#3054: Master Mordo

MASTER MORDO

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Mordo has gone rogue since leaving Kamar-Taj, hunting other sorcerers for breaking the laws of reality, and is never far off the trail of Doctor Strange.”

In addition to some new faces, and some guest-starring faces, Doctor Strange: Into the Multiverse of Madness also has some faces that were in the last movie.  And the rest of the people attached to those faces, I suppose.  One of the returning person and face combos is Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Karl Mordo, though the face is now sporting a beard, so it looks a little different, I guess.  But, the face is still Mordo, and so’s the rest of him.  Well…mostly.  I’ll get to that.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Master Mordo is figure 3 in the Rintrah Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the second-to-last of the movie figures, with the final one being the second of the two Strange variants.  Mordo’s getting his second Legends release here, since he was the only non-Stephen Strange figure to get a movie offering the first time around.  This one’s obviously based on his appearance in the sequel, which looks to be taking him a little closer to his comics roots, with longer hair, a beard, and some slightly more ornate robes.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Mordo’s posablility is okay.  It matches up more or less with Wong and Strange.  There’s some restriction at the shoulders, and the hair obviously has an effect on the neck joint, but he’s not bad at all.  The sculpt on this figure is largely new, though not entirely so.  The legs and feet are borrowed from the Vol 2 Star-Lord.  Not sure as to how accurate that’ll be to the final film, but they’re generally pretty hidden, and the details are vague enough that they don’t look super out of place.  The only downside is the visible pins at the knees, but, again, that’s pretty well hidden.  The rest of the sculpt is all-new, and it’s pretty good at that.  The head has a really strong likeness of Ejiofor, improving on the passable likeness of the last one.  The body sculpt exhibits a good selection of texturing and depth, which makes him quite visually interesting, and is a good use of the general space of the sculpt.  Mordo’s paint work is generally pretty solid as well.  The head now gets the printing on the face, which aids the sculpt a good bit more than the last one, and the clothing gets a lot of smaller details, which help to accent the sculpted elements nicely.  Mordo is packed with three sets of hands (fists, gripping, and open gesture), the Staff of the Living Tribunal (rather than the generic staff the last figure erroneously included), a crossbow, and the right arm to the Rintrah Build-A-Figure.  Oddly, the hands seem to have slightly different peg sizes, resulting in some of them fitting loosely after swapping them around.  It’s minor, but it’s annoying.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Mordo was my favorite part of the first film, and by extension my favorite of the figures from that set.  I’m looking forward to seeing him reappear, and likewise I was looking forward to the updated figure, so this one was on my shortlist from this line up.  He’s not without his flaws, namely the shoulder movement and the issue with the hand pegs.  That said, I still really like how this one turned out, and I’m even more excited about seeing his role in the upcoming film.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3053: America Chavez

AMERICA CHAVEZ

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“America Chavez is a young girl from another universe, being hunted for her power – the unique ability to open doorways into the Multiverse.”

In addition to the returning cast of the first Doctor Strange, as well as few other returning characters from elsewhere in the MCU, Into the Multiverse of Madness is also serving to introduce America Chavez into the MCU.  America is a relatively new character, only just first appearing in 2011 in the comics.  She found her footing relatively quickly, however, and has at this point been a member of no less than four Avengers spin-off teams.  Her move to the big screen certainly makes sense, especially given the undercurrent of building an MCU version of the Young Avengers.  And, courtesy of her film appearance, she also gets to make her first appearance as an action figure.  Dope.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

