#1932: Bumblebee

BUMBLEBEE

TRANSFORMERS: STUDIO SERIES (HASBRO)

You know what was a really good movie?  Bumblebee.  As someone who couldn’t make it through more than one of the prior live action Transformers films, I was quite pleasantly surprised by how thoroughly enjoyable a movie Bumblebee turned out to be.  It was fun, it was coherent, it had a cool ’80s backdrop, and it had a runtime that didn’t urge me to say goodbye to my loved ones before departing for the theatre.  It also revisited its title character’s design, returning him to the car he had been at the beginning, a VW Beetle, and by extension removing the perceived need to make him “cooler” that had been added by prior films.  And what do you know, all that change actually prompted me to buy a toy.  Please, try to contain your shock and awe.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Bumblebee is one of the Deluxe Class releases from Hasbro’s Transformers: Studio Series line, which is a whole line devoted to producing slightly more movie accurate figures from all six movies in the series.  He’s figure 18 in the line, and started showing up in October/November of last year.  In robot mode (ie, the mode he’s in right out of the box), he stands 5 1/4 inches tall and has 19 practical points of articulation.  Bee’s robot form is represented pretty well here.  There were clearly some changes between when the figure was designed and when the final movie arrived in theaters, as well as some additional changes necessitated by the figure’s actual transforming features.  On a whole, the figure is a little boxier, and not quite as polished as the Bee of the film, but he’s certainly recognizable, and he keeps the important changes from this design compared to earlier ones.  The implementation of the articulation is solid for the scale and the concept.  I might have liked some side to side movement on the wrists, but the hinge at least provides *some* movement.  I was quite happy with the movement on the head; that balljoint has a nice range to it.  Bee’s alt-mode is, of course, the Volkswagon Beetle, a major selling point, given how finicky Volkswagon is with their products.  The car mode is pretty decently handled.  The Volkswagon design is nicely rendered, and well captured, and there aren’t too many consolations that have to be made to make it work.  The transformation between the two modes is a little tricky, at least for me, a Transformers-pleb.  The biggest trick is folding up the hood and roof of the car behind him for the robo-mode.  It felt a bit like I was going to break it getting it in place there.  Similarly, getting everything locked into place for the car mode can be a little nerve wracking.  Ultimately, I was looking more for a cool robot figure that has the potential to turn into the car, not a car that can sometimes be a robot, so I’m okay with leaving him in the robot mode most of the time.  Bumblebee is packed with a few extras, all meant to accent the robot mode.  There’s the battle-mode faceplate, which swaps out for the regular one.  The first swap was a little tricky, but they generally go back and forth with relative ease.  There are also two weapon attachments: a cannon arm that swaps out for his right forearm, and a blade attachment, which can be plugged into either of the arms.  All this allows for a nice coverage of Bumblebee’s looks from the movie.  There’s also a cardboard backdrop, for them that want such things (I’ve never been much into them myself).

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I eyed this guy up a few times before seeing the movie, because I did just really like the design, but held off because I was trying not to get hooked on Transformers.  I really, really was.  But then, like a fool, I saw the movie.  And I really liked the movie.  So, then I *had* to have a Bumblebee.  And maybe some others, but more on that later.  Fortunately for me, my friends at All Time Toys were happy to set me up with one.  I’ve seen some negative opinions of this figure, but I myself am pretty darn happy with him.  He’s a fun little toy.

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#1931: Han Solo

HAN SOLO

STAR WARS MIGHTY MUGGS (HASBRO)

