Thursday, December 8, 2011

Review II: Art Figures AF-005 1/6 Avenger AKA Thomas Jane 12-inch Punisher Figure

Here's the Art Figures AF-005 1/6 scale Avenger 12-inch figure in full attire and armed with all that he's got (see the previous post for packaging and contents), ready to rain justice on those who think they are above the law and can get away with murder. The Punisher (Thomas Jane) is out for blood and wants to avenge the deaths of his loved ones.

The Punisher (Frank Castle) character was created by writer Gerry Conway and artists John Romita, Sr., and Ross Andru, and made its first appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man #129 (February 1974). Driven by the deaths of his wife and two kids, who were killed by the mob when they witnessed a gangland execution in New York City's Central Park, the Punisher wages a one-man war on the mob and all criminals in general by using all manner of conventional war weaponry.

The Punisher (2004 film) was based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name, starring Thomas Jane as the anti-hero Frank Castle / The Punisher and John Travolta as the villain Howard Saint, a money launderer who orders the death of Castle's entire family. The story and plot were mainly based on two Punisher comic book stories; The Punisher: Year One and Welcome Back, Frank along with scenes from other Punisher stories such as Marvel Preview Presents: The Punisher #2, Marvel Super Action Featuring: The Punisher #1, The Punisher War Zone, and The Punisher War Journal.

This Art Figures AF-005 Avenger is essentially a 1/6 scale Thomas Jane as Frank Castle / The Punisher 12-inch figure, not to be mistaken for Hot Toys First Avenger figure which is Captain America (coming soon). Art Figures has been doing some incredible work and this figure again doesn't disappoint. The head sculpt is amazingly realistic and manages to capture Thomas Jane's likeness very well and the movie-accurate vigilante outfit with skull logo on his chest plus weapons and accessories make this a fine figure indeed.

"The Punisher does not just go around blowing people away using such things that Batman or James Bond would have or would even be in envy of; he uses guile and cunning just as much as he does weaponry and physical combat." Quote from Director Jonathan Hensleigh, The Punisher (2004).

When Frank Castle (Thomas Jane) goes to the Saint Building to dump all his money into the street, he takes a Mossberg 590 "Compact Cruiser" 12-gauge shotgun, which is the perfect gun to stash in his trench coat. He uses the gun to force Saint's money launderers to dump the money from the top floor and "rain 100 dollar bills."

Frank Castle is also seen using an M4A1 carbine fitted with an M203 grenade launcher and an Aimpoint CompM2 red dot sight when assaulting Howard Saint's club Saints and Sinners.

In the comics, the Punisher is a vigilante who employs murder, kidnapping, extortion, coercion, threats of violence, and torture in his war on crime. Gerry Conway had drawn a character with a small death's head skull on one breast. Marvel art director John Romita, Sr., took the basic design, blew the skull up to huge size, taking up most of the character's chest, and added a cartridge bandolier that formed the skull's teeth. Amazing Spider-Man penciller Ross Andru was the first artist to draw the character for publication.

Art Figures AF-005 Avenger 12-inch figure comes with Black T-shirt with death's head skull, Black jacket / trench coat, Black Trousers, belt and Brown shoes. The 12-inch male body with 1/6 scale Thomas Jane as Frank Castle head sculpt comes with bendy hands i.e. hands with flexible / bendable fingers for posing and holding his various weapons. This is the same attire that Thomas Jane as Frank Castle wore in "The Punisher (2004)"

Art Figures AF-005 Avenger 12-inch Thomas Jane Punisher figure also comes with a 1/6 scale M4A1 carbine that can be fitted with an M203 grenade launcher and an Aimpoint CompM2 red dot sight (the launcher, rifle sling and sight all come as loose accessories which you assemble yourself).

The Mossberg 590 "Compact Cruiser" shotgun can be kept / holstered / stored on the side in the Punisher's long black coat / trench coat and may be retrieved easily when he needs to us it

Frank Castle (Thomas Jane) uses a pair of heavily customized M1911A1s as his main sidearms in the film. The M1911A1s have their chambers bored, triggers customized and thread-on compensators. Muzzle brakes and recoil compensators are devices that are fitted to the muzzle of a firearm or cannon to redirect propellant gases with the effect of countering both recoil of the gun and unwanted rising of the barrel during rapid fire. They are not silencers or suppressors.

