“The film which you are about to see is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of five youths, in particular Sally Hardesty and her invalid brother, Franklin. It is all the more tragic in that they were young. But, had they lived very, very long lives, they could not have expected nor would they have wished to see as much of the mad and macabre as they were to see that day. For them an idyllic summer afternoon drive became a nightmare. The events of that day were to lead to the discovery of one of the most bizarre crimes in the annals of American history, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.”
That prologue opens one of the most genuinely scary horror films ever made. While digital restorations and tinkering with the original film elements has made the film clearer and crisper, I always felt the best way to enjoy the movie was a dark, grainy image that helped to amplify the gritty nature of what you were seeing. While the gore is surprisingly tame compared to what came in later horror films, the portrayal of the Sawyer family in the original film was raw and scary in a way that no follow up or remake has truly captured. Among that horrific family was The Hitchhiker. A seemingly dimwitted traveler, who sets the uneasy tone from the start of the film. Shifting from a lonely traveler to a deranged madman in just a few seconds, the portrayal by actor Edwin Neal is one of the scariest in the film. The Hitchhiker meets his demise at the hands of a semi-truck as he chases the last survivor, but makes his return as a corpse puppet known as Nubbins in the sequel.
Continuing their expanded Texas Chainsaw Massacre Mego style releases, NECA introduced a 2-pack that features The Hitchhiker as well as the corpse puppet Nubbins. Available online and in-stores now, the set includes a figure of the Hitchhiker, who comes with a switchblade, a razor, a pouch and a camera. The Nubbins puppet is made out of armature wire, with a sculpted upper torso and hands. Straps and wiring allow for the figure to be held by the previously released chop Top.
Toyark sponsor Entertainment Earth sent along the set for us to check out. After the jump, see my photos and thoughts on the new 2-pack.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre – The Hitchhiker and Nubbins Sawyer 8″ Scale FigureSet by NECA
- Great overall set
- Likeness on The Hitchhiker is great
- Perfect accessories
- Nubbins is nice and light to work with Chop Top
- Great sculpting on Nubbins head sculpt
- Mostly good paint work
- A little hard to stand The Hitchhiker
- Facial hair paint could be cleaner
The set comes packaged in a collector friendly window box featuring design elements inspired by the film franchise. The back of the box includes a few photos of the figures, as well as a brief bio on them. The figures sit on a plastic tray, held in by some ties. A cardboard dio backdrop is included, featuring the road where The Hitchhiker is picked up from the first film. Both figures include a pelt pouch to wear. The Hitchhiker includes Franklin’s switchblade, a razor, and a camera.
Never did I expect to see the day where I’d have a growing line up of Texas Chainsaw Massacre figures beyond Leatherface. At most, once NECA introduced Chop Top, I figured that would be the only additional character we’d ever see. I was happy to be proven wrong here with the Nubbins set. The Hitchhiker is probably the most important character outside of Leatherface in the original film. He’s our introduction to the Sawyer’s, and our first glimpse into the dark minds of those characters. He’s almost as creepy as Leatherface, and you can’t help but feel satisfaction when he gets flattened by the semi-truck.
The Hitchhiker figure captures the character pretty much perfectly. The expression on the face is great and exaggerated, while still maintaining a good likeness to actor Edwin Neal. The paint work is strong here, outside of the facial hair, which looks a little spotty up close. Thankfully, the rest of the paint application is crisp and clean, with sharp eyes, a striking birthmark on his face, and nice paint washes to bring out the sculpting. NECA also include the blood steaming from his left hand after cutting it with a knife. The accessories are spot on. About the only other thing you could ask for are some of the creepy photos that he carries around with him.
In the second film, we’re introduced to Nubbins. The reassembled corpse of The Hitchhiker that is carried around by Chop Top, the eldest of the Sawyer brothers. Chop Top uses Nubbins as a puppet to taunt the new victims in part 2. Nubbins features a sculpted upper body and hands, which are all attached to bendable wire armatures. His hands and the bottom of his pants feature straps that can be used attach Nubbins to Chop Top (or another Mego style figure if you choose). There’s also a handle on the back of his head to give further stability when being controlled by the other figures. The sculpt work here is also handled very well. The figure is appropriately gross looking, with a great decaying flesh look to him. The figure is nice and light as well, so it won’t tip over whoever you attach him to. Paint work is appropriately dark and muddy to reflect the decomposed nature of the figure. The armature bends easily, allowing you to use those bits to help prop him up when being handled.
If you’re a fan of the film franchise, then this is an easy recommendation. It’s not going to make believers out of fans who aren’t into the Mego figures. But for fans who do enjoy this style, there’s plenty to like here. It features two nicely sculpted figures, good accessories and adds two more characters to the TCM line up.
Background featured in pics below are from Extreme-Sets.com. Enter code TOYARK at checkout and get 15% off your order!