Now discontinued (but still cheap), it's ridiculous how good The Planet of the Apes Pop! Vinyl figures are. From the second movie, General Ursus feels like he's always been there - you just didn't see him. James Gregory was hidden under the Gorilla make-up, and the costume was similar to the soldiers from the first film with a swell new hat. The costume would be adapted for use in the TV show as "Urko." While the other figures are quite good, this one is exceptional - there's a lot more going on with this 4-inch ape.
Like Dr. Zaius, Urko is squinting a bit to let you know he's evil. He has a glossy hat that looks magnificent in person, and his foot gloves look great too. A purple undergarment is visible on his arms and legs, but what really impresses me are the silver armored bits on his wrists and torso. Each silver block is painted, as are silver armored dots on his neck and back which you can barely see. They didn't take any shortcuts here, beyond articulation. Only the neck moves, but that's OK since the figure stands up just fine and should cost you only about ten bucks. His hunched-over pose recalls the other characters in the series, and he has no accessories like a gun from the movie. He's just a really cool gorilla.
The Pop! series is very good, but the Planet of the Apes subset is one of my absolute favorites. While you can get Kubrick figures, super-realistic figures from NECA, super-adequate figures from the 1990s and Kenner, and even vintage Mego I'm finding I like these best. Advances in sculpting and deco probably won't result in these figures aging much, so the fact that it's basically a stylized PVC figure with a jointed neck probably will keep it from looking dated. Heck, if this figure came from the 1960s or 1970s, other than the paint job, you'd believe it. There's no way Mego or Remco would have given him a glossy hat, painted nostrils, or a different black texture for the hair under the hat - but the sculpt could have been an older item. As Pop! figures get expensive you should probably snag this before people start getting interested, if you're so inclined. There are only four in the series and my guess is that's all we'll ever see. This makes it easy to collect, and I appreciate that a great deal.
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