#1754: The Champions

ANGEL, GHOST RIDER, BLACK WIDOW, & HERCULES

MARVEL MINIMATES

In wake of the success of the Avengers and the Defenders, in the ’70s, Marvel was looking for another big team-up book to push.  In 1975, Tony Isabella and Don Heck introduced the Champions, a collection of two X-Men, two fan favorite solo acts, and a former Avenger.  The team wasn’t really a smash success, running only 17 issues, before the team disbanded and the members were absorbed into other projects.  They remained a favorite amongst die-hard fans, though, as well as having a pretty strong line-up, which led to them getting an Action Figure Express-exclusive boxed set in 2009.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These four were released via AFX at SDCC 2009.  They cover four of the five founding members.  Sadly, we’ve never gotten a proper Iceman to match the other four, but there are a few stand-ins…anyway, onto the four we actually got!

ANGEL

We’d had two Archangels prior to this figure’s release, but this was the first proper Angel ‘mate.  Angel notably had two distinct looks over the course of the series.  This figure is based on the second, less dated of the two, which was a variant of his blue and white costume from the ‘60s.  This is one of the character’s longest-lived looks, so it was definitely a well-deserved variant.  The figure is built on the basic ‘mate body, so he’s 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  He gets an extra two points via the ball-joints for the wings, which brings his count up to 16.  Angel had four sculpted add-on pieces, for his hair/cowl, harness, and wings.  The hair is a new piece (which would see re-use later down the line for two other Angel variants), and, aside from the cowl being a little bulky at the sides, it’s a good match for Angel’s style of the time. The harness is the same one first used on Archangel, with a new set of feathery wings attached to it.  The new wings are a marked improvement over the DCD Hawkman wings, with greater size, greater posablity, and a far more durable point of connection.   Angel’s paint is privy to its ups and its downs.  The detail lines are all nice and sharp, and the face does a pretty great job of capturing Angel’s pretty-boy persona.  The colors are all very bright, and match up with the comics in that regard.  The big problem is with the application of the paint.  The changes from red to white are particularly sloppy, and the yellow for the gloves and boots is too thin to fully cover the reds in some areas.  It makes for a somewhat sloppy figure.  Angel included no accessories, but with the wings, it’s not too much of a loss.  I suppose an extra hair piece might have been nice.

GHOST RIDER

The fourth Ghost Rider, and technically the second Johnny Blaze, this figure marks the first, and to date only, ‘mate of the classic incarnation of the character.  Ghost Rider makes use of sculpted add-ons for his hair, collar, glove cuffs, and belt.  His hair and cuffs are re-used, with the hair coming from the Series 8 Human Torch, and the cuffs being the rolled-up sleeves from the Spirit two-pack.  At first glance, the collar looks to be the same one from the DCD Star Sapphire, but it’s not quite the same.  The belt is likewise a new piece for this set.  The collar sits a little high on the torso, and hides his neck, which looks a little off.  Otherwise, the parts make for a pretty solid recreation of Ghost Rider.  Ghost Rider’s paint is a marked improvement on Angel.  Perhaps it’s the variations of blue helping matters, but application seems to be cleaner and sharper than it was on Angel.  The new head also does a tremendous job of handling GR’s flaming skull, doing it in a much more pleasing way than prior variants had handled it.  Accessories are pretty much going to be the failing point of any Ghost Rider Minimate ever, since contractually he can’t have the Hellcycle that actually makes him a “rider.” As the classic version of the character, this one’s even lighter than other variations of the character, since he didn’t yet have the usual chain whip.  This one instead just gets a flame effect piece, which is certainly better than nothing.

BLACK WIDOW

This set marked Black Widow’s Minimate debut, and she served as a prominent selling point for a lot of people.  Like the others, she’s seen here in her classic ‘70s garb.  Not quite as timeless as some of the others in the pack, but a very good choice nevertheless. Widow has four sculpted add-on pieces; one for the hair, two for the widow’s stingers, and one for the belt.  Apart from the belt, which is shared with the Ghost Rider from this set (and let’s be honest, was really designed for her and re-used on him), all of her pieces were new.  Sharp detailing, and good recreation of her look from the comics. Widow’s paint is by far the best in the set.  The shiny black for the body suit looks really spiffy, and the detailing on the torso is an amazing feat in adding dimension to a flat torso block.  The face could perhaps stand to be a little more emotive, but it still feels true to the character.  There are no accessories for Widow in this set, which is a bit of shame, but not totally surprising, since Widow’s primary means of attack at the time was her widow’s stingers.

