Muscle Of Moria



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Gallery New



 (from: Cave Troll from

The Lord of the Rings - 2001)

Manufacturer: Needful Things

Sculptor: Mike Locasio

Material: Resin and vinyl

Scale: no scale



I think if JRR Tolkien had been alive to see the film adaptation of his work he would have been very pleased. Peter Jackson and team have created the world of Middle Earth with an obvious care and affection for the original work. They have visualized Tolkiens creatures as if they were their own creations. And of all the figures in this film none stand out more than the Orc’s gigantic Troll.


Dark Carnival has done us the favor of bringing this big boy to life in vinyl. He comes in 5 main body parts with a few resin pieces and stands a whopping 20” tall when assembled. The vinyl has a good thickness and weight to it but because of the pose I would recommend filling the feet and lower legs with something to help stabilize him. Don’t get me wrong – he’ll stand on his own. But you never know. You wouldn’t want him to take a header off your shelf one night while you’re snoozing.


The sculpt and design of the piece are just great. Locasio captured all the detail and nuances of the beast and the pose is excellent. It has a good sense of motion and is well balanced.


Assembly on this kit is straight forward and relatively easy. Because of the sheer size of this piece I think the attachment at the waist was a little more problematic than most vinyl kits but nothing that couldn’t be handled with some careful thought. I had some large gaps at the joints to sculpt in after assembly but I enjoyed the challenge. Again, nothing too difficult to handle with some patience and a tub of Aves!


The size also affected my order of assembly. I decided to go ahead and put the teeth in the mouth and leave the head separate while I painted them. I also took care of the eyes at this point. This allowed me to hold the head in my hands and easily work on those areas. I then masked them off and attached the head to the body, puttied the joint, primed it and moved on. I was afraid the sheer bulk of this thing would get in my way while trying to do detail work.


Painting this guy was a blast! The size does create some issues – both good and bad. The good is that there is so much area to paint and in such a large scale that you can really get into it and do some nice detail work. The bad is that there is so much area to paint and in such a large scale that it may seem like you’ll never get finished. It’s like painting a child!


The only modification I made was to substitute the plastic chain that came in the kit with some metal chain of the same size I found at Home Depot. The chain was that kind of soft plastic that you can’t really sand very well because it feathers up when it gets scraped. Each link had seams that needed to be removed and I couldn’t see myself tackling it all with an X-Acto knife. So I took the lazy way out and made a swap.


As I came to a close on this piece I was bummed because I was going to have to give him up. He was a commission and had to go home at some point. He had turned out so well and was so much fun to do that I wanted to keep him.


So, if you’re a Lord of the Rings fan, grab one of these if you can. It will make an impressive center piece to your collection. It will certainly be the biggest!











































For additional information, please e-mail me.

Copyright © David E. Bennett    All Rights Reserved