There is no shortage of large-scale Jack Sparrow figures. Johnny Depp's effeminate pirate from Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is available in 12" and 18" versions from NECA, as well as more articulated 1/6 scale offerings from Zizzle and Medicom. Finally, there's the Disney Store exclusive Talking Jack Sparrow, clocking in at 16" high. This is a strange scale indeed, and the only other toy that really fits in with it is the counterpart Disney Store exclusive Talking Davy Jones.
The sculpt of Disney's Jack is very good,
and it continues a trend of in-house Disney figures that really compete with the wider market in terms of quality. It may not be quite as good as NECA's Jack, but if you're like me, you're pretty darn tired of the same old Jack Sparrow sculpt, which has changed very little since NECA debuted their POTC figures years ago. The Disney Jack does a very nice job of capturing Johnny's face, with a nice expression that seems to represent both confusion and extraordinary focus. His costume is done nicely, though it should be noted that this is one of the few Jack Sparrow figures I can think of that does not allow you to stash his pistol in his belt. There's a nice attempt to differentiate the textures of different materials, and his clothing folds and hangs realistically. The only nit I have to pick is the rather cheap-looking string hanging from his belt that houses Jack's bird foot, as well as other trinkets.
The paint is well done on the body,
but the work on the face and head is just decent. The skin is a bit glossier than the rest of the figure, and the eyes don't exactly focus on any particular point. Also, I couldn't find a single Jack in the stores that didn't have at least a little bit of paint rubbing off the tip of his nose. In some cases, it was just a few dots, like in the figure I picked up, but in the worst cases almost the entire tip of the nose is black. The rest of the figure is nice if a bit plain, with very little bleed or slop.
The articulation is fairly good above the waist, and non-existent below. Up top we get a balljoint in the neck, balljoints in the shoulders, pegs in the biceps, hinges at the elbow, pegs at the wrist, and... that's it. The neck is pretty restricted due to the hair, but the elbows are surprisingly well hidden, although they can't quite be bent to a full 90º. None of the joints are loose per se, but I could see them getting that way after too much play. Therefore it's actually probably a good thing that the legs are nice, sturdy, and unarticulated. Jack stands fine.
Jack comes with four accessories:
his hat, his sword, his gun, and his compass. As I mentioned before, the gun can't be stowed in the belt, but the sword does slide in the loop of his sash. The hat fits nicely askew on his head, and the compass flips open, though it's prone to coming apart at the hinge. Still, a nice compliment of accessories, although there's no flask to be found anywhere. Disney probably doesn't want to promote alcoholism in our young'uns... although to my knowledge, the smaller Davy Jones from the Disney Store line was the only version of the character to include a pipe.
Jack also has a talking feature. The button that activates the feature is cleverly disguised as... a button. A button on Jack's vest. Press the button and he'll say one of three phrases, none of which seem to be from the movie. In a reasonable, if slightly higher-pitched, impersonation of Johnny Depp, the toy belts out:
- "Ugh, please don't tell me you're an honest pirate. Wonderful. Now I'm sure we'll get nothing accomplished."
- "Now, if it wouldn't be too much trouble to say again... what's in it for me?"
- "Captain Jack Sparrow... at your service."
The phrases seem more like they're directed at a child wishing they were talking to the real Jack Sparrow, rather than iconic phrases from the movie. It's a little odd for a figure of this scope and price.
Speaking of price, all the 12" Jacks vary wildly in cost, from the $20 Zizzle figure to the $100+ Medicom import. The others are closer to each other, with the NECA 12" as low as $30 and as high as $40, and the NECA 18" between $40 and $50. The Disney figure originally sold for $49.50, but can be found reduced to varying degrees, depending on the individual Disney Store. I picked mine up for 25% off, but some stores are still charging full price, and I've heard other reports of even deeper reductions.
In the end, this is a great Jack if you want something to break up the monotony of NECA's singular Jack sculpt for all sizes. Hold out for the price that's right for you, then snap it up!
Why 16"? Tell us on our message board, the Loafing Lounge.