#2021: Hercules

HERCULES

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“An immortal champion of Olympus, Hercules uses immense strength to battle evil and protect the world.”

Honey, you mean “Hunk-ules!”…wait, sorry, sorry everybody.  Wrong Hercules.  My bad.  Pack it back in, let’s regroup….Although, I do feel the need to point out that both Herculeses in question are owned by Disney, so you can forgive my confusion.  Today’s Hercules is officially of the Marvel branding, introduced by Lee and Kirby during their run on Thor.  He’s been a mainstay of the Marvel Universe since the ’60s, but has actually been a slightly rare occurrence as a toy.  Toy Biz, for all their Marvel stuff they did, never released a single figure of Herc, and even Hasbro’s have been few and far between.  Their first Herc was a Legends release, as part of their very first series, all the way back in 2007, and now their finally replacing him with an update, 12 years later.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Hercules is figure 6 in the first series of Endgame-themed Marvel Legends.  He’s the last of the four comics figures, and also the last single-packed figure in the series.  As a full-fledged Avenger for many years, Herc is definitely the most natural choice of the comic-based figures in the line-up.  Herc is based on his most recent appearances, from around the time of Avengers: No Surrender.  It’s really not too far removed from his classic appearance, with the only prominent change being the addition of pants and boots.  I’m not super crazy about the man-bun, but worse things have happened.  The figrue stands 7 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  Hercules is an all-new sculpt, which was honestly a little bit of a surprise to me, since I’d kind of been expecting the Hyperion body to be trotted out again.  It’s most certainly a pleasant surprise, because this body is much better.  It still maintains that impressive god-like physique, but avoids a lot of the odd proportion issues and especially that “shelf” issue at the front of the torso.  I wouldn’t mind seeing some of these parts become more regular additions to the bigger guys.  Interestingly, both my favorite and least favorite aspects of the sculpt are on the same piece: the head.  The expression on the face is perfect for Herc, the beard is nicely defined, I dig the intricate nature of the head gear, and the flow of the hair is great too…mostly.  But he’s still got that freaking man-bun.  For whatever reason, it just really bugs me.  Not enough to distract from the rest of the awesome sculpt that it’s attached to, but enough to give me slight pause whenever I first pick him up.  The texturing on his boots and pants is on par with most of the MCU level stuff, and I think his harness is the least float-y harness piece yet in modern Legends, which is definitely a step in the right direction for a line that already takes lots of steps in the right direction.  It’s all topped off with a pretty darn solid paint-job.  Some of the paint for this assortment has been a little iffy, so I had my concerns about Herc, but he turned out quite nicely.  Everything is nice and cleanly applied, and he manages to be colorful and eye-catching without being as garish as some of his incarnations have the potential to be.  Hercules is perhaps the best accessorized figure in the line-up, getting a sword and mace (both of which can be stored on his back), plus two sets of hands for both fists and gripping.  A comic figure getting extra hands is always cause for celebration if you ask me.  And, he’s also packed with the head of the Thanos Build-A-Figure, which is now complete!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As much flack as it may get, I’ve actually always really loved Hasbro’s original Hercules figure.  He was quite good for the time, and I always felt he did a solid job of capturing the spirit of the character.  Sure, he was looking more and more dated with each updated release, but replacing him would still be a daunting task.  Well, maybe not so much.  This figure’s awesome.  Like, really, really awesome.  I didn’t have much of an opinion of him going in, but he quickly became my favorite figure in the set.  Even if he does have that stupid man-bun…

Hercules was purchased from All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here.  Go buy him.  Go buy him now. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

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#2020: Citizen V

CITIZEN V

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Baron Helmut Zemo adopts the alias Citizen V and leads the heroic Thunderbolts into battle against various villains.”

