Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Guest Toy Review: Movie Maniacs series 3 Blair Monster (The Thing) By Black Arbor

Greetings, fellow Phantomaniacs! Long time lurker, first time (but hopefully not the last time) guest reviewer! Today we’re going to be doing something a little different: See, me and Phantom share a common bond over our love of John Carpenter’s cinematic masterpiece, “The Thing”, so today I figured we’d embark on a trip back to the early 2000’s, and take a look at a slightly older figure, the “Blair Monster” from series 3 of McFarlane’s Movie Maniacs. Everybody ready? Then let’s hop to it!

(side-bar: for anyone who hasn’t seen The Thing yet, this review will have light spoilers. Also, log off your computer immediately, go to your nearest Barnes and Noble and buy the DVD, postum hastum. We’ll wait.)

First Glance

Hideous. Disturbing. Gut-wrenching. And that’s just the part of the sculpt with Wilford Brimley’s face. Zing!


The standard blister card setup, which, while just fine for openers like myself, could be a real pain in the rump to the mint-on-card crowd, seeing as how the creature isn’t posed very nicely inside. For me though, it’s all just a means to an end, and if you don’t wanna open this puppy up and appreciate all the fine detail, I pity you. Aside from that, there’s a sad lack of movie-specific information on the back. Not asking for a play-by-play, but at least a blurb about the movie would be nice.


This is truly an impressive sculpt, especially for a figure that’s almost fifteen years old at this point! All the major details are here, with clawed hands, lacerated skin, dark lumps bursting through his(?) flesh, tentacles, and a look of pure agony on poor Blair’s face. Height-wise, he clocks in at just around seven inches tall, but that’s somewhat helped by the pose of his mutated head-half, arched up into the air.

One problem I do have though, is the look of the cut joints on the figure. Now, looking back at most figures from the early-2000’s, it’s obvious that the marriage of sculpt with articulation was still a ways away, but it still would’ve been preferable (in my opinion, at least), to have a solid piece, instead of ugly lines chopping up the figure.

Blair has a whopping ELEVEN points of articulation, all of them being cut joints. Man, those early years were dark times… Anywhoo, here’s the breakdown:

  • neck
  • right shoulder
  • right bicep
  • right wrist
  • left bicep
  • left wrist
  • back-arm bicep
  • back-arm wrist
  • left and right shoulders on the dog growth
  • dog growth neck (I think: mine is fused in place)
That fused dog-neck also allows me to slide into my next category…


Now, cards on the table: I ordered this guy off Ebay recently, knowing one of his hands was broken off in the package. I obviously fixed it as you can see by the pictures, but I also had to re-attach one of his tentacles, as it fell off when I was heating up the joints to free them. Other than that little snafu, Blair seems to be pretty durable, though I’m certainly not the kind of guy to go play in the sandbox or the tub with my figures, so your mileage may vary.



A standard Movie Maniacs stand and a mini-poster for The Thing. To quote Mr. Burns: “Let me throw back my legs, and pollute my britches with delight.” Welp, into the bin of misfit accessories it goes!

This is a tricky one, seeing as how this is really more of an adult collectible than an action figure… Let me put it this way: He makes a great display piece, and he can pretty much hit every pose he did in the movie (AKA standing, waving arms, flailing tentacles, etc.)


Mcfarlane did a really great job on this one: It almost feels like a scale model of the movie puppet! Sure, he may be pretty fragile, but as long as you have it set up on a sturdy shelf, you should have no problems with him.
4 out of 5

Oh, if only he didn’t have those ugly cut joints, this’d be an easy 5… Now, I paid thirty dollars for Blair in package on Ebay, so if you’re interested, that’d probably be your best route!

Hope you guys and gals enjoyed this review, I should have one coming up soon for Blair’s wave-mate, the Norris-monster! Stay tuned!

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