Welcome to our review of the 11th Doctor Box Set from the 2018 B&M releases of Character Options Doctor Who figures. This 3-pack of 5.5inch figures includes tweaked and repainted versions of Amy Pond and the 11th Doctor, and a repack of the Oswin Oswald figure that was previously part of a Forbidden Planet International Box Set.
Like all the sets the 11th Doctor pack comes in a rectangular window box with the TV movie style logo in white. The contents and features of the set are in dark blue shaped inserts giving the character names as The Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond and Oswin Oswald - as this of course is not Clara, but one of her split selves who is spread across time to save the Doctor.
All of this sits on a cosmic backdrop that starts off pink and purple and works its way through various shades until it hits a starscape on the back of the box. Down each side of the box are images of the figures with Amy and the Doctor on one side and Oswin and the Doctor on the other.
The same figure images adorn the back of the box along side the character names. Unlike many boxed figures nowadays, there is no bio or story - just a very simple confirmation that these are the 5.5 inch collectors series.
The three figures sit in an inner plastic tray that itself sits into a blue clockwork design cardboard insert. While the figures are not secured by twisty ties, there are clear elasticated bandings holding the arms and legs - and these can damage the paint if you aren't careful.
Up first is Amy Pond, and this is a complete repaint of her original figure from back in 2010. The facial sculpt, as it was back then, is a passing likeness to Karen Gillan but nothing more spectacular than that. The hair sculpting is nice with plenty of flowing detail down the head and around the shoulders.
Paint is basic with a basic skin tone on top of which are painted eyes and a pink lipstick shade on the lips. The auburn hair has a touch of dark brown wash built into it that helps the depth and to bring out the sculpting.
The costume is based on Amy's outfit from the episode "Let's Kill Hitler". It is of course on top of an existing sculpted outfit, so while it looks OK in general it is not 100% screen accurate. The jacket is now painte dblue with dark blue wash to give it a denim look. Underneth the sweater and top have been repainted to an approximation of the pattern seen on Amy's top int the episode.
The skirt goes black, but has no washing to look like the Black Denim it actually was. The belt also remains visible from the original figure while in the episode the top covered this. The legs have now been painted as tights and the boots have a blue shade to them.
When you compare this new 2018 Amy repaint vs the original version you can see the outfit this tie round is painted with a better depth of paint with washes on the jacket and boots. The hair is a darker shade and the skin a little healthier in tone.
While the paint may be improved, the articulation is still stuck in 2010 with very basic pin and peg joints and just 13 points of articulation. The head is jointed but can't move because of the hair and there is no obvious waist swivel either. Legs are trapped under the skirt so the hip joints don't really work and the thigh swivel underneath is only really needed to widen the feet to get her to stand. The knees use those peg and pin joints to bend to 90 degrees, with the peg visible and quite unsightly Arms start with a peg shoulder that will only rotate where it is plugged into the torso. There is then a bicep swivel and finally another peg and pin elbow joint that bends to 90 degrees
Second out of the box is a new(ish) version of the 11th Doctor. This is the Doctor as we saw him in The Snowmen, the Christmas Special of 2012. The head sculpt is the newer Matt Smith head used by Character, but is sadly not painted as it was when it was first released. That does end up making him look a bit off despite what is a strong sculpt.
The costume is taken from the Forbidden Planet International release from The Time of the Doctor, and again in The Impossible Girl Set. This time round it is repainted from the purple tones to something resembling the dark brooding Victorian outfit from The Snowmen. The costume is neatly painted with some nice detail such as the trim to the coat and the buttons on the waistcoat and pocket watch chain.
In this shot you can see the combination of the Time of the Doctor body with the updated Matt Smith head. I do like the costume and it works well for the Snowmen it is just a puty the head has managed to loose something this time round when painted.
The hands on the body remain as though he should be holding a Sonic Screwdriver, but there are no accessories included.
Articulation on the Doctor jumps up a little from what we saw on Amy with 16 points of articulation in total. The legs remains the same with hip, thigh and knee joints. The Doctor gets a waist swivel and his head moves around easily where it is plugged into the torso.
The arms are an upgrade on Amy as the shoulder is a two way joint now so as well as rotating it can move out from the body, opening up posing a little more. THe rest of the arms stay the same and both arms and legs still have the peg and pin system of joints, although these are less visible on a darker coloured figure like The Doctor.
Our final figure is Oswin Oswald, who was seen in Asylum of the Daleks and who turned out to be a version of Clara sent down the Doctor's timeline to save him. This figure is a direct re-release of a 2016 Oswin figure included in The Impossible Girl set - which also included the original version of the 11th Doctor we also get in this pack.
Like the 2016 release, the figure has basic resemblance to Jenna Coleman and this is not helped by some pretty cartoonish eyes painted on top of a simple skin tone. The hair is better with a dark wash to bring out the sculpted detail.
Sadly the quality control issues rear their ugly head again here - something that has plagued all B&M sets to date - and our Oswin has been assembled with two left sided upper arms, making the right one look misaligned. I have since checked a 2nd set that my Son purchased and his is fine, so please check the box as best you can before you buy,
Oswins outfit is a plain one colour red dress over which hangs a utility belt of sorts painted in brown with silver details. Her skin tone is consistent on her legs and arms with that of her face. her trainer boots are also very well painted with a dark red pattern over the base red, and visible tied laces, soles and trims.
While this is a repack, it does have some variances being a new production run. The dress is darker and more muted than the original and the paint on the face is not as polished. They've even muted her lipstick. The belt comes the other way round out of the box - which is not an issue as it is fully moveable - and comparing each set to the episode the B&M pack position is accurate with the larger tool to the front.
As one of the newer figures of the line, Clara has some upgraded articulation and features. She comes out with 14 points of articulation overall - loosing the wrist pivots that the Doctor has. Her legs still have those visible pegs, but the elbow joints are now hidden behind a rubbery sleeve. The same process is used for the waist, which clearly rotates wile the rubberised plastic dress flexes with the movement. Oswin also gets the improved shoulder joints to move out from the body.
All the three figures do scale well with each other. Matt Smith is the tallest, followed by Amy and then Oswin (Clara).
As well as the issues with the arm on Clara, all the figures do suffer from some very problematic joints. The wrists on the Doctor pop out very easily as do the biceps on all three figures when the arms are bent. This was not an issue on the original releases of these figures, so I suspect some costs have been saved in the plastic here.
Out of the four sets released in 2018, the 11th Doctor Set is arguably the least impressive. We get a repack in this one in the shape of Oswin, and Amy Pond is just a repaint. The 11th Doctor is the best of the three with a lovely body combined with the more recent and much improved Matt Smith head.
The repaints are not as slick as they have been, and in this set all three paint jobs are worse than their original counterparts. There is also some quality issues with joints popping apart too easily and in the case of Oswin the wrong arm assembly. We do still have to consider value for money here though and this set is just £16.99, so less than £6 a figure. To that end I score this a just above average 3 out of 5 on the strength of that 11th Doctor figure and the quality paint job on Any's outfit.