Subject: Deanna Troi
Assignment: U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701-D
Profile: Stardate 48271.5 Deadwood, South Dakota. The site of a wild west holodeck fantasy set on Earth in the 19th Century, unfortunately programmed by a notorious pervert and Worf’s idiot son. A stranger by the name of Durango wanders into town. Durango is really Counselor Troi, who has entered the Holodeck to join Sheriff Worf in the quintessential western saga which, again, was programmed by an idiot and a pervert. The Holodeck program created by Worf’s son, Alexander and his friend, Reginald, malfunctions. This strangely wasn’t due to their incompetence, but due to the fact that Captain Picard yelled at Geordi and Data for interrupting the recording of his new space clarinet mixtape. The corrupted programming on the Holodeck spawns multiple Datas with the simulation. Geordi wanted to get back at Picard, so he plugged Data’s brain into the Enterprise, and replaced all recreational activity and food with cat poetry and Friskies. Meanwhile, on the holodeck, Troi unfortunately didn’t get to do very much.
Wild West accessories:
* Sure-Shot Rifle (we legally can’t say ‘Winchester’)
* Six Shooter Revolver
* Ring of Jail Keys (pretty sure Troi looked at these once in the episode)
* Showdown Time Clock (Worf looked at this clock once, which is good enough for Playmates)
* Bonus: Starfleet Action Base
1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango, a Toy I Never Has as a Kid
I’ve loved Star Trek for as long as I can remember. If some evil warlock cursed me by making me choose just one franchise I could enjoy for the rest of my life, I would choose Star Trek. As much as I love GI Joe, Transformers, Exosquad, Marvel, DC, L. Frank Baum’s Oz, Gundam, Macross, TMNT, and 70s/80s sitcom Taxi, I’d choose Star Trek every time.
The first Star Trek experience I remember was watching The Wrath of Khan with my father in his trailer in rural Idaho. The scene with the space earwigs in the space helmet scared the piss out of me, but I came back for more.
A little later on a much better man, my grandfather, got me really into Star Trek. We watched reruns on daytime TV, and watched new episodes of Deep Space 9 every Sunday. By 1993, I was watching Star Trek: The Next Generation every day after school. I was also getting into the accompanying Playmates toy line.
By 1994, GI Joe was winding down and I was much more into the Star Trek toys than I was into the plastic military men I’d been on countless adventures with since 1989.
My estranged father sent me a big tackle box for Christmas that year, hoping it would prod me into sharing his love of fishing. That year, I also received several toys from the Star Trek: Generations line. I used the tackle box to hold those toys and their accessories. Generations was a huge event for me, and 1994 was my first big year for Star Trek toys. I couldn’t get enough of them.
I still love them to this day. If I had to rank things, the Playmates Star Trek range would probably be in my top 10 (if not top 5) toy lines of all time. The toys were brilliant because they had to cater to both kids and collectors. For collectors, they made sure the character likenesses were great and gave each figure a stand, to ensure maximum display potential. For kids, they crammed in (mostly) functional articulation and fun accessories. There was a huge range of characters from every series up until Enterprise.
I was still hardcore into Star Trek toys until my eighth grade year. At the time, I lost interest in Star Trek: Voyager (which was the first show my mom ever let me stay up past my bedtime to watch, three years earlier), and fell to peer pressure. Kids at my middle school were merciless to anyone who liked Star Trek, or really most “nerdy” pursuits that weren’t Nintendo 64 or Playstation.
Then, I lost all of my Star Trek toys in a house fire.
In college, my interest in the toys was rekindled. I saw that they were dirt cheap on eBay, and built my current collection. But, as a kid and as a college student, I never owned the 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango figure.
That all changed recently, when my friend Figure Fan Zero sent me this figure, along with Worf and Data from All Good Things.
I haven’t reviewed a Star Trek figure on this site yet (though I did review a vehicle), and this does seem like an odd inaugural review for one of my favorite toy lines.
But I appreciate that FFZ sent me the figure, and I decided we should get weird right off the bat. After all, what is Star Trek if it isn’t weird?
Let’s take a look at Troi dressed in her cowgirl best.
1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango Review
The 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi figure comes from the episode A Fistful of Datas, which is a holodeck episode from TNG’s 6th season. Some people hate the holodeck episodes, but I tend to like them. When you have a show as serious, dignified, intense, dramatic, and existential as The Next Generation, you sometimes need a break for some laughs. And, credit to the show’s creators, the holodeck is a brilliant concept to provide those laughs.
With Star Trek, we love the characters enough that we’re just as happy to see the characters just hang out as we are to see them in a complex, death-defying situation. And that speaks volumes about the show.
