The Collective: Review – Diamond Select Star Trek Busts

Diamond Select Toys has taken the advice of Young MC who told us all to Bust a Move. With the recent release of their Captain Archer mini sculpture, DST had now released all five Trek captains as busts–with more on the way. Today The Collective looks at the entire line of these mini Star Trek sculptures.

 

Bust a Trek – keeping a theme
The DST Star Trek busts are a welcome return of this kind of item. Up until 2006 Sideshow Collectibles held the Star Trek bust license, with their last item being a Seven of Nine likeness (you may pause to make any of your own bust puns now). While the quality and size was good, there was an issue with no coherent theme to the offerings. Collectors like to finish out collections, but at times Sideshow’s offerings seemed random. For example, The Next Generation was represented by Picard, Riker, Data, and Worf. They did the same thing with Kirk, Spock, McCoy, and Scotty. However, they never finished the crews, but instead offered guest villains like Koloth and the Gorn. 

Diamond Select’s first series of busts does not have this problem, as their ‘Icon’ line of busts has a theme: Star Trek Captains. The line started with Kirk and just finished up recently with Archer, making a complete set of five. It is great to see variety, and it is nice to have some new Voyager and Enterprise collectibles as they are often persona non grata in the world of Trek merchandising. 


DST’s new Trek busts (front row) and past Sideshow Trek busts (back row)
NOTE: Archer was not available at the time

The likenesses vary in quality. The best are Benjamin Sisko and Kathryn Janeway. The Janeway sculpt is a near perfect representation of that expression Kate Mulgrew often provided the character in her noblest moments, that mix of mirth and wonder. Sisko has that glint of fun adventure yet also seriousness which Avery Brook’s brought to his character. There  is also some nice latter-season detailing of Jonathan Archer, but his hair is a tad weird (although it is as it was presented in the third and fourth seasons). The face isn’t perfect, yet it is recognizably Archer.


Sisko, Janeway and Archer busts
(click to enlarge)

The Captains Kirk and Picard are detailed and brightly colored, however both likenesses are a bit lacking. It is a given fact that there is something about William Shatner’s Kirk that presents a real challenge to sculptors. The face is asymmetrical and lacks distinguishing features, so Kirk action figures and busts have always had trouble getting the likeness right. However, Patrick Stewart’s Picard has enough unique features for this statue to have been made better. Regardless all the busts, including Kirk and Picard, benefit from a variety of facial expressions you don’t get in other lines of busts.


Kirk and Picard busts
(click to enlarge)

There is also nice attention to detail in the packaging. Each is limited to 1,701. The busts include a certificate of authenticity signed by the sculptor and each bust is hand numbered on the certificate and on the bottom of the bust. The new busts are about 40% shorter than the previous Sideshow busts, but much of the reason the Sideshow had much larger (and somewhat oddly shaped) bases. The DST bases are more traditional, which I prefer.



Bust certificate and base
(click to enlarge)

Although pricey at $45 a piece, the quality of the sculpts, the construction, and the consistent theme make these Star Trek busts a highly recommended collectible.

All 5 captain busts are available now at Entertainment Earth.

Diamond Select Star Trek ‘Icons’ Captains Busts
Kirk Picard Sisko Janeway Archer
$44.99 $44.99 $44.99 $44.99 $44.99

More busts on the way
It is a very nice display to have all five Captain statues next to each other. Diamond’s next two busts are a TOS Commander Spock and Star Trek II-IV era Admiral Kirk. We don’t know where they are going, but hopefully these are parts of a theme and not random. It would be nice to see them finish out the TOS crew (for TV and movie era), or maybe do all the first officers.

DST Icons Busts – Pre-orders
Spock Adm. Kirk
$44.99
(pre-order for August)
$44.99
(pre-order late July)

 

OTHER COLLECTIBLE NEWS OF THE WEEK

Wave 5 of Minimates available for pre-order
The next wave of minimates is now available for pre-order retailers.
Action Figure Express sells them as a set of four 2packs, giving you the following figures: “The Trouble With Tribbles” Kirk and Yeoman Rand, Captain Decker and Lieutenant Ilia from TMP, DS9 Captain Sisko and Gul Dukat, and the limited Commander Sisko variant and Gul Dukat.