America Chavez is figure 2 in the Rintrah Series of Marvel Legends, and is the second of the movie-based figures in the set.  The figure stands 5 3/4 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  The articulation on this figure is a little bit disappointing, if I’m honest.  The legs are fine, and have an alright range of motion, but the arms, especially the elbows, are really restricted, with less than 90 degrees of bend.  She’s also rather restricted at the neck, courtesy of the hair, and the mid torso joint.  In general, she’s just not getting a ton of poses beyond basic standing, and maybe some slightly wider stances.  Notably, she can’t do the fist in hand pose seen on the back of the box, which is a pretty distinctive pose for the character.  Not being able to recreate that is a pretty big issue.  America’s sculpt is an all-new one.  Issues with mobility aside, it’s not bad.  She’s sporting what looks to be her main attire from the film.  It’s just civilian clothes, but that’s pretty much America’s usual attire in the comics anyway.  I do miss the star on the shirt, but the overall look is definitely solid.  The head has what looks to be a pretty decent likeness of actress Xochitl Gomez.  She sports the same self-assured smile that the picture on the box is sporting, which seems pretty character appropriate.  The paint work on the figure is generally straight forward.  The face printing works respectably well, and the detailing on the jacket is definitely the strongest part of the work.  The wear and tear on the printed details is pretty spot-on, and again character appropriate.  America is packed with two sets of hands, one in fists, and the other in a relaxed position, and the torso for the Rintrah Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was a pretty faithful reader of Young Avengers, so that was how I came across America as a character.  Given she was in with a bunch of characters I already knew, I wasn’t sure about her at first, but she certainly grew on me.  I’m excited to see how she pans out in the MCU, and it’s great that she finally got a figure.  This one’s certainly not perfect, and I really wish she had better articulation, but she’s still a nice enough looking figure.  I do hope we get a proper comics version, but until then, this one works pretty well.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3052: Wong

WONG

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Wong takes over for The Ancient One as Sorcerer Supreme and leader of Kamar-Taj, teaching a new era of sorcerers to protect our reality from mystical threats.”

The next cinematic installment of the MCU, Doctor Strange: Into the Multiverse of Madness, hits theaters this summer.  In preparation, Hasbro’s got its usual Legends tie-in, a split of movie figures and loosely related comics offerings.  One of the prime offerings from the movie portion of the set is a character that’s far overdue in toy form at this point, Wong, who finally gets his figure due after five film appearances, with an impending sixth.  Let’s see how that turned out, shall we?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Wong is figure 1 in the Rintrah Series of Marvel Legends.  Numerically, he’s the first, though the box lists him after the standard Doctor Strange, who’s without Build-A-Figure part or corresponding number.  Wong’s had a rather evolving look over the course of his film appearances, with his general design growing a little bit more ornate each time.  The newest Doctor Strange marks a far more colorful and eye-catching design for him, which honestly makes for the best option for a figure.  Guess waiting for this look wasn’t the worst overall call.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 31 points of articulation.  His articulation, and in fact his general construction from a larger standpoint, are similar to the No Way Home Strange figure.  It’s a good set-up for a robed character, so it makes sense to keep the general layout.  He loses the double knees, but it’s a universal joint instead, and given the longer robes, it’s not really much lost mobility.  Wong’s sculpt is an all-new offering.  It’s a pretty solid set-up.  The head sports a respectable likeness of Benedict Wong in the role.  The face is definitely there, at least from most angles.  Not entirely sure about the hair, but that’s the element that he changes most frequently, so it’s not as major an issue.  The body sculpt is a pretty decent one, with a lot of sharp detailing on the more ornate sections of his garb.  The less ornate parts do seem slightly soft for what they should be, and the neck is probably a touch long and skinny for Wong, but it overall works.  Wong’s color work is surprisingly bright given his prior looks.  It’s pretty basic application, without a ton of real accenting.  The colors are a little sloppy around the edges, especially on the yellows, but he does still get the face printing, which is at least pretty fun.  Wong is packed with two gesturing hands, two spell-casting effects hands, a gripping hand, a sword (which I assume is something plot relevant to the new movie), and the left arm of the Rintrah Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve been hoping for a Wong figure since the first Doctor Strange, and it’s only been a more noticeable omission with each successive film appearance he’s gotten.  I’m glad he finally got a figure here, and I think it’s probably his best look yet, so it worked out.  The figure’s not perfect, but he’s still a strong offering, and he’s a solid addition to the existing cast.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3051: IG-88

IG-88

STAR WARS: POWER OF THE JEDI (HASBRO)

“The most infamous and feared of all assassin droids, IG-88 has made a career as a ruthless bounty hunter. The tall, slender, gray droid was produced at Holowan Laboratories. IG-88 is equipped with an array of head sensors that allow him to see in all directions at once, and a variety of lethal weapons including grenade launchers, missiles and a flamethrower.”

