On January 18th, 2008, J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves released a monster movie that was shrouded in viral marketing. While the movie left a lot to be desired enough for a sequel, there were a lot of speculations of what people thought the monster looked like. That was until a month later at Toy Fair, Hasbro revealed the 14 inch toy of the monster putting all speculation to rest. I got this figure as a birthday gift back in 2009 and is the figure that got me into collecting in the first place. Has Hasbro’s Cloverfield monster stood the test of time or is it time for an upgrade?
Paint and Sculpt:
The sculpt of the Cloverfield monster is very much accurate to the monster we see in the movie. From the face that looks like an anglerfish to the long arms, the tail, and the arm-like appendages are very much screen accurate. However, the paint could be better. The paint isn't bad, but it looks very bland when you look at it from a normal distance. Also, the legs has warped outwards over time and really hinders articulation and making poses difficult. When you get a closer look at the figure, there are some interesting detailing on the figure.
The good parts about the paint applied are the blue crosshatches on the face and the upper body making it look like veins. I am also a fan of the brown on the hands, arms, legs, feet, and tail to help bring out the wrinkles and other details on the figure. I also like the grey spots that we see on the head and body. I also love the pearl black eyes. It makes Clover look very alien and creepy.
The pink on the…gills(?)…air sack(?), whatever they're called, is definitely lacking. I remember those air-sacks having a little bit more color to them. Perhaps the paint sort of faded away over time, which would be a shame since I remember them being sort of prominent from the rest of the figure. While everything looks nice up close, from a standing distance it looks really bland making it not stand out as much from the rest of the figures in my collection.
When the toy was first released, articulation was flawless to me at the time. Boy, has time really flew by and this figure did not age as well as I would have liked it to.
What made this figure flawless to me back then is the many points of articulation. The head can turn side to side or look upside down, the arms, hands, fingers, abs, legs, feet, and toes could twist, bend, and turn with the ratchets, swivels, and hinges to pose in many stances, the tail (or fluke) is on a bendy wire so the tail can bend like it's flailing up and down. I don't think the toes needed to articulated. I know it is there to make the monster look like it's walking, but I never bothered posing the figure with its toes bent. Moving the legs, arms, hands, and fingers was enough to simulate movement for me.
Over time, though, posing Clover became more and more of a hassle. It got more difficult to even stand up straight or pose because of those legs warping outwards. If you look at the promotional pictures the legs are not supposed to be as spread out compared to my figure. Especially when I am playing with it now it makes me wish the figure had ball joints where the thigh plugs into the lower body just so I can make it stand up straight.
Hasbro's Cloverfield monster figure comes with an alternate roaring or open mouth head, the head of the Statue of Liberty, 10 tiny parasites, a display stage the toy is packaged in, and a sound feature of the monster's roar.
The alternate head definitely looks terrifying, especially with the air sacks puffed up like that. It looks more angry with those teeth out on display, the nostrils flared up. To put on the alternate head, you have to remove the neutral head by simply twisting and pulling from the back of the head and align peg on the back of the alternate head with the plug in the body. I think the tongue is a little too long, but the tongue is also part of a feature as it acts as a button to make the monster roars, which is cool. The tongue button does not always reach to activate the roar, but there is also an alternate button on the monster's back that can also make the monster roar without any hassle at all. You may also notice that the roaring head is missing a tooth. I honestly don't know how that happened to the tooth other than it could have accidentally chipped off by falling on the floor. I prefer the neutral/closed mouth head because it has a more friendly face to him. It looks like he is smiling in certain angles.