With 3D imaging and new technologies arriving each year, one of the attractions that just seems to get overlooked is the statue market. Sure, Sideshow, Gentle Giant, Weta, and several other companies offered up some incredible figurines at San Diego Comic-Con last weekend, and this year the Sideshow booth had so many new creations it seemed like an endless row after row any figure could get lost in. Yet for the most part we’re seeing new versions of the same characters we saw last year and the year before. So it’s more difficult for anything to knock your socks off. It’s rarer to see someone come up with something new, and it’s the rare realization of a fresh idea with new 3D rendered sculpts that has become the real jaw dropper.
This year that surprise was the unannounced preview of a new series of high-end figures from Gentle Giant’s own brand, the Honey Trap Army. A tongue-in-cheek throwback mashing the best of 1960s and 1970s design with the spy movie genre, the first series of four figures was a standout among collectible statue figures five years ago. With the 2013 convention exclusive (discussed at borg.com here) Whisper character, Gentle Giant interpreted the 1960s James Bond–think Thunderball and Doctor No–and created a deep-sea diving superspy who could probably kill anyone with her harpoon 21 different ways. Right with her, team member Katya was ready to take no prisoners with her trusty Doberman, Lucky was straight out of the Army special forces, and Derby was something else altogether. With box art by Kevin Dart, we thought the Honey Trap Army was poised to best the G.I. Joe Adventure Team. Like many a toy line–as many learned over the past year watching The Toys That Made Us on Netflix–the Honey Trap Army was an idea that went straight to the toy (in this case, a collectible) with no backstory, comic book, animated show, or movie tie-in.
So we were happily surprised to see last weekend at San Diego Comic-Con, overlooked by many, the next series of the Honey Trap Army. It begins with the new British spy with the best spy name not created by Ian Fleming–Brexit, also known as Dani Mint. She’s the explosives expert, and brings along the fight of Britannia. She is joined by a new Russian spy with the simple moniker The Russian. Don’t let her little dog distract you. And the seventh member of the Honey Trap Army is Junior. You can find Junior easily. She’s driving race car number 88.
We don’t know if artist Kevin Dart will be back with more box and poster art. Gentle Giant also didn’t have a release date set. The figures shown above and below are prototypes, but they look as detailed–and as deadly–as the first series.
The Honey Trap Army seems to us to go hand in hand with the contemporary era of the G.I. Joe Adventure Team line, which was not so advanced in terms of sculpts and accessories, but was the 1960s and 1970s equivalent to the spy genre the Honey Trap Army evokes, complete with similar accessories to help them on some similar adventure.
What do you think? Does G.I. Joe stand a chance?