Topless Toy Chest: 18″ Pacific Rim Striker Eureka by NECA
I’m semi-infamous for not liking Pacific Rim much the first time I saw it. I recently gave it another try on HBO, and the same things that bugged me about it before still did. But those were all humans – I have no issue whatsoever with the designs of the giant robot Jaegers, so when NECA offered to send me one for review, I was anxious to check it out. Striker Eureka here is the Jaeger that Idris Elba took command of on a final suicide mission, so that makes it pretty much the coolest one.
Striker Eureka is the heaviest single action figure I own. I’m not kidding – my forearms and wrists actually hurt from playing with it (no, not in that way, ya pervs). It may be inappropriate for kids simply because some of them will not be able to lift it. I joke about this point a lot, but you could kill somebody with this thing.
The back of the box showcases the newest 6″-scale figures in the line, rather than the 18-inchers. Note that I don’t call this “quarter-scale,” as some mistakenly do. A six-foot human done in 18 inches is quarter-scale; a Jaeger at quarter-scale would still be bigger than your house.
The packaging resembles a Jaeger hangar, with a cityscape outside, prompting the thought that perhaps even out of the box, it’ll make a good display piece.
Ehh, not so much. The figure is so heavy it damages the cardboard behind it, and the big foam pads that keep the toy safe are more conspicuous once you remove the toy.
While collectors have long been aware of “the hairdryer trick” to loosen joints by heating, NECA is the first company I know of to explicitly instruct consumers to do it.
They’re not kidding, either. It’s quite the trick to get those wings to stay in, and will involve muscle power.
Robot figures are usually the easiest to heavily articulate, since joints are a natural part of the character’s appearance anyway. Since the point of the Jaegers is to be articulated enough to take on kaiju in no-holds-barred fights, it’s important that they be poseable, and they are. Rather than count all the points of articulation, here’s a closeup of just one key nexus – the double-ball shoulders.
Unfortunately, with great articulation comes great potential for quality control issues, and mine had a couple. On his right gauntlet, the upper scissor-blade is stuck in place. I tried heating it, but it looks like glue got in the joint by mistake, and it will not budge – attempts to try came close to snapping it.
He also suffers from a loose left knee and a loose right elbow. The latter’s not a huge deal, but the former makes him a very dangerous threat for shelf-diving. Even with the metal doll stands I use for all my other NECA 18-inchers, he’s still top heavy and easily unbalanced, so I recommend both a doll stand and leaning him against something.
I just realized there’s no real reason to call it “he” – the robot has no genitalia, and its puffy chest could conceivably be a female proportion. Gender-neutral pronouns may be best. At any rate, said chest has the least articulation of all the body parts, to allow for a light-up feature.
The lights are perfect – their pinkish-purple and blue combo really recreate Guillermo del Toro’s lighting scheme in the movie.
Maybe it is a “he” after all…NOW WE HAVE A NEW CHALLENGER!
Grimlock’s got him on the ground…BAH GAWD KING, HE’S STRIKER-ING UP!
“Haha, J.R.! He Grimlock, he dead!”
Striker Eureka retails for $104.99 on Amazon – if shipping is by weight, expect to pay more than usual for that.
I figure there are exactly two demographics for this – Pacific Rim superfans who want them all, and toy collectors who like one given robot design in and of itself, and think this is the best one. For both, he’s a good value, and the sculpt is up to NECA’s highest standards. The articulation issues, though, would have me returning it if I’d paid for it – I like my figures not to be at risk for shelf-diving, and NECA seems uninclined to pursue their own custom stands at this point in time.
That said, if he breaks, it’s still in-canon – the line includes several Gipsy Danger figures in various stages of damage, including missing an arm. A little battle-breakage is okay on this guy too.