Welcome to our review of the 2017 release of the 10th Doctor in his Tuxedo, as seen in The Voyage of the Damned, the 2007 Christmas Special of Doctor Who. This new version of the 10th Doctor was released as part of a three figure wave that also contained two versions of the current 12th Doctor. It was meant to go to Toys R Us stores, but ended up in Forbidden Planet stores following the demise of Toys R Us.
The Doctor arrives in the window box packaging adopted for Toys R Us in 2016 when the 5.5 inch figure line made a return to retail. The colouring is a blue hue with shades of purple and starlight under the Doctor Who logo and the character name plate which reads "The Tenth Doctor in Tuxedo"
As always we are reminded that this is a 5.5 inch collector figure (not 5 inch) with the diamond insert to the side of the figure. Round one side the window wraps round and you find a QR code for some added online content. To the other side is another Doctor Who logo and a repeat of the character name and the same 5.5 inch scale confirmation.
Our version of the Doctor was purchases from Forbidden Planet and there is some overstickers in place over what we assume would be Toys R Us specific info.
The back of the box changes to more of a starscape with an image of the actual figure and some blurb about the Doctor and the episode on which the figure is based.
"THE TENTH DOCTOR 2005-2009
The Tenth Doctor has a bright, sparky personality, yet he rarely gives his foes a second chance. Leaping back into the TARDIS with a series of extraordinary companions, the Doctor fights numerous foes and enjoys many adventures before his violent regeneration destroys the TARDIS control room, sending it crashing back to Earth...
VOYAGE OF THE DAMNED
Set immediately after Time Crash, the Tenth Doctor, now travelling alone, finds himself at a Christmas party aboard the luxury space liner the Titanic. This is a Christmas-themed cruise with a difference. The Captain purposely lowers the Titanic's shields resulting in catastrophic damage to the ship. Joined by a new friend called Astrid and several passengers, the Doctor must battle killer robot Angels and prevent the Titanic from crashing into the Earth"
That is quite a lot of text for the back of one figure box, but Character don't stop there and also include the iconic speech from The Voyage of the Damned.
"I am the Doctor. I'm a Time Lord. I'm from the planet Gallifrey in the constellation of Kasterborous, I'm nine hundred and three years old And I'm the man that's going to save your lives and all six billion people on the planet below. You got a problem with that?"
The box opens via the top or bottom box flap. The Doctor slides out in an inner clear tray that itself sits into a blue clockwork design cardboard insert. The Doctor is securely strapped in place with cotton ties that are a real pain to untie - I'd suggest cutting with scissors. His sonic screwdriver sits to the side and is held in by a piece of tape.
Paint & Sculpt 4/5
This is a brand new David Tennant head sculpt and is a better likeness to the one used for so many years across the Doctor Who line - but perhaps not as crisp as the short lived one we saw with the glasses toward the end of the line.
The paint apps are basic with the head cast in skin tone and then eyes, lips and eyebrows painted on in a basic fashion - no photo realism with this line.
The hair is well executed with some volume and there is a touch of a wash in the brown to bring out more details.
The rest of the body is essentially a black suit. It is good to see this looks to be a new sculpt too, I had suspected a re-use from a Master figure or similar. The white shirt underneath is clean and crisp and then the bow tie is painted on top. Sadly the paint has not covered the full bow tie so it looks a little odd from some angles.
The Doctor is wearing his trademark Converse trainers, changed to black and white for this episode from the usual blue or red versions. These are painted well with the lace detail coloured in and a thin red stripe down either sole.
The hands are re-used and are the basic "screwdriver" holding hand from the prior 10th Doctor release and a generic open palm to the other side.
The sonic screwdriver included looks to be a new version too. This version looks to be the closed version of the screwdriver, while previous releases have had the screwdriver extended. It is cast in a softer plastic, and despite this and its size it does have visible detail and is then painted with black base, silver body, grey handle and blue emitter - that is a lot of paint for something less than 1.5cm long.
The screwdriver fits perfectly in the shaped right hand. The nature of the hand allows the figure to be posed with the screwdriver pointed out or raised, depending on the arm position.
While I am probably being greedy and accessories have never been extensive in the Who line, this figure feels a bit light considering the various things the Doctor used in the episode. It would have been great to get a repack of the lifering from Astrid, or perhaps even a steering wheel for the Titanic itself.
Our Doctor has 12 points of articulation, a standard for the line since it started. Being a new sculpt he does get one upgrade with the shoulder joint now being two way so it can extend outward from the body as well as rotating. The rest of the arm remains consistent then with a bicep swivel, single joint elbow and plugged wrist which allows the hand to rotate.
The figure suffers from the usual arm issue where the arm sculpt is flat and turning the bicep joint makes the arm look wrong. The bicep joint is also really weak, like so many recent releases, and pops out far too easily when you turn the joint.
The headson the Who line still have not moved onto ball joints, so the Doctor can only rotate the whole of his head and neck piece where it plugs into the torso. Beneath the Tux there is a simple rotating waist to give a little bit of variation to the stance.
The legs are very basic with a t-joint hip and single joint knee. Without any ankle rocker or the ability to rotate the leg you are let with neutral stances only. In this position the Doctor stands perfectly well.
With all the Who figures, I score on the basis that these are essentially £10-£12 figures and not the £20+ figures we see from Hasbro and NECA. To that end this is a perfectly good release of a Doctor variant fans have been asking for and a welcome change against all those suited / coated 10th Doctor's we've had over the years.
The execution of the figure is good for the price point, but remains a little dated to some of the more modern lines in terms of articulation and paint techniques.
Those bicep joints remain a concern as they leave a visible gap in the figure and pop apart far too easily - a sign of perhaps a change in the line to cheaper plastic to keep costs down?
I score the Tuxedo 10th Doctor figure a 4 out of 5.