WINTER SOLDIER — FLASHBACK
MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)
“Though Bucky Barnes has fought to become himself again, in his darkest nightmares his greatest fear comes to life…that he is still the Winter Soldier!”
Oh man, is this two whole Marvel Legends reviews? In a row? Don’t get too used to it, guys. But hey, it’s some Legends. And I do love reviewing me some Legends. Some of my earliest Marvel Legends reviews here on the site were of the tie-in product for Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It’s still one of my favorite MCU films, and, despite plenty of retrospective MCU coverage in Legends since, we’ve not actually gotten any additional TWS figures since that initial run. Kinda crazy, really. 8 years later, we’ve got one more, though this one comes under the guise of technically being a tie-in to last year’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Hey, I’m hardly going to complain about weird loopholes if they mean I get more TWS figures.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Winter Soldier (Flashback) is a one-off Fan Channel-exclusive Marvel Legends release. He’s loosely tied in with the Sam and Steve Caps two-pack, as they both are using the same code-name, and are clearly meant to at least somewhat compliment each other. Winter Soldier started hitting retail in roughly the last month or so. Officially, this figure is based on the flashback dream Bucky has in the first episode of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, but unofficially, he’s definitely meant to be Winter Soldier from the highway fight in TWS, since that’s the most distinctive use of this particular look. The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation. From the neck down, this figure is re-using the mold from the original Mandroid Series Winter Soldier. It’s a pretty sensible re-use. Slightly old-style articulation scheme aside, it’s a really good sculpt, which does a respectable job of capturing the character’s outfit as seen in the movie. The detailing is all nice and crisp, and he just really looks the part. He’s also not nearly as undersized as the Caps of the same era, which really works in his favor. He gets two all-new head sculpts, replacing the original two, which were working from pre-production designs. These one’s give us the proper half-mask and fully unmasked looks. They’re both pretty solid sculpts, and certainly improvements to the original release. Of the two, the masked look is the stronger sculpt, I feel. The half-mask looks really cool, and the sculpting is really sharp. The unmasked head is okay, though the likeness isn’t quite there; I think his chin is a bit too large for Sebastian Stan. Adding to the updated head sculpts is an updated paint scheme. The jacket is properly darkened, matching the final film, rather than the concept art that the original was based on. The heads both have the printing on the face, and the metallic arm is now much cleaner, closer to the way things look in the movie. While the prior Winter Soldier’s only accessory was a big, goofy red thing that was supposedly a gun-type-thing. This time around he’s got actual guns…well, closer to actual guns, anyway. There’s an assault rifle type thing, and two pistols, which sort of have some Beretta 93r elements…if you squint. He’s also got a knife, which is key for that cool knife flip trick from the movie. The guns aren’t real, but they at least look the part more so than the original, and I’m honestly going to have him wielding the knife all the time, anyway.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I really loved the old Winter Soldier at the time of its release, but he was always slightly hindered by some of the odd factors that went along with him. I also always really wished he had the half mask, which is by far his coolest look in the movie. I’d been hoping for some sort of an update, what with all of the Marvel Studios stuff Hasbro’s been doing. It’s been quite a wait for this one, and there are still some minor nits, but I really love how this figure turned out, and he’s pretty much exactly what I’ve been hoping for since 2014.
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.