Most of the IG-droid love on this site has been directed to the newcomer IG-11, and while I do certainly love that guy and all of his Taika Waititi-voiced goodness, I still feel the need to show some proper appreciation for the original IG, IG-88.  With an extra 40 years of existence on IG-11, 88’s got quite a number of figures in his arsenal.  I’ve covered his vintage figure and his Shadows of the Empire figure (which doubled as his representation for Power of the Force), so now I’m moving forward in the IG-88 chronology, with a look at his figure from Power of the Jedi, the post-Episode I full-franchise covering line that ran from 2000 to 2002.  Not a long run, but long enough to get an IG-88, and that’s what really counts.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

IG-88 was added to Hasbro’s Power of the Jedi line during the second half of its debut year, as part of the push for more Original Trilogy offerings, to further distance from the Episode I merchandise that was still hanging around at this point.  The figure stands about 4 inches tall and he has 6 points of articulation.  The Shadows IG-88 just used a slightly tweaked version of the vintage mold, adding a “waist” joint to match with the rest of PotF style figures.  Jedi IG-88 doesn’t completely abandon the vintage molds just yet, but he does get a new head and torso.  The head is more accurate to the actual prop than the previous mold had been, and the new torso firstly makes the bandolier a separate piece (allowing for more depth to the design), and secondly moves the mid-torso joint up to a more design appropriate spot.  It takes a mold that was already pretty strong, and just makes it stronger, resulting in probably the best take on IG-88 until they started making the articulation improvements.  There was a running change on the mold; initial offerings had the right hand molded into a closed grip, while the larger portion of the run opened the hand up.  It doesn’t really affect the ability to hold his gun, or anything, and honestly just looks about the same either way.  Previous IG-88 figures had been relatively light on the paint front, but for this release, Hasbro actually put a bit of effort into making him look a little more worn-in.  It’s pretty well done, and does a great job of breathing some new life into the re-used parts, while also doing a nice job of showing off the detailing of the newly sculpted bits.  88 downgrades a bit on the accessory front, getting just one long rifle, rather than the two guns he usually sports.  It’s at least a new gun, so he’s got that going for him.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Despite its close proximity to both Power of the Force and Saga, both of which I collected quite a bit growing up, I only had two Power of the Jedi figures growing up, and I’ve only since picked up a few others.  IG-88 is notably one of them, given that he’s IG-88 and all, and I do kinda like IG-88.  This figure’s a pretty solid one, taking the vintage mold, which is already really nice, and just making it even better.  I really like him.

#3050: Blink

BLINK

MARVEL’S MOST WANTED (TOY BIZ)

“In an alternate world where Charles Xavier has died and Apocalypse rules supreme, Clarice Ferguson is a young mutant struggling to stay alive. Fighting alongside the astonishing X-Men, Blink uses her super powers of teleportation for the good of mankind. Her mutant abilities allow her to temporarily “blink” an object out of existence with the aid of a phasing pulse. Few people know that while just a girl, Blink’s life was saved from the forces of Apocalypse by none other than Sabretooth!”