Let it be known, I have *not* forgotten about Mighty Muggs!  Everybody else may have, but not me.  I’m stubborn like that.  Also, I haven’t forgotten about Solo.  Because, once again, stubborn.  What do you get when you put those two things together?  A total loss of faith in humanity’s ability to have nice things?  No, wait, that’s not quite right.  Solo-themed Mighty Muggs!  Yeah, that’s the one!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Han is number 10 in the Star Wars Mighty Muggs line, making him numerically the first Mugg in the third assortment of the line.  The whole assortment was Solo-themed, and this guy follows suit, meaning he’s based on Alden Ehrenreich’s Han, rather than Harrison Ford.  That being said, the more cartoony nature of their designs means that, aside from the costume choice, he could theoretically pass for either actor.  The figure stands 3 1/2 inches tall and he’s articulated at the shoulders and the neck.  He’s built on the exact same body as all of the other modern Muggs l’ve looked at.  It’s kind of the line’s whole thing, so no surprises here.  Han does get a new hair piece, which is stylized to match the rest of the line, while still maintaining the proper look for Han’s usual fabulous hair.  As is the new standard for Muggs, Han has an expression-changing feature, with three expressions featured.  Han gets cocky grin, sheepish grin, and annoyed sideways glance.  He’s the first of the ones I’ve looked at to not have any sort of a raging expression, but that actually feels totally appropriate for Han.  The basic cocky grin is probably going to be my go-to, but I think there’s a lot more versatility to these expressions, which I definitely dig.  Han has no accessories, which isn’t a huge surprise, but is a slight let-down.  I would have liked to have gotten his blaster, especially since all of the Jedi characters have gotten their light sabers.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

After the first assortment, at the beginning of last year, Mighty Muggs seemed to just spontaneously disappear from every retail store.  Han here is the only one of the later assortments I ever saw, found at the Walmart around the corner from All Time Toys.  I was happy to find him, but kind of got distracted by other things.  Remember how I mentioned yesterday that Ghost Rider and The Fallen had been sitting on my desk for five months waiting to get reviewed?  Well, this guy’s been sitting on my desk for even longer.  I literally just opened him up 10 minutes before writing my review, which is cutting it much closer than I usually do.  I’m glad I finally got around to opening him up, and I feel a little bad about letting him sit for so long.  Some researching I did for this review also led me to find that apparently this line has *not* been abandoned by Hasbro, as a new assortment quietly appeared on Amazon.  Hopefully they actually find their way out!

#1930: Ghost Rider & The Fallen

GHOST RIDER & THE FALLEN

MARVEL MINIMATES

Toys and gimmicks go together like…two things that go together really well.  Sorry, I’m not much of a wordsmith.  (Pay no attention to the fact that I’ve written 1929 prior daily entries for this site).  Toys and comics also go together pretty well, as do comics and gimmicks.  So, sometimes, you hit this perfect trifecta of toys based on gimmicky comics.  Take, for instance, today’s focus, the Avengers of 1,000,000 BC, a very gimmicky concept running in the current Avengers comic from Jason Aaron, which has, in turn, led to some matching gimmicky toys.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Ghost Rider and The Fallen are one of the four two-packs in the standalone “Avengers of 1,000,000 BC” series of Marvel Minimates, available exclusively at Walgreens, starting in the fall of last year.

GHOST RIDER

“Bonded to a Spirit of Vengence, the Ghost Rider sits atop a giant wooly mammoth, who later falls victim to the Fallen.

I feel I should at this juncture clarify something I needed clarified for me: it’s the mammoth that is a victim of The Fallen, not Ghost Rider.  The phrasing on the bio’s slightly off, so I got confused, especially since I haven’t actually read the whole “Avengers of 1,000,000 BC story.  With that bit of confusion aside, let’s look at the actual figure!  He stands 2 1/4 inches tall and he has the usual 14 points of articulation.  He’s constructed on the basic ‘mate body, with add-ons for his “hair,” necklace, loincloth, and arm wrappings.  The hair is re-used from the Series 50 Ghost Rider; a sensible choice, since it’s not like flame hair’s gonna really change all that much.  The arm bands are similarly re-used; they’re the same ones that cropped up on the Best Of Iron Fist, among others.  The necklace is new, and it’s a pretty impressive piece.  It certainly sells the 1,000,000 BC aesthetic.  I *think* the loincloth is new, which is honestly a little surprising, since there’s not really anything all that unique about it.  That said, the same piece was also used for the Phoenix from this line-up, so maybe DST just thought it was time for a new standard piece.  Whatever the case, it gets the job done.  The paintwork on Ghost Rider is solid work.  The colors are a bit monochromatic, but that’s true of a number of the designs from this set.  The line work is quite sharp, and I do really like the skull face on this one.  I may be swapping that onto a more standard issue GR.  Ghost Rider is packed with a pair of flame effects to slide over his fists, as well as the standard clear display stand.