From the fallout of the dreaded “Heroes Reborn” relaunch of the ’90s, there was actually one notable not-terrible thing to come about: Thunderbolts.  In the wake of the Avengers disappearance, a new super-team arose, and in one of the decade’s most shocking twists, were revealed at the end of their debut hero to not be heroes at all, but rather the Masters of Evil in disguise.  Former Masters of Evil leader and Captain America foe Baron Zemo became the patriotically-themed Citizen V.  And, following up on last year’s Songbird figure, we’ve gotten a Citizen V to go along with her.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Citizen V is figure 5 in the first Endgame-themed series of Marvel Legends.  Given his real identity, he’s not the worst choice in the world for this assortment, even if Zemo’s not actually in Endgame.  I mean, at least he *is* an MCU character, and with the Songbird figure last year, there’s a good precedent.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and has 32 points of articulation.  Like yesterday’s Nighthawk, Citizen V is built on the Bucky Cap body, which definitely a good choice, given it’s the same body that the basic Zemo was built on as well.  He’s specifically built on the recent Daredevil variant of the body, meaning he has the wrapped hands and laced up boots, which are a good match for Citizen V’s design.  He gets a new head, belt, and cape piece as well, which completes the appearance nicely.  I particularly like the head, which is nice and sleek.  The cape is also a rather nice piece, though the nature of how it’s laid out is rather restricting for his left arm.  Of course, given that his sword hand is his right one, it’s not a huge loss.  I’m willing to sacrifice movement for form on this one.  The paintwork on V is some solid stuff.  I really dig the metallics on the shoulder pads, as well as the accenting on the red sections.  There’s some notable slop on the cape at the edges, which I wish wasn’t quite as obvious, especially given the quality of the rest of paintwork.  It’s really the one downside to an otherwise really strong figure.  Citizen V is packed with his sword, which is a decent enough piece, though he has a little bit of trouble holding it.  Still, a cool piece nonetheless.  He also includes the right leg of the Thanos Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While I didn’t read Thunderbolts back when it was new, I’ve always kind of dug Citizen V’s design and have long thought it would make for a good figure.  I was definitely hoping to see it turn up when we got Songbird last year, and I was happy to see him show up.  He was pretty high on my list for this assortment, and I definitely had high hopes.  The paint on the cape is annoying, but beyond that, I do really like this figure, and I look forward to the possibility of getting more members of the original Thunderbolts.

Citizen V was purchased from All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2019: Nighthawk

NIGHTHAWK

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Originally a member of the Squadron Sinister, the wealthy Kyle Richmond has a change of heart and joins the Defenders.”

In the past, I’ve briefly touched on the Squadron Sinister, Roy Thomas’s Justice League pastiches created in 1969 for an unofficial crossing over of the Avengers and the Justice League.  While the Champions of Angor, the Avengers parody that the Justice League fought in their own book shortly after, weren’t particular successful in any fashion, the Squad was successful enough to get not only their own heroic spin-offs (the Squadron Supreme), but also to have a couple of its original members worked into the mainstream universe proper.  The team’s resident Batman expy, Nighthawk, actually did alright for himself, going on a path of redemption and eventually becoming a mainstay of the second-tier superhero team the Defenders!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Nighthawk..sorry, *Marvel’s* Nighthawk is figure four in the first series of Endgame-themed Marvel Legends.  He’s the second comics-based figure in the assortment, and I guess if I ragged on Living Laser for his spot being questionable, then I have to rag on Nighthawk too, since he’s really more a Defenders character, despite starting off as an Avengers villain.  Despite all that, I can’t really complain too much, since I doubt there are going to be any dedicated Defenders assortments anytime soon.  Plus, we got three other Defenders back during the tie-ins for Age of Ultron, so I’d say there’s some precedent.  Nighthawk is based on his second costume, following his turn to the heroic, which is definitely sensible, since he spent most of his career in variations of this look.  It also further removes him from his Distinguished Competition counterpart, which I’m sure makes the legal department extra happy.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Nighthawk returns to the tried and true method of building figures on the Bucky Cap body, even re-using that figure’s buccaneer-style boots.  It’s a good fit for Nighthawk’s stature, and still a very good body, though I imagine it’s nearing its retirement.  The figure gets a new head, hands, and forearms, as well as brand new cape add-on.  The newly sculpted parts are nice and clean, and fit well on the body.  The head is a pretty basic piece.  It’s a guy in a cowl, so there’s not a ton of unique work to do there.  It’s a good adaptation, and I do prefer the streamlined mask design they went with. I appreciate that they actually sculpted the ends of his gloves, rather than just painting them on, and I also dig that they made his claws distinctly different from Wolverine.  The cape is big and bulky, but it’s also really dynamic, and certainly the best interpretation we’ve gotten of it in three dimensions.  I was expecting it to be a lot more cumbersome than it ended up being, so I was pleasantly surprised to be sure.  Nighthawk’s paintwork is clean, bright, and bold, which is pretty much everything you’d hope for.  I definitely like the palette here more than the Marvel Universe figure from a few years back, and the application is overall pretty clean.  I did see some slight variance on the coverage of his logo on the few figures I looked at, but for mine it looks pretty solid.  Nighthawk includes no accessories for himself, which, while slightly sad, isn’t a huge shock.  An unmasked head would be cool, as would some non-clawed hands, but they aren’t the sort of thing you expect to see on a character like Nighthawk.  He does include the right arm of Thanos, as well as Thanos’s bladed weapon.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve been a fan of Nighthawk ever since Kurt Busiek made him a prominent player in his late ’90s Defenders series, and I’ve wanted him in figure form for pretty much just as long.  He and the rest of the secondary Defenders are some of my favorites, and he’s the last one I needed for a true classic Defenders set-up, so I was pretty stoked for his release.  The final figure lives up to my expectations, and I’m happy to have him.  He’s sort of Living Laser’s counterpart in this assortment, another formulaic lower tier character release who’s actually a pretty solid toy.  The difference between the two is that Nighthawk is actually a character/design I wanted, so he resonates just a little bit better with me.

