MARVEL STUDIOS WHAT IF…? (HOT TOYS)
Greetings and welcome to a brand-new year, faithful readers! Today’s important thing is the official kick off the post-Christmas reviews. Very fancy stuff. Notably, I’m also breaking formula, and totally writing a review of a Hot Toy, but not on a big review number. Look, I’ve got a new Hot Toy, and I don’t really feel like waiting over 200 reviews to get to it, okay? When last I was discussing Hot Toys, I had two different Captain America reviews, and indicated that was kind of the path I’d be sticking to for Hot Toys going forward. Today’s focus sticks with that, more or less, albeit in a sort of an alternate universe capacity. Yes, straight from 2021’s What If…?, I’m taking a look at a very fancy version of Captain Carter, Margaret “Peggy” Carter’s super soldier alter-ego!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Captain Carter is the second figure in the What If…? component of Hot Toys’ Television Masterpiece Series, which is their “small screen” equivalent to their longer running Movie Masterpiece Series. She’s figure TMS059, placing her right between Zombie Hunter Spidey and the Hydra Stomper. It’s a nice little stretch of What If…? figures there. Peggy stuck pretty much spot-on to her original release date of fourth quarter 2022, hitting back in early November. Captain Carter is based on her WW2-era outfit from her debut episode, which is definitely the more distinctive of her two looks (it also pairs well with the upcoming Hydra Stomper). The figure stands about 11 3/4 inches tall and she has over 30 points of articulation.
Captain Carter’s head sculpt marks a change for the usual Hot Toys stylings. They most often got for hyper realism, even when adapting non-realistic designs (as highlighted by the Clone Wars characters in their larger Star Wars line), but the What If…? figures are instead sticking closer to their actual animation models. This appears to possibly be a licensing thing, since the Legends figures were the same way. Whatever the case, the spot where this is most evident is the head sculpt. The sculpt is much smoother and streamlined than your typical Hot Toys head, but it’s nevertheless a really strong likeness of the character as she appears in the show. It’s still got a respectable likeness of Hayley Atwell, making her fairly easily recognizable. She includes two different pieces for the back of her hair, allowing for either a relaxed hang, or something a bit more dynamic. They’re both attached via magnets, so they swap out and hold in place pretty nicely. They also both work really well for their respective looks, and add a nice bit of variety to what you can do with the figure. As with the sculpting, Captain Carter’s paint work is a bit different from the usual, with something a little cleaner and bolder. The application’s still really strong, and she’s got enough realism to her that she doesn’t stand out too much from other figures Hot Toys has done.
The bulk of Captain Carter’s costume is a single piece jumpsuit, in contrast to the usual two-piece set-up we’ve seen on the Captain Americas. That said, she’s still got that layered look like the Caps have, so as to properly recreate all the cool little details of the costume. On mine, the mid-torso stripes do seem *just* a tad off-center, just careful posing makes them look just fine. The suit is topped off with a shoulder harness, a belt, and boots, which are all plastic add-on parts. Like the more recent Captain Americas, the boots use a two-piece construction, so that the ankles can still properly move. The belt and harness just being plastic is a slight step-down from the cloth construction on the other Caps, but it also tracks a bit better with her more animated appearance.
Peggy’s underlying base body is a rather basic one, which seems to go more for function over form. It’s a fairly standard female base body, albeit one that’s a little taller than the usual. It’s generally a pretty good match for Peggy as seen in the episode, although, if I’m honest, I do feel like she’s still perhaps a bit too short for her appearance in the show. Likewise, her shoulders seem a little narrower. Beyond that, though, it does work okay. The posability is pretty decent, especially in the arms. The hips are a bit restricted, but that’s more about the costume design than the actual body.
Captain Carter gets a pretty decent selection of extras, covering all of the basics for what she’s got in her episode. Included are:
- 7 hands
- Hanger for shield
- Display stand
The hands included are two fists, two gripping, two relaxed, and a right hand with trigger finger. The shield is smaller than Steve’s (which is either accurate or not, since it’s scale fluctuated depending on the shot), but it’s still similar to his in construction and detailing. The straps can unhook just like Steve’s, and there’s a hook for hanging it on her back. The sword is based on the one she grabs during the first episode’s climactic battle, and it’s nice and sharply detailed. The handgun is a little simpler than other HT weapons, which I’ll admit I was just a tad bummed by, but it’s not going to get much use by me anyway. Her display stand goes with the hexagonal shape, with a printed design based on the What If…? branding, as well as her name on the front.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
The Captain Carter episode of What If…? is far and away my favorite of the show’s first season. I’ve been very excited for all of the tie-in stuff for it. While I’m keeping it lighter on the HT side still, I’ve got that soft spot for the Captain America-related stuff, and I’ve honestly been wanting an HT Peggy of some form since The First Avenger. Now, you’ll notice that I said this figure was kicking off the post-Christmas stuff. I got this one courtesy of All Time’s owner Jason, who gave her to me as a very generous Christmas gift. She’s pretty awesome, and I’ve very excited to pair her off with the Hydra Stomper figure!