When Toy Biz did their tie-ins for the “Age of Apocalypse” event, they mostly focused on the heavy hitters in their new personas.  This left some of the more underdog characters, whose mainstream counterparts weren’t as developed, out of the picture.  Thankfully, they found some other avenues for a few of them.  Morph found his way out as a ToyFare exclusive, and Holocaust joined the main X-Men line later on, oddly shoehorned into a ninja-themed assortment.  Blink, a breakout character who in the mainstream universe was just a throwaway casualty for the original Generation X line-up, found her first foray into the toy world courtesy of the rather bizarrely named Marvel’s Most Wanted line, a figure whom I’ll be taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Blink was released in 1998 as part of the three figure line-up for Marvel’s Most Wanted, an assortment that featured Blink, X-Man, and Spat & Grovel.  Not exactly the heaviest of hitters, the most wanted, or even a particularly cohesive set, but they sure were….um…released all at the same time?  Sure, let’s go with that.  The figure stands roughly 5 inches tall and she has 14 points of articulation.  Her articulation scheme marks an improvement over a lot of what Toy Biz was offering at the time…in some ways.  The shoulders are universal joints, and she’s even got wrist movement, but then she’s stuck with v-hips, and no knees.  There’s a swivel on one thigh, but not the other, which is strange to say the least.  Still, she’s capable of a good deal more poses than other figures of the era.  Blink’s sculpt was new to her, and would remain unique for Toy Biz’s run.  Since it was prior to any of her post-AoA appearances, she’s based purely on the design from there.  It’s a fair choice, especially given that it means she works with the other AoA figures Toy Biz had done up to that point.  The sculpt is a decent offering.  She’s rather stylized, as well as being slightly pre-posed.  Both of these are in keeping with the main line’s AoA assortment in terms of style, as well as the overall evolving designs of Toy Biz’s Marvel stuff at the time.  It matches well with Blink’s illustrations from the comics, and is suitably unique.  The dynamic nature of the skirt and hair does a nice job of working with the pose, and just making for quite a visually interesting figure.  Blink’s color work is generally pretty basic, but it does what it needs to.  The application’s all pretty clean, and there’s not any notable bleed over or slop.  Blink is packed with a removable cloak, a quiver with removable javelins, and a base meant to look like one of her portals.  It’s not a bad selection of extras, given that none of them are really dead weight or fillers, both of which had a tendency to crop up with the Toy Biz stuff.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The only one of this line-up that I had as a kid was X-Man, mostly because he was the only of the characters I actually knew at the time.  I first really encountered Blink in Exiles, and by that point, this figure had kind of dried up in terms of availability.  I always wanted to pick one up, but it took me a while to get around to it.  It was actually Jess who finally got me one.  In 2017, we were driving up and down the coast a lot while in the process of a rather slow move, and one of the places we stopped had a Blink.  I mentioned to Jess that I had never gotten one, and she made a point of fixing that, because that was just how she was.  Blink was actually a favorite of hers as well, so I suppose it was kind of appropriate.  As far as first outings go, Blink was pretty solid.  She’s stylized and all, but it works for the exact nature of the character, and it’s still one of her better figures.  I mean, yeah she only has three, so I guess they’re all kind of high up there, but still…

#3049: Orko

ORKO

HE-MAN AND THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE (MATTEL)

Last summer, Netflix dropped the first of its two Masters of the Universe cartoons, the more veteran fan-aimed Revelation.  Two months later, they dropped the second, the more younger audience-friendly He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.  This one is a more true reboot of the franchise, building things more or less from the ground up.  Roles and basic set-ups are the same, but the specifics of the characters are, in a number of cases, heavily re-worked.  I gave the show a try, and it wasn’t quite my speed.  I’m admittedly about two decades outside of the target audience, so I don’t really think it’s a mark of the show’s overall quality.  It’s clearly designed with toys in mind, and there are some pretty fun designs there-in.  One that particularly caught my eye was the show’s mechanical take on Orko, or “Ork-0,” whose figure I’m taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Orko (as the packaging refers to him) is part of the basic He-Man and the Masters of the Universe toyline from Mattel, which bears the sub-branding “Power Attack”, though I’m not sure if that’s an actual line-branding or not.  The figure stands roughly 5 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation, as well as a spring-loaded waist joint.  His movement is a little bit on the restricted side.  I found he had an alright range of motion on the neck, but the shoulders and wrists are just simple cut joints, and he lacks any motion on the elbows, which is kind of a bummer.  At the very least, if the elbows had a couple of ball joints (which they totally look like they do), his mobility would be a lot better.  As it stands right now, he’s good for the basic hovering pose, with a little tweaking on the head, and that’s it.  He’s effectively on par with the vintage figure, I guess, so it’s not the worst thing.  Orko’s sculpt is a rather good recreation of the animation model for the character as seen in the show.  The proportions are pretty well matched, aside from the arms being a little bulked up, for the sake of durability.  The detailing’s really not bad for this style of figure, with a really nice bit of texture work on his outfit.  Orko’s color work is largely handled via molded colors, but he gets some paint for his face, and the detailing on his outfit, and it’s cleanly and sharply applied, and again matches well with the show design.  Orko is packed with a single blast effect piece, which can be used on either of his hands, albeit somewhat loosely.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Though the show didn’t really grab me, I did really dig the new Orko design, and I enjoy the new concept behind him.  That being the case, I was definitely on board for the new figure.  He’s kind of basic, and there are some slight drawbacks to how the articulation works, but he’s overall a pretty fun figure of a pretty fun design.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3048: Ecliptor & Astronema

