The 90s, as wacky as they may have been, are still a rather important decade to me. Obviously, being born in that decade does it some favors, but many of my formative action figure collecting years occurred during that decade as well. Growing up, my favorite toy company was very definitely ToyBiz, who were just killing it with their huge selection of Marvel toys. The line that pulled me in was X-Men, which also happened to be their biggest line. And what kind of an X-Men line would it be without a few versions of their very first foe, Magneto?
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Magneto (or Magneto II, as he’s officially known) was part of the third series of ToyBiz’s X-Men line. He was the second version of the character to show up in the line, which, you have to admit, is pretty impressive for someone who wasn’t Wolverine. The figure stands roughly 5 inches tall and features 9 points of articulation. The 90s X-Men definitely had a style to it when it came to the figures’ sculpts. Some of them have aged pretty well, some haven’t. Magneto is one of the latter. He’s not too bad, but he definitely has some odd spots. The arms are rather stubby, and the torso is quite short as well. He also has a strange assortment of muscles on his torso. I think they’re meant to represent muscles that exist on actual people, but they seem to have missed the mark. At the very least, they’ve managed to translate his costume pretty well to three dimensions. The figure has a weird action feature, even for the 90s. He has a (rather obtrusive, I might add) lever on his back, which, when pulled, is supposed to activate a sparking effect in the transparent square on the front of the chest. It’s worn out on my figure, which is actually a rather common occurrence. Magneto originally included a cape, to aid in masking the action feature, but, as you can see, my figure no longer has his. The paintwork on Magneto is fairly straightforward. He’s got some pretty basic color work, which is all pretty clean. There is some bleed over on some of the edges, but nothing too major. He’s lacking in pupils; I’m not sure if that’s purposefully that way, but it seems a little weird. Magneto originally included a blaster, because…I really don’t know. Mine doesn’t have that either, so I guess it doesn’t matter.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
For as many of these figures as I owned growing up, this Magneto wasn’t one of them. I ended up finding this guy in a bin of loose figures at this past Balticon. Not quite as great a find as Shatterstar, but, for a dollar, I really can’t complain. I still prefer the first version of the character, but this one’s not bad.