CollectionDX Network
CollectionDX - Toy Reviews, Toy News, Japanese Toys and Action Figures

V.I.N.CENT (SDCC 2009 Distressed Edition)


27 comments posted
Long-time listener, first-time caller..... :-)

BUMMER about the poor printing, Atom. One a run this small (and this pricey), there isn't any excuse for that. :-(

Ironically, I was just offered one of these last night, after asking around about it (I'm a huge fan of Vincent's design). So it's been on my mind.

Two things:
1) The head does turn. It might require a tiny bit of force (and I don't know what it will do the paint, if anything). But I've seen others turn the head with no problems.
2) What is this "regular edition" you mentioned? I was going to ask if you actually meant the "Tron" version they are selling at D23, but I see they've slipped a pic of a regular-colored Vincent on their homepage. No details to be had, though. The SDCC version looks pretty clean, so I wonder where the "distressed" comes from...?

Thanks for the pics!

japester's picture
Posted by japester on 27 August, 2009 - 18:40
It's really a beautiful

It's really a beautiful piece and a classic design. While the actual robot in the movie isn't terribly well articulated, I can't see how a swiveling neck would be unworkable here.

While I can appreciate vinyl toys as objects, I can't get over the non-toyness of them. Even a ridiculous, maddening, kibbly adult chogokin (re: the review directly below this) DOES things.

I'm glad you reviewed this. I really dug the advance photos, and any new Black Hole product is worth a look.

The Enthusiast's picture
Posted by The Enthusiast on 27 August, 2009 - 19:27
The messed up paint is left

The messed up paint is left like that because the target audience for designer vinyl doesn't really give a s**t. They buy it to get cool points with their frenemies.

kidnicky's picture
Posted by kidnicky on 27 August, 2009 - 21:21
Play value

The problem I have with "designer toys" is that the paint application is so much of it's value. You can't actually play with it if you're afraid it might get scratched!

Then again, I guess you aren't supposed to play with these.

ZA's picture
Posted by ZA on 28 August, 2009 - 03:57
The head turns, it's most

The head turns, it's most likely the paint sticking.

The "Distressed" edition actually refers to the box, if you look at the box again, it's been artificially worn to appear old. The edges in particular are white like an old box that's been kicking around for 30 years.

I'm surprised they couldn't get the head to collapse and extend as well, but again it's "art", and the head turning is probably only there because of how it was constructed.

As for the printing, mine isn't as bad, but the text on his drill door was right on the edge, with the text just at the bottom.

It's pretty crappy that in a 300 piece run they can't keep the QC up. With so few it's reasonable to assume they'd take a bad one and re-paint it. I'm guessing they were pressed for time since this was a limited run for a convention exclusive, and just didn't have a window to re-run the "off" pieces. I'm sure there are probably a few people that will never remove it from the box, unaware if it has some sloppy paint.

Mine was #279, so I barely made it. And even then it was thanks to an awesome dude that picked it up for me.

As for the price, it's like anything else, it comes down to how much it's worth to you. For years I thought I was the only person to remember the movie, let alone to actually like it. I saw it in a theater in Hollywood with my folks, back when some films had actual overtures before the movie started, and it made a huge impression on me. I had already seen Star Wars the same way two years prior, but something about the darkness of the story made it much more memorable.

V.I.N.CENT is far more important to me than R2-D2, even when I was 5, so having a nice representation of the character is worth the money. Even if it's made by some pretentious douchebag art haus outfit. I'm no fan of expensive vinyl as "art", but I'll bite my tongue for this and any possibility of an "Old B.O.B.".

duke togo's picture
Posted by duke togo on 28 August, 2009 - 11:42
Man, I too was very tempted

Man, I too was very tempted when I had an opportunity to pick one up from SDCC. But it looks like I made a good choice in staying away. It's beautiful piece no doubt, and the size makes it that much more impressive and I LOVE that movie and VINCENT. But the detail flaws (glaring for such a high end piece)and the fact it's not really a toy doesn't quite do it for me. Especially when you can get something much cheaper like Onell's Armodoc that's meant to be played with but is "arty" and creative at the same time.

Oh...and HEY THERE JAPE!!!! *waves*

Harvey's picture
Posted by Harvey on 28 August, 2009 - 13:31
^^ H-Man??? ^^ Well, either

^^ H-Man??? ^^

Well, either way, hello, Jape! Nice to see ya in these parts!

Oh, and kidnicky, ick-snay on the it-shay, o-k?