Nighthawk came from my friends at All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

 

#2018: Living Laser

LIVING LASER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Driven mad by jealousy, the brilliant research scientist Arthur Parks becomes the villainous Living Laser.”

Man, wasn’t it a huge shock when the Avengers defeated Thanos in Endgame, only to all be instantaneously killed by the Living Laser?  That was a dark turn!  Clearly, this figure is the most timely inclusion ever, just because of that.  What’s this?  Spoilers?  No, not even close.  Living Laser’s not in Endgame at all…whoops, spoilers for all those Arthur Parks fans hoping for a surprise cameo.  I guess you’ll just have to make due with this only vaguely connected figure release.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Living Laser is figure 3 in the first Endgame-themed series of Marvel Legends.  As I touched on in the intro, no, Living Laser is not in the movie, but is instead one of the four comics-based figures in this line-up.  His placement is kind of odd, but I guess no more odd than Grey Gargoyle cropping up in the Captain Marvel series.  He *is* and Avengers villain, so that’s sort of related.  The figure stands just shy of 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation…in theory.  The head/neck combo messes with the mobility of those joints a little bit.  Living Laser’s had a host of rather differing appearances over the years, but this figure goes for his most recent, which, if I’m being totally honest, isn’t something I’m super thrilled about.  For my money, I’d much rather have gotten Laser’s classic design he was sporting from the ’70s on through the ’90s, as hokey as it may be.  This one’s sleek, but I don’t feel it’s quite as gripping.  But, hey, maybe this is the design others want.  I was buying the figure anyway, so my personal preferences certainly haven’t impacted their sales at all.  The figure’s construction is pretty simple.  He’s got a brand new head, thrown on the ANAD 2099 body, funky add-on bits and all.  Aside from the restriction on the neck movement, it’s actually not a bad combo, since the 2099 body’s a pretty solid one.  It doesn’t make for the most thrilling appearance, but it’s an accurate one.  The new Living Laser design has him in a constant state of energy, which the figure replicates by casting him in clear purple plastic.  There’s some airbrushed accenting on it.  It’s fairly decent, though it rather suddenly disappears when you get to the butterfly joints, which is a little bit jarring, but you can make it work with the right pose.  Living Laser is packed with two of the electric effect pieces, this time in an off-white.  It’s a shame he doesn’t have any alternate hands to replace the fists, but at least he’s not entirely un-accessorized. He also includes the torso of the armored Thanos Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When I initially heard they were making Living Laser, I was excited, because I wanted to add him to my growing ’90s cartoon Iron Man villains roster.  Then I saw the figure, and he’s the wrong design for that, so my desire to have him quickly dwindled.  It’s not the figure’s fault.  This is his most current appearance, so I can’t really fault Hasbro for choosing it, nor can I say that the figure isn’t an accurate recreation.  He’s honestly not a bad figure, but he’s one I just don’t feel much attachment to.