Thomas Jane as Frank Castle / The Punisher fires both pistols at the same time with two hands. In "combat shooting", it is unquestionably faster to shoot accurately two handed i.e. two hands, one gun as there's better accuracy and control of the pistol using two hands.

In most of the pictures featuring special forces and operators in elite units, you don't ever see them firing two pistols with two hands. It's mostly two handed shooting although they practice shooting with either hand just to be proficient in what they do.

Scroll down to see more pictures of this Art Figures AF-005 Avenger 12-inch Thomas Jane Punisher figure shooting with both heavily customized M1911A1s.

When you fire like that, I guess aiming is out of the question. It's more like pray and spray. Looks good in Hollywood movies but I don't think this pans out well in real life situations.

The use of two weapons of the same type at the same time i.e. one in each hand is called Guns Akimbo. As far back as the westerns of the '50s, The Gunslinger has often strapped on two pistols. Double-fisted firing of handguns just plain looks cool. In The Old West and The Cavalier Years, carrying two pistols was a practical result of long reload times on muzzle-loaders as well as percussion revolvers and Single Action Revolvers that were loaded one cartridge at a time. After break action revolvers and speed-loaders came around, one gun could do all the work.

There are several ways to use Guns Akimbo: Both guns are used for concentrated fire on one target at a time. The shooter either pulls one trigger and then the other in rapid fire succession (commonly called "Woo Style" for its use by characters in John Woo movies), or pulls both triggers at the same time on a single target.

Another way is when both guns are used separately on different targets. The shooter either alternates fire between each one as the situation warrants (for example, mowing several guys down with the submachine gun in your main hand, and then putting down another guy with the Hand Cannon in your other hand), or uses them both simultaneously on separate targets.

Some close-up shots of Art Figures AF-005 1/6 scale Avenger AKA Thomas Jane 12-inch Punisher Figure with his M4A1 / M203 grenade launcher with Aimpoint CompM2 red dot sight

NOTE: He doesn't have any bandolier or vest for extra 40mm M203 grenade rounds (only one is included with the box set). So how does he store the rest of the grenades? If he only needs one grenade, why carry the extra weight of the launcher? Maybe he didn't think things through ;p

Art Figures Avenger also comes with only one M4 / M16 30-round magazine. Enough ammo to do the job? I wonder... he does come with four pistol magazines / clips and a Emerson Combat Karambit.

Likewise for the shotgun. No rounds are included, just gun.

NEXT: Are two Punishers better than one?


CheungKinMen said...

Anther awesome review. I like the figure, sculpt does resemble Thomas Jane, but not by much, still the price makes it all worth it. I hope they make a Punisher Dolph Lundgren too, haha.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I love the review (it made me buy this figure!) but I was just wondering if yiu knew how to help me as the stock on mine doesn't seem to pull back (the machine gun seems a bit stiff at te moment) I don't want to break it, so may I ask how did you get yours to pull back? Many thanks, John Doe

alex teo said...

Hi John Doe, the stock of the 1/6th scale M4 works in pretty much the same way as the actual weapon :) so you have to remove the catch / locking mechanism which is located at the bottom of the stock (the thing that is protruding out from the rest), extend the stock to the desired length and re-insert the catch to lock it in place. For the actual weapon, the catch is spring loaded but for this 1/6th scale version, you have to remove the catch and re-insert it for the stock to stay in place. Hope that helps :) ENJOY the figure CHEERS

Anonymous said...

He actually only wields the 1911s akimbo only once in the movie when he's confronted by two of Saint's men at the same time who were only about five or six feet away, a distance where just pointing your pistol straight in an individual's direction will result in a hit. In the climatic firefight, he uses only one aiming down the sights with a proper two-hand grip. I would say the akimbo moment was just a result of his situation at the time and not something he'd do regularly.

alex teo said...

Thanks for the info :)

One Shot said...

I had to revisit this figure again, he's still proudly displayed in my cases and I still like taking this figure out for photo shoots. I will say this though, just last month I took him out of the case because I wanted to pose him with the bow and arrow set and all of a sudden his shoulder snapped clean off, luckily I told AZTECA from Point Blank Toys and he gave me a newer improved Art Figures body. (now that's service with a smile)