So, back to this toy...kinda crappy value, huh? Only for the diehard fans, I guess. Here's the thing about designer vinyl: you have to pay close attention to who makes it. MINDstyle is known for substandard-quality Chinese vinyl made in large numbers. Now, that's not bad in and of itself. Afterall, toys some of us around here like, such as Onell's Glyos figures, are also mass-produced in Chinese.

The thing is, even Glyos' new vinyl figure, the Armodoc, costs...what?...$20? I'll bet the unit cost on this V.I.N.Cent is in the neighborhood of $15-20, charge $130 is assinine. Then again, a large portion of that cost may go into it may be a tough call.

Anyway, this is generally what I dislike about designer vinyl. It's more the name or "the scene" than it is about the toy. Also, whether the toy is made in Japan or China has a HUGE impact on the final quality of the piece. If this had been made in Japan, the unit cost would probably be triple. But would've come out perfect.


Sanjeev's picture
Posted by Sanjeev on 28 August, 2009 - 16:58
Printing errors vs. production run

The blurry decal is probably the result of a freshly cleaned pad that still had solvent on it, which thinned the ink and left it runny. The decal with the double exposure is the result of the previous toy being printed in an incorrect location. The faint imprint above the normal looking one is known as "pick-up" and results from the pad not being cleaned before proceeding with production. Since it appears that these decals are printed on top of additional paint detail, it's likely that it would have been too time consuming/ expensive to fix. Thus we can arrive at two conclusions concerning this toy: 1) there are at least three other misprints, and 2) they are very serious about limiting production to three hundred, and had no test shots or replacements. That seems kind of stupid, but might speak to their idea of integrity.

If the regular version appears with the same aps, then its time to call foul. If it's different somehow, hey, you still have a unique collectible. I think the likelihood is that MINDstyle farmed out the pad printing and got shafted themselves and passed that on to you :) If this company usually produces "Art Toys" (where it's okay to suck) I might cut them some slack for taking on a real chore like V.I.N.CENT.

Materialist Zen's picture
Posted by Materialist Zen on 28 August, 2009 - 17:14
great review

I loved the movie as a kid....still do, too. this sculpt looks great, too bad about the paint, though. for $130, that shouldn't be like that.

it's funny...when it comes to designer collectible toys, I like the idea of it more than the actual toys themselves. I'm just not into where the people that seem to be at the helm of that genre are taking it. so much of it looks the same, and like the other comments have mentioned, where's the playability? how are some of these things "toys"? too many of these things are just statues. and if they're statues, they don't need to be in vinyl. Vinyl was used initially because it was durable...soft-yet-hard...and cheap. Now it's anything but. Vinyl has now become synonymous with big bucks and endless repetition. too bad.

again, great sculpt, bummer about the paint. (and price)

JS2300's picture
Posted by JS2300 on 28 August, 2009 - 18:16
Hi, Sanjeev and Harv!

Hi, Sanjeev and Harv! ^_^

Sanjeev tried to educate me about vinyl back in ancient times, when I mentioned that I "just didn't get it" when it came to all the boutique stuff. I mean, TINY vinyl statues have been easily going for $50, $80, $100+ for years now. And most of them were fug-tacular to my unappreciative eye.

Due to it's size and number of paint apps, I have an easier time accepting the Mindstyle offering. It still hurts, but it seems a far better value than tiny, acid-trip-inspired vinyls that cost $80 and probably cost $2 to make.

Plus, there's the rarity factor, and that's the huge unknown right now. The fact of the matter is there are NO Vincent's out there this size. All we have are tiny action figures, a Kubrick, and a magnetic Mego. And all go for HUGE bucks...assuming you can even find them. As long as Mindstyle doesn't plan on churning these out ad nauseum, the price makes it relatively cheap compared to the $100-200 you'll spend on the other toys I mentioned.

And its not like "The Black Hole" is getting *more* popular as time goes on. The odds of getting a better Vincent get slimmer by the day. :-/

(Oh, and if the "distressed edition" truly only refers to the box, that is great news!)

japester's picture
Posted by japester on 28 August, 2009 - 18:28
I assumed the regular

I assumed the regular edition would include the box...but the box would appear "new" and "clean" rather than "distressed". ^_^

I shot an e-mail to Mindstyle to ask about both (if a standard edition was being made and if the figure would look different). But they are slow to answer. I'll share here when/if they reply.

japester's picture
Posted by japester on 29 August, 2009 - 16:24
Mindstyle's PR rep, Emi

Mindstyle's PR rep, Emi Uchiki, was kind enough to reply to my e-mail. I basically asked if a "standard" version would be produced and offered at D-23, and what the difference would be between that and the "distressed" version.

