Matrix Sentinel by Hot Toys

Often times I buy a figure for, shallow as it may be, their looks. Other times perhaps I like the character and ignore some of the more obvious production or design faults. This item however falls into neither category. I have no feelings towards the Matrix Sentinel, it wasn’t a character I fell in love with nor is it particularly attractive, actually it’s probably the least attractive thing I own. I suppose at best it’s kind of badass but mostly it’s just squid-like. For the first time I bought an item solely on it’s poseability.

Having never purchased anything produced by Hot Toys before, I wasn’t sure what kind of quality to expect. I’d searched the Internet for information but was met with only two reviews, both of which lacked a certain quality in their pictures. That said, they were both rather informative as to what I should expect when the Sentinel arrived. They drew comparisons to the previously released McFarlane model and the obvious size differences, the general consensus seemed to be that this variant was over priced for it’s size but was more detailed and accurate than the McFarlane. Being that the McFarlane variant was too big for the plans I had in mind I was limited to only the Hot Toys version or an ultra cheap version by N2 Toys.  Never one to cheap out when it comes to my hobbies I went with the more detailed and better produced Hot Toys Sentinel.

Unboxing the Sentinel was quite the chore in and of itself. I suppose I should praise the care Hot Toys took with wrapping up the robo-squid but it was perhaps the most tedious unboxing I’ve ever experienced. Everything was twist tied to the plastic packaging to hold it in place during transport, and while this was annoying it was understandable. The worst of it however was when you’d moved on to the claws at the end of each tentacle. Each and every single one of the fourteen claws had shrink wrapped plastic surrounding them. The kind that picks up static charge like a mofo and clings to you like your yandere girlfriend. Torturous. In all of this effort however there was a hint of familiarity, the smell PVC exudes, that assortment of chemicals that probably kill braincells by the thousands with each sniff.

Unfortunately my Sentinel arrived somewhat damaged. The box and packaging were perfect so it had to be a defect it shipped with or perhaps grew over time due to the plasticity of PVC. It’s bug-like legs seem squished on one side and do not bend outwards as they’re supposed to. Normally this would be a bigger issue, however I didn’t even really know these legs existed nor do I care about them as they do not apply to the ideas I had when purchasing. The base the Sentinel sits upon is adequate and due to the weight of the Sentinel the ball joint supporting it is incredibly stiff. So stiff in fact I worry about breaking the support arm when adjusting the angle of the Sentinel upon it. The biggest issue with the base however is it’s inability to balance the Sentinel when all the tentacles are pointed in one direction, it becomes rather unstable at best. I suppose this wasn’t the intended position of the tentacles anyway, but for certain poses it can cause some serious issues with stability.

The poseability of the Sentinel is quite amazing as is the strength of the tentacles themselves. I’d originally envisioned a fairly limp setup where they’d just barely hold themselves up and certain poses and placements impossible. Thankfully this was far from the case, the tentacles were actually very stiff and almost hard to pose at times but with patience any position could be had. Which as I came to grips with allowed my creativity to continually grow throughout the course of shooting for this set. However the difficulties experienced with placement made me reluctant to continually reposition them, which is probably unfortunate for the sets.

“World is Mine” Hatsune Miku

Al Azif



  1. Chag says:

    Aka my man, I have newfound respect for you, because that’s a lot of tentacles to mess around with. I liked the way you coiled the tentacles around in the flying poses — it looks very convincing! Those tentacle rape shots also have some lovely composition. That first WIM Miku shot is amazing. The colours are perfect, and with the way her face is lit, there’s a real melancholic took to her.

    At least Al Azif seems to be having a good time. Fun with bladed tentacles — yay!

    • Aka says:

      I’d taken a bunch of boring shots of the Sentinel and decided that I should look at some source material to see how the Sentinel moved around and came across this picture and thought I should try and get some of that organic movement the top Sentinel has there. I couldn’t quite get it without serious work, but what I got seemed good enough, especially for the header.

      Al Azif is used to tentacles, she knows how to enjoy herself. Miku not so much.

  2. Ashlotte says:

    Well that was…interesting and wholly unexpected. (Even if it was in the loot shot didn’t expect a review!)

    It’s funny because the Sentinel was actually one of my favorite things from the Matrix…As much as the movies were praised for their visuals a lot of it was rather ho-hum (Especially the bleh mechs in the later movies…) but the sentinel was an awesomely unique looking beast of a machine that never really lost its menacing edge!

    • Aka says:

      I thought it’d be interesting to do a review of something different for a change. Even if I’ve only done one review since returning to active duty.

      The 2nd and 3rd movies had great visuals but that was it. The 1st was just a great movie, everything about it was well done, and I agree the Sentinels were unique. But a decade later I don’t think they’re as cool as they were then.

  3. Eddy says:

    You gave me a new perpective on tentacles… but wow I didn’t expect all of them to have an outstanding amount of articulation, Great photos too.

    • Aka says:

      Haha I’m glad I could help erm.. educate. They really are quite amazing in their articulation, I had one tentacle wrapped right around Al Azif’s (purple haired character) waist nice and tight, I thought surely I wouldn’t be able to do that but it did so happily!

  4. Tier says:

    Haha, that is awesome. I agree with Ashlotte, the Sentinel was one of the coolest parts from the films, even though they weren’t used nearly as much as they should have been. The unnatural appearance from its squid shape and spider-like eyes makes for a perfect tentacle monster. Though it looks like Miku and Al-Azif are enjoying its ministrations quite a bit, Al-Azif moreso I suppose, being that she ought to be used to robots and tentacles given where she comes from. Then again, what anime girl would turn down a lover like this? Great pictures and I’m looking forward to seeing the sentinel spread its tendrils in the future.

    • Aka says:

      I hope that in the future I can be a little more creative and find some figures perhaps slightly more suited to the Sentinels tendrils.

      I never really even thought about their spider-like eyes, I just thought they were creepy, but now it’s worse! I hate spiders! haha

  5. That1Gai says:

    You have an interesting view on the use of tenticles. Just sayin’.

  6. lovelyduckie says:

    As soon as I saw this I started trying to think of figures that would go well being wrapped up by sentinel…even though I don’t own her the original Mikuru Figma would be a well matched figure to have wrapped up by sentinel. Miku looks like she is ready to stand up and beat the heck out of sentinel, the smile on her face makes her look like she has a lot of hidden strength and isn’t worried by her current situation.

    • Aka says:

      I think figmas are just too small for these tentacles unfortunately. They’re just a bit too thick I feel for a figma to handle.

      I’m glad that you’re on the same level as me here though, immediately into the gutter.

  7. Laura says:

    I really like this Sentinel. Hot Toys has some amazing stuff.

    I know I’ve become a pervert when I looked at the delicious tentacle goodness and hoped you’d do shots with some figures.

    I can do to bed happy now. :3

    • Laura says:

      I like how I can’t spell XD

    • Aka says:

      What other stuffs does Hot Toys have that are amazing? This is the first and only Hot Toys item I’ve shown any interest in.

      You’ve definitely a pervert, but it’s all good, everyone else here is too. Besides, if I’m recalling correctly, Erika from Megatokyo (srsly Aka?) once mentioned something along the lines of “At least they [the tentacle monsters] leave the girl satisfied.”

      Also, I read your post like 15 times before I realized your spelling error. I kept reading it properly it would seem.