I bought this Cornelius from Planet of the Apes late. I am a fool - I saw these at Toy Fair in Super7's booth and they were beaming over how cool they were. And indeed they were right - these things were gorgeous and looked like they hired an ex-Kenner sculptor to make them. But I was trying to cut back on starting any new lines or new scales, so I skipped these - but picked some up on sale much later. And dagnabbit, they're marvelous.
Picking up Cornelius, he compares favorably to Kenner's better creature work. The green suit is molded in color, down to the "glove" shoes on his feet. Select parts are painted - which matches the movie costume - plus they painted the hair and face make-up, too. It looks more authentic than most retro action figures, which are slathered in paint due to budget reasons. Due to the abundance of ape hair it makes sense that the face would have to be painted. The eyes are also very Kenner-y, with the classic eyeline on top and a simple dot for his pupil. It's simple, and it all works. The hands are colored to match the face - there's sculpted, but not painted, hair - and the sleeves and collar all look more or less how you remember them in the movies.
One detail I love is his pose. In the movie the apes sometimes walked with a bit of a hunch, crouched over a bit to distinguish them from the movie's few human characters. The figure also needs to be bent forward a bit to look straight ahead, which is a great design choice. All the joints move smoothly and he really feels like a lost Kenner figure in a way that few releases can boast. The left hand was designed to hold his sacred scroll accessory, and the left hand is open but largely useless. This is also how Kenner sculpted hands back in the 1970s and 1980s, where one is made to grip an accessory and the other is visually interesting, but functionally useless. This is how it should be for this kind of figure.
I love the colors and I love the detail. I could take or leave the scroll accessory - it's nice to have, but if it were left out I'd never miss it. It's cast in a vaguely translucent, fleshy color and it looks like a bottle at first glance. He can hold it like a bat or a weapon, so it's kind of silly. Honestly I think he'd be better off without it.
With all the various details on his shirt, the unique hands, the subtle folds on his pants, I can say this is one of my favorite new retro figures.One of the arms is bent just a bit more than the other one, there's a nice little drape of fabric on his coat to cover his butt-legs when they swivel forward, and he just looks close to perfect. If you have the means and the inclination, get this one. Put him next to your old Cantina aliens and go "Oh yeah, this is what magic looks like."
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