Toy Review: The Lord of the Rings Gimli Deluxe Figure by Diamond Select

It’s been a while since action figures based on The Lord of the Rings movies have appeared in toy stores. Back when they did, Toy Biz made a fairly comprehensive line that’s still much in demand today. But with a new, very expensive TV show on the way, there’s room in the marketplace for more. Comprehensive lines seem essentially a thing of the past; Diamond Select‘s approach, like many other companies, is to focus on rendering the best version of each major character they tackle as they can. Up first? Gimli, the irascible dwarf.

For a dwarf he’s not super-short, but then Peter Jackson’s versions aren’t, in general.Just remember John Rhys-Davies is quite a large man, and here he’s been in-scale rendered to be about a head shorter than Johnny Depp, who isn’t.

It’s hard to say how good the likeness is. Davies wore so much makeup that Gimli barely looked like him anyway. But the figure definitely resembles the character. Nobody’s going to mistake him for any of the other movie dwarfs.

Gimli includes interchangeable open hands, which, while convenient, are unlikely to ever be used in display. Most folks will want to pose Gimli with his axes, rather than making cat-claw gestures. As far as said axes go, he comes with three. A single head, a hooked-head, and a double head. Any one of them can go in a loop on his belt. While he also includes faux-metal rings on his waist and back that look like holsters, they aren’t. Attempting to make them so will only cause them to pop off.

The gripping hands have just the right amount of give to the fingers. He won’t drop these axes, but your fingertips won’t endure undue pain trying to fit them in place either. Each ax handle is long enough for double grip, if preferred.

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Articulation is a little different on this one. Because his hips are hidden under a skirt, Diamond has given him full ball-joints, rather than their usual cut-and-hinge. With his skirt having some leeway, this allows for more dynamic posing than one might expect.

And yes, that’s the head of Sauron. All of the first six figures from Diamond come with a piece of the Dark Lord, though here it also looks like a battle trophy. Toy Biz’s Sauron was an outstanding figure, with lights, sounds, and a ragged cloth cape. This may not have the effects, but the sculpt looks impeccable.

Back to Gimli. In addition to ball hips he has a ball waist, shoulders, and head (though his beard is restrictive). Pin-and disc ball elbows, pin and hinge wrists. Bicep and thigh cuts, knee hinges, and hinge-and-rocker ankles fill him out.

Sculpt-wise, the real appeal of Gimli comes in all the different textures on his outfit. From his skirt’s inner lining to the Celtic designs on his boots, this figure looks like he wears layers. Essential for those Misty Mountains cold.

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Diamond continues their fantastic new deluxe packaging, about which it’s hard to say enough good things. Like Eric Draven and Jack Sparrow, Gimli is sandwiched between two form-fitting plastic trays, eliminating the need for twist-ties and allowing careful openers to put the figure back in the package with ease. Other companies should take note.

Gimli, however, costs more than Jack or Eric, at $29.99. I suspect this may be an overall cost increase, but as with some of McFarlane’s recent DC waves, the extra $5 is theoretically justified by the build-a-figure piece. A headsculpt like Sauron’s requires more elaborate sculpting and deco than Jack’s diorama pieces, even if a lot less plastic gets used.

Overall a strong debut for this line. Figures with more specific actor likeness remain to be seen, but as “ultimate” interpretations designed to stand next to other 7-inch-scaled figures on the shelf, these are worthy. Take a look in our gallery below for even more images and details. Gimli should be hitting all your favorite specialty figure retailers now.

Will you buy into the new Lord of the Rings line? Let us know in comments.

Recommended Reading: J.R.R. Tolkien 4-Book Boxed Set: The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

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