Living Laser came from All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2017: Scorpion Alien

SCORPION ALIEN

ALIENS (NECA)

We interrupt our regularly scheduled Avengers coverage for a look at another “A” franchise.  Yes, it’s April 26th, or 4-26, also known as Alien Day, or at least it has been for the last few years.  And this year, I did actual manage to flag something special to review for the occasion.  Last month, I took a look at the NECA’s Kenner-inspired take on Sgt. Apone.  Today, I’m following that up with my first look at one of NECA’s Kenner-style Aliens, namely the Scorpion Alien, the closest the original line got to a standard-issue Xenomorph variant.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Scorpion Alien is the second of the three figures in the Kenner-inspired Series 13 of NECA’s Aliens line.  As sort of the quintessential alien of the original line, it was a little bit of a surprise that the Scorpion Alien wasn’t in the first Kenner-inspired assortment, but my guess would be that NECA was looking to space him out a little bit from the other more standard Alien variants.  At this point in the line, a more standard Xeno is a little more appreciated.  The figure stands 8 inches tall and he has 39 points of articulation.  The Scorpion Alien uses the general model of the recently released Ultimate Alien Warrior as a starting point, mostly cribbing the internal workings and articulation scheme of that figure.  Most of the exterior is new; I think the pelvis and maybe the lower legs are the only truly un-changed parts.  Everything else gets a new skin.  It’s not *terribly* different from the film design, just a lot spikier, really.  For the sake of mixing things up a bit, and making him a little more unique, NECA’s also changed up the musculature a little bit, making him ever so slightly bulkier in areas such as the shoulders and the thighs.  It matches better with the slightly stouter build of the old figure, making him a more true adaptation of that figure.  The paintwork on this figure also leans pretty heavily on accuracy to the original’s exact coloring, with a heavy bronze accenting.  It’s a good look, though, as always, I’m slightly partial to blue, so I wouldn’t be opposed to a re-paint.  Still, this is a good look for the figure, and I appreciate the heavy bronze to black ratio.  The Scorpion Alien doesn’t have any accessories, but he does include a reprint of the comic included with the original figure.  I was slightly saddened by the lack of a blast apart feature, but I can’t really blame NECA for leaving that one out.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Since I was already picking up Apone, the Scorpion Alien was a pretty easy sell for me.  Though not far removed from the original design, he’s always been my favorite Kenner Alien design, so I was happy to see him show up in this line-up.  If you have any of the other Xenos from this line, he may not feel like much new, but I dig the changes they made, and I think he makes for a fun variant.  Hope you didn’t mind the detour.  The Marvel stuff will be back tomorrow!

I picked up this guy from my friends at All Time Toys, who have (or had, at least) the whole series.   If you’re looking for toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2016: Ebony Maw

EBONY MAW

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The dangerous assassin Ebony Maw puts his powers of persuasion to sinister use in the service of the evil Thanos.”

