Thursday, January 28, 2016

Review: Silver Sphere Replica by BAKERProps

Phantasmic salutations - your friendly neighborhood Chief Archivist checking in today with a different kind of review. I’ll be taking a look at a sphere replica made by Michael Baker of BAKERProps. I’ve come across numerous sphere replicas of varying quality at conventions over the years, so I immediately recognize this ball as being spectacular. If Don Coscarelli ever gets around to sanctioning an official sphere replica (Lord knows why he hasn’t yet - there have been so many interested parties), this is the kind of ball you would hope for.

Let me say first that I have no idea exactly how sphere makers actually produce these replicas. Magic, I suppose. I interviewed Michael several years back and I’m no more educated on the process nor less mystified by the final product. There are no seams on this sphere, no smudges, scratches or defects of any kind. I challenge anyone to find an angle to gaze upon this ball from which it doesn’t look outstanding. My personal favorite vantage is looking at it direct from the drill-bit, which recalls the poster art for Phantasm Oblivion.

The ball is heavy, but in a good way and as you’d want it to be. After handling the lightweight plastic sphere case from the UK box set, I was happy to find this orb couldn’t be blown away by an errant gust of wind. The blades are terrifically movie accurate as well, unlike the stubby stabbers of the plastic ball.

What I also appreciate about this particular ball is the sturdiness of the blades and drill. You can touch them without fear that they are going to pop right off. They are also about as sharp as you’d expect a deadly silver sphere’s attachments to be. Back in 2007, I received a replica from someone who contributed effects on Phantasm II (an assistant, not Kerry Prior or Mark Shostrom!) and one of his blades plopped out within minutes of my simply holding it. Nine years later and that sphere isn’t around anymore - I eventually tossed it in the trash.

In summary, I would strongly recommend you turn to Sphere Master Michael Baker if you’re looking for a high-end Phantasm sphere replica. Sure, you could grab one off eBay or Etsy, but it’s not going to come anywhere near this level of authenticity. The ball I now have is so good, it might could fool even the Tall Man. I will gladly display it upon my desk for a long time to come, but if I happen to hear even the faintest buzzing or humming coming from it, a swift relocation to my freezer will occur. Not taking any chances!

(Feel free to click either of the photos above to enlarge them, but please excuse my amateur attempts to photoshop myself out of the ball's reflection!)


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