When Tim Burton and Disney teamed up to release a new adaptation of Alice in Wonderland in 2010, there were high expectations. And even though critics felt mixed, it's been nominated for a number of awards – including three Oscars. The standout performance was Johnny Depp's portrayal of Tarrant Hightop – The Mad Hatter.
Tonner Doll Company, which has the license to produce Alice in Wonderland Tonner Character Figures, released their highly anticipated Tarrant figure. So...did it live up to all of the hype? (How about that for a teaser?)
Tarrant – The Mad Hatter
Series: Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland Tonner Character Figures
Manufacturer: Tonner Doll Co.
Sculpted by: Robert Tonner
Authorized Likeness: Johnny Depp
Material: Tonner's Matt Oneill Body with red rooted hair
Points of Articulation: 14 points
Outfit: Soft cotton dickie; Printed vest with gold buttons; Neck scarf; Twill trousers with custom embroidery and lace trim; Miss-matched socks; Faux leather lace-up boots; Jacket with multi-colored ribbon streamers, custom bird embroidery, and bandolier comprised of resin spools of thread; Top Hat with sash, jeweled pins and 10/6 tag
Accessories: Display stand
Edition Size: 500 pieces
The Mad Hatter is packaged in the Tonner's skinny box featuring the Alice in Wonderland design. Inside, the figure is strapped in place with ribbons and Styrofoam. The accessories and several of the clothing items and individually bagged.
I watched Tim Burton's adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, and while I thought the visuals were stunning, the story was sort of “meh”. It's quite possible that I just need to re-watch it. The one performance (and character) that really stood out was Johnny Depp as The Mad Hatter (Tarrant Hightop).
I first saw Tonner's Tarrant figure at Toy Fair 2010. Even though photos were not allowed, I came away remembering a brilliantly detailed piece. Not only was the sculpting work perfect, but the attire was spot-on.
Luckily, Tonner didn't do anything to change my opinion. While we often see slightly feminine sculpts on the male Tonner Character Figures, it works perfectly for this character. The sculpt is a great version of Depp...covered in a layer of makeup. And don't forget about that gap between his front teeth.
The paintwork is also superb. You can see that there's slightly more paint than your average TCF. And he even has fingernails that are painted in various shades.
But where Tonner consistently shines is in the outfit department. This might be the most complex and beauteous doll attire that I've ever seen. There are just so many intricate details – from the decorated pants to the crazy hat to the sash made out of spools of thread. This is the apex of Tonner quality and really warrants the slight premium price tag. (I know of only Medicom's 1/6 scale Mad Hatter...and Tonner's version blows it out of the water)
OVERALL: Simply-put, Tarrant is Tonner's premier Tonner Character Figure. I've seen a number of Tonner dolls in my time, and it's hard to compete with the Mad Hatter. The only issue I see is whether or not you'll plunk down almost $225 for the figure. If you love the character or are a Tonner collector, it's an easy call.
You can pick one up at the following:
Tonner Direct: $224.99
Tarrant - The Mad Hatter Grades
Figure Quality: 9/10
Fun Factor: 9/10