It’s kind of funny that the first member of the Black Order we see in Infinity War is the last one to get a figure, isn’t it?  Yes, despite his fairly prominent role as Thanos’ top hype-man, Ebony Maw was displaced by fellow Order member Proxima Midnight when it came to the initial toys.  In defense of the toy makers, Proxima does some like a more conventionally easy sell, what with Maw’s general non-action stance.  The important thing is that we have him now, and it only took a year (hey, that’s better than Red Skull, Ronan, and Crossbones).  So, was he worth the wait?  Let’s find out!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ebony Maw is figure 2 in the first series of Endgame-themed Marvel Legends.  Hasbro switched to referring to these assortments by the name of the figure you’re building, and I generally follow their lead, but seeing as this is our third “Thanos Series” since the relaunch, I have to be slightly more specific.  Despite his presence alongside Endgame products, Maw is officially an Infinity War figure, barring any surprise appearances during Endgame.  I haven’t seen the movie yet, so I wouldn’t know.  The figure stands 7 1/2 inches tall (retroactively making Corvus seem a little small compared to the rest of the team) and has 31 points of articulation.  Ebony Maw is sporting an all-new sculpt, because really, what could you possibly get away with re-using.  Well, I mean, I guess you could try, but it wouldn’t turn out very well.  This figure’s sculpt, on the other hand, turned out swimmingly.  Like Corvus, he benefits from having a year to get all the details right, and, while he’s not quite as smoothly articulated as Corvus, Ebony’s articulation is a marked improvement on Proxima’s.  The detailing on Ebony is crisp, and very spot-on.  The texturing on his sleeves and pants is really solid work, and that head sculpt is absolutely the spitting image of Maw’s Squidward-like visage.  His hands are suitably expressive, and I especially like the gesture of the left hand, which feels like a perfect match for the character’s personality.  Like all of the Black Order, Ebony Maw’s color scheme isn’t the most thrilling, but the figure replicates it nicely enough.  For me, the most impressive part of the paint is the subtle texturing of his exposed skin, giving him a properly lifelike, if perhaps alien, appearance.  Perhaps the only drag to Maw is what comes packed with him.  He has Thanos’ left leg, but nothing of his own.  A few effects pieces with the glass daggers, or even some alternate hand poses would have been really cool.  At least with his larger size, the packaging doesn’t feel as empty as it did with Cap.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was always fairly certain we’d be seeing Ebony in Legends, but I’ll admit I was getting slightly concerned as we moved away from the Infinity War product.  Once he was slotted into this assortment, it felt like it took no time at all to get him.  While I was initially distracted by getting the two Endgame figures, getting to finally complete the Black Order was a very nice feeling, and Ebony may well be the best figure in the set (I still *really* like Corvus, though.  I might be a little biased on that one).

I grabbed Ebony May from All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2015: Ronin

RONIN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Clint Barton is a master sharpshooter and skilled martial artist who fights alongside the Avengers.”

For my second official Endgame-centered review, let’s talk about something I loathed in the comics: Ronin.  Ronin is, as his generic name may suggest, a really generic concept.  The identity appeared during the first arc of New Avengers, and there was this whole mystery that led to a kind of forgettable reveal.  Then, the recently un-deceased Clint Barton was looking for a new identity, settling on “Ronin” because, hey, they’d just spent all this time hyping this super generic concept up, so they might as well not abandon it quite yet.  So, Clint spent four years as Ronin, mostly for the sake of annoying fans who were upset he was killed in the first place by further delaying his return to the identity we all knew he’d be taking back.  You may have gleaned I was amongst those annoyed fans.  It’s okay, I’ve moved past it.  I’ve totally let the fact that they saddled Hawkeye with this dumb, lazy, super generic identity for four years slide.  Seriously, I’m very chill about it.  For the sake of the movies, Clint’s move to the identity seems to have a more direct narrative reasoning, so odds are good it won’t turn out as lame as it was in the original source material.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ronin is figure 1 in the first series of Endgame-themed Marvel Legends, and is the second of three direct tie-in figures for this assortment.  Given Hawkeye’s absence from the last film and its associated tie-ins, putting Clint front and center this time was definitely a smart move, though I do have to laugh a little bit about him having more figures than anyone else coming out of the gate.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation, although that articulation is somewhat restricted, especially ab crunch and waist swivel, thanks to how the figure is constructed.  He’s sporting a brand-new sculpt, based on his new gear from the movie.  The design is fairly faithful to the comics look, albeit slightly filtered through the MCU stylings, and with a definite cross purpose of easy conversion to a more proper Hawkeye appearance.  The sculpt is a pretty solid offering.  There’s a lot of nice, small detail work, and quite a bit of texturing, which makes him a very visually interesting figure.  Everything is also quite sharp, continuing the trend we’ve been seeing on most MCU figures as of late.  The head doesn’t officially have a Jeremy Renner likeness, but you can actually make out a decent likeness on what we can see of the eyes and brow.  The add-ons for the hood and jacket are a little bit overly bulky, with the hood in particular looking rather goofy in most poses.  On the plus side, said hood is easily removed, resulting in a better overall looking figure.  The jacket can also be removed, though it’s not quite as easily done.  In fact, I thought it wasn’t meant to be removed at all at first, but the fully detailed torso beneath it begs to differ.  Fortunately, I was able to get it off without horribly mangling it.  Underneath, there’s a respectably well-detailed version of what we’ve seen of his underlying garment.  It’s a little softer on the details than the rest of the sculpt, and his head sits somewhat high on the neck, but I imagine it’ll look nice with the unmasked Hawkeye from the Target set.  Ronin’s paintwork is largely relegated to just gold accents on black plastic, but it does it well, and he looks pretty sharp.  His eyes are also pretty nicely painted, and make use of the printing technique, which works pretty well here.  After the rather lightly-packed Cap, Ronin is a definite step-up.  There’s still no unmasked head (which has been a regular complaint online), but at least there’s one available that’s compatible with this body.  What’s more, there’s plenty of other stuff to make up for it.  He includes two differently-sized swords, a sheath to store them in (with an adjustable strap to allow for use both with and without the jacket), and an alternate hand with throwing stars attached.  He also includes our first piece of the Armored Thanos Build-A-Figure, his left arm, sporting the Infinity Gauntlet.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Legends hasn’t been overly kind to Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton, and his exit from the MCU during the years when the figures were really picking up hasn’t helped matters.  Fortunately, he’s back in a strong fashion with this figure.  While I’m not the biggest fan of the Ronin concept, I do like how it translated to the film, and subsequently to the toy.  After a slight misstep with Cap, this figure puts the assortment on more solid footing.

