SPIDER-MAN & HOBGOBLIN
It’s another Monday, and I’m doing that Minimate thing again. So, here we are, looking at more Minimatrs. 2018 marked the year that Walgreens’ supply chains got a little gummed up, at least as far as Minimates were concerned. Technically, four series hit that year, but for a good portion of collectors, those figures didn’t actually arrive for the better part of a year after their first sightings. While the most infamous case of this was certainly Series 10, the two series prior also were rather afflicted. Things did eventually level out, though, making things easier to find. So ,let’s have a look at some of those ‘mates, specifically Symbiote Spider-Man and Hobgoblin!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Spider-Man and Hobgoblin were released in Series 9 of Walgreens’ Marvel Minimates line-up. These two were part of the assortment based on Disney’s then-running Spider-Man cartoon, with marketing to match.
“Recovered on a space mission, the substance known as V-252 is actually a sybmiotic creature, which bonds to Peter Parker and increases his aggression.”
We’ve had no shortage of Symbiote Spider-Men (well, not in recent years, anyway), but this does mark the design’s first inclusion at Walgreens. It also sports the somewhat up-dated design of the cartoon. It’s not a bad look, truth be told. It manages to keep the sleekness and simplicity of the original design, while still doing something a little different. I can get behind it. The figure is built on the standard post-C3 ‘mate body, so he’s about 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation. Structurally, this, like most Spidey ‘mates, is just a standard vanilla ‘mate. It’s the right course of action for such a design, and it’s never a bad thing to get a good focus on the core body. It’s the paint work that really sells this guy, of course. It’s not perfect; there are a few spots where I definitely feel the application could stand to be a little sharper, and those fuzzy edges do hinder the sleek design a little bit. Overall, though, it’s a solid look, and has the benefit of being one that can integrate with non-animated ‘mates without too much trouble. Symbiote Spidey includes a webline and a dynamic posing base, both of which have become fairly standard for Spideys. Unfortunately, on my copy, the stand’s peg for connecting to the figure twisted off. I’ve not encountered such an issue with one of these stands before, so perhaps it’s limited to my copy.
“Hiding his true face behind a hood and metallic mask, the mysterious Hobgoblin will stop at nothing to destroy Spider-Man.”
Despite what the bio might suggest, the 2017 Spider-Man‘s take on Hobgoblin is actually something of a departure from how the character is usually handled, being a more heroic identity held by Peter’s best friend Harry. While the two are initially opposed, and the identity later gets co-opted by Harry’s father Norman, Harry as Hobgoblin serves as an ally for Spidey within the confines of the show. We’ve gotten only three Hobgoblin Minimates over the years, each somewhat reflecting a different incarnation of the character. In addition to being the show version of Hobgoblin, it’s worth noting that this design also draws fairly heavy influence from Humberto Ramos’ design for the Phil Urich version of the character. Hobgoblin’s construction makes use of a single add-on piece for his hood/shoulder pads/backpack. It’s a little restricting in terms of articulation, and the details do seem a little soft, but it looks fairly decent overall. It matches well with the character’s design from the show, to be sure. The paintwork on Hobgoblin is passable overall. The line-work is pretty sharply handled, and instances of slop are fairly minimal. The add-on piece is again a little more softly defined, but it’s not too bad. Hobgoblin’s only accessory is a clear display stand. This feels rather light, and it’s a shame we couldn’t get any of Harry’s goblin gear. The glider might have been too big, but his sword, or even an alternate head with an unmasked Harry would have been cool.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I picked these two up back when they were still relatively new, with a bit of an assist from Max, who was also scoping out Walgreenses for ‘mates at the time. I was slowing down by this point, but this pack appealed to me. It got to the point where it was a little bit difficult to make a new Symbiote Spider-Man distinct, but this one did a decent job, and turned in a pretty fun, somewhat unique figure. Issues with the breaking stand aside, he’s pretty alright. This Hobgoblin figure represents a fairly unique take on the character, and is well-removed from previous releases of the character. While he lacks in the accessories department, he’s still a pretty nifty figure overall.