THE FALLEN

“The Fallen is one of a race of Celestials, highly powerful beings who pass judgement on all planetary bodies and the creatures who live on them.”

Despite their recurrent presence in the Marvel Universe, the Celestials have never been a particularly toyetic bunch.  Also known as Zgreb the Aspriant, The Fallen is the first of them to actually been made as an action figure, largely thanks to his presence as the main antagonist to the Avengers of 1,000,000 BC’s first story arc.  He’s by far the most divergent of the bunch design-wise, being all futuristic and robot-y.  He’s also largely re-used parts, if you can believe it.  His torso/head is an all new piece (and a quite nicely sculpted one at that), but the other eight add-on parts are borrowed from the Series 63 Hulkbuster. While not perfect matches for the source material, I’m willing to call the appendages close enough, and there’s no denying he looks pretty darn cool.  Also pretty darn cool is the paint; unlike the rest of the assortment, he’s actually pretty colorful and dynamic, going back the classic Marvel color scheme of green and purple.  The application is nice and clean, and the metallic finish really looks top notch.  His only accessory is a clear display stand, but honestly, I don’t know what else you would give him.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’m not overly enamored by the whole Avengers of 1,000,000 BC thing, so for the most part the ‘mates didn’t do much to excite me.  However, I came across them after last year’s incredibly lengthy minimate drought, so I was just excited to find *anything* new.  While the other three sets still didn’t grab me, I liked The Fallen a fair bit, and if nothing else Ghost Rider had a decent Ghost Rider head.  Of course, then they sat on my desk waiting to be reviewed for five months.  Yikes.

#1929: Omega

OMEGA

FORTNITE (JAZWARES)

Oh boy.  More Fortnite.  Remember Fortnite?  That thing I said I had no attachment to, but for which I have now written four reviews? Yeah.  That’s the one.  For what it’s worth, this us my last Fortnite review, at least for the foreseeable future.  Somewhat appropriately for my last review of this set, I’m going to be taking a look at Omega!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Omega was released in the “Early Game Survival Kit”, a slightly more deluxe offering from Jazwares’ Fortnite line, which falls right between the “Solo Mode” and “Drama Llama” offerings.  The figure stands 4 inches tall and he has 28 points of articulation.  In the game, Omega is a progressive skin, meaning he starts out rather basic, and gains new armor as the player progresses.  The Omega seen here is a fully kitted-out version, which I suppose is a sensible choice.  His construction is the same styling as the other Fortnite figures, so he’s a pretty solid little toy with a decent spread of articulation.  The only slight downstep from others is this figure’s more restricted elbow movement, but he’s still getting more than 45 degrees, so we’re not quite at Mattel levels.  The sculpt does a solid job of recreating the in-game design, though like the others, the detailing can be a little soft in some spots.  He’s certainly helped by the design’s more simplistic nature, which just makes for a clean overall figure.  The paintwork is decent, if perhaps not anything amazing.  I like the metallic finish, and the application is overall pretty good.  There’s a little bit of slop, especially on the red lines, but given the scale and the price point, he’s certainly passable.  The more deluxe nature of this release means that he’s a little better accessorized than Raptor was, but not *quite* as accessory heavy as Rust Lord.  He gets a Legendary Assault Rifle, the Onslaught harvesting tool, Precision back pack, Wet Paint Glider, and a foot-peg-bearing building plate.  It’s a nice little taste of all the differing accessory types.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Despite being my last of the reviews, Omega was actually the second Fortnite item I acquired.  Super Awesome Fiancee’s store had gotten him in, and after I was so happy with Rust-Lord, she asked me if I might also like this guy.  I’m hardly one to turn down someone buying me a cool action figure, so I of course took her up on it.  Omega is another solid toy from this line, and I definitely dig it.