ECLIPTOR & ASTRONEMA

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

“Ecliptor adopted Astronema and raised her as his own, eventually becoming her second-in-command as she serves Dark Specter”

Hey, remember yesterday when I was talking about Power Rangers, and more specifically how most of my Power Rangers reviews as of late have been centered on Power Rangers In Space?  Well, surprise surprise, we’re back on In Space.  No actual Rangers today, though.  Instead, I’m looking at two of the show’s antagonists, at least for most of its run, main baddie Astronema and her surrogate father turned henchman Ecliptor!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Ecliptor and Astronema are an Amazon-exclusive Lightning Collection two-pack, which, like other recent exclusives, also had limited quantities available through Hasbro Pulse.  Unlike the Pink Ranger pack, they weren’t part of any particular subset focus, just a general Lightning Collection push.

ECLIPTOR

The new piece of this set, and certainly its main selling point, Ecliptor makes a rare toy appearance here, doubly interesting because he’s a non-MMPR antagonist who wasn’t an any point a Ranger or Ranger equivalent.  And he’s even slated for another figure down the line, if you can believe it.  Ecliptor is seen here in his most standard set-up, before his power-up or cyborg reprograming.  The figure stands 6 3/4 inches tall and has 33 points of articulation.  Despite how bulky and squared off his design is, Ecliptor actually has a pretty solid range of motion, and can get into quite a number of impressive poses.  And, thanks to the really huge feet sported by the original Yugande design, he’s also quite stable, which is a definite plus.  His sculpt is an all-new piece, set to be shared with the upcoming Red Ecliptor figure, but unique for now at least.  It does a rather nice job of capturing the show design for the character, in all of its wire-frame-y, limited polygon count glory.  It’s very clean and sharply detailed, and just looks really slick.  The paint work on Ecliptor isn’t *quite* as in-depth as it should be for true show-accuracy.  There should be a great deal more green linework than is currently present.  That being said, they’ve done a respectable job of at the very least giving it a bit of visual shorthand, so that the overall appearance is preserved.  Ecliptor is packed with a fairly nice selection of extras, including his sword, two sets of hands (fists, and a gripping/open with effects combo), an effect for the sword, and a larger effect that’s meant to encircle the whole figure.  The right fist on my figure is rather oddly missing all of the green detailing, but it’s otherwise a solid selection.

