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Diamond Select Toys: The Nightmare Before Christmas

Tim Burton’s stop motion-motion classic The Nightmare Before Christmas is celebrating its 25 year anniversary this year, and Diamond Select Toys have been pumping out characters in their 7-inch action figure line. As I seem to spend most of my time chasing around a toddler these days, Jack and company have been languishing, unopened, on my toy room floor. So let’s open these up and take a look at DST’s line as a whole!

Like many recent DST leases, there is a specialty shop version that is more expensive but includes a bundle of accessories and build-a-base pieces, and there’s an economy retail version that is just the figure and maybe an accessory or two. As my tiny city isn’t big on specialty stores, the economy version is what I ended up with. To date, there have been 12 releases found at Toys ‘R Us, as well as an exclusive Jack Skellington at Walgreens and Books-a-Million. If there are any others that I’ve missed, please feel free to share!

Today we’ll be checking out all but three Jack variants (Pumpkin King, Pajama, and the store exclusive Jack, which is just a different head).

Packaging

The mass retail version has some pretty standard and serviceable packaging. There isn’t much that grabs your attention, but it does its job of showcasing the figure and keeping it safe.

Sculpt

I’ve always been a big fan of DST’s sculptors, so it was no shock that I loved these. I’m not the kind of guy that compares them to screen shots of the movie or anything, so my takeaway was that they looked just like the characters in the film — which is a hard thing to do since you’re basically comparing a toy to a MUCH more expensive toy. Like any line, some look better than others. Oogie Boogie is probably the standout for me, but the quality of sculpt is pretty well even across the board.

Comparison with NECA Vampire

Paint

Paint is certainly hit and miss. Nothing atrocious, mind you, but they have their fair share of sloppy cuts and glop. Jack’s pinstripe suit must be a painter’s nightmare, and they didn’t quite nail it. While flaws may be noticeable when you examine each figure on its own (or under a macro lens), they really look great when all together. The tones and execution match each other perfectly.

Articulation

This is not a Marvel Legends line where you can expect some similarities in the articulation scheme. You have Jack with tons of joints and poseability, Corpse Boy with just three points, and everything in between. Without getting into the nitty gritty of each figure, I’d say that most are adequate. Sub-par if you like highly articulated figures, but fine enough if you’re more into vanilla posing. This is probably the least articulated line that I’ve gotten from DST in quite some time, but I’m fine with that as I’m more interested in one massive display that I’ll put out at Halloween. I do have to mention, while Jack is extremely poseable, he is also incredibly frustrating as every single joint pops out if you look at it funny. He’ll hold a pose fine once he’s in it, but getting him there is not exactly fun. It doesn’t help that the included stand (which is required as he can’t stand on his own) falls apart easily at the joints as well.

As mentioned earlier, this is the basic figure assortment. I picked up each of these for only $15, which is an incredible deal for a collector line. For about 10 bucks more, you can get the specialty shop releases that come with tons more accessories. They may have basic articulation schemes, and the paint can be hit or miss, but I’m loving the line so far and have definitely committed myself to buying each and every character they release.

So keep ‘em coming, DST!

Thanks for reading!

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