#1928: Kingpin

KINGPIN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

It’s an event seven days in the making!  What’s that?  Seven days doesn’t make for much making?  I mean, I guess…

Wilson Fisk, better known as Kingpin, isn’t historically the most toyetic character.  He’s a chubby guy in a suit.  Doesn’t scream fun.  But, he’s an important character, both to Spider-Man and Daredevil, and is definitely one of the Marvel universe’s best villains, so he gets his toy due from time to time.  The advent of Build-A-Figures, especially in their current incarnation, is well suited to his sort of character, making him a natural choice for the latest round of Marvel Legends.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kingpin is the eponymous Build-A-Figure for the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends.  Believe it or not, this isn’t his first time as a Legend; Toy Biz released a figure if him (as well as a variant version) alongside Daredevil in their “Face Off” sub-line from 2006.  That figure is still considered one of Toy Biz’s finest, but I think an update was certainly needed.  The figure stands 7 1/4 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation.  He’s sporting an all-new sculpt, which is really to be expected.  How many guys have Wilson Fisk’s physique? Given Hasbro’s propensity for re-use, I imagine we’ll be seeing at least some of these parts crop up again, though the whole body getting a re-use seems unlikely.  Regardless of re-use potential, there’s no denying that this is a well-crafted sculpt.  The suit is nicely defined and very sharply tailored, and the articulation is fairly cleanly worked in.  Impressively, the articulation is still quite functional; obviously, his design restricts movement a little bit more than smaller figures, but for him it’s all very useful.  There are two different heads included for the figure, depicting Kingpin in his two best known moods: calm and raging.  Both heads are nicely defined, and open the figure up to a great variety of posing options.  The calmer head is my personal favorite of the two, but I definitely like both of them a lot, and I appreciate how consistent the features are between them; these are very clearly the same guy.  The paintwork on Kingpin is basic, but very well implemented.  The application is clean, and the white and black look shows a nice contrast.  He doesn’t have the wacky purple pants that I’ve become accustomed to, but he’s clearly a more modern take on the character.  Purple pants just won’t do anymore.  In addition to the extra head, Kingpin also has his diamond-topped cane.  He has a little trouble securely holding it, but it does look really nice when balanced between his hand and the floor.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Without a doubt, Kingpin was the selling point for this whole assortment of Legends.  I never got the Face-Off release, and I’ve been wanting a good representation of Fisk in my collection.  The individual figures we’re pulling me in when they were shown off, but as soon as I saw this guy, I knew I was in fore a whole set.  He did not disappoint, and he’s definitely put the 2019 Build-A-Figures off to a great start.

In a similar fashion to the Venom Series from last year, this line-up has been an odd one for me.  There were no clear-cut standouts like there have been in prior sets, and I can’t really put my finger on any of them as being “must-have” (apart from the BaF, of course).  That said, with the exception of the Red Goblin figure, I was pleasantly surprised by every figure in this assortment.  I may not have wanted them at the start, but Hasbro sure made me glad I got them all.  If you’re interested in getting a set of your own, all seven of the single figures are still in-stock at All Time Toys’ webstore.  And, as always, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.

#1927: Red Goblin

RED GOBLIN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

When Norman Osborn merges with the Carnage symbiote, he becomes the villainous Red Goblin.”