HERCULES

Like Black Widow, Hercules made his Minimate debut in this set, though unlike her he’s yet to get a follow-up. There are a number of options when it comes to Herc’s design.  This one is the one he was sporting for the entirety of his time with the Champions, and it had just gotten a revival right around the time of this figure’s release, courtesy of Herc’s role during World War Hulk and its subsequent fall-out.  Hercules has five add-on pieces, for his hair, his chest cap, his wrist bands, and his skirt. The hair piece is new to Herc, and it’s a really goof piece.  The detailing on the hair is quite sharp, and the flow to his hair is quite realistic.  The rest of the parts are re-use, with the torso coming from the Wave 22 Hulk, the wrist bands coming from the DCD Ocean Master, and the skirt coming from the Star Trek line.  It’s an okay combination of parts, but not one that’s held up the best.  The chest cap in particular was always rather flawed design, with the shoulders in particular giving the whole thing a rather strange appearance.  As one of those sort of in-between characters size-wise, DST was undeniably in a tough as to how to handle him.  Herc’s paintwork is fairly decent work.  The face captures Herc’s likeness well (though I might have liked something a bit more intense or angry, following after the cover to The Champions #1), and has a lot of detailing in the brow and beard in particular.  The rest of the details are pretty well defined, but the orange and green sections of the skirt could probably have stood to get an outline, if nothing more than to match the strap on his torso.  Hercules was packed with his club, which was a newly sculpted piece.  It follows the comics design well.  It can be stowed on his back, which is a cool touch.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve never been to SDCC, so it follows that I wasn’t there in-person to get this in 2009.  Fortunately, AFX was good about getting their exclusives up online, so I was able to secure myself a set without much trouble.  I was happy to get this set, because I’ve always really liked the Champions, and I’m excited for any recognition they get.  Apart from the lack of accessories, I think Widow is this set’s strongest offering, and still holds up as one of the best variants of the character.  Angel is a very good ‘mate held back only by some issues with paint application.  Had the paint been a little better, he would have been darn near perfect.  As is, he’s just close to it.  Ghost Rider is yet another version of the character that’s missing his cycle, but at least this is a solid ‘mate in his own right.  Herc’s not the strongest figure in the set, and is somewhat compromised by some of the pieces used for him.  Still, he’s far from a bad offering, and rounds out the set quite nicely.

#1734: Archangel

ARCHANGEL

X-MEN (TOY BIZ)

“Archangel is the high-flying X-Man with a knock-out secret weapon– wingtip darts filled with paralyzing fluid! Archangel can fire these darts with uncanny accuracy from any height and speed. With his amazing metal wings, Archangel is able to fly faster than the speed of sound and silently attack like a striking eagle. This ability strikes terror in the hearts of evil mutants, for their first warning of Archangel’s attack is usually the impact of one of his darts!”

In the late ’80s/early ’90s, there was a trend in comics, of taking characters with formerly passive powers and either creating a new character with those powers plus an offensive component, or even just reforging the original into something more “kick-ass.”  Founding X-Men member Warren Worthington III, originally known as Angel, found himself on the receiving end of one of these make-overs, become the war-ready Archangel.  It was a lasting look, and one that was at the forefront when it came time for Warren’s first action figure.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Archangel was released in Series 1 of Toy Biz’s X-Men line.  His presence is somewhat interesting, as he’s the only X-Man in the line-up who wasn’t from the “All-New, All-Different” lineup.  Archangel was still wearing his hideous “Death” togs he got from Apocalypse at the time of this figure, so that’s what he’s wearing here.  Boy, was this costume ugly.  I mean, I love it, but it’s ugly.  The figure stands 4 3/4 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation (his wings can also move, but it’s tied into his action feature, and they don’t really hold poses or anything).  His sculpt was unique to him.  It’s not terrible, but I do think he’s a fair bit more dated than some of the others in the set.  His head’s kind of large, and his facial expression is sort of goony. I think it’s the eyes; they seem too close together.  The body is rather stiffly posed, and his proportions are definitely a little off.  The arms are probably the worst part; they just look so scrawny when compared to the rest of him.  The wings are okay, though they suffer a bit from the comics’ lack of consistency on the exact shaping of them.  They’re also slightly marred by the “missile launching feature” at the tops.  I use the quotes because there’s no actual spring-loaded feature or anything; you just pushed them out with your thumb.  Kind of disappointing.  The torso is also impacted a bit by the wings.  Toy Biz wasn’t sure how to attach them, so they went for this this big honking block on his back.  Elegant it is not.  Archangel’s paintwork is decent enough; it’s a little brighter than a lot of interpretations of this costume tend to be, but it’s not like it was going to get *less* ugly.  There were two versions of this guy’s colorscheme; the original release had white wings, while the re-release offered both white and grey wings.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Archangel was one of my earlier additions to my collection.  Though the Invasion series had hit right when I started collecting (and given me my first three X-Men figures in the process), the Archangel variant included there wasn’t quite as plentiful, so I ended up getting this guy’s re-release instead.  He’s not aged particularly well, and I definitely prefer other Archangel’s, but he still has a quaint sort of a charm to him.

