked knee instead of putting a garish seem or joint right in the middle of it… whereas “boy” toys need to be able to do and not just be.

    Regarding Flashpoint… I’m really bugged at how sloppy the whole time travel reality change was handled since it was basically a handwave for all the changes they wanted rather than anything that naturally resulted from the cause and effect of time travel. The life and death of Nora Allen would not dictate the fate of the entire DCU as it did during that period (ex: whether Abin Sur survives)… and with a premise so broken, one wonders why they even bothers to script it (heck, in the end, that’s what they did- Lady Miss Strange-Fingers Deus Ex Machina basically pushed a new universe onto us without rhyme or reason). Basically “time travel” is DC shorthand for “reality manipulation” (or I suppose, Stan Lee’s Radiation as Matthew says), which sort of exceeds the scope, theme, and history of The Flash except for in this arc (prior time jaunts relating more closely to causation) and doesn’t really give an accurate picture of the titular character’s appeal. I wonder if Flashpoint won anyone over into liking The Flash….

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