Minimates Series Five – 8-pack
$25.59
(pre-order for December)

The only other news this week is that the DST/EMCE Scotty Retro Mego Scotty and Keeper 2-packs are going to be delayed slightly (they were supposed to be out this week). They should be available by August.

Retro Mego Scotty and Keeper 2-pack
$30.39
(pre-order for September)

Next Collective – Cards
Next time we will take a look at Star Trek cards, new and old.
 

 

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They call me Stasiu

Busts are great for comic book superheroes where artistic representation of the face isn’t critical. But when you can’t reproduce a decent likeness of an actor from film/TV then these things aren’t really worth the expense, IMHO.

Darth Ballz

UGGG! those busts are ugly, I would never put something so tacky anywere in my home and I have alot of Star Trek Crap, Ha!

Darth “Bust-my-Balls” Ballz

krikzil

I have most of these busts and really like them sitting on the shelves staring at me. ;) Glad to see more are on the way. And the Megos! I love that they are redoing them. I have a few Megos from childhood but I played with them and didn’t save the packaging. It’s nice to relive childhood.

Wow….that tunic of Kirk’s sure is tight on that bust. A borrowed piece of wardrobe from Jennifer Love Hewitt’s closet no doubt.

New Horizon

Good lord. These busts are awful. Sisko looks like nothing more than…generic black guy! blech

brady

thants a dead on archer and janeway but the rest aren’t even close

Wheeli

Archer’s hair looks almost Vulcan

Redjac

Who has room for all this crap?

I quit collecting back in the 90s. I moved out of my parents basement, got married…had kids…

In other words: got a life.

Posting on Trek websites has become my “hobby”.

LOL!!!

Redjac
warning for trolling

to you and others who dont collect, why are you even commenting? This website is for all Trek fans, many of whom are collectors. I am not a collector, or a comic book reader, and dont read all the books even. But we cover all those things because they are part of Trek. There is no reason to insult others because they celebrate their fandom differently than you do.

#8: I’ve got a life, a house, a beautiful wife, am very successful in my profession. And I collect Star Trek stuff. Not everything, mind you, but I collect the stuff that interests me. I do hear you about finding room for everything, though.

I just picked up the Master Replicas TOS Enterprise. I made room for that one.

New Horizon

I comment because I personally care about Star Trek, and I’m sick of seeing half baked products released. I don’t agree with insulting others, but commenting on the questionable quality of items should be fair game.

krikzil

I have a life…..it just happens to include A ROOM in my house for my Trek collection. Heh heh.

BrF

The bust that would be Kirk looks like an entry in a wet t-shirt contest. What gives?

Curtis

I just think it’s great that TWOK Kirk has a ‘fuller’ hairline than TOS Kirk ;)

Irishtrekkie

well the Adm. Kirk one at least looks like him .

Sebi

I think the minimates look closer to the original than the bust. Look at the Kirk minimate and that smile.

The busts suck though…

Katie G.

I don’t collect Star Trek stuff (except for the all the dvds of all the series and all the movies) but I will be collecting the Pez set if it comes out in Canada. Got hooked on Pez again after purchasing “The Pretender” on dvd. The Pez heads don’t really look like the actors but they’re very small so I can live with it. However, the busts look larger and don’t seem to look like the people they are supposed to portray (or maybe it’s my computer screen). The best-looking one as far as I can see is Data.

Regardless, thanks very much for the work on this article, John. Always interesting.

kg

Rainbucket

For that money, the quality really should be better if these are going to be in peoples’ homes. I’d swear I’ve seen competent Trek likenesses from Sideshow.

Then again I’m not quite the target market. I only have a Sam The Eagle bust from the Muppet Show. He just looks natural on a pedestal.