I picked up Ronin from my friends at All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2014: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The First Avenger, Steve Rogers continues to protect the world from evil as the star-spangled hero, Captain America.”

Okay, we had a little bit of a prelude to Endgame with yesterday’s Infinity War pairing, but today I’m moving onto the Engame product proper.  A central piece of the promotional work for the film has been the swanky new “quantum suits” that the surviving Avengers will be sporting, so it’s not a huge shock that the suits are showing up pretty prevalently in the toys.  For the main assortment of Legends, we’ve only got one sample of the suit so far, being sported by most Avenger-ly Avenger, Captain America!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America is part of the first series of Endgame-themed Marvel Legends, which is currently arriving at most retail establishments.  He’s an unnumbered figure, due to being the one figure in the set not necessary to complete the Armored Thanos Build-A-Figure, much like last year’s Mark L Iron Man.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  The whole sculpt of this figure is new, though it should be noted that the body has already been re-used for Hawkeye in the Target-exclusive Hawkeye & Black Widow two-pack.  As noted in the intro, this figure is based on Cap’s quantum suit-sporting look.  It’s an interesting choice for our first Cap in the line.  While I’m not opposed to a uniformed look in principle, it does take some getting used to for a character like Cap, who has a more established solo look (and even has a brand-new solo look for the movie that we’ve yet to see any toy coverage for at all).  Still, these are the looks getting the clear push for merch, so I can’t really blame them for going with him.  The body is built to pull double-duty, so it’s maybe not a spot-on build for Chris Evans as Cap, but it works reasonably well, and I can understand their desire for a single body, especially with the two-pack’s included extra heads.  The suit itself is a pretty solid design, and I think it’ll look good in action.  Cap gets a unique head sculpt, and if I’m honest, it’s one of the more perplexing pieces of the figure.  He’s wearing a helmet that appears to be the same design as the one he had in the first Avengers.  While not a bad design, it’s been supplanted by the Winter Soldier-style helmet for a while now, and that’s even the helmet that is shown on the images on the back and sides of the packaging, making this older helmet seem out of place.  However, the helmet’s on this figure, the basic figure, and even the Minimate, so perhaps there was a change during production of the film.  What’s even more surprising, is that he’s wearing a helmet at all, since the concept art and trailers have all depicted Cap without any headgear while sporting the quantum suit.  Again, this is the sort of thing that might make more sense once I’ve seen the movie.  Whatever the case, it’s actually a rather nice sculpt, and I can definitely foresee a lot of people modding this to replace the Walmart exclusive figure from the first movie.  The figure’s paintwork is reasonably well-handled.  There’s a bit more slop than I’ve seen on other recent Legends, and some scuffing on the legs on my personal copy, which I was a little annoyed by.  Also, the printed face doesn’t seem to have worked quite as well for this particular figure, and results in him looking a little bit messy. The darker silver of the armor also seems to be in contrast to the more straight white we’ve been seeing in the trailers, but that could be a lighting thing.  It doesn’t look too terribly off here.  The real Achilles’ heel of this particular figure is the accessory compliment.  He’s got his shield…and that’s it.  The shield’s nice and all, and at least it’s the new and improved sculpt from the 10th Anniversary set, but he feels really, really light, especially with no Build-A-Figure part.  The lack of an unmasked sculpt is definitely the biggest killer, especially since the really nice unmasked head from the 10th Anniversary isn’t compatible with this release.  A slightly retooled release of that would have added a lot to this figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Chris Evans as Cap is one of my favorite parts of the MCU, so I’ve really been looking for a solid figure of him for a while.  Sadly, it seems like every Legends release so far has had *something* off about it.  In this figure’s case, I can forgive the slightly un-Evans-like build on the body, but the lack of unmasked head is really hard to get past.  Admittedly, I like this figure more than I’d expected to, but not as much as I’d hoped to…if that makes any sense.  Perhaps my opinion will change after the movie.  At the very least, I think he’s a better figure than last year’s Cap.

