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Ayelet Peer, Bar-Ilan University, firstname.lastname@example.org
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Elżbieta Olechowska, University of Warsaw, firstname.lastname@example.org
Logo retrieved from Wikipedia, public domain (accessed: February 2, 2022).
Funko LLC. (Company)
Funko is an American company located in Everett, WA. The company designs, sources and distributes collectable products, including vinyl figures, actions toys, plush, apparel, housewares and accessories.
funko.com (accessed: January 13, 2021).
Prepared by Ayelet Peer, Bar-Ilan University, email@example.com
These figures are an addendum to the Disney Hercules collection, which includes Zeus (no. 593), Meg (no. 379), Phil (no. 380), Hades (no. 381), Baby Hercules (no. 382), and Baby Pegasus (no. 383).
These are "Funko Pop!" figures of Hercules and the winged horse Pegasus from the Disney movie Hercules (1997). The figure of Hercules resembles his "Funko Pop!" Individual figure (no. 378). Hercules is portrayed as a mature and muscular man, wearing his brown armour, brown sandals, wrist bands and headband. He has a blue cape and is holding a sword in his right hand, his left hand is tightly closed, making a fist.
Pegasus is also in his adult version. He is white except for his mane and tail which are blue. His nose seems shorter than in the movie's illustration and his head rounder. He appears to be smiling. His front left leg is raised a little and his wings are fully stretched to the sides.
The figures here capture the unique friendship between Hercules and Pegasus. Both characters smile. Hercules displays the same grin he has in the individual "Pop! Figure" and Pegasus' lip also curl a bit to reveal a soft smile. We get the impression that the two are close friends. This is of course a depiction of the movie characters, since the mythological Hercules never rode on Pegasus' back (nor did anyone in the ancient myths except Bellerophon). Yet, in these figures Pegasus appears content as if he does not mind carrying Hercules, hence the creators of the figures accentuate the friendship between the two characters (which is prominent in the film as well).
Animals, especially cute animals who often possess the power of speech or are anthropomorphised in some way through facial expressions and reactions, are a recurring and significant motif in Disney movies, hence a combination of an animal and a human character together makes this figure set stand out. Pegasus the "Pop! Figure" appears cuter than in his adult version in the movie, due to the specific feature of "Funko Pop! Figures" (round heads, big round and black eyes), yet it does not mean that a younger version of Pegasus is depicted here. In the movie, Hercules met with Pegasus again when he grew up and they completed his training and fought subsequent enemies together.
There is a significant addition to Hercules' figure which does not exist in his individual figure, a sword. In the present set, Hercules, flying atop Pegasus, yields a sword in his hand, as if he intended to strike. Hercules is not armed at all in the individual figure. We cannot be certain whether Pegasus is taking flight or preparing for landing (due to the position of his legs), yet Hercules is facing danger (or perhaps one of his trainer, Phil’s, challenges).
It is possible that Hercules is intended to be facing the released Titans or Hades, but both his and Pegasus' faces appear content, with no fear or intense emotion, making Hercules look self-assured and certain of his victory.
This set then captures both the friendship and cooperation between the two characters but also reveals Hercules as a fighter in mid-action. Hence, it complements the other individual figures in the Hercules collection. The collection offers us a glimpse at baby Hercules and at mature Hercules as well as a cloud Pegasus (hold by Zeus) and baby Pegasus. This set shows the two heroes at the height of their powers, together. Both already grown up and as a result able to work harmoniously together.