Beam Me Up

Wow, they look more wooden than the actors!

dyaleleon

They really look weird with no arms….

MikeyPikey

no offence to anyone here without arms, but they are just freaky :P

Kirk, James T.

Diamond Selects poor attempt at the likenesses to these characters is dire, however, so was sideshows!

Is it me or do Diamond Select seem to be skimping a lot with Star Trek? hmm all we seem to get is re-used bodies and the recent word that like Sideshow, DST will not be finishing the main cast of Voyager but only releasing a few of the characters (my guess it will be Seven of Nine and Janeway).

go to http://www.trektoy.com/forum, sign up and have your say on this because i think, although not a Voyager fan myself, a lot of fans are ready to sharpen their stakes again and go for DST.

slow news day…..

James

Why can we not have decent trek products. The Wars products are soooo much better

captain_neill

The Archer one looks awful, nothing like Scott Bakula.

The action figure I have of Archer looks cooler than this.

The sideshow collectables were great and detail like Data’s face having the gold shine was amazing

captain_neill

Janeway one is great

Kirk, James T.

Does anyone remember when Art Asylum actually cared about the quality – those where the good old days, when Art Asylum released the very best of figures from Enterprise and “Star Trek” then Diamond bought them out and we’ve been left with sup standard quality and poor marketing – indeed i do wish Hasbro had got the entire license rather than Playmates and Diamond. Lets just hope Playmates picks up the entire license after the movie.

thebiggfrogg

Yeah, I have to agree those busts are awful renditions. The only one that looks vaguely like the person portrayed is Archer. The rest look like some generic sculptures of some woman, some bald guy, some black guy. I guess I can understand the quality in a tiny action figure, but a bust. I’m not a collector, but I’d love to get the Mego stuff–brings back childhood memories. My Dr. McCoy still survives. Unfortunately Kirk and the one-legged Klingon got lost in the shuffle of time, blue undies and all.

Enterprisingguy

The one of Sisco looks like Bill Cosby asking who wants jello pudding!

DavidJ

Ugh. It looks like they got the same guy to do these who did the action figures. They have the same bland, generic faces, lifeless expressions, and flat bodies.

Adam Bomb 1701

Those busts remind me of the booze-filled Spock bust that was released in 1979, as a promotion for “The Motion Picture.” Wish I had bought one back then; it’s probably worth a fortune now.

elmachocombo

Cripes! These things make the old Galoob figures look pretty damn good. I’ve seen better likenesses of actors on El Salvadoran Rambo bootlegs at the 99 cent store.

Cenobyte

Kirk looks like the professor from Gilligans Island
Picard looks like Mr. Clean
Sisko looks a bit like Samuel L Jackson
Archer looks like Mr. Howell

Janeway is ok…

Meh these things kinda blow.

THX-1138 The Fandom Menace

While the figures and stue dealies aren’t really my thing, I do admit to loving to play with Seven of Nine’s bust.

And John, I think your collective article is awesome. Today, I sit at my desk in my office in my “Set Phasers to Stun” t-shirt with my Diamond Select hand phaser at the ready to blast anyone who dares enter with accounts payable. My geek hand is strong.

THX-1138 The Fandom Menace

Die, Typonians, die!

“statue” not “stue”

I’m not impressed, to say the least. Why did they have to use that hairdo on Janeway? Just because it was easier to reproduce? It made her look like a nun, which is probably why it didn’t last for more than oh, a season and a half maybe?

And Sisko doesn’t look anything like Avery Brooks. Archer isn’t too bad but could have been a lot better. You’d think that since the artists don’t have to work on a very small scale the way they do with action figures, they’d be able to be a little more thorough and achieve a better resemblance…

Doug

It almost makes me wonder if there is something contractual that alllows that if the likeness is different enough from the actual actor, they don’t pay as much to the actor? Just a thought….artistically, they’re pretty bad. The sculptures are “fresh out of junior college art school with a degree in painting and a minor in sculpture” quality.

let me clarify

What I consider trolling is insulting other fans and especially the writers of the columns as Redjac did. For the record John Tenuto’s lovely wife Mary Jo is also a collector and they have a whole room of their house for their collections.