ASTRONEMA

Wow, remember when it was a big deal to have the *one* Astronema?  And now there’s *two*?  Who could have foreseen getting an Astronema as a hum-drum affair.  I mean, I guess it’s really not that hum-drum.  Astronema does have a slightly evolving appearance throughout the show, meaning there are a few options for looks, beyond just what we got on the first figure.  This one specifically draws influence from the show’s first three episodes.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 30 points of articulation.  Though at first glance, the figure seems like she’s a pretty straight repaint of the last figure, she’s actually not.  The head is all-new, sporting a slightly different hairstyle, but she also gets an all-new torso piece, which replaces many of the simple painted details from the last with proper sculpted details.  It takes a figure I already quite liked, and makes her even better, which is quite nice in my book.  The paint work isn’t terribly different from the last one, though the face paint is a lot more subtle with the coloring than the last release.  It’s again an improvement on an already pretty solid release.  Astronema is packed with two sets of hands, her spear, and an effects piece, much like the last time.  The effect is at least a different color, so there’s that going for it.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Obviously, given how much of an In Space fan I am, I wasn’t going to miss out on Ecliptor.  While I wasn’t initially thrilled about getting another Astronema, it annoyed me less than the pack-out on yesterday’s set.  While I missed the Pulse window on this set, I was able to get in through Amazon, and they also didn’t get cancelled, so that was a win.  I really like this set in hand.  Ecliptor is a fantastic figure, and I look forward to seeing more variants of him.  Astronema is a figure I definitely warmed up on, especially after seeing how any improvements they’d made.  All in all, not a bad set.

#3047: Mighty Morphin & Zeo Pink Rangers

MIGHTY MORPHIN & ZEO PINK RANGERS

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

“Originally under an evil spell that allowed her to transform into a white cat to spy on the Power Rangers, Kat Hillard becomes the second Mighty Morphin Pink Ranger and, later, Zeo Ranger Pink”

Okay, we did a week of Marvel, and two weeks of Star Wars before that, how about doing more of a mixed week this time around?  I’m still sticking to the Hasbro side of things, because, honestly, it’s a bit hard not to these days.  I’m setting my sites on one of their less frequent ones around here, Power Rangers: Lightning Collection.  My last several Lightning Collection reviews have been centered on my favorite Rangers incarnation, Power Rangers In Space, but today I’m looking at my second favorite incarnation, Power Rangers Zeo…well, partly, anyway.  For the backstory on this one, it’s important to bring up the mid-show replacements for half of the MMPR Rangers, Rocky, Adam, and Aisha, who replaced Jason, Zach, and Trini.  Initially, Amy Jo Johnson’s Kimberly remained with the team through the change over, but she was still replaced a bit later by Kar Hillard, who would serve as the Pink Ranger for the last batch of MMPR, carrying over into Zeo.  Today’s focus covers *both* of those incarnations, in one convenient set…well, for Hasbro, anyway, since it means we have to buy the MMPR Pink Ranger again.  Alas.  Such is the way for us.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

This pair of Pink Rangers is a GameStop-exclusive Lightning Collection two-pack, with limited quantities available through Hasbro Pulse as well.  They were part of a larger celebration of the Pink Ranger specifically, all of which were made available for order last summer.

MIGHTY MORPHIN

With the base versions of all of the Mighty Morphin Rangers released, Hasbro’s doubling back for some variants, just to get some extra mileage out of them.  All of the replacement Rangers got the metallic/translucent variants, but now they’re following up with some more straight forward releases for them as well.  This figure follows up on Aisha’s standard release getting packed in with Scorpina, giving us a standard MMPR Pink, but with Kat under the helmet instead of Kimberly.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and has 30 points of articulation.  Her sculpt is the same as the prior release of Mighty Morphin Pink (and, by extension, the Mighty Morphin Yellow figures).  Since it was the same suit (and a good chunk of the same footage), the shared sculpt makes sense.  It’s a pretty okay offering, with a decent articulation set-up, which is pretty well worked into the sculpt.  The color work is alright, though there’s some notable clashing in the molded colors of the pink plastic, which seems to be worse on this release than the prior one.  The application is at least pretty cleanly applied.  The figure is packed with her power bow, an arrow, the blade blaster, and two sets of hands.  The bow and blaster are notably sporting slightly inferior paint work, compared to the single release, which is a bit of a bummer.  Also included with this release are an unmasked Kat head, as well as Kat in her cat form from before her time as a Ranger.

