SQUIRREL GIRL & JET-PACK SPIDER-MAN
Squirrel Girl? They made a Squirrel Girl? Like, for real? That’s awesome! Now, for those of you wondering “who’s Squirrel Girl?,” let me ‘splain: Squirrel Girl is a minor character from the ‘90s, created by Will Murray and Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko. In her very first appearance, she teamed up with Iron Man to defeat Dr. Doom. Defeating Doom gave her something of a jokingly legendary status in the comics, and over the years, there was a running gag where she would reference beating some other infamous foe off-screen. She was eventually added to the Great Lakes Avengers during Dan Slott’s mini-series in the mid-00s, which kind of cemented her status as a fan-favorite. Since then, she’s bobbed around in the background of the Marvel universe, before eventually picking up her own series in 2014. More recently, she’s cropped up in the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, which has netted her a Minimate, half the subject of today’s review!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Squirrel Girl and Jet-Pack Spider-Man are part of Series 3 of Walgreens’ exclusive line of Marvel Minimates. Due to the slightly odd numbering scheme of the Walgreens assortments, this actually makes it the fifth series released, but whatever. Squirrel Girl was granted her spot in this set thanks to an online fan poll, of which she and Man-Thing were the winners. Spider-Man was granted his spot because he’s Spider-Man. He does what he wants. Both figures in this set are based on their appearances in the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon.
This marks not only Squirrel Girl’s debut as a Minimate, but also as an action figure in general. As noted above, the figure is based on her animated design, which is itself a pretty straight adaptation of her comic design from GLA until around the time of her solo series. It’s a pretty classic look, following all of the various comic book super hero conventions. The figure is built on the standard Minimate body, with add-ons for her hair and her belt/tail. Both add-on pieces look to be new to this particular figure, and they suit the character pretty well. Some characters look a little lacking on the animated-style ‘mates, but I think Squirrel Girl is one of those that actually fits with the style a bit more. It helps that her paintwork is really sharp. The colors are remarkably vibrant for just being grey and brown, and all of the detail lines are really crisp. She’s sporting a somewhat goofy grin, which is really the only expression a Squirrel Girl figure should ever have. I also appreciate the shading, especially on the torso, which helps keep her from looking too blocky (I mean, yeah, she’s a block figure, but still…). She’s missing a few of the seams on her arms and legs, but those are minor enough details that I don’t feel it really holds the figure back. I’d chalk it up to simplifying the design for translation to the ‘mate aesthetic. Squirrel Girl is packed with her three squirrels (Monkey Joe, Tippy Toe, and Mr. Lieberman. Monkey Joe and Tippy Toe are from the comics, but it looks like Mr. Lieberman was added to bring the total up to three, for whatever reason), as well as a pair of burritos (apparently from an episode of the show), and a clear display stand. The stand is more essential here than usual, thanks to the tail making it virtually impossible to keep her standing on her own.
So far, every Ultimate Spider-Man pack has has its requisite Spider-variant, and this set’s no exception. You can sort of see them starting to reach with this one. He’s pretty much just a basic Spider-Man, but with an extra accessory. I suppose there have been worse variants. The figure is built on the standard body, with the addition of the aforementioned jet-pack, which is an add-on piece. The actual pack is the same one used for both Hope Summers and the Age of Ultron Nick Fury, but the straps are new to this particular figure. I liked the jet-pack the first time I reviewed it, and it’s still pretty cool here, and the new straps actually make it nicely versatile. The rest of the details are handled via paint, which is pretty decent overall. He’s still exhibiting the slight bleed through issue on his eyes, which has been present on most of the recent Spider-Men. That’s a bit annoying, but it’s less present here than on some of the other examples. The rest of the paint is pretty clean, and replicates the look from the show, so I guess that’s pretty good. Spider-Man was packed with a blast-off base that plugs into the jet-pack, a thumbs up hand (re-used from Buddy Christ), an extra surprised head, and a clear display stand.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I’ve not had much luck finding these sets at any of the local Walgreens, so I had to call on the help of my family to track them down for me. My dad ended up finding this set for me a few weeks ago, which was very nice of him. The Spider-Man I can kind of take or leave, but I’m really enthused to have a Squirrel Girl finally. She’s definitely worth the cost of the set!