Since Norman Osborn’s return to life at the end of “The Clone Saga,” there’s been some confusion about what to do with the character.  His goblin mantle had been filled in his absence by both his son Harry and the mysterious (or at least very illusive) Hobgoblin.  While he has returned to the Green Goblin a few times, there always seems to be something of a caveat to its presence.  He’s also taken on other identities, serving for a time as Marvel’s answer to Lex Luthor, a ruthless business man with no true secret identity, then as a twisted “savior” as the Iron Patriot, and then finally as the leader of an army as the Goblin King.  His latest identity, born from the pages of Amazing Spider-Man #799, is that of the Red Goblin.  Red Goblin is about as clear-cut an example of escalation is serialized fiction as you can get.  He’s the combination of Spider-Man’s greatest foe, Norman Osborn, with the deadlier, more un-hinged spawn of another of his greatest foes, Venom, all in a dark reflection of Spidey’s own time as host to the Venom symbiote.  Hey, when you get to issue #800, you kinda have to pull out all the stops, right?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Red Goblin is figure 6 in the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the final single-packed figure in the assortment, and the only of the individuals to be a clear-cut villain.  He also marks the second quickest turnaround from page to plastic in this assortment, being beaten out only by the Symbiote Spider-Man created to stop him in #800.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and has 32 points of articulation.  Like the last version of Norman, Red Goblin is built on the Bucky Cap body.  He makes use of Carnage’s tendril-ridden lower arms and legs, as well as his tendril back-pack piece, a sensible bit of re-use, since it’s the same symbiote and all.  He also uses Superior Venom’s feet and 2099‘s hands for properly clawed appendages.  Red Goblin is topped off with a brand-new head sculpt and a tail that’s been stuck to the back of the basic Bucky Cap pelvis.  The Red Goblin design is one that’s very dependent on specific lighting and a fluidity to the design, and because of this, it’s a design that’s not ideal for translation to toy form.  This is evident in the sculpt, and how it looks when viewed from most angles.  The head looks downright comical when viewed straight-on, like an old toothless man.  Also, as versatile as the Bucky Cap body tends to be, I wouldn’t say it really lends itself to “fluid”.  It’s a more realistic, balanced physique, so you throw a cartoony looking head on there and the head just looks even more cartoony.  Not helping matters is the tail, which is a big, solid chunk of unmoving plastic.  I can kind of understand Hasbro’s hesitance to do bendable appendages, with the long term issues that can plague them and all, but on a figure like this, it’s really limiting his play value, and ends up looking downright silly just sitting there in the exact same pose no matter what you do with him.  Furthering the issues with translating the design into three dimensions?  The paint.  They tried.  They really did.  They’re clearly taking a page out of the Carnage playbook with how they handled this, but it just doesn’t work as well with this particular design.  The black sections just look kind of random and blotchy, and there’s too much un-broken red between them to make it look convincingly like the symbiote is in motion.  The hands and feet being solid black also looks goofy, because it kind of looks like he’s running around with opera gloves and some toe-socks.  It’s undoubtedly too clean and too collected, and, again, it just ends up looking comical.  Maybe he’d look better molded in slightly translucent plastic?  Or something with various colors injected in?  It’d be an inconsistent effect to be sure, but I think that would only further help the figure.  He just needed something better than all the solid colors we see here.  Red Goblin is a rather sparsely packed figure, with only a single Carnage-infused pumpkin bomb.  No glider, which seems kind of criminal with any Goblin figure.  He’s also packed with the right leg of Kingpin, which is, without a doubt, the best thing he’s got going for him.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve long felt that Norman Osborn was the sort of character that was better off dead.  Apart from a few decent stories here and there (the Goblin King angle was one I liked), he’s felt like he’s sort of out of place.  I appreciate the Red Goblin concept for what it is, but I can’t say I was that invested in it, nor was I that crazy for a figure of the design.  Having the figure in hand, my feelings really haven’t changed.  He just doesn’t work as a toy, and I struggle to find much to like about him.  I appreciate their attempt to be timely with this release, and he pairs off alright with the Symbiote Spider-Man, but he’s ultimately just not very well-made, and a very clear weak point in the assortment.

Red Goblin was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys.  He’s currently in-stock at their webstore.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.

#1926: Silver Sable

SILVER SABLE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Fearless mercenary Silver Sable makes her mark as a skilled martial artist and lethal sharpshooter.”

