It’s me, Leonel, back again to review another of Sideshow Collectibles’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles amazing comiquettes! It’s my mission to tell all my fellow Tortuga Fans why these statues are all so precious, and why they’d be a centerpiece of any TMNT lover’s collection. You will listen NOW, Turtles Fans!
This week, I’m going over the second turtle I managed to get my grubby little fanboy hands on. He’s got the most attitude on the team, known for being cool but crude, and you can always count on him to throw the first punch. He’s mean, he’s green, and he’s got a serious case of Middle Child Syndrome. It’s the Nightwatcher himself; Raphael!
Now before I begin, I’d like to share a personal story with you all. Well, two, actually. The first story is that a Raphael comiquette was actually the first of the set I’d ever laid eyes on, up on the second floor of Midtown Comics in Manhattan. I was blown away! Raphael is my least favorite turtle (which isn’t saying much considering I love all four of them), but that didn’t stop me from wanting to take his sneering hide home! The detail on him was astounding! He was much too expensive for my budget at the time, though, and I had to leave him behind. But good things come to those who wait (like a turtle do!), and I ended up getting a much cooler, much more valuable Raphael in the upcoming months. The one at the store was the basic model (I don’t think it’s loaded, kid!), but I ended up hunting down the Sideshow Exclusive variation! Eat that, owner of the comic store who told me I’d never afford the quad!
The second story is quite laughable in hindsight, but was at the time very frustrating. See, when I ordered Raphael, Hurricane Sandy was right around the corner. I expected him to arrive at my doorstep a few days before the storm hit, but things got delayed. Turned out, he actually got lost in transition! I had to be a squeaky wheel to UPS for three weeks before they tracked him down, and when they found him, it turned out he was right here in New Jersey; he’d made the trip, but somehow got stashed away in a warehouse of sorts. And what’s worse; they wouldn’t deliver him; I had to go pick him up! No big deal on a regular day, but the roads were still all tore up because of the hurricane! Leave it to Raphael to be the one and only pain in my shell for me to collect, and after I’d already bought him! ‘He does it all the time. He likes it!’ But I got him home eventually, and now he’s here to stay.
But enough of that; on to the review! Raphael is noticeably a bit darker in tone than his brothers, and I mean that both literally and metaphorically. He’s perched up on a rooftop, and he looks characteristically angry. Because his mask’s ribbons are to the side of his head, they immediately stand out, and the curvature and wrinkles in them really make him feel like he’s got heavy winds blowing him by. He actually looks like he just landed on this roof, ready to attack with the fury we all know and love him for. And he’s holding his famous twin sai so hard you can see his knuckles popping out! Totally tubular, dude.
What stands out to me most about Raphael are his arms. You can see the musculature of his broad shoulders; the rear, medial and anterior deltoids really pop out on his left, while his biceps and triceps stick out like the guns they are on his right. This is even further accentuated in his forearms; I wasn’t kidding when I said he’s gripping those weapons of his real tight! I think somebody else ate the last of his cereal this morning, because he looks miffed.
As we all know, this moody reptile is the only one of his brethren who never swapped colors; he’s forever red. Therefore, unlike his brothers who come with swap-out masks, this Sideshow Exclusive edition of Raphael comes with a swap-out right hand. While I prefer him with the regular variation, it is pretty freakin’ cold to see the exclusive version pay homage to Mirage Number One by having a note tied to the prong of his sai. Shredder’s got a message coming his way, and knowing Raph, it’s headed for his face!
I actually don’t have any complaints about Raphael that I didn’t already mention in the Michelangelo review. Basically, I wish he had visible holsters for his weapons, and maybe been given a pose that’s not so akin to Mikey’s. But all in all, I’m more than content with this model of Raphael, and I’m sure any Turtles fan would be, too! Where do they come up with this stuff?!
That’s it for this week, but tune in next time for my review of the Leader in Blue; Leonardo! Same pizza time, same pizza channel!