Cap was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2013: Corvus Glaive & Loki

CORVUS GLAIVE & LOKI

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Known for his shifting allegiances, Loki faces evil head on when he is confronted by the Black Order — a sinister group of Thanos’ cohorts that includes the menacing Corvus Glaive.”

Hey, I hear there’s like, this movie coming out this week, that’s supposed to be a big deal or something.  You’ve probably never heard of it.  Yeah…

So, Avengers: Endgame will hit theaters this Thursday night, and is already starting to break all sorts of records.  Odds are good that it’s going to be the biggest movie of the year.  As the 22nd entry of the MCU canon, it’s got a lot riding behind it.  Product for Endgame officially started hitting shelves on the 31st of March, and is making its way around right now.  And I’m going to hype myself up for the movie by reviewing some of that product this week.  First up, something that’s not *technically* Endgame-related, Corvus Glaive and Loki!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Corvus Glaive and Loki are a Walmart-exclusive two-pack in the Marvel Legends line.  Though officially based on the characters as seen in Infinity War, the set is part of the official Endgame product, and has been showing up alongside it.  Corvus was shown last year (alongside Ebony Maw, who I’ll be looking at later in the week), but it was not until just a few months ago that we knew he’d be arriving alongside another Loki.

CORVUS GLAIVE

As I noted when I reviewed his minimate release, Corvus Glaive is the Black Order’s least developed member in Infinity War.  And, if you don’t believe me, just read that bio up top from the back of the box.  That’s a Loki bio with “oh, and Corvus, too” tacked on the end of it, despite the fact that Corvus is undoubtedly going to be the main selling point for most buyers.  That said, I think he’s got the coolest name of the bunch, and I liked what I saw of him, so I’m certainly happy to have him cropping up here.  The figure stands 7 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  He ends up being a far more mobile figure than Proxima, which is a definite improvement (Cull gets a pass due to his extra bulk).  There’s some slight restricting on the left arm due to the design of the cape, but that’s a fairly reasonable sacrifice.  Otherwise, there’s a lot of potential with these joints, and he’s a very playable figure.  Corvus is sporting an all-new sculpt, and, of the three members of the Black Order I’ve looked at so far, it’s definitely the most screen accurate, thanks to having an extra year to get everything right.  His sculpt is, in addition to being film accurate, is nice and sharply detailed.  The details of costume in particular are really crisp and really pop out at you.  It’s all topped off with an impressively subtle paint scheme.  The gold detailing on his add-ons, as well as the entirety of his facial detailing, are handled via the printing technique, which gives them a nice amount of depth and realism.  Corvus’ only accessory is an acceptable choice: it’s his glaive, and it’s actually quite a nice piece, and is held well in his hands.  Plus, he can actually properly hold it, unlike the Minimate.

