The Collective: Review Of DST Retro Pike and Salt Vampire Figures + First Look At New Titan Busts

This week The Collective takes a look at Diamond Select’s two newly released Star Trek retro MEGO cloth figures: Captain Pike and the Salt Vampire. We also give an update on what is next for the line and get a first look at the new Titan Star Trek busts.


REVIEW: Star Trek Retro Pike and Salt Vampire Figure Set

From: Diamond Select Toys
Price: $35.99 [Entertainment Earth]

Beginning in 2007, EMCE Toys and Diamond Select Toys/Art Asylum joined to bring fans authentic retro reproductions of the 1970s MEGO Star Trek cloth action figures, along with “new” retro versions of figures that many wished had been included in the original line. The retro fun continues this month with the release of Captain Christopher Pike and The Salt Vampire from “The Man Trap.”

New retro Salt Vampire figure in packaging

As usual with the MEGO retro line, the action figures are sold in a clever design which allows fans to open and play with the figure, then place it back in the packaging. The excellent artwork on the card is all new, yet in the original style, and show Pike, Salty, and the next two figures, Nurse Christine Chapel and Vina.

New retro Pike figure in packaging

As the captain before James T. Kirk, Christopher Pike has the distinction of being immortalized as an action figure many times, in sizes two inches to twelve, and in both the original time line and 2009 alternative universe versions. However, Pike was never included in the original MEGO line which began in 1974. As with their other “new” retro figures such as Khan, EMCE and DST have taken great care to imagine how MEGO founder Marty Abrams and his team would have presented the figure had it been made back then.

New retro Pike figure

New Pike retro figure with past Pike figures

The original MEGO line was influenced by the animated show then on television, and MEGO Pike has the same stylized look as his counterparts. There are two concerns with this new figure: the skin tone is a bit different than previous MEGO figures (as is shown in this comparison photo between the retro Kirk reproduction released in 2007 and Pike) and the head sculpt seems a bit bigger than previous action figures. That being told, there is also much to like here. The fun detailing of “The Cage” outfit, the good Jeffrey Hunter likeness, the inclusion of the time honored phaser and communicator accessories, and the delta shield that makes rainbows when the light hits it right, are all features that show the respect that the line has always had of the original MEGO toys.

DST’s new Pike is much paler and has a bigger head than their Kirk figure

The Salt Vampire also surprisingly was not included in the original MEGO line, which is weird considering how many monster figures MEGO produced. This “new” retro Salty is fun and inspired. EMCE and DST use a “bunny” suit to cover the action figure, a very MEGOish detail.

New Salt Vampire retro figure

The sculpt, while not a direct likeness of the character in the episode, also looks good next to the original alien figures. There are some nice details, such as Salty’s hands and face. The MEGO line wasn’t about exact likenesses. It was more about the feel of a character, stylized and cartoonish in detail. Salty continues that tradition.

Nice detail on Salt Vampire figure

The retro Mego Salt Vampire and Pike figures are just arriving in stores. You can order up the pair from Entertainment Earth for $35.99.

Next for DST Retro Mego Line

Later this year, EMCE and DST are planning to release MEGO style versions of Nurse Christine Chapel and Vina. Next February, just in time for the 25th Anniversary of Star Trek: The Next Generation, the first ever TNG MEGO retro figures, Captain Jean Luc Picard and Borg, will be available. This is a great news for those who enjoy the retro line. It is hoped by some fans, including myself, that EMCE and DST will also consider finishing their reproductions of the original line by making available retro versions of Neptunian and Talos, the only two figures they have not brought back. Christopher Pike and The Salt Vampire are good additions to the line, however, and they have the most important feature of MEGO toys: they are fun to play with!

Retro-Mego line of Star Trek cloth figures headed to the Next Generation in 2012

FIRST LOOK: Titan Star Trek Busts

Beyond Diamond Select, there is some other news in the world of Star Trek collectibles with the first looks at the first busts coming from Titan. In February they will be releasing limited edition busts of Captain Kirk and Captain Picard. The 8-inch tall busts retail for $79.99 each and are available now fore pre-order now at Entertainment Earth.

Titan Star Trek busts coming in 2012

Next for The Collective: Review of Westland Collectibles

The next Collective column will feature reviews of the recently released Westland Giftware Star Trek cookie jars and salt/pepper shakers.

Star Trek Enterprise in Space Cookie Jar Star Trek Spock Cookie Jar 


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Some pretty impresive stuff. I love the Salt Vampire. Looks really good. Oh and First. Like anyone really cares i’m first. Lol.

Does anyone else think it’s odd of where those busts end? I thought it was always at shoulder or chest level, not there..

Error Patrol: The Mego Star Trek figures began in 1974, not 1979.

Not only do I know this from personal experience, but here’s what the Mego Museum has to say: “The original five “Star Trek” figures were released in 1974, and included Capt. Kirk, Mr. Spock, Dr. McCoy (Bones), Mr. Scott (Scottie), and the Klingon. It is notable that these were the first 8″ Mego figures to be available exclusively on blister cards, having never been available in boxes throughout the entirety of their run.”

Although those busts feature pretty nice sculpts, it’s a bit unsettling to see the captains with their private parts and lower halves caught in drain pipes (at least it looks that way).

I also saw a Data bust from the same line. It was at the Diamond booth at Comic-Con.

