McFarlane picked up the Harry Potter, and indeed all the Wizarding World licences, in 2018 and the first figures were released in late 2019 in the US (UK was early 2020). The initial wave was based on the Deathly Hallows Part 2 and included figures of Harry Potter, Hermione, Ron and He Who Shall Not be Named.
The packaging design for Harry has clearly been dictated by Warner Bros. and is the same white design, into which is grey text in various languages, with gold lettering used on all Potter merchandise at the current time. McFarlane have translated this design to a window box using a circular window to display the figure. The character name sits under the window with the Wizarding World logo above, and an image of Harry to the right of this. The image of Harry is used on all the packaging so is not reflective of the character, or indeed the outfit, in the box itself.
The circular window and name plate wrap around both sides, taking you through to the back of the box. The rear has no bio, no background or any others details. We simply have a checklist of other figures in the line with an image of each of them.
The Buckbeak is also shown on the back - which is a bit misleading if you didn't know that McFarlane have chosen to do the Magical Creatures in a completely different scale to the 7 inch scale figures.
Once opened you do get a better look at the cardboard insert which is printed to look like a stone wall covered in the "undesirable number 1" posters. Keep this safe for later...
Paint & Sculpt 2/5
Like all McFarlane figures, Harry feels heavy and robust in hand, there is a very good weight to the figure.
The likeness to Daniel Radcliffe is there on the head sculpt, but it is certainly not perfect. The first issue seems to be the proportions with the head very big for the body. Comparing the head to an at hand NECA 7 inch Arnie from Terminator, Harry's head is actually bigger? The nec and head are the same width and the hair seems off from what we actually see in The Deathly Hallows - although I suspect this is a generic Potter head we will see used again.
The paint palette is also odd, with very pale almost sickly looking skin with dark red lips that makes Harry look like he is wearing lipstick. On the positive side, McFarlane have done a great job on the glasses - always tough at this scale - and the scar is visible under the hairline. The hair itself is pretty much one colour, but as you can see in the photo below there appear to be glss patches within the hair as though a glue or sealer has been spilled or added by mistake?
The proportional issues don't stop with the head, the body just looks wrong too. The head is too big for the torso and the torso too big for the legs. The feet are then tiny. Putting this aside the body is well sculpted and painted - McFarlane are brilliant at costume details. We have the weathering on the jacket and the wear of the denim. Sadly the hands are cast in the same sickly skin tone as the head with the cuffs then painted. This is not executed well with skin tone visible around the sleeve ends and also up the sides where the brown has been missed.
Wand's are going to be the central accessory for the McFarlane Harry Potter line, and they have to be accurate enough for collectors yet be robust enough not to snap when you look at them. Harry's wand in this set is the one he takes from Draco Malfoy - which is a great piece of screen accuracy by McFarlane.
It is cast in a hard plastic and is very much larger and thicker than it should be. The painting on it is minimal, and quite clumsy, with black across some of the grip.
It is designed to fit in Harry's right hand.
The second accessory feature that McFarlane have bundled with the first wave are creature accessories - Patronus animals for the three Wizards and a Nagini for Voldemort.
Harry's Patronus is a Stag, and this comes in five pieces, including its stand. There are no instructions, but its not overly difficult to work out what goes where. The whole thing is cast in clear plastic, with a blue hue on the parts of the Stag. Once assembled on the stand it is very well balanced and can then be posed emerging from Harry's wand as he summons his Patronus.
McFarlane have gone back to their older plinth stands for Potter, the ones that were included in their Colortops line when they returned to 7 inch scale figures. There are then two clear clips included - again with no instructions - and it took a few minutes fiddling to realise these are used to clip the backdrop onto the stand.
These clips are obviously an after addition to the stand, so to get both clips, the stand and the backdrop lined up and in place is a tricky. Once done the front look is good, with Harry slotting onto the stand via a hole in his right foot. The backdrop however is plain card on the back and thanks to the two side pieces this is visible on display - a black backing to the card would have been nice to minimise this issue.
The McFarlane articulation has improved quite a bit over the past 5 years, particularly driven by their Fortnite line and it is good to see Harry comes with a total of 18 points of articulation.
Head : ball joint neck
Body : ball joint torso
Arms : ball joint shoulder, bicep swivel, double joint elbow, wrist ball joint and swivel
Legs : T-joint hip, double joint knee, ankle rocker, tow joint
The arms are the big win on Harry, with the double jointed elbows helping posing massively. The wrist joints are also a clever addition. While they look a bit odd, they can pivot and rotate which is crucial on the right arm particularly for wand poses.
Less impressive is the head which does move on the neck but feels like it always wants to spring back to the starting position. The torso behaves the same way and is almost as springy as those old 80's style figures with the spring punching feature. Double jointed knees are great, but they need better hips and/or a thigh swivel to help them. The ankle rockers, a consistent issue on McFarlane figures, are better than some (Jareth the Goblin King) but they are still quite loose and with the tiny feet the stability is a concern and the toe joints add very little.
As a launch figure of the titular character of what I assume McFarlane wants to be an extensive line, Harry Potter is somewhat disappointing. There are paint issues, proportion issues and issues with articulation. The packaging is OK, and I do like the idea of the backing card for display - but it needs a better system and a black backing to the card itself.
For anyone with a NECA Potter collection, you will be pleased to know these two lines do scale well together, as you can see below with McFarlane Harry with NECA Mad Eye Moody - although this comparison picture does demonstrate how big the McFarlane Potter head actually is?
This is not a complete write off figure. I do like the Patronus and with some patience some good poses are achievable and by facing the figure more sideways on and having arms raised you can alleviate the "big head" look.
I score Harry Potter a disappointing 2 out of 5, and hope the other figures in the line can ensure that sales are strong enough for this first wave for McFarlane to crack on with future figures.
action figures, reviews, review, articulation, harry potter, wizarding world, deathly hallows, mcfarlane, potterverse, hermione, ron, voldemort