His sculpt? Well, he’s a horse, so… He’s mostly a repaint of Swiftwind with a few new bits – a new head & neck, a new bridle & reins, and new saddle with stirrups. Hope I got all that right, I don’t know anything about horse equipment (& I plan to keep it that way). And it’s all done really well, very style guide accurate with some added texturing here and there.
But there’s nothing really killer. In that, Arrow suffers as some of the POP girls have suffered. For example, where are the magical quivers mentioned in the bio? He’s technically great, but I think there’s nothing here to make him pop. My favorite bit on the sculpt, I kid you not, is the buckle on the saddle. The clasp is neat – the interior of the buckle is the post and the “metal frame” is the catch on the other site. It’s a great engineering bit that adds a layer of realism (see, I can get giddy over silly things).
While he’s not blue, Arrow does includes the wings from the toy version, albeit painted in a way to match the cartoon color scheme. These are cool if you want them (& have the room for them). It does make him look rather resplendent. Here’s the catch though, these wings, and the Swiftwind reuse, causes Arrow to have these two giant sockets over his shoulders. The solution to displaying him without the wings, and to get that seemingly crucial cartoon accurate look, is these extra plugs.
And these plugs are my least favorite thing about Arrow. They’re just there. They kinda faux-connect to the saddle. There’s little studs that make it look like they’re extensions of the saddle, but they don’t line up right. It kinda just looks like Bow just glued or pinned these extra patches on to Arrow for fun. I just don’t see any design genius here, like that buckle!, and it’s disappointing. Weapons storage? Sculpted quivers? Anything that shows some TLC here would’ve been great, but it’s just not here.
Overall, Arrow is a fine addition to the collection. For the most part, I’ve pushed my lack of enthusiasm for Arrow out of my head – he’s a good for a horse figure, the cartoon visuals are good, and the horse buck is well-articulated (edit: check out Swiftwind’s review for the breakdown, I kinda skipped it). So I’ve come to terms. I like the shock of orange hair! He still doesn’t wow me though. I want him to scream “own me” like so much of the rest of the line does. He’s just more or less rank & file, run of the mill, and that’s harder to accept on the higher priced items. Even though it’s from Mattel, MOTUC is a 4H line and I’m happiest when the pieces have a more obvious 4H influence. Heck, if it was 4H-Unleashed? I’d probably be down for eight horses, the sea horse, and that swan. Just sayin’.
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