As for the ‘i hate stuff’ comments. Well it is OK to critique merchandise, but I do think there has to be some perspective. I think some people have unrealistic expectations of what merchandising could be, and also I think some people wrongly attack Trek for even having merchandising…as if it is somehow ‘above’ other franchises and shouldnt do it, even though there is actually less merchandising of Trek than others. Just check out rebelscum.com some day to see just how much Star Wars stuff there is in the world, with new stuff released every day. We do one collectibles column a week, mostly geared for those who collect Trek stuff.

If you don’t like collectibles, find one of the other 20+ articles a week we do to entertain yourself.

I’m thinking that actors’ images need to licensed or paid for usage… maybe a “close” approximation avoids legal measures if the actor has not consented to their likeness being reproduced.

After all, anyone can make an image to sell of a “character” rather than a speciifc person to sell off…

Hmmm… then again, anyone can paint Bill Shatner stealing your garden’s veggies and there’s no liability if it is art…

or is it libel?

40 I am not an attorney. Please do not sue me if you decide, based on my uneducated guess, to plaster up a series of unlicensed Trek actors and sell them on E-Bay only to be caught and fined severly forevermore…

elmachocombo

Pallas. If only that were so. Only a handful of very powerful actors (Jack Nicholson in Batman) have the kind of pull to demand points on merch. Mark Hammill for example doesn’t see a dime from the 30 years worth of action figures he has inspired. It’s a shame really. I would be inclined to collect more if I thought I was helping Wil Wheaton buy a Whopper Jr.

Katie G.

#33. John Tenuto

“Thanks, I appreciate the notion that what is written is unimportant. Makes me feel great!”

John, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain…

People bring their attitudes with them wherever they go. That’s why there’s road rage and that’s why we get those negative posts. Just ignore them and hopefully they’ll go away. (Or Anthony will make them disappear…)

I would say that a HUGE majority appreciate the time and effort you put into these articles even if we forget to tell you so.

Please don’t get discouraged and give up.

kg

Beam Me Up

I think the TWOK Kirk is the best looking one.

Anthony, the mego figures of Scotty and the Alien are mis-labeled as Minimates Series 5.

7 of 5

I like collectibles; big good-looking expensive ones that actually look more like what they are supposed to represent, which is why I only have a few.

These items are fine for the market they are intended for and there is nothing wrong with kitsch. My wife just won’t allow it in the house.

1701 over Gotham City

the likenesses are not great, but they do fill a void… even in the “underground” circuit of the Garage kit world, Trek has rarely been touched, outside of ships. Off the top of my head, I can think of (including the recent statues and this bust) 5 statues/kits of Kirk in the past few decades. That’s sad for such a strong fan-base

As a modeler, I can tell you that each likeness of these pieces would benefit from better paint jobs. So, if you have any skills in painting, giving the bust an overhaul might really bring it out.

I was a big fan of the Sideshow busts and have them all. Sure, some were better likenesses than others but they were all passable. These Diamond ones are pretty ugly (I think). The bases look too plain and the smaller size doesn’t do anything for me (especially at the prices they’re going for).

I really wish Sideshow would get the licence back and continue the line!

The Underpants Monster

That bust doesn’t even look like it could be of Scott Bakula’s uncle’s second cousin.

El Rushborg

My GOODNESS –the Archer bust looks like an APE-MAN!

By the way… I have an Art Asylum Kirk, Spock, and McCoy set. Awesome, high quality, they look EXACTLY like the actors.

I wonder…did they make any other characters? Sulu, for instance, or Rand?

It’s amazing –the only Trek figure I’ve ever seen that looked ANYTHING like Grace Lee Witney was a BARBIE!

Pathetic, huh?

small peni man

the new busts are too small. (like my member)