STORM – STRIKE FORCE & AVALANCHE
Man, I’ve sure gotten a lot of new stuff lately. So much that certain things have gotten pushed to the side, sometimes for a lot longer than I intended. Case in point, Marvel Minimates Series 60. I’ve had them for two whole months, and I’ve still only reviewed half of the series. Sorry everybody! In an effort to fix that, I’ll be taking a look at Storm and Avalanche today.
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
These two were released as part of Series 60 of Marvel Minimates, which was designed as an X-Men vs the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants set-up. As an added bonus, three of the four X-Men included an extra head to let them double as a second character.
STORM – STRIKE FORCE (PLUS PSYLOCKE)
Storm’s definitely one of the better known X-Men, so it’s no surprise to see her show up for another turn in the Minimate form. Like the rest of the X-Men in this particular series, Storm is presented here in her Strike Force uniform from the 90s. Like Wolverine before her, she didn’t wear it for very long, but she did wear it long enough to make it a valid variant. The figure is roughly 2 ½ inches tall and has 14 points of articulation. Storm has sculpted parts for her hair, gloves, and the two sets of straps on her legs. Everything is re-use, but this is an example of just how well it can work. The uniform pieces are the same as the rest of this series’ X-Men, and the hair is a traditionally male hairpiece, first used in the Platoon boxed set for Pvt Gator Lerner. Storm’s paintwork is decent, if not without issue. The colors are nice and bold and the detail lines are nice and sharp, so that’s good. She also has my personal favorite Storm face we’ve seen so far. That said, she still shares the same thin yellow paint on the shoulders and missing bit of red on the belt buckle with the rest of this set’s X-Men. It’s not really surprising, but it is a little annoying. Storm gets two distinctive sets of accessories: those for Storm and those for the alt character Psylocke. Storm includes a pair of electricity attachments and a flight stand, allowing for a nice representation of her abilities. Psylocke gets her extra head, which features a hairpiece first seen on the Marvel vs. Capcom 3 line’s Jill Valentine, as well as a Psi-Knife attachment and a basic clear display stand.
Avalanche is a longstanding member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, but he always seems to get overlooked. He’s gotten a few toys before (but no Minimates), but he always seems to fade into the background. My only real exposure to the guy was on X-Men: Evolution, where he was merged with Rictor and played as something of an anti-villain, who was conflicted about being a bad guy. That was a cool take on the character, but the comics have always just played him as a rather generic thug. But, he’s important to the team, so here he is. The figure has 7 sculpted parts, for his helmet, chest piece, gloves, belt, and boots. All of these are parts we’ve seen before, but they’re all pretty good matches for the character’s design from the comics. The torso is just a basic powerhouse piece painted to match his armor, which is a little bit jarring next to the more highly sculpted parts elsewhere, but it looks okay in person. Avalanche’s paintwork is pretty decently handled. The colors are nice and bold, and the detail lines are pretty sharp. His face is a more extreme expression than a lot of others, which is nice to see for a change. Under his chest armor, there’s a fully detailed torso, with a big ol A on his chest, which makes for a neat alt look. For Accessories, Avalanche includes two chunks of road, which are a lot of fun, as well as a set of shoulder pads, should you want to display the giant A look, and a clear display stand.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
This set was part of the full series 60 set I got via Big Bad Toy Store. Storm/Psylocke doesn’t really represent a standard look for either character, but it’s a well-made figure, and it offers those who missed out on the first Jim Lee Psylocke another chance at the character. Avalanche is an important, if somewhat overlooked and underdeveloped part of the Brotherhood. He’s necessary to round out the team, and he’s a pretty well made figure to boot. This set is probably my least favorite of the four sets available, but it’s not a bad set by any means.