SUSAN RICHARDS, INVISIBLE WOMAN & POWERHOUSE THING
You can’t just do *half* of the Fantastic Four…well, I mean, if you’re Toy Biz, I guess you can. In fact, you can do it way more times than you ever fairly should be able to. Just constantly stringing people along forever…Sorry, I was having flashbacks. Look, we’re not talking about Toy Biz here, we’re talking about Diamond Select. And they would never leave us high and dry like that, with an incomplete team, just two members shy of completion…apart from that one time that they did exactly that with their Aliens line…look, this isn’t about Aliens, it’s about the Fantastic Four, and finishing up that line-up, which we’re totally doing right here, right now, with no further distractions!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Susan Richards and Powerhouse Thing were released in Series 8 of the main Marvel Minimates line, and then again at Target in 2005 and 2006. Standard Sue was the heavy packed version, with a full Invisible Woman swapping in for her in the variant set.
SUSAN RICHARDS/INVISIBLE WOMAN
Sue made her Minimates debut in style. While her brother Johnny was stuck being flamed on all the time, she gets to be regular most of the time. Lucky her. Like her assortment-mates, Sue is built on the standard C3-style ‘mate body, peg hole on the head and all, so she’s 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation. She uses the same glove pieces as Reed, as well as a new hair piece, clearly based on a ’60s Sue ‘do. It’s a rather basic piece, but it gets the job done, and thanks to the peg it stays in place better than Reed’s. I’m still iffy on the bulked up glove pieces, and exactly what their purpose is, but I’ll try to move on. In terms of paint, the standard version fairs a bit better than Reed, thanks to having consistent coloring for the all of the costume details, as well as getting some actual torso detailing. The variant is molded in all clear plastic, keeping the detail lines, and going for a slightly translucent blue for the black sections of the costume. It’s a cool look, and you can easily mix and match the two for a powering up effect. Both versions are packed with a shield piece, similar to Captain America’s. And, thanks to those bulked up gloves, the shield has to sit over her elbow joint, which is a bit annoying.
Thing gets his third go at a Minimate here, thanks to being the only team member available for a while, and yet still kind of needing to be included in the assortment proper. So, here he is. 2005 marked a notable change-up for the line’s construction, adding in a few more bulked up parts for slightly larger characters, hence the “powerhouse” title for this version of Thing. He uses the same bulked up hands as before, as well as making the first use of the original powerhouse chest piece, and an all-new head piece. The powerhouse piece is pretty basic, and not nearly as involved as later bulk up parts. This kind of helps to keep him more on the basic side, in keeping with the rest of the assortment. The only part I don’t really care for his the head piece. It’s really just different from the prior piece for the sake of being different, and that’s not really a good reason to change it. It’s just not as good as the older piece, and even DST knew it, since this piece didn’t get used beyond this series. In terms of paint, he’s not terribly far removed from the Series 5 version. He’s got the proper team shorts this time, which is good, but I don’t like the the new face. It just doesn’t match that classic Thing feel. Fortunately, the oranges match, so a re-work is possible.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
As I noted in the last set of these I looked at, despite being very excited for this set of ‘mates, I didn’t buy them new, and I didn’t really jump too quickly into tracking them down after the fact either. I blame the Thing; he’s just so ugly. I snagged these guys at the same time as Reed and Johnny, just to round out the team. They’re not bad, but they’re definitely dated, and kind of from a weird middle spot for the line.