ZEO

The real selling point of this set, of course, isn’t a re-pack of MMPR Pink, but is actually Zeo Pink, our fifth of the six Zeo Rangers.  She brings us just one figure away from completing the team (Tanya will be rounding things up in the next assortment of the main line), and gives our first female Zeo Ranger.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 30 points of articulation.  Her articulation scheme is essentially the same as the Morphin body, with the one notable exception being a slightly more restricted range of motion on the elbow joints.  Given all the advancements we’ve been seeing with the elbow joints on Hasbro’s other lines, it’s a bit of a shame that we’re still seeing things this restricted over on the Power Rangers side.  The sculpt is largely new, though she shares the upper arms and most of the legs with the standard Morphin body.  The new parts match up with the male Zeo bodies, and she gets a unique helmet sculpt sporting her character-specific helmet, with the oval visor, the second most sensible visor shape, after Adam, of course.  The color work on this figure is a little bit better than her Mighty Morphin counterpart.  There’s still a slight mismatch on the pinks, but it’s not quite as bad here.  The paint application is pretty sharp and all of the major elements are properly detailed.  Zeo Pink is packed with her Zeonier, capsule sword, disc shield, two sets of hands, and another unmasked Kat head, this time sporting a truly ’90s-tastic pink scrunchy.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Zeo is one of the two line-ups I’m looking to complete in this line, so I’ve been eagerly awaiting each successive release for the team.  I was less than thrilled by Zeo Pink being stuck in a two-pack with another MMPR Pink.  I was even less thrilled by this two-pack being a GameStop-exclusive, as I’d really prefer to pretty much never give that company any money ever again.  Thankfully, I was able to get in on the Pulse quantities when they went up for order.  I’m still not thrilled by the set-up here, but Zeo Pink is at least a pretty nice figure, and I look forward to getting to complete the set shortly.

#3046: 501st Legion Clone Trooper

501st LEGION CLONE TROOPER

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES ARCHIVE (HASBRO)

“An elite unit of Clone Troopers, the 501st Legion patrolled the grounds after their siege of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant”

Clone Troopers.  They’re, like, one of the back bones of Star Wars.  Yes, it has multiple back bones.  It’s one of those aliens with multiple backs.  And Clone Troopers are one of them.  When in doubt, do some Clone Troopers.  It’s a good motto, especially when it comes to toys.  And one that Hasbro takes pretty well to heart.  Sometimes, they even do those Clone Troopers multiple times.  Also not a bad call, really.  Despite seeming like the perfect avenue for constantly re-releasing clones, their main line of re-releases, the Archive, hasn’t yet had any actual Clone Troopers, just one commander.  But that’s okay, because now we’ve got one.  Yay for new old Clone Trooper!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The 501st Legion Clone Trooper is part of the fifth assortment of the Star Wars: The Black Series Archive line, alongside Episode III Obi-Wan, Darth Revan, and A New Hope Leia.  He’s a re-release of a figure previously only available as part of the Entertainment Earth-exclusive “Clone Troopers of Order 66” boxed set from 2016.  Apart from some minor paint adjustments on the weathering of the armor, the releases are effectively the same, since there’s no face to update with face printing or anything like that.  The figure stands just over 6 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  Since he’s a straight re-release, we’re back on the old Clone body, rather than either of the updated versions.  That means a slight downgrade in terms of how the articulation works, but it’s still certainly passable, so I’ll hardly complain.  The 501st Trooper’s sculpt is shared with all of the other standard Phase II clones.  It’s the Phase I body, with the new helmet piece.  While it’s not quite as accurate as newer releases, it’s still a pretty strong sculpt, even seven years removed from its original release.  It’s not as good as the newer update, but it will fit in just fine with them.  As with any standard rank and file clone, the thing that makes this guy “unique” is the paint work.  It’s quite involved, with detailing not just for the 501st Legion’s distinctive blue markings, but also the wear and tear on the surface of the armor.  The first release of this figure used straight paint for these details, which was a little inconsistent in application, but for this release it’s updated to the printed technique, which gives it some more consistency from piece to piece, and looks just a touch sharper.  The Trooper is packed with his standard smaller blaster, which is accurate to what they carry in the film, as the long rifles are gone by that point.  It does still feel kind of light, but it is what it is.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was still on my “no prequels” rule for the most part when the set that contained this guy dropped, so I held off at the time.  I grew to rather regret that moving forward, so when he was confirmed for a single-packed re-issue, I was definitely on board.  He’s pretty straight forward.  Nothing new, and perhaps slightly outdated at this point, but it’s exactly what you expect, and by that metric, he does what he needs to exactly on the mark.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.