Troi is sometimes a bemoaned character, but I’ve always liked her. It’s interesting to me that the Federation saw fit to station a counselor on the Enterprise D, but it makes sense. After you’ve seen the infinite horrors of deep space, you’re going to need someone to talk to about it. And, if your wife and kids are on board the ship with you, you’re going to need to talk to someone about your interpersonal issues, as well. Troi is a great character– she’s smart, empathetic, charming, and funny. But she also doesn’t take shit from anyone, least of all that lothario William “T” Riker.
In A Fistful of Datas, Troi plays the role of “the mysterious stranger,” who is a total badass with a lever-action Winchester rifle. And, although she gets some good lines and gets to smoke tobacco products in front of a child, she unfortunately doesn’t get much to do in the episode.
Oh well. Onto the figure.
Some people say the likenesses in the old Playmates Star Trek line are cartoony, but I disagree. I showed this figure to my friend Herb, who has only a passing knowledge of Star Trek, and he recognized her right away– even dressed as a cowgirl. This figure unquestionably looks like Marina Sirtis. The outfit is also fairly accurate to the show, at least after Durango takes her coat off. The pattern on the pink shirt is nice, the leather pants and pistol holster look good, and the hat is spot-on to what she wore in the episode.
Here she is with some of her accessories:
The 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango figure comes with her Winchester rifle, a revolver, a ring of keys, a clock, and a figure stand. The only one of these accessories she can actually hold is the key ring. I had to use poster tac if I wanted her to hold anything else. But, these are generally appropriate accessories.
So, she can’t hold her accessories, but I have a few other nits to pick. One is the articulation. For the time, it was spectacular, especially considering the price point. And it’s still not bad. But the hips are cut in a ‘V,’ meaning the figure’s legs move sideways when you move them forward. Consequently, it’s tough to get the figure into many dynamic poses– or even a sitting pose! If you’ve handled these Star Trek figures, you know exactly what I mean.
My other complaint comes from a more recent development. The articulation has always been there, but the slime factor has not. Here’s the thing: the plastic used on these old Playmates Star Trek figures breaks down over the years. That means whether you open one fresh from the card or find one next to the pile of Coors cans in your Uncle’s basement, it’s bound to have some plastic residue “slime” on it. The plastic starts a mild degradation process, leaving an unpleasant film on the figure.
Luckily, you can easily wash it off with warm water and dish soap, and the toy will be just fine. It’s annoying, though. No one likes doing dishes, and no one likes to think about doing dishes when they’re trying to play with a Cowgirl Deanna Troi action figure.
Here’s some knowledge and wisdom from my friend Barry B. (follow him on Instagram here), who has some good advice about plastic degradation:
You are quite correct about playmates plastics leaking their plasticizers over time. Also this will bond with dust and make a layer that wont scrub off easy. I have a few gundam msia with that issue, as well as a couple exosquad figures with a dust cake layer, so try to dust off any displays frequently. Hasbro tends to feel sticky when their plastic breaks down, playmates feels slimy. I find putting the toys in a ziplock bag then letting them sit in hot as hell water for about 30 seconds does help the plasticizer to absorb back a little, then take it out and clean it off well does the trick, for me at least.
Despite the flaws that encompass the entire toy line, these are still the best Star Trek toys ever made. Mega Bloks is the only other line that comes close, but they don’t have the character library to pull ahead. The Playmates toys’ likenesses, accessories, and playability can’t be beat. The cherry on top? For the most part, they’re still dirt cheap. You can build a nice collection for under $100.
And Durango here is a fine example of a Playmates Star Trek toy.
Verdict: 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango is a niche toy from a niche toy line. She’s not a modern figure with a bunch of bells and whistles. Still, she looks great and is a fantastic representation of the character as she appeared in a fun episode of the TV series. If you like the Playmates Star Trek line, you’ll be happy to have her. Likewise, if you’re a Deanna Troi fan. Otherwise, you can probably skip this one. I like her quite a bit, though. Mildly Recommended.
- Durango at Figure Realm
Closing Thoughts on 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango
I must confess, coming up with interesting photos for this review was a challenge. I’m far too lazy to build a holodeck set, and I don’t have any of the old Playmates Star Trek playsets. So, I had to get a bit creative.
So, I looked for a green screen app and found Green Screen by Do Ink. I’m still learning how to use it, but I’m reasonably pleased with the results. It’s only a $3 app, and it’s super easy to use since it’s made for children. I really recommend it.
So, thanks for reading my 1995 Star Trek Deanna Troi as Durango review.
Do you like the old Playmates Star Trek line? If so, what’s your favorite weird figure variant? Let me know in the comments!