Flashback Friday Figure Addendum #0007: Savage Land Angel

Another Friday, another Flashback Friday Figure Addendum!  This one’s another look back at Toy Biz’s epic line of 5-inch Marvel figures, with Savage Land Angel!

The 90s X-Men line!  Now there was a line.  I haven’t really looked at this line yet on the site, aside from the Original Members Boxed Set, which wasn’t actually part of the line.  But in the 90s, the X-Men were the big thing.  They had a TV show, their comics sold millions, and they had one of the most comprehensive toy lines to date.  There was a Cho’d action figure for God’s sake!  Towards the end of the line, they began to run out of new characters to release, so they started doing these theme waves with rereleases of the main characters.  One of those theme waves was a set of figures based on the X-Men’s many trips to the Savage Land.  It featured figures of the X-Men in tattered “Savage Land” uniforms.  Today, I’ll be looking at the Angel figure from that line.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

So, as I said above, Angel here hails from the Savage Land series of Toy Biz’s 5-inch X-Men line.  He stands roughly 5 inches tall and has 11 points of articulation.  If you read the review of the Fallen, you’ve seen a lot of this figure before.   He shares all but his head, arms and feet with that figure.  The head was actually one that saw frequent reuse over at Toy Biz, and I know this wasn’t the first figure to use it, but I honestly don’t know what was.   Anyway, it works fine here, though it might be a bit scowly for a pre-Archangel Warren Worthington.  The figure’s look is mostly done through paint, which depicts a tattered version of Angel’s blue and white costume from the silver age*.   It’s cool to see this costume here, but a bit disappointing that the costume never got a proper release.  Angel at one point featured a pair of (very small) wings, a gray vest with an X-logo, and some weird claw thing that attached to his wrist, but I lost most of those pieces many years ago.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got this figure on one of my many trips the KB Toys outlet in Rehoboth Beach.  I was very excited to get it because Angel figures were a bit of a rarity in the 90s.  I know I really liked this guy, and for reasons I can’t fathom at this point, I know he spent a lot of time in my Ghostbusters Ecto-1.

Well, that’s not an awful review.  Still a bit shorter than the average review nowadays, but not horribly so.  I actually listed off all of the relevant information for the figure, and even referenced re-used parts and everything (though, rather amusingly, the Fallen pieces I referenced weren’t even discussed in my The Fallen review).

When I last reviewed this figure, he was missing both of his wings and the little wrist claw, both of which were returned to him during The Find.  The wings are rather on the small side, but detailed nicely enough.  I’m not really even sure what the claw supposed to be, but there it is.  Still missing is the grey cloth vest.  Also, I didn’t mention this previously, but each figure in the Savage Land series included a creature figure of some sort.  Angel included a small Sauron figure, which I still haven’t found.  Maybe he’ll turn up one of these days and I can write a *second* addendum.

#0703: Death Archangel, Apocalypse, & Archangel

DEATH ARCHANGEL, APOCALYPSE, & ARCHANGEL

MARVEL MINIMATES

Archangel&Apocalypse1

Jeez, didn’t I just review a set of Minimates a few days ago? Is it already time for another one? <looks at randomized list from which I may not break> Yep, guess I’m reviewing Minimates again. Worse things have happened. Next year will see the release of the next installment in the X-Men movie franchise, X-Men: Apocalypse, which will feature, you guessed it, X-Men villain Apocalypse. It’s also set to feature Warren Worthington III as Archangel. And, would you look at that, they’re both in today’s review. How about that?

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

This trio was released in the 19th Series of Marvel Minimates, way back in 2008. Death Archangel and Apocalypse were the standard, heavier packed set, and Archangel was the one-per case variant, also packed with Apocalypse.

DEATH ARCHANGEL

Archangel&Apocalypse2Following losing his natural, feather-y wings in a battle, Warren got a replacement pair of metal wings, courtesy of Apocalypse. Of course, he didn’t read the fine print and ended up becoming one of Apocalypse’s Four Horsemen, Death. And he got saddled with a hideous costume to boot. Rotten luck, right? This figure depicts him in said look, which was Warren’s primary look for a few years. He stands roughly 2 ½ inches tall and has a whole 16 points of articulation, thanks to the wings. The figure is constructed on the basic Minimate body, with add-on pieces for his wristbands, and, of course, his wings. The wing harness is the same piece we saw on the Avengers #1 Wasp ‘mate, though they did actually show up here first. The wings themselves are all-new pieces, shared between the two Archangels (and a third that came a few years later). They’re bigger than the figure himself, and give him quite an impressive presence on the shelf. They’re also quite accurate to the source material and sport some very nice, clean detail work. They do have an unfortunate habit of getting a bit warped over time, but they regain their shape pretty easily. A lot of Archangel’s design is dependent on paint, which is quite nicely handled, even if it is a hideous costume. The pink lines are nice and sharp, and I quite like his stern expression. It’s very in-character. The only drawback is the faint gold lines on his face, which are transfer lines from his death mask, which happens to be his one accessory. It’s an okay sculpt, but the paint really hasn’t stood the test of time.

APOCALYPSE

Archangel&Apocalypse4So, uh, this is the guy that turned Warren into Archangel. And gave him that hideous costume. Also, he’s tied to Kang the Conqueror, a guy from the future, but the two met in the past, and then Apocalypse turned out to be immortal and may or may not have been from the future, some of the time. It’s a little confusing, and, if I’m totally honest, I don’t care enough about the guy to sort it all out. Apocalypse is presented here in his original look, which has been his main design on and off for quite some time. The figure stands 2 ½ inches tall (thanks to some added height from the boots) and he has 12 points of articulation (also thanks to the boots). The movement is rather limited on this guy, due to the various sculpted parts interfering. The worst offenders are the tubes connecting his arms to his torso, which are just solid plastic, rather than something more flexible. Apocalypse has six sculpted add-ons, for his chest piece, gloves, belt, and boots. The pieces are all pretty well sculpted, with plenty of great detail work. It’s worth noting that this guy predates the move to bulk up larger characters, but he’s actually not too badly held back by it. Apocalypse does a bit of size-changing anyway. The paint on this figure is pretty decent. The leg muscles are somewhat ridiculously defined, but it works for the character. The head exhibits some excellent work, with tons of great detail. Apocalypse included no accessories.

ARCHANGEL

Archangel&Apocalypse3After getting past that whole being a henchman to ultimate evil bit, Archangel was still stuck with the blue skin and the metal wings. However, he had a choice in the whole costume manner, so he moved to get rid of that hideous thing that Apocalypse stuck him in. Truly a sign that he had returned to good. So, he started wearing a variant of one of his older costumes, which is what this figure is wearing. Structurally, he’s not far off from the Death Archangel. The wings and harness are the same setup, and they’re just as cool here as they were on the other figure. He ditches the wristbands and gains a hairpiece, which was all-new to this figure. It’s a pretty good piece, which does a decent enough job of capturing Warren’s hair of the mid-90s. The rest of Archangel’s detailing is done via paint. It’s, admittedly, not as good as the other two. The blue doesn’t continue onto the harness, which is quite distracting. Also, he’s got some serious muscle detailing on his torso, but nowhere else. To top it off, the face is oddly angled and set too high, which just makes it look really odd. Archangel included no accessories.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got Death Archangel and Apocalypse on their day of release, courtesy of my local comicbook store Cosmic Comix. I ended up picking up Archangel from a vendor at Comic Con a few years later, and gave the spare Apocalypse to my younger brother. These guys are a little dated (mostly just the basic Archangel), but they’re still pretty good, and they mark one of the earliest instances of what most would consider “modern” Minimates.

#0359: Angel & Beast

ANGEL & BEAST

MARVEL MINIMATES

Angel&Beast1

It there’s one thing the X-Men are good at, it’s costume changes. As a team, they have to have the highest turnover rate in uniforms of any team in comics. Another thing that X-Men are big on is alternate versions of established team members running around. Combine those two, and you have a dynamite pitch for selling lots of toys of the same characters. This seems to be the case with the line-up of All-New X-Men, which has brought early versions of the original X-Men to the present, and given them a new set of threads along the way. Yesterday, I looked at Cyclops and Marvel Girl; today, I’ll be looking at Angel and Beast, both in their “pre-blue” forms.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Angel and Beast are a two-pack from Series 59 of Marvel Minimates, which is based on the designs of the team as seen in recent issues of All-New X-Men.

ANGEL

Angel&Beast3Angel is a character that has kind of broken even on the whole “previous version” thing. The old Angel has certainly gone through his fair share of stuff, but his thing is mostly ping-ponging between being classic Angel and Archangel. I guess it’s not terrible to have a pre-ping-ponging version running around. The figure is about 2 ½ inches in height and he features 16 points of articulation, thanks to the wings. He’s based on All-New Angel’s second costume, which is a variant of the base costume everyone else got. His is accented with red, which serves as a nice callback to his Champions and X-Factor costumes. The figure features the basic Minimate body, with add-ons for his wings and hair. The wings are the same three-part piece we’ve seen on previous versions of Angel, and the hair was first used on Lost in Space’s Doctor Smith. The hair offers a nice “rich-boy” look, and the wings are a very definite case of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Angel’s paint is generally a lot cleaner than what we saw in the Cyclops/Marvel Girl set. There are still a few sloppy areas with the base paint, but overall everything is pretty clean. I think the face looks perhaps a little too old for a younger Angel, but that’s really a personal thing. Angel includes a flight stand and a clear display stand.

BEAST

Angel&Beast2Beast seems like the one time-shifted X-Man who might work pretty well in conjunction with his modern day counterpart, but not as a replacement. They haven’t really screwed Beast up too bad, and most people like the few changes they’ve made to the character. Still, this reset version does serve as a pretty good counter point. Beast is a little over 2 ½ inches tall and features 12 points of articulation. Like the others in this series, Beast is in his second, Immomen-designed costume. Honestly, Beast’s is probably my least favorite of the five. The brown accents seem odd, almost like he got them because all the other colors were taken by the rest of the team. The brown/yellow, coupled with the goggles, kind of makes him look more like X-Men foe Mimic than Beast. Beast is built from the basic Minimate body, with add-ons to bulk up his torso, waist, shoulders, hands, thighs, and feet, as well as a goggle/hair combo. The hair and goggles piece is new, and it looks pretty spot in to what’s seen in the comic. The bulk up pieces have been seen on the Avengers movie Hulk (hands and feet), GotG’s Drax (torso), and countless other figures (everything else). I’m not sure I’m a fan of Beast being this bulky, but that’s gonna vary from person to person. Overall, Beast’s paintwork is pretty good. Mostly, the lines are clean. However, there is a random bit of brown paint on his goggles that very definitely shouldn’t be there. Beast includes a spare head/hair (with hair from Universal Monsters’ Henry Frankenstein) and a clear display stand. The extra head features a pair of glasses and a more reserved facial expression for Hank.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Like Cyclops and Marvel Girl, Angel and Beast were picked up from my local comic book store Cosmic Comix. I hadn’t initially intended to get these two, but I wanted Cyclops and I liked the Icemen, so I figured I might as well complete the team. I still think this is the weakest set in the series, but they aren’t bad. Perhaps if Beast had costume detailing under the bulked up pieces, I’d enjoy him more, but I can’t fault Diamond for going that route. All in all, this set is good, but not great.

#0126: Angel – Savage Land

ANGEL – SAVAGE LAND

MARVEL 10-INCH (TOYBIZ)

Okay, so I’m currently attempting to stay on top of work and school, while at the same time doing my best not to miss posting any updates.  As such, the next few reviews may be a bit more on the brief side.  Hope nobody is offended.  If you are…ummm…I’m sorry?

Today, I’ll be doing my second review from ToyBiz’s line of 10-inch scaled marvel figures.  For those of you who missed my previous review, quick little backstory: in the 90s, ToyBiz had a rather expansive line of 5 inch scaled Marvel stuff.  They decided to double their profits by up-scaling a bunch of the molds and releasing them as 10-inch scale.  Towards the end of this line, they actually started mixing up some of the pieces to get some new concoctions and character designs.  I’ll be looking at one of the later additions: Savage Land Angel.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Angel was released towards the end of the line, after it had become an exclusive to KB Toys.  He stands 10 inches tall, and features 13 points of articulation.  The figure, coming from the end of the line is completely built from previously used parts.  The head comes from the second Archangel figure, released in the Invasion series of  ToyBiz’s X-Men line.  The body is reused from The Vulture, who was released as part of the 90s Spider-Man line.  The head is sensible, given that it’s the same character, but I’ve never been the biggest fan of this sculpt, with its odd expression and wide eyes.  My issues are only amplified with the larger scale and normal flesh tone coloring.  The body is an interesting choice, I suppose, but given that is was the overly armored 90s Vulture, it means that Angel is left wearing this odd armor.  The paint is a bit of a mixed bag.  The head actually has some pretty decent work, and the shading on the armor is nice, but the costume under the armor looks a bit strange.  They seem to have tried to replicate the look of the previous Savage Land Angel, with his classic costume torn up.  However, while that figure had  bare feet, that wasn’t an option, as those pieces weren’t tooled for the large scale, which means that he’s got these weird painted on boots. Which look very strange with the shorts look, like he’s perpetually that nerdy guy who wears shorts with dress shoes and socks.  It’s weird.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve mentioned before how much I enjoyed the 10 inch line, and how I practically got a new one every time I went into a KB Toys.  Not this guy.  This guy, I passed up more times than I can remember, mostly based on how damned creepy he looks.  I’ve mentioned before about the trip I took to that huge KB Toys outlet center, which had a 5-10 year back log of toys.  This guy was amongst them, and I finally decided to get him to round out my X-Men.  I still think he’s a bit odd, but, he’s not the worst thing ever.

#0055: Angel – Savage Land

ANGEL – SAVAGE LAND

X-MEN (TOYBIZ)

 

The 90s X-Men line!  Now there was a line.  I haven’t really looked at this line yet on the site, aside from the Original Members Boxed Set, which wasn’t actually part of the line.  But in the 90s, the X-Men were the big thing.  They had a TV show, their comics sold millions, and they had one of the most comprehensive toy lines to date.  There was a Cho’d action figure for God’s sake!  Towards the end of the line, they began to run out of new characters to release, so they started doing these theme waves with rereleases of the main characters.  One of those theme waves was a set of figures based on the X-Men’s many trips to the Savage Land.  It featured figures of the X-Men in tattered “Savage Land” uniforms.  Today, I’ll be looking at the Angel figure from that line.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

So, as I said above, Angel here hails from the Savage Land series of Toybiz’s 5-inch X-Men line.  He stands roughly 5 inches tall and has 11 points of articulation.  If you read the review of the Fallen, you’ve seen a lot of this figure before.   He shares all but his head, arms and feet with that figure.  The head was actually one that saw frequent reuse over at Toybiz, and I know this wasn’t the first figure to use it, but I honestly don’t know what was.   Anyway, it works fine here, though it might be a bit scowly for a pre-Archangel Warren Worthington.  The figure’s look is mostly done through paint, which depicts a tattered version of Angel’s blue and white costume from the silver age*.   It’s cool to see this costume here, but a bit disappointing that the costume never got a proper release.  Angel at one point featured a pair of (very small) wings, a gray vest with an X-logo, and some weird claw thing that attached to his wrist, but I lost most of those pieces many years ago.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got this figure on one of my many trips the KB Toys outlet in Rehobeth Beach.  I was very excited to get it because Angel figures were a bit of a rarity in the 90s.  I know I really liked this guy, and for reasons I can’t fathom at this point, I know he spent a lot of time in my Ghostbusters Ecto-1.

*In super hero -comics, the first 40 years or so are divided into three “ages”:  The Golden Age, The Silver Age, and the Bronze Age.  The Sliver age, at Marvel any way, is believed to start with Fantastic Four #1, and end somewhere around Giant Size X-Men #1.

Read the Flashback Friday Figure Addendum here!

#0030: The Fallen

THE FALLEN

MUTANT X (TOY BIZ)

Ah, Mutant X.  Man, that was such a 90s comicbook.  One that I enjoyed immensely!  Diamond Comics’ catalogue Previews offered figures of four members of the books main team “The Six”(No, I don’t really know why they didn’t offer all six.  Seems a little odd, doesn’t it.  It’s like only releasing  three of the Fantastic Four!).  Being a fan of the comic and a fan of action figures, particularly 90s Marvel figures, I of course wound up with a set.  Today, I’ll be looking at The Fallen, who was an alternate universe version of Warren Worthington III, aka Archangel.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Fallen stands about 5 inches tall, and has 13 points of articulation.  He also had his signature wings, which could be snapped onto his back, and were made of a soft translucent green material, with wire running through to allow them to be posed.  The wires honestly didn’t offer much poseability, but it’s the thought that counts, I suppose.  Fallen also included an X-Logo shaped stand, which is good, because he can’t stand without it due to his top heavy nature.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Fallen, along with the other figures from the Mutant X line, was a Christmas gift from my parents.  I recall being fairly excited to open him, as he was my favorite character from the series.  Yay!

#0007: X-Men Original Members Boxed Set

CYCLOPS, MARVEL GIRL, BEAST, ICEMAN, & ANGEL

X-MEN ORIGINAL MEMBERS BOXED SET

Today we look at another of Toybiz’s First Appearance boxed sets.  This one’s not quite as colorful as the Avengers set, but it’s still pretty fun.  The set is of course based on the founding members of the X-Men in their original uniforms, straight from X-Men #1.

CYCLOPS

THE FIGURE ITSELF

What better place to start than leader-man himself: Scott Summers, aka Cyclops!  He, like all the others in the set is depicted here in his black and yellow uniform from the early issues of X-Men.  He’s got 12 points of articulation.  The sculpt is pretty good, especially the head, which does a good job of capturing a nice determined look.  The facial expression is very Kirby, which is appropriate.  The body is another story.  It’s not terrible mind you, but it could be a little better.  His shoulders are a bit on the broad side, and his waist is too thin.  The torso is also a rather flat in general, which is a bit odd.  The best part of the figure, I think, is the hinged visor.  It showcases the very nice sculpt below, and highlights the light-piped eyes, simulating his optic blasts.  I also love that his right hand is specially molded to allow you to pose him holding his visor.

MARVEL GIRL

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Next up is Scott’s girlfriend,  the marvelous Jean Grey, aka Marvel Girl.  She shown in her early costume, before they tweaked her design to set her apart more from the boys.  And that’s unfortunate, because it makes for a somewhat ugly figure.  Her proportions are really off.  She’s got long arms, huge hands and feet, and what looks like no ears.  Not to mention that her torso looks way to short.  Throw in the odd choice of rooted hair for the pony tail, and you’ve got yourself quite the funky looking figure.  She’s not the most hideous figure that Toybiz ever put out (That honor goes to the Marvel Legends Scarlet Witch.  Euggghh…), but she‘s far from the best.  She looks okay with the team, but not really anywhere else.

BEAST

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Next up is the resident brains AND brawn, Hank McCoy, aka The Beast.  This is a pre-blue and furry beast, which is quite the rarity in the toy world.  It’s a pretty good representation of that too, though the face sculpt focuses a bit too much on the “brawn” side of things in my opinion.  The huge hands and feet are well done, and make him really easy to balance, which is quite nice.  He’s a solid addition to the set.

ICEMAN

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Next is the hot-headed but cool Bobby Drake, aka Iceman.  He’s probably the figure in the set that stands out the most, because he’s the only one not in the standard black and yellow uniform.  They’ve chosen to show him in is snowy form, from before he learned to actually turn into ice.  The figure’s  molded in clear plastic, with very light blue accents painted generously to make him more opaque.  It’s a great effect, and really makