The figures do look like they're going backwards in terms of articulation.
What happened to the series 6 type of figure( like the one I have posted up above)?
Also the doctor figure doesn't look good as this prototype/Asylum of the Daleks doctor
Hmm...I got the total opposite reaction. I think the new Doctor figure in the purple coat looks much better than this prototype one above in his old outfit.
As far as the playsets being mostly (if not entirely) cardboard, I don't mind because they appear to be more dioramas solely for display purposes than something meant for very rough play. Overall, I like what I'm seeing with the 3.75-inch line as it seems to still be landing somewhere between collectibles and actual toys, IMO.