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Venture Brothers - Hank and Dean
BifBangPow

Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow


I'm a big fan of the Venture Brothers. With it's rather unique take on the entire 80's cartoon scene, as well as mad scientists, evil genius', and international spys, it snagged me the first time I watched it. I've made it a minor mission in life to let others know too, converting as many of the masses to it's quirky humor as possible.

It's a show that begs for action figures too, and when BifBangPow picked up the license a couple years ago, I was a happy camper. They first announced and produced their retro-style 8" clothed figures, including the Doc and Brock,and I wasn't uber-thrilled. But when they announced the 4" scale action figures, I was much more pleased.

They released Brock quite awhile ago, and he was nice if not perfect. Every line needs a start, and he was a decent one of those. They've now followed up with Hank and Dean, as well as Dr. Girlfriend. I'll be looking at the boys tonight, and the Dr. Venture and Monarch figures should be shipping shortly.

The price tag on these is ten bucks each online, which considering the current cost of Star Wars figures, seems to be a reasonably good deal.
Click on the photo below for a life size version
Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow

Packaging - ***1/2
I really do like the graphics and text style on the cardbacks. It isn't super creative - it is just from the show after all - but it looks terrific.

It's also very sturdy, especially the bubble, making it less likely to crush. The cards are small too, and the MOCers should have no trouble storing a lot in a small space.

They aren't collector friendly of course, but I don't really expect that of bubble and cardback packages, even for figures clearly intended for collectors. Another big plus - no twisties or rubber bands!


Sculpting - ***1/2

My favorite aspect of these two is the sculpts. Both really do look like their cartoon counterparts, and considering how important they are to the show - it is named after them - it's nice that they came out well.

They are scaled down a bit too from the adults, which makes them look good with the rest of the line (as well as other series). They each stand just about 3 3/4" tall, while most male adults in this and other lines are 4".

The hands are sculpted to hold the accessories, and while the leg articulation isn't great, they do stand fine on their own once you find the sweet spot.

Paint - ***
The paint was a bit rough on Brock, but they've done a bit better with these two. It's not perfect - there's still some slop, particularly around the edges of the clothing - but the overall look is good.

I'm particularly happy with the eyes and hair, which is always tricky in this sale. Remember, these figures are less than 4" tall, and the nekkid eye can't easily pick out the minor issues.

Articulation - **1/2
My least favorite aspect of these figures remains the articulation. The joints are lacking by the standards of lines like Star Wars, although they're better than some of the weaker 4" scale stuff on the pegs.

There's a cut neck, cut shoulders, pin elbows and knees, and T hips. The knees and elbows are a little weak (and very obvious to the eye), and the neck really should have been a ball. The legs don't pose well without any sort of lateral cut, but you can get them to stand fine on their own.

The arms are a little better, but without cut wrists you're still limited. For example, while Dean could have held the gun in both hands, he can't do it properly without cut wrists.

Accessories - **1/2
Each comes with one accessory - Hank comes with a machete, and Dean a gun. Both look terrific, right from the show, and both are nicely scaled with decent paint ops.

It's a little light, just like with the single knife that Brock came with, but at least there's a little more meat on the bones.

Fun Factor - ***
I might find the articulation on the annoying side, but they are decent enough action figures. Obviously, these are great cubicle fun, and for adult fans of the show, these will be excellent conversation toys.

Value - ***
A lot of the mass market figures in this scale are hitting $8 - $10 regularly. These figures are certainly a MUCH lower production run, making the price tag a better than average value. 

Things to Watch Out For -
The knees are a little weak, so be careful with those joints - that's about it!

Overall - ***
While I'm not giving these a four star review, I will say that I'm very happy with the overall result. They have improved in terms of sculpt and paint, the price is good, and the format fits the cartoon style.

This scale works best when you get a whole bunch of figures together. We have Brock, Hank, Dean and Dr. Girlfriend now (yes, I know she's now Dr. Mrs. Monarch, but I like the old name), with Dr. Venture and the Monarch coming soon. But with figures this small, we need an army of characters, and I'm hoping that the demand picks up enough to get 30 or more at least.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***1/2
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ***
Articulation - **1/2
Accessories - **1/2
Fun Factor - ***
Value - ***
Overall - ***

Where to Buy -
Since these are a BigBangPow product, your best option is Entertainment Earth where you can pick up Hank or Dean (or Dr. Girlfriend) for ten bucks each.They have the pre-orders for Dr. Venture and the Monarch as well.

You can search ebay, particularly if you skipped Brock.

Related Links -
I reviewed the first in this series, Brock Samson, as well.

Discussion:
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Hank and Dean Venture Brothers action figures by BifBangPow


This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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