LOKI

Though only a small part in the overall film, Loki’s role in Infinity War is still a very prominent one.  Despite that, the sheer volume of characters in the film, coupled with his coverage in Ragnarok, meant that Loki was absent from IW‘s product line.  It’s not a huge shock to see him crop up in this set, though, especially given he was packed with the completely uniquely tooled figure.  This figure, comparatively, is a straight re-use of the Ragnarok version from 2017.  There are positives and negatives to that, because that sculpt was a bit of a mixed bag in regards to quality.  On the plus side, though, it means the two figures are consistent, so hey that’s cool.  The paintwork has been changed up to match Loki’s more stark green and black garb from the end of Ragnarok and the beginning of Infinity War, meaning we finally have the costume that actually goes with the headgear that came with the prior figure.  Also, I do think these colors work a little better for the sculpt.  Loki is packed with the most natural inclusion for an IW Loki, the Teseract, re-used from the Mandroid Series Red Skull.  It fits surprisingly well in his hand, and I’m glad it got another release.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Hey, wanna guess where I got this Walmart exclusive?  That’s right, a Walmart!  Yeah, when the Walmart around the corner from work put out their Endgame display, this showed up in surprisingly high numbers, so I had no trouble at all getting one.  I’m on record that Corvus Glaive is my favorite of the Black Order members, and I was waiting for him to get his figure due.  I’m quite happy with this figure, and I think he’s probably the best of the three we’ve gotten so far.  The Loki he’s packed with is definitely a space-filler, but he’s a reasonably well chosen one, and honestly I think he improves on the prior release enough that I don’t mind that I had to get a second one to get Corvus.

#2012: Apocalypse

APOCALYPSE

X-MEN (TOY BIZ)

“The megalomaniacal mutant villain known as Apocalypse believes that total war between humans and mutants is inevitable. In order to weed out those he feels are weak and unsuitable for the coming conflict, he manipulates mutants into battling one another, calculating that with the help of the strongest and most ruthless survivors he can conquer the world and become ruler of all – both man and mutant!”

Introduced in the ’80s, as a foe for the recently launched X-spin-off X-Factor, Apocalypse has gone on to become one of the X-franchise’s most enduring foes.  Throughout the ’90s, he maintained a rather prominent place in at the center of a lot of conflicts and cross-overs, and also wound up as a big-bad for the ’90s X-Men: The Animated Series, and, by extension, got some pretty solid coverage from the toyline that ran alongside it.  He was actually among the very first figures released in the line, but due to evolution of the character’s design, he found himself up for a second figure quite quickly.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Apocalypse was released in Series 4 of Toy Biz’s X-Men line, just two years after his initial figure debut.  Following Magneto, he was the second true remake of a Series 1 figure (Wolverine had also shown back up, but all of his figures up to this point were using unique designs, so it’s every so slightly different).  The figure stands 5 1/2 inches tall and he has 8 points of articulation.  He’s actually quite a step-down on the articulation front when compared to his predecessor.  He got an all-new, much more bulked up sculpt, based on the steady changes to Apocalypse’s design since he’d first appeared in the ’80s.  This was very much the current Apocalypse design at the time, making him a more definitive take on the character than his prior release had been.  His sculpt is a fairly decent one, and definitely had a little more menace to it.  The head in particular really captured how Apocalypse looked in the comics at the time.  His color work was another marked change from the prior figure, and again befitted the changing design of the character.  This one, with his brighter blue accents, follows the lead of the cartoon design.  I do miss the black details, but overall, it’s a decent colorscheme, and certainly one that’s accurate to the character.  Apocalypse was packed with a spare set of arms, simulating his techno-shifting abilities. There’s a claw arm and a drill arm, both of which are pretty neat.  They swap out at the shoulders, which means that both they and the regular arms do have a slight tendency to pop out of place when you don’t want them to.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I had a copy of this guy growing up, but it was a ways after getting the first one, who remained my favorite.  That one went missing, so I picked up this replacement during one of my splurges of 5-inch Marvel figures, about a year or two ago.  He’s an okay figure, and was certainly a more accurate figure at the time of his release.  Personally, though, I find that the changes make for a figure that’s just not as much fun to play with as the original was, so he’s always been second gear to me.