Tsu’Tey from Avatar

March 2, 2012

In 2009, Avatar was either the prettiest retelling of Pocahontas to date, or the bastard movie that ripped off a great cartoon’s title, depending on your point of view. Or a bit of both. James Cameron’s Avatar gave us unique humanoid characters called the Na’vi, and one of the tribal leaders was Tsu’Tey.
Now, personally, while the movie was a bit cliche in terms of the story, it was gorgeous in terms of the layout and design. The aliens (or should I say, inhabitants? As the humans were the actual aliens here…) were this weird cat-like Smurf people that fought against the invaders. The main antagonist for the lead character in the tribe was Tsu’Tey, who was supposed to be the next leader and was the intended of the lead female.  Although the figure is in the 4″ class, it’s not in the 1/18th class. The characters are 9 to 10 feet tall, so that would actually put it at… what, 1/30th scale? Tricky stuff, huh?

Tsu’Tey has a small but nicely detailed head. The mohawk and braided hair is nicely detailed with a long braid going down to his backside. The ears protrude out from the head, much like the characters’ in the movie do. The skin has darker blue stripes, and the stripes on the head are clean and precise. However, his eyes are poorly painted, so he has a bit of crazy eye going on. A little less than halfway down his neck, he’s got a leather wrap around his neck that goes down where his breastbone would be. The front of the wrap has detailed lines going side to side, while the back has detailing going up and down. The figure is nude minus a few articles of clothing. He has a wrap around his rib cage that overlaps intself. The wrap is gray with a brown trim, and is loosely painted. The gray isn’t as clean as it should be, and the brown trim runs over onto the gray in several spots. Meanwhile, the body’s stripes are clean and precise. There’s a bit of a paint error on the stomach as well, where there was a brown paint blotch. He has two different arm bands around the bicep, one’s a detailed typical band, while the coiled ornamental piece. The right hand has an arm guard to protect himself from the bow that he comes with. The loin clotch is a separate piece but glued on. There are painted on feathers and beads on the front, and a chord that runs around the waist and around the tail. The tail has the dark blue stripes, although the stripes aren’t as crisp as the rest of the body, and ends with a black furry tip. The legs are bare minus the stripes going down the sides of the legs. The bare feet have four toes, the big toe separate from the rest of the toes.

The articulation for the figure is okay in general, but is pretty good for a Mattel figure. The head is on a swivel at the base of the skull and can freely twist side-to-side. The stomach has a swivel just above his belly button to allow swivel motion. With him being nude, the swivel cut sticks out more, and looks a bit more annoying if there’s any great turn, so while it’s there, and the point is free to move, you can’t keep the composition of the figure if you turn it too greatly. The shoulders, elbows, and knees all have the ball-hinge joint, allowing for full motion. The hips have the advanced t-crotch, allowing for forward and reverse motion, but also allowing the legs to kick out to the side of the figure. The ankles have nice hinge joints as well, allowing the feet to go up and down.

Tsu’Tey has a double-bow and a figure stand. The double bow is a bit of a goofy device, but he can hold the weapon with both hands. It comes with the arrow already cocked back, and the arrow point is painted silver. It’s not a clean paint, as arrow has the fletching in the front, and the silver is loosely painted on the tip and the fletching.

As a figure himself, it’s interesting. The tribal alien thing could probably work with Star Wars figures. It’s a long and gangley figure, with limbs that are extremely thin and an almost nonexistant waist. But, he’s an alien, so he’s allowed to be different. The paint apps other than body stripes are loose and not as clean as they should be. Although he’s a unique character, he could easily pass as a general “trooper” type, as he has nothing unique about him. He’da been more fun with a knife, I think, as the bow’s unique but odd. If you can get them on the cheap, pick one or two up. Otherwise, you can probably avoid him and be okay.









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