#3045: Shocker

SHOCKER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Shocker’s vibro-units allow him to blast through solid metal, or hurl long-range vibrational punches! But they’ve yet to help him defeat his eternal nemesis, the amazing Spider-Man!”

Some of Spider-Man’s rogues are memorable because of how menacing they are, or how close they come to actually defeating the wall-crawler in battle.  On the other hand, some of them are memorable based more on the ineffectiveness.  Such is the case with the Shocker, peroneal punching bag of the Marvel universe.  He’s such a punching bag that the fact that She-Hulk *didn’t* beat him up to get information out of him is a memorable change.  Such a punching bag that his first entry in the 6-inch scale was not as his own figure, but rather as an action feature-based pack-in with a Spider-Man, which saw him permanently stuck in one of Spidey’s web-traps.  Such a punching bag, that even his own bio doesn’t give him any respect.  That’s cold, man.  But, there’s hope on the horizon, because all of this has actually made him memorable and worthwhile in his own right, meaning he’s getting a double-dip on the Legends treatment.  That’s not so bad, I suppose.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Shocker is the last of the three villains in the latest Spidey-themed Retro assortment of Marvel Legends.  It’s his second time as a Legends release, following the one from the Sandman Series in 2017.  While that one was in his at the time current gear from Superior Foes of Spider-Man, this one instead goes back to the very beginning, for a proper classic Shocker, fitting with the retro-theme of the release.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  While he’s got the elbow joints that Shocker so frequently loses (complete with the pinless construction that Hasbro’s been rolling out with their new sculpts), he does loose the standard wrist movement, in favor of a swivel joint further up the forearm.  While it ultimately results in less mobility at the wrists, it’s for the sake of keeping the gauntlets one piece, which is true to the original design.  And, honestly, with those gauntlets on, he’s unlikely to be able to really move his wrists anyway, so it’s not like it’s unrealistic.  Shocker is sporting an all-new sculpt, which serves his design a little more justice than the Bucky Cap body of the previous version.  It beefs him up a little bit, as you’d expect for a guy in a big padded suit, and it just generally does a really nice job of capturing the character’s classic look.  All of the quilting is properly sculpted, and I like how he’s even got extra detailing on the non-quilted parts, especially evident when comparing the head sculpts from the two releases.  I do somewhat miss the bewildered expression of the last one, but I don’t know that it would fit quite as well for this release.  Shocker’s color work is alright, though nothing particularly spectacular.  The base work is there, and the colors work well for the character.  The sculpt could really benefit from any sort of accenting on the quilted sections, as they do sort of get lost in the big patches of yellow here.  I may wind up giving this guy the same treatment as Six-Arm Spidey, just to help him pop a bit more.  Shocker is packed with two sets of hands, one set with fists, the other with relaxed hands.  They swap at the forearm joint, which keeps things clean.  I like the attention to more options on these figures.  He also includes the same effects pieces as the last one.  I still don’t think they really work for his powerset, but I won’t complain about getting extra stuff.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I really liked the last Shocker.  Like, a lot more than I’d expected, really.  But he wasn’t a classic Shocker, so another felt like it kind of needed to happen at some point.  This guy is really great.  Getting an all-new sculpt for him is really great, and the end result is a lot of fun.  He’s going to make it really difficult for me to pick a Shocker for the shelf, because I do still really love the old one, but this one’s just so good.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website.