Emi Uchiki:

That's correct, we call the SDCC version " Distressed" just because we made the figure looks like it was made in 1979 and recently found in one's closet.

Please be noted that the "standard" version is not scheduled to be produced at this moment unless Disney really wants and asks us to make one later.. The SDCC exclusive "Distressed" version is the closest to the original color from the movie.
Tron version will be the only color version of VINCENT we will take pre-orders at D-23 and the figure is scheduled to ship out to customers in October.

So it looks like a "standard" edition is a definite maybe at this point in time. LOL. And her description of the "distressed" edition does sound like its mainly about the weathered box. Good to know. I don't think I'd like a "factory-fresh" Vincent (lord knows it didn't look good on the WALL-E toys, ha).

japester's picture
Posted by japester on 1 September, 2009 - 23:06
Hiya! (yes,'s

Hiya! (yes,'s H-man).

There's no doubt that this piece will be highly collectible and gain some secondary market value just because the Black Hole property doesn't have much to offer as far as VINCENT stuff (the little action figure, and a model right?). Take away the scrutiny that we're giving it and it's an undeniably gorgeous and attention getting piece for Black Hole and scifi movie fans.

Harvey's picture
Posted by Harvey on 28 August, 2009 - 18:44
Is it true that Mego passed

Is it true that Mego passed on the Star Wars rights because they had the rights to this goldmine? Or is that just urban legend?
I've never seen the movie. Would I like it as an adult seeing it for the first time,or do you guys just like it out of nolstalgia?

kidnicky's picture
Posted by kidnicky on 28 August, 2009 - 18:45

would kill a for a diecast and functional version, this version to me is just a mocking tease of what could be...

AJProDie-Cast's picture
Posted by AJProDie-Cast on 28 August, 2009 - 19:10
Black Hole is good.

Great piece here.

Yessiree, an SOC VINCENT would KILL!

kidnicky, YES, the Black Hole is a pretty good movie, even now. Disney put quite the effort into great effects back then, and the story is solid too. Crazy weird ending too, ....not telling. I just rewatched it a month or so ago, after finding an nice old paperback copy of the original novel adaptation in an antique shop. Rekindled the memories (freaked out for a kid then), and intrest.
Watch it. You'll probably like it. Better than a lotta crappola on SciFi today.

repairtechjon's picture
Posted by repairtechjon on 28 August, 2009 - 22:34

I have never seen the movie but after reading Atom's review I felt the need to watch it somehow. The sculpt looks great but it's a pity that such a beautiful statue was marred by low-quality paintwork. I believe that vinyl was used (instead of resin)to keep the price as low as possible although $130 isn't cheap.

And so this thing is an Art Toy Collectible. And here is the catch. If you consider it as a toy, then the price is too high especially when it does nothing except turn its head. But if you look at it as a collectible then that's another story. In fact, many of you said that this is the only representation of V.I.N.CENT. in this size.

As for the box, I disagree with Atom. I feel that a collectible deserves a high quality box, a numbered certificate of authtenticity a display stand/case and whatever makes it UNIQUE. Just putting V.I.N.CENT. in a plastic bag would have made the item look like some cheap toy which it isn't. Yes, for me boxes are important too.

Finally, I agree with Sanjeev that if this item was made in JAPAN it would have come out more pricy but PERFECT!

grendizer1975's picture
Posted by grendizer1975 on 29 August, 2009 - 03:17
I really wanted to get one

I really wanted to get one of these, but I am glad I waited. Hopefully I will grab a regular version once released. It must have cost a ton for Mindstyle to get the license, so hopefully they will make a lot in an effort to recoup their costs.

CollectionDX Admin

JoshB's picture
Posted by JoshB on 30 August, 2009 - 10:08
Harvey--great seeing you

Harvey--great seeing you over here!

Anyway, I just wanna echo what JoshB has just said and clear up some misunderstandings about Chinese vinyl and the whole "designer" vinyl game.

After thinking about this more, I really think the bulk of the cost of this item has gone into licensing. Let's look at manufacturing this toy with ZERO licensing. You have just a couple rotocast (I believe that's the right term!) vinyl parts, but about a zillion paint masks and pad prints. All that detail is the bulk of where the cost is. Paint masks are pricey. So, I'm gonna up my original manufacturing estimate to $30-40USD. Now, add the box, packing materials, paperwork (if any?), and ultimately, shipping. $50? So, THEN you add licensing onto that? Ouch. I would actually not be terribly surprised if MINDstyle isn't making as much as we suspect on these.

Now, as for the vinyl's origin... Chinese does not necessarily equal "bad". Here's the deal. It just so happens that ALL Japanese is super-high quality and also super-expensive. You can be DAMN sure that if this were done in Japan, the vinyl pouring, alone, would be 3 to 5 times more expensive. The material, itself, is just pricier there...with all their secret formulas and whatnot! It's also a matter of pride. The paint work, if done in Japan, would be a little more expensive, but I'm guessing you wouldn't see the flaws you'd see on this.

So, back to China. The absolute best of Chinese vinyl is close, but not quite as good as Japanese vinyl. Their glow isn't quite as bright, for example, and their surface texture isn't as tight as in Japan. Why care about surface texture? Well it's because "clear" vinyls in China look murky, while they look crystal-clear from Japan. It's not that clear Chinese vinyl is actually cloudy--it's because on a microscopic level, the surfaces are more porous and, thus, diffuse light, rather than transmit it.

Now, here's the problem: China gets outsourced from ALL over the world to make their crap for them. That forces them to be price-competitive, so whereas you have a legacy of great vinyl toys from Japan, and the pride of being the best to go along with it, now you have widely varying grades of quality. Like I said, the best of Chinese vinyl is close to the best Japan has to offer...but the worst China has to offer is pretty awful. Remember, they're literally making doggie chew toys at the same factories as some toys we probably have! ;)

So, which factories in China make the best quality Chinese vinyl? Who knows? Which printers do the best work? Again, it's tough to say. So, either MINDstyle got screwed...or they went with the "cheap alternative", thinking these would be good enough. Either way, I think it's pretty irresponsible on their part to release these toys with such flaws.


Sanjeev's picture
Posted by Sanjeev on 31 August, 2009 - 11:34
Nitty Picky

He is a beautiful piece. But I found one important part so off that I turned my back on it. And you're probably gonna hate me after pointing this out. Or maybe not and I'm just an intolerable nit-picker(more on this in a sec).

I picked up MINDstyle's two original Dark Crystal pieces a few years back. Only because there is so little DC merch out there. I don't buy ANYthing unless it articulates. I thought they were nicely done, to contradict Sanjeev. Maybed they declined in quality since 2007. Or maybe the amazing box design for the Land Strider had me fooled. I dunno. I've since passed them on. I RARELY get turned on by products of the new vinyl fad.

I saw this guy at CC and wet my pants a little but studied him closer and(here comes the nit-picky) his inner head tapers in quite drastically. They hit the mark on every other aspect, he really is pretty gorgeous. But that one detail... uhg... it URKS me to no end.

I know you got it as a gift and couldn't ever sell it, but if I were you I'd sell it and get the Kubrick version. The V.I.N.cent and B.O.B figures are spot on and a nice 4" size(a little too big to scale in with the 3 3/4 figs. I have the Kubrick BOB along with the MEGOs. They're a nice lookin' little family. Anyway, there's my two...

Robots In Love's picture
Posted by Robots In Love on 3 September, 2009 - 01:55
So I jumped in and bought one, too

And I LOVE it! Luckily, the stamped graphics on mine are all super-clean. Whatever mishaps plagued Atom's figure didn't hit this one (#200). If I was to nitpick, the "GLA419VX" on his chest is slightly lower than it should be, but I consider a little variation part of the vinyl allure. I totally see now that the paint is indeed a bit distressed, but it looks wonderful to my eye.

The head does turn, and it only took a tiny bit of pressure to break the paint seal on mine.

I also don't really see the inner head taper. Maybe it's slight, but I recall that his head under there is actually round (in the movie). It only looks cylindrical when his cap is kept very low. If anything, I'd say the downward tilt of his head is more off-model, but again I'll chalk that up to a little vinyl artistic license.

I was worried about spending the money, but no regrets at all!

japester's picture
Posted by japester on 9 September, 2009 - 16:42
It is round, you're right.

It is round, you're right. The red part tapers in slightly as though the whole thing is round. But the top and bottom halves of the red part should mirror each other. The taper I'm talking about is from the bottom of his "cap" to his body. It's way wider at the top and smaller when it hits the body. Ok, I'm geeking on this infinitesimal detail WAY too much. Sorry. But I had to clarify. I promise I'm done now. :)

Robots In Love's picture
Posted by Robots In Love on 24 September, 2009 - 21:57