I still wonder when DST will release the Excelsior/Enterprise B models… anybody heard anything about those lately?

i would like to see a C model with lights and sound

For my part, I’d like to see a reissue of the Excelsior (not Enterprise B) model kit, and a Salt Vampire salt shaker. The Pepper shaker can be whatever… perhaps one of the vampire’s victims from The Man Trap.

OK, this feels really nerdy to point this out, but it’s too bad they chose to give Pike a regular TOS phaser/communicator. I’d have thought they’d give him ‘glow in the dark’ version of “The Cage’s” laser pistol and clunkier communicator.

OK, back to reality now; already in progress… ;-P

Now why didnt they have all this stuff when i was a kid in early 70’s? I was dying for this stuff, of course they had the retro figures but not all the other stuff, god it was tough back then…it was a star trek desert…

The Kirk figure looks silly. lol

And the busts.. why end there? I don’t know. lol Weird

Also, Kirk looks PISSED.

“What.. doyoumean… Misterspockwhenyou say, no-more-chicken?”

10. Heh. I had a few of the mego guys (in Canada in the mid ’70s) — Kirk, Spock, Scotty, Chekov and Sulu, and a phaser that was taken away because the screeching drove everybody nuts. They must have been on sale at Zellers. The creepy alien device of the week (my hand) would squish their heads, or remove them entirely. Steve Austin also served on the fictional enterprise bridge made of (multi-coloured, mismatched) lego in my basement too, as did Batman and Robin. Later, they were joined by the comparatively tiny Star Wars guys. And some Fisher-Price safari people. It was a glorious time. ;)

is that bust jean-luc picard or the great cornholio?

I could easily imagine Mego recycling a Peter Parker head for Pike. I really hope that’s an early prototype though! The head is a tad huge…

Nice we’re finally getting a Salt Vampire. Playmates threw in the towel before releasing their 12 inch version.

Not to nitpick, but the phaser that Pike has on the toy didn’t come into service until AFTER Kirk took command of the Enterprise. And on Where No Man Has Gone Before, the phaser casing is the same as the laser casing from The Cage.

Nitpick away. We’re Star Trek fans. Its what we do! :)

Cool. It’s a parallel universe where Jeff Hunter stayed for the series and it was a bit more Irwin Allen.

The retros look like good toys to play with, or give to the kids. Not really sure they’re high quality enough to want for a collection.

The busts look like Kirk and Picard being stuffed in the wood chopper, a la ‘Fargo.’

Yah, Hon!

The Picard bust is an impressive likeness of Sir Patrick Stewart. The Kirk bust…not so much.

I own the Pike w/ Command Chair. That’s a nice action figure. The new retro figure is a little too childish for me, I prefer more realistic toys. (Talk about Minimates.)

When will we see a Enterprise “C”??????

Call me a child, but why put Picard’s phaser THERE of all places?

Love the retro ‘MEGO’ figures! I want MOAR!!!!!!!

Those busts look odd, why did they include their hips? Pikes sidearm was a miss, why didnt they make a laser pistol for him?

Pike looks like a vampire who only goes out at night with that pale skin.

Had no idea so many Pike figures had been made. I wish Mego had expanded their TMP 12″ line to include the Security Guard (with armor) and the spacesuits. Oh well.

Cool Mego figs. Might have to have a Pike.

Wow. They should’ve labelled him Pike’s corpse!

The reason, my fellow nitpickers, that Pike has the same phaser and communicator as everybody else instead of his own “The Cage’ style laser pistol and transister communicator is because its in keeping with the way Mego did it back in the Seventies. EVERYBODY who had an accessory in the Star Trek line got the same phaser, communicator, and belt – the good guys in blue, the Klingon, Gorn, and Romulan in red. Nobody got a disruptor or anything like that. If Mego had made Pike back in the Seventies, he would have come with the same blue phaser and communicator that he has today. It was an intentional choice, and if you don’t believe me, ask Paul Clarke.

The Kirk bust looks like Jason Statham. With hair.

Seriously. Look at it closely.

Looks like they stuck the Shazam! head on Pike.

@29. Now that you mention it it does. Maybe Shats sitting fee was too high, so Jason stepped in….

The Picard bust looks convincing… but the Kirk… hmmm. Someone said angry, maybe… or Jason Statham… maybe…

Shatner is tough to do.

The Pike figure is very very pale!

I too want Enterprise C model. That was a cool design. Say now… how about a ST series with an Ambassador class ship? (Not the Enterprise C of course, otherwise they’d vanish halfway through season 1).

Why can’t any company ever get Star Trek busts right? These are awful.

None of this looks good. Except the top half of the Picard, which is a very good likeness of him. It should be full-length, though.

The Pike Metro figure looks awesome.

You are right, Commodore Mike: No one cares that you are first with a comment.

Kirk bust say: “Transportation is a precise business!”

I am not too happy with the Pike figure. He’s so pale and his head is huge! I love the Salt Vampire though. I’m totally buying the salt and pepper set. Good price point.

The Borg man looks so happy!

39 – LOL I didn’t notice that before. Maybe it’s the same head for the Edward Scissorhands figure… ;D

KirK bust: “Replace the other half of my body or I’ll burn you where you stand.”

Picard bust: “Go get the other half of my body, or I’ll talk you to death.”

Why doesn’t Salty have any thumbs?