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The Street Deacon

Shadowrun: Duels
by yo go re

After careful consideration, we've decided not to wait 11 years before reviewing another one of these.

The Street Deacon first appeared on the Seattle scene ten years ago and has since established himself as a figure feared by criminals and corporate interests alike. He normally works for the highest bidder, taking or rejecting jobs at whim. He also takes jobs at reduced rates, and occasionally for free, if they fit with his unique worldview.

The Street Deacon sees himself as an agent of karmic retribution, seeking to punish those sinners who might otherwise escape unscathed. As a result, he is disposed to help the oppressed majority (including the SINless and metahumans) against the elite minority. He has no overwhelming sympathy for the less fortunate. Rather, he feels that the rich and powerful already have so many advantages that when they escape just retribution, the entire world is thrown out of balance. He truly believes that he has been chosen by greater powers (usually identified as God and/or the Archangel Michael) to restore that balance.

The world of Shadowrun is futuristic place where magic and technology co-exist, so a crazy warrior priest makes plenty of sense there. The kind of guy Robert Knepper would play, chewing on the scenery all the while. The toy is wearing dark glasses which, when coupled with his white facepaint, give the impression of a skull.

The sculpt here is the one later reused for Series 2's Karkhov, though the Street Deacon has a short jacket rather than a long coat. Befitting a preacher, he dresses all in black: flat-brimmed black hat, black jacket, black shirt with a brown leather harness across the chest, black pants, black belt, and black shoes with silver toes. Shouldn't he have one of those little white collars, though? The Shadowrun: Duels figures were sculpted by Plan-B Toys, so the clothes each get their own unique textures, and overall the toy looks great. Well, except for the back of the head; the black hair is weirdly flat, and hangs almost perfectly straight down. It looks really bad, almost as if the work had to be handed in before it was finished. There's a single pad on the left knee, and when he clasps his hands to pray, it's going to sound like a drawer full of silverware (thanks to his robot hands).

The articulation is a little outdated for a 2003 action figure. The Street Deacon has hinged knees, T-hips, swivel waist, swivel wrists, hinged elbows, swivel/hinge shoulders, and a swivel neck. Yeah, it's nothing special, but this line is more about the game than the toys. At least we get some interesting accessories out of it - the gimmick of the game is that the different pieces you choose to give your figure will give it different dice and therefore different stats (all of which can be tracked on the included display base - which can be opened up to store everything and has pegs to help keep him from falling over).

Taciturn, blunt and effective, the Street Deacon believes that actions speak louder than words, and he delivers his sermons with the assistance of his auto-loading shotgun. He's also got a sword, because Shadowrun is showing its Neuromancer roots, a small green medical pack, a walkie-talkie, and a bulletproof vest that he's already wearing in the package, so you might not even realize it's a separate piece. The accessories all have small holes in them that allow them to attach to pegs on the figure: one on his back, and one each in the palms of the included alternate hands.

Admit it: you're never going to play Shadowrun: Duels. I've had these toys since they were released, and I think I've only ever played one game of it? To try it out? Doesn't matter, really, because the Street Deacon is another interesting character done as well as it could be at the time.

-- 02/22/19

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