This latest assortment of Legends is just hitting straight at a lot of my Marvel Comics blind-spots, you know that?  Today’s focus, Silver Sable (or, if you want to go by her real name, Silver Sablinova, because, hey, Blackagar Boltagon wasn’t bad enough), is a character I’m again not so well-versed with.  She comes from the same period of comics as Puma (their first appearances were less than a year apart, and they were from the same creative team), which is to say a period I’ve never sat down and read myself.  I’m a little more familiar with Ms. Sablinova, due to her prominent appearances during Dan Slott’s run on Spider-Man.  That, and the toys, which she’s gotten three of.  Today, I look at the most recent.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Silver Sable is figure 5 in the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends.  She’s another Legends debut, like Puma and Night Thrasher before her.  She’s also our second white-haired femme fatale in this line-up after Black Cat, which is somewhat amusing.  Rumor has it, the two of them were actually in the line-up because of the proposed team-up movie Sony decided to shelve.  Sable’s look changed rather drastically after her original appearance, but since then she’s moved into a more consistent appearance, which is the one we see here.  This figure seems to draw from some of her more modern appearances, as denoted by her lack of fancy buccaneer boots, and the fact that she’s not super shiny and chrome.  A missed opportunity if you ask me.  Anyway, the figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  She’s built on the Phoenix body, which has become Hasbro’s favorite female base.  For good reason, really.  It’s fairly versatile, and it poses pretty well.  I still think the legs are a bit skinny, but it looks reasonable for Sable.  She re-uses the shoulder strap, belt, and thigh pouch add-ons from the Lady Deadpool figure.  As with the Lady Deadpool figure, I really find myself wishing those thigh straps were somehow affixed to the legs, because they fall down a lot, but beyond that, the re-use works pretty well.  She also re-uses Kitty Pryde’s forearms, for some more noticeable cuffs to her gloves, and the hands from Black Widow, so that she can better hold her weapons.  It’s all topped off with a new head sculpt.  At first glance, the head looks a touch too large for the body, but after playing around with the figure and putting her into some better poses than how she was packaged, I didn’t find the proportions to look all that bad.  Sable’s paintwork is decently handled, but not without some issues.  The slight variations in the silver actually work pretty well, and provide a much greater contrast than I’d been expecting.  Unfortunately, Hasbro seems to have had some trouble with keeping the colors consistent from piece to piece, so the bluer silver in particular changes tones as it moves down the legs, to the point that the distinction between the boots and the rest of the leg is almost impossible to see.  Silver is a difficult color to work with, so I think Hasbro did the best they could.  The paint on the the head is particularly nice, with the face being quite clean, and very lively.  Silver Sable is packed with the two blaster-style weapons we saw with Domino and Casual Deadpool, but this time in a dark grey.  There have been some complaints about them cropping up again here, but, if I’m honest, I think Sable’s the character who looks best with them, so I don’t mind them.  Sable is also packed with the left arm of Kingpin.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Silver Sable continued the trend of figures in this line-up that I didn’t really feel like I needed. That being said, I liked the look of her well enough, and I was definitely going to finish that Kingpin figure.  And, as seems to be the other continuing trend of this line-up, she exceeded my expectations and is a solid addition to the Legends line-up.  If nothing else, she’ll provide an adequate body for the Lilandra head that’s being packed in with the upcoming Mystique figure.

I picked up Silver Sable from All Time Toys, who helped me get this whole set to review.  She’s currently in-stock at their webstore.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.

#1925: Night Thrasher

NIGHT THRASHER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The founder of the New Warriors, Dwayne Taylor is a martial arts master clad in a special combat suit.”

Night Thrasher!  He’s the Thrasher what thrashes at Night! Yeah…that’s all I got.  The New Warriors are a team I can definitely appreciate as a team, made up of characters I definitely won’t turn down as action figures, but I can’t say I know too much about any of them, Night Thrasher included.  As the bio notes, he’s the team founder, and was one of the active members during the team’s ill-fated mission that kicked off the events of Civil War, leading to his death.  But it’s comics, so that didn’t really stick.  Now he’s got an action figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Night Thrasher is figure 4 in the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s not the first New Warrior we’ve gotten, but Nova and Darkhawk were far more modern than he is, so he’s definitely the first one to really commit to it.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall an he has 32 points of articulation.  Night Thrasher’s built on the Bucky Cap body, though like a good number of the recent figures to be built on it, he’s mostly built out of adjacent parts.  The only true Bucky Cap parts are the upper legs and pelvis.  He also makes use of Beetle’s torso, and Taskmaster’s arms and lower legs, as well as a brand-new head sculpt and add-ons for his belt and the bandanna on his leg.  The Beetle and Taskmaster pieces are inspired choices for the figure, and actually end up being quite close to Night Thrasher’s typical comics get-up.  It’s also nice to see them turn up again, since they hadn’t really shown up since their first use.  The new head is a good translation of Night Thrasher’s distinctive helmet from the comics, and is made with a few different parts glued together, allowing for some proper depth to the design.  The belt is interesting, because at first glance it’s identical to the one used on Puma.  However, Puma’s belt has an extra detail stamped on the front that Night Thrasher lacks, meaning they aren’t just the same mold.  I’m genuinely amazed that Hasbro didn’t just use paint to differentiate the two.  Whatever the case, it’s a nice belt.  The one piece I’m not super crazy about is that bandana on his leg, because it never wants to stay in place, and just generally gets to be rather annoying when posing the figure.  Night Thrasher’s paintwork is pretty solid, and not quite as simple as it might look at first glance.  The finish on the black sections of the costume is different depending on if it’s supposed to be armor or cloth, which keeps him from being too one-and-done.  The red sections are suitably eye-catching, and the use of accenting helps to highlight all the nice sculpted details in his belt.  Night Thrasher is the best accessorized figure in the set.  It starts off with the a re-use of those same batons we’ve gotten so many times prior, but they’re made more awesome by the inclusion of a back-pack to mount them on (the back-pack also conveniently covers the wing ports from the Beetle torso).  He’s also got his skateboard, which is a pretty awesome piece in its own right, and can also be stowed on his back when he’s not using it.  I really appreciate his ability to keep all of his accessories on him.  It makes him feel like a more complete package on the shelf.  Lastly, he comes with the left leg of Kingpin.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Despite not being overly familiar with the character, Night Thrasher was one of the figures I was most looking forward to from this set.  Something about his design just seems so inherently toy-etic.  Hasbro did a really good job on this guy, and wisely balanced new and old parts to make a very unique feeling figure.  I foresee this guy being a real fan-favorite.

Night Thrasher from my friends at All Time Toys.  He’s currently in-stock at their webstore.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.

#1924: Symbiote Spider-Man

SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The Venom symbiote gives Peter Parker a black suit with special, enhanced powers.”

After a long hiatus from the line, Spider-Man’s distinctive symbiotic black costume re-appeared in Legends back in early 2017.  That figure was a pretty straight forward “classic” symbiote Spidey, which I guess left the door open for a *less* classic symbiote Spidey?  And wouldn’t you know it?  Dan Slott and Staurt Immomen were kind enough to provide Hasbro with a variant of the symbiote right in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man.  In one of the fastest turnarounds from page to plastic, here’s the newest Symbiote Spider-Man!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Symbiote Spider-Man is figure 3 in the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends, as the second Spidey variant in the assortment.  This one’s just got the normal number of arms.  He’s based on SPider-Man’s appearance from the pages of Amazing Spider-Man #800, where Peter is forced to re-bond with the Venom symbiote in order to defeat the Red Goblin (more on him later in the week).  It takes the classic black costume, and adds a bunch of minor tweaks.  Some work, some don’t.  I like the re-worked version of the logo, and I don’t hate the claw hands, but I’m still not sold on the monster feet, and especially not sold on the eyes.  He looks like he’s wearing some form of funky eye-wear, and it feels like it’s needlessly breaking up an otherwise streamlined design.  All that said, I’ve certainly seen worse designs, and there’s good reason to include him in this line-up (again, more on that later in the week).  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation. Unlike the other Spidey in this set, Symbiote Spider-Man sticks to the formula of the last few years, and is built on the Pizza Spidey body.  He gets the clawed 2099 hands and the monster feet from Superior Venom, with a brand-new head to top the whole thing off.  If nothing else, the whole thing is faithful to the comics design.  The new head is a fairly nice sculpt.  The eyes still bug me, and the fact that they stick out the way they do means that there’s some potential for them to be bent in the package.  Fortunately, they’re a soft enough plastic that you can reshape them with a bit of heat if its an issue.  Beyond the eyes, though, I really like the shaping of this head, especially how you can see Peter’s nose beneath the mask.  I wouldn’t mind seeing a version of this sculpt without the eyes; it would make for a cool basic Spidey head, I think.  Symbiote Spidey’s paintwork is pretty simple, molded black plastic with white detailing.  It’s the usual for this design.  The white for his symbol is a little sloppy in some spots, but he’s overall a solid effort. Spidey’s packed with a spare set of hands in fists, as well as both heads to the Kingpin Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: I wasn’t really that interested in getting this guy initially.  Yeah, with the standard Symbiote look covered, I wasn’t hurting for another version of it, so I wasn’t sure about this guy, especially with some of those weird design elements.  The desire to get that Kingpin figure really drove this one.  I didn’t expect much, but I was actually quite surprised, and I find myself really liking this figure.  Yes, those eyes still bug me, but he’s a fun toy nonetheless.

I bought Spidey from my friends at All Time Toys, who were kind enough to set me up with this whole set to review.  He’s currently in-stock at their webstore.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.

#1923: Puma

PUMA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The genetically engineered Thomas Fireheart can transform himself into a half-mountain-lion, half human known as Puma.”

Hey, it’s Puma!  You know, Puma!  That guy with the…Puma…thing.  I mean, like, as the bio up there states, he technically turns into a half-mountain-lion, but I guess “Half-Mountain-Lion Man” just isn’t nearly as catchy.  Probably would make him easier to Google, though.  Like yesterday’s focus, Black Cat, Puma is another character that began his career as a Spider-Man foe, before ultimately becoming an ally to the webslinger.  Though he’s never been a super prominent character, nor has he had much luck in the toy world (his only prior figure was a Super Hero Squad release, and counting those as figures is dubious at best), he’s got a decent fanbase, and has been a rumored addition to the Legends line for a little while now.  And here he finally is!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Puma is figure 2 in the Kingpin Series of Marvel Legends, where he’s one of two characters making their proper figure debut.  He’s seen here in what would I would definitely classify as Puma’s classic appearance, since it’s the one he spent the most time in.  And if you’re finally going to release a character like Puma, you should probably make the costume choice count, right?  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Puma uses the Spider-UK body as a starting point, and mixes in the arms and feet of Jackal.  I’d imagine the ability to re-use those Jackal pieces played a large role in getting Puma made, since he’s the first figure to re-use them.  Puma also borrows Black Panther’s necklace, and gets a new head, and add-ons for his arm band, belt, and the fur on his lower legs.  The new pieces generally mesh pretty well with the old, and make for a rather respectable representation of the character.  The head in particular is a very well-detailed, very expressive offering, and is rather similar to the quite impressive Sabertooth head sculpt from last year.  If I have one complaint, it’s with the torso.  The design of Puma’s costume means that the sides of his torso are exposed.  However, since the figure’s still using the UK torso, the exposed sections not only lack the fur texturing of the arms, but also have the folds of the cloth showing on them as well.  It’s fortunately a small area of the figure, and not terribly noticeable depending on the using of the arms, but it did strike me as slightly odd.  The paintwork on Puma is mostly pretty solid.  Application is clean, and the colors are well chosen to represent the character.  There’s a slight mismatch between the arms and the exposed section of the torso, but that’s actually not the worst thing, as it sort of makes it look like the orange sections are part of the costume, which keeps the previously mentioned issue with the sculpt from looking quite so odd.  I was happy to see the addition of some accent work on the furrier parts of Puma’s sculpt; it helps to prevent the figure from looking too bland.  Puma’s only accessory is the torso of Kingpin.  It’s sizable, so he doesn’t feel too light, but I can’t help but wish we’d gotten an extra, less intense head for Puma.  As it stands, posing options are slightly limited.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Puma’s not ever been much of a favorite or anything.  I certainly don’t dislike the character, but I can’t say I find him all that notable.  So, his announcement for this series didn’t catch me.  I mostly bought him for the Kingpin piece.  That said, like Black Cat, he’s another solid toy, and I can appreciate the fact that we’ve finally got Puma.  If I can get my Batroc the Leaper, it’s only fair that the Puma fans out there have this guy.

I purchased Puma from my friends at All Time Toys, who were kind enough to set me up with this whole set to review.  He’s currently in-stock at their webstore.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out All Time’s website and their eBay storefront.