IRON MAN (TOY BIZ)
“As the United States had its armored champion in Iron Man, so did the former Soviet Union have their own crusader — the Crimson Dynamo! His first mission was to destroy the symbol of Western democracy — Iron Man — a mission which led to the first of many defeats for the Dynamo. As the Cold War came to a close, so did their animosity; now these uneasy allies focus their combined might against such foes as Fin Fang Foom and Titanium Man!”
The biggest problem faced by the ‘90s Iron Man toyline was Iron Man’s overall lack of a really strong rogue’s gallery. I mean, he’s got Mandarin, and….alcohol? That’s hard to do in a toyline, though. Another good, solid Iron Man foe (and my personal favorite) is Crimson Dynamo. Unfortunately, Dynamo wasn’t very prominent in the cartoon that the toyline was based on, so it took a few assortments. Still, at least he got a figure. Living Laser was on the show a couple of times, and he never did…
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Crimson Dynamo was released in Series 4 of Toy Biz’s Iron Man line, as the assortment’s only villain. The figure stands 5 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation. This figure uses Dynamo’s armor design from the Valentin Shatalov incarnation of the character, which was the most recent version of the character at the time of this figure’s release. It’s got a lot more silver than most Dynamo designs (the cartoon even recolored the whole thing red to keep him consistent with other versions), and is a but thinner, making it much more similar to an Iron Man design. Personally, I’d have preferred one of the earlier models, but I think it’s fair to say this version worked a bit better with the overall style of the line. As with all of the Iron Men and War Machines of this line, Crimson Dynamo’s fished look is completed using a base figure with a bunch of clip-on armor pieces. Dynamo had 9 clip-on pieces, for his chest plate, back plate, gauntlets, belt, boots, and helmet horns. What’s that you say? You don’t see any horns on his helmet? Yep, mine’s missing his. I’d have borrowed them from my dad’s figure, but his is missing them too. They have a tendency to go missing. Why they didn’t just make them a permanent fixture of the head is anyone’s guess. I can’t imagine why someone would want him without them. The rest of the armor is cool enough, though I’m not a huge fan of how the boots work, since they make posing the figure a bit difficult. Another major issue with the figure’s design is linked to his action feature, which launches a missile from the middle of the figure’s torso, resulting in a big hole in the middle of his chest. Another item that harms the integrity of the figure’s appearance for essentially no good reason. On the plus side, the paint’s decent enough. Moderate slop on the edges of the silver, but nothing too terrible. Beyond the clip-on armor, Dynamo also included a flame-styled projectile, meant to go in that big gaping hole int he torso.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I believe Dynamo was a gift, possibly for Christmas. I definitely remember getting one of the other Series 4 figures for Christmas that year, so I think Dynamo was part of the same set of gifts. Honestly, Dynamo is one of the line’s weaker entries. Off costume choice, and a number of very strange design choices in the actual implementation of the figure. He’s hardly a bad figure, but he’s still a rather frustrating one.