Saturday, July 16, 2011

AOME LOTR - Elven Warriors of Helm's Deep

Ahhh, who can forget the epic Battle of Helm's Deep, the fortress built within the arms of the Hornburg where the denizens of the Riddermark face off against Saruman's minions? Of course it's all fantasy but to fans of  'The Lord of The Rings',  both in book and movie form, it's as real as Cannae, Waterloo, or Iwo Jima, and evokes powerful images. This Soldiers and Scenes offering from Play Along Toys features three participants from the battle, Elves sent by Elrond to aid the struggling Rohan: Haldir, Elven Warrior, and Elven Archer. This is a departure from previous offerings in that the exact same figure - the Elven Archer - is repeated in two sets, in this set as well as the 'Elven Soldiers' set. 

From a toy company's perspective, an undertaking like this must have been daunting. To produce an entire line of figures which, prior to the advent of Harry Potter, was based on one of the most profound fantasy works of all time must have been mind boggling. The Trilogy was so visually rich and varied the toy makers must have had to make some real tough decisions, after all you can't realistically expect to produce everything shown in those movies. I've enjoyed collecting the toys and believe the company did an admirable job of bringing this line to the public but in my humble opinion I do believe there were a couple of small missteps. One of them was to not offer more Helm's Deep compatible figures. There were only two sets of Elves offered that were 'right' for the part, and remember, one of the figures is a repeat. There was a third set called 'Prologue Elves' which of course would be out of uniform, as it were, when compared to the two other sets. That certainly is not enough to flesh out a proper Helm's Deep scene. The same goes for all the other battle participants, there's simply not enough variety. The basis for my opinion is that Play Along Toys did in fact offer a Helm's Deep playset and this playset simply cries out for more figures! But it is what it is and, again, Play Along couldn't possibly offer everything, and so we still have these figures to - Enjoy!

Elven Warriors of Helm’s Deep: Elven Warrior; Haldir, Elven Archer
Wave 2
Issued by: Play Along Toys
Assortment: 48100
Item Number: 48107
Issue Date: 25 Jul 2003
Issue Price: $8.99

Elven Warrior


Elven Archer