King of the Independents: Gothitropolis Scarabus Figure Review

The Four Horsemen are known to some as the bringers of the apocalypse. For others, they are the greatest stable in professional wrestling history. To us, they represent a group of our favorite toy sculptors, currently known for Mattel's Masters of the Universe Classics and DC Universe lines. While sculpting for major corporations allows them to re-imagine some of our childhood favorites, the Horsemen also release their homegrown toy brands through their own website! The FANtastic Exclusive website features options that fans can vote on in order to see the winner made into action figure form. This last year saw the release of Scarabus from the Gothitropolis line with it premiering during the 2011 Toy Fair! Join us as we take a look at one of MTV Geek's Top Ten Toys of 2011!

The text on Scarabus' package practically covers the back of the blister card and details a very interesting backstory for the character and the Gothitropolis line. Here's a small excerpt:

This foul beast, who has also been called Scarabagoth in some texts, has been both worshipped and loathed. he has lurked in the shadows for centuries, shrouded in mystery, with only his closest of acolytes knowing his true purpose. One thing is for certain to the rest of us-- Scarabus is a dark force that may well usher in the end of days. -Book of Atellus Chapter 12

When it comes to the sculpt, there really isn't much higher you can go than something unleashed from the minds and hands of the Four Horsemen. Scarabus has a very large Egyptian influence coupled with a more sinister feel thanks to the hoofed feet and large pincers (from his insect beginnings) rising up from his shoulders. Our favorite part of the sculpt is the way the loincloth/skirt has been made to be a part of the legs and thighs which allows for full range of motion while still keeping the flow of the figure instead of the usual hindering single piece waist covers used. Every inch of Scarabus has been sculpted to show the power and evil of the character from the bony horns jutting from the sides of his head to his small, hidden, forked tail.

The paintwork on Scarabus is very elaborate. While not overly using drybrushing and washes, the sheer amount of different colors used to detail the figure and his armor is more in line with the Four Horsemen's offerings from when they were with McFarlane Toys than their current Mattel figures. The gold, blues, and reds all combine to make a very eye-catching and regal look for the Dark Lord of Gothitropolis. What amazed us the most is the sheer lack of slop and mistakes that we see with most mass-market releases. We don't know what kind of evil magic the Four Horsemen are inducing to keep the tight control on their overseas production, but we're glad for it.

Scarabus has an articulation model reminiscent of Mattel's DC Universe Classics line (also sculpted by the Horsemen). He features a ball-joint neck, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, swivel waist, swivel/hinge hips, swivel thighs, hinged knees, and swivel/hinge ankles. All of the joints are tight and hold their position well. His shoulders and hips are restricted by the armor and loincloth pieces, but not nearly as much as we initially thought thanks to the use of softer plastics.

The Scarabus figure comes packaged with a ridiculous amount of accessories. This is a rare feat in today's action figure market with only Hasbro's G.I. JOE flying the flag for extra equipment. Scarabus comes with two sets of extra hands (fists and gripping), two flame effects (these fit over the open hands for a power effect), a massive staff, two pincers (these attach to the figure's back and have a hinge/swivel joint at the base), two extra faces (one horned and the other decayed), a spear attachment for the staff, and a set of armor pieces for a Timekeeper figure. His cloak can be removed and is attached to the large shoulder pauldrons. With these removed, he has a better range pf movement when posed in fighting stances.

Scarabus has lived up to the hype surrounding his release (thus the placement in our Top Ten Toys List) and we are anxiously waiting the Raven, the next figure in the Fantastic Exclusive lineup. For more info on The Four Horsemen, be sure to check out their official site and online store!

Stay tuned to MTV Geek! for all your Four Horsemen toy coverage during this year's Toy Fair!

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