It’s been almost a year since the 3.75 inch Avatar figures started showing up at stores, and now, even after the Extended Edition of the movie was released in theaters, I would say that James Cameron’s Avatar has pretty much run out of steam (at least until Avatar 2 premieres, if rumors have any shard of truth in them).
One of the last characters to see the light as an action figure is the acting manager on Pandora’s Hellgate Installation, Parker Selfridge. So yes, I concede the character may not be as exciting as an all-out action hero (or villain), but there is something quite appealing about an action figure of a fairly nondescript white guy in a power tie, and it has a lot to do with the general lack of plainclothes civilian types in most toy lines these days.
Parker comes dressed in gray slacks, brown shoes, an off-white short-sleeved shirt, and a red tie with pink diagonal stripes. That’s it. No utility belts, no holsters nor tech devices. Even his watch is just a plain number in black and silver.
The sculpting is pretty consistent with the level of detail in the other figures in the line, meaning there is a decent amount of detail, but no real effort to impress with layered textures of complex detailing.
Usually it is pretty easy to find a resemblance in the head sculpts to the actors who played the characters in the movie, thanks to the Real Scan process Mattel used with these figures, but in the case of Parker here, he doesn’t really look all that much like actor Giovanni Ribisi. Some characteristic shapes are there, definitely, but something about the coloring of the head makes it really hard for the resemblance to be readily identifiable.
• Swivel neck.
• Peg & hinge shoulders.
• Peg & hinge elbows.
• Swivel waist.
• Peg & hinge knees.
• Peg & hinge ankles.
For some reason, Parker’s knees are cut rather high on the leg, just above where the rotula is, when the usual is to have the cut made at or below the joint. Functionality is the same, but it does look weird when the articulation is flexed.
The paintjob on Parker is neat and clean. The hair is a tad darker than it should be, but overall paint application is uniformly competent. If anything, the Parker Selfridge figure has a much more focused, alert gaze than his onscreen counterpart.
Since Parker Selfridge is pretty much an inaction character, he doesn’t come with any actual weapon; instead he comes with only a golf club. The grip is painted in a dark greenish gray; it has a silver shaft and ends with a shiny brown head. Right off, I would be hard pressed to recall any other instances of a golf club being included as an accessory with a non-sports figure.
Parker’s iTag base plate is molded in the square-ish, machined look of the RDA dog-tags and has a sticker on top with his portrait. The CGI model the plate generates after you log into Mattel’s Avatar site is that of the Unobtanium sample he keeps on his desk over a magnetic base. As usual, trivia tidbits sprout into text windows when you cover the Info icon on the iTag, accompanied by a faint humming sound effect.
While the action-oriented human figures in this line are looked upon as inferior when compared against similar offerings by Hasbro, I must say that Parker Selfridge is actually quite a decent toy, as well as being something of an oddity, from a collecting standpoint.