HULKBUSTER & CORVUS GLAIVE
Hulkbuster and Corvus Glaive would both make for pretty sick band names, wouldn’t they? Sorry, no pithy intro here; that’s really all I got…
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Hulkbuster and Corvus Glaive are part of the second assortment of Infinity War-themed Marvel Minimates. They’re the second of the two sets shared between specialty and Walgreens (and were originally supposed to be offered at Toys R Us). It’s kind of an odd pairing, since I don’t know that these two ever interacted, but they were at least both part of the big final battle, so there’s that.
What is a Hulkbuster with no Hulk to bust? Well, if we’re going by Infinity War rules, it’s a pretty decent Hulk stand-in, actually. Who’d have guessed? Yes, after the slight misdirect all of the merchandise gave us by including the almost entirely absent Hulk in the early assortments of just about every tie-in, we finally got some follow-up with the Hulkbuster, Banner’s far more prominent look. This is our seventh time getting some variation of the Hulkbuster in Minimate form, and in fact our second time seeing Banner in the suit. The Hulkbuster armor uses 11 add-on pieces. Since the ‘buster’s design has had an overhaul since we last saw it in Age of Ultron, it gets a number of new parts. In fact the only parts shared between this figure and that one are the hands and the torso extender (well, and the basic Minimate body, but that’s kind of a given). The torso and feet are brand new parts, and he also uses standard power-house pieces for his upper arms and legs, as well as a blank slip cover mask for the helmet. The new pieces are great; they really add some bulk to the figure, and are filled with tons of great little details from the screen. The power-house pieces work well in conjunction with these new parts, adding some decent bulk to largely unseen areas that don’t need quite as much extra detail. The mask…I’m not sure about the mask. It’s hardly the first time we’ve seen an Iron Man helmet handled this way (in fact, Infinity War‘s own Mark 50 uses the same basic style), but it does make the figure look a little off when placed next to the AoU variant. Of course, this one also loses that one’s neck seam, and actually has a posable head, so you win some and you lose some. The Hulkbuster’s paint is pretty decent. The red and gold are a little brighter than prior Iron Men, and therefore a little more eye-catching. The last Hulkbuster was far more reliant on sculpted elements to carry things, but this one is more willing to fall back on painted detail lines, which I do think helps him look a little sharper, and more defined. Under the mask is a Bruce Banner face; It doesn’t dethrone the Ragnarok version as the definitive likeness, but at least it’s actually the right person in the armor. Unlike prior ‘busters, this one doesn’t feature any sort of detailing on the torso, but since Bruce isn’t wearing another suit of armor like Tony, I guess there wouldn’t be much to detail. A dirty t-shirt maybe? Yeah, I think DST can be forgiven for leaving it blank. The figure includes two accessories. The first is a spare hair piece, allowing for an unhelmeted Banner to be displayed. The piece looks familiar, so I think it might be a re-use, but it’s curiously not the same piece from the Ragnarok set. The Hulkbuster also includes a standard clear display stand, for all your clear displaying needs.
Perhaps the least developed of the Black Order, Glaive’s main character trait seems to be “gets knocked down a lot.” Nevertheless, the guy’s still got a really cool name, and a pretty solid design, so I like him. Plus, it’s not like you can only make part of the Black Order and not the rest. Right, Hasbro? Corvus is built using three add-on pieces on the standard body. He’s got his headgear/ears, shoulder decoration, and loincloth/belt. All three of these pieces are new to this figure, and they’re pretty decently sculpted, if perhaps a bit soft in some spots. The torso piece seems to get the worst of the softness, and I’d say it at least partly is due to lack of reference material. The rest of the detailing is handled via paint, and it’s overall pretty decent work. It’s perhaps not the most thrilling color palette, but the detail lines are all pretty sharp. I think his face is the weakest part of the figure. Corvus’s face is thin, angular, and very pointy, which are all the things a Minimate’s head is *not*, so his face ends up looking a bit nondescript. He just looks like a fairly average guy who’d generally prefer not to hear about his co-worker’s vacation. Doesn’t exactly ooze intimidation. Corvus is, unsurprisingly, packed with his glaive. It’s a solid recreation of the design from the movie, and he can hold it well enough, for a Minimate weapon, anyway. He also includes a clear display stand.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Since Walgreens was kind of slow getting this assortment out, I grabbed these from Cosmic Comix when they came in. The AoU Hulkbuster was kind of the star of those tie-in waves, so this one has some big shoes to fill. While the differences in design and approach make it difficult to outright compare the two, I feel that this one is still a pretty admirable addition to the collection. The Black Order are actually the only “new” offerings from the Infinity War assortments, so in that way Corvus is sort of this set’s draw. However, his design isn’t particularly minimate-friendly, and the end result is a kind of bland offering. Not terrible, but just sort of “meh.”