By and large, since Sigma 6's debut in 2005 I have been extremely pleased with every offering that's come across the table. It's a rarity in the toy world these days where you are happy with every toy that hits retail. Even though I come across pretty positively in most of my reviews, the truth is, I often find some fault with a lot of toys that come out, and rarely am I pleasently surprised. Well, one of the driving forces to me for the Sigma 6 line (and now the 8" line in general) is how often I am pleasently surprised. Toys that I thought I would hate end up far better than I suspected (see Ninja Armor Snake Eyes, Desert Long Range, and Jet Wing Duke for some typical examples) and toys that I thought would be cool ended up even cooler. Sure, there have been a few duds here and there, but by and large I remain extremely happy with everything that has come out.

Every once in a while, though, a toy appears that you can just tell has "it". "It" is pretty tough to explain, and you can't always quantify it, but you can just sit back and look at an action figure and see the personality, see the character, see the execution. The figure just hits on all levels, and often that's evident right out of the gate. That was especially true of Lt. Stone, COBRA Firefly, and now Flint. The minute pictures appeared of these figures, you could just tell that they were going to be amazing toys, and Flint keeps up the very, VERY high standards that Hasbro has set throughout the past two years of great larger scale action figures.

The Sigma 6 name may be gone, but the spirit absolutely lives on through this new, updated version of Flint. Many folks immediately wondered how this could be the infamous Joe Warrant Officer, considering his appearance, but as Hasbro has done since '05, they manage to give a new twist to existing characters, and still make them work, even if they don't look anything like their previous versions. There is no beret here, no shotgun shells, leather jacket or cocky smile. But considering Flint's recent turn to a darker side of himself in recent America's Elite story arcs, this look actually works from a certain perspective, and I really have no problems with it.

There may actually be a more sensible reason for his change in appearence, though. Initially, many months ago, we got a glimpse at early product listings that were erroneously sent to a small toy retailer somewhere, and on those listings there was a Commando figure named "Agent Pantha". If you ask me, I think this figure was originally intended to be that "Agent Pantha" (I think it's safe to assume perhaps he would have been "Agent Panther" by the time the figure hit retail). I base this thought on the fact that the filecard really treats this as a totally new character, and it actually makes references to how "catlike" Flint is, so that's my personal hypothesis. Regardless of the name, I think considering this is a new "universe" this works just fine as Flint. In fact, I think it works exceptionally well as Flint and actually gives him quite a bit of character to me. The same night I received this figure in the mail, I sat down and immediately wrote up a Battle Files bio for him. The character was just so effective, it hit me immediately.

From an execution point of view, Flint is fantastic. Utilizing pretty much all new tooling, Flint makes for a terrific covert operative, yet manages to fit in perfectly with the rest of the Sigma 6 "universe" which is all I can really ask for.

The biggest bone of contention that most fans had with this figure involved his head sculpt, which I think is one of the figure's biggest strengths. His determined, intense glare is immediately evident, showing a sordid recent past and a great scar over his right eye. His somewhat longer, scraggly hair, strands hanging in his face, really gives him an "on the edge" appearence, someone who does not abide by strict military protocol, and someone who seems a lot more "Freelance". While that may go against Flint's character from the 80's, I think it's a nice bridge to his current role in the Devils' Due comics, which has grown somewhat nicely over the past few issues. I'm not absolutely thrilled with the bangs being sculpted in place on top of his face, but the figure does look nicely different and it adds some necessary character. The more I look at his head sculpt and facial expression, the more I really like how it came out.

Flint uses the Lockdown style of Kung Fu Grip, with a larger padded glove and pseudo trigger finger. One minor nitpick I do have is that the wrist ball joint is a different shade of flesh tone than the rest of his arm, which does stand out a bit, but if this is my only concern, the figure is working pretty darn well.

As far as the rest of the figure goes, things look really great. Flint's got a nicely "Sigma-tized" turtleneck combat sweater/armored vest that is really again reminiscent of some of the uniforms in the America's Elite title. The two-toned colors, with a nice drab gray and faded purple actually work amazingly well. Initial reactions from some to the purple color tone was somewhat mixed, but I think it comes out awesome, especially with gray being the larger share of the color pallet. This combination of purple and gray is great, and adds some great color to his look without making it too bright and obnoxious. His legs are plastic sculpted pants as they have been recently, with dark black color, small kneepads and large brown combat boots. I would have loved to see some more color mixed in with the legs, but these work fine and are effective. Very cool.

So, even as a base figure, Flint works remarkably well...but then you add up the combat vest and the climbing harness and things get even better!

The vest is simply great! It's a somewhat thin, elastic material which slides over his shoulders and fits on his torso flawlessly, and has a quartet of pouches sewn into the fabric. They are held on well and the end result is a well-fitted and nicely designed vest. So nice I wish they'd included it with Shockwave instead of the new "vest" he ended up with. His climbing harness is made of rubber and while it looks very nice, it isn't the most effective way to do it. If you attach the included grappling hook, the thin rubber material stretches out somewhat if you put weight on it, and the belt can actually become unbuckled rather easily. Beyond this minor complaint, though, from an appearence point of view, it looks nice, offsets the vest well, and is a great compliment to the overall look of the figure.

Flint's gun is equally cool. Hasbro went with a somewhat modular feel, giving him a rifle that can be a long range machine gun, heavy machine gun, or even...err...a suction cup launcher. Suction cup playability aside, though, the gun is actually very cool, with a couple of fun configurations, interesting colors, and a great design aesthetic. As usual, I'll provide more info in the Tech Specs section.

From head to toe, Flint exudes character, flair, and terrific execution. The minute I saw initial pictures I knew this figure would rock, and I'm happy to say my initial feelings were spot on. A great unique head sculpt, a nice military feel, and a great assortment of accessories, Flint is a perfect example of what made this toyline great over the past two years. As I've said, the Sigma 6 name might be gone, but the style and the feel is absolutely still running strong.

I've seen a lot of questions about the future of the 8" line recently as well, and it certainly looks somewhat questionable. I can say without any hint of hesitation that if the 8" line does fade away this year, that it went out strong and it went out after providing two solid years of exceptional product, which is something that not many toylines can say. I have been infinitely happy with pretty much all of the product that has hit retail and that is really saying something. I will be thrilled if it is still going strong two years from now, but I know how the toy world works at this point, and I know if Hasbro had their choice, this line would go forever. It's been a great ride, but no matter what the future of the line is, I cannot overstate how much fun these toys have been since 2005. Flint continues that spirit on in full.

Huge thanks to "Mysterious Stranger" for supplying these excellent pictures of Flint "test shots" compared to how he came out in production! A great behind the scenes peek...














    Top of the Page  
text links HomeThe StoryThe SeriesThe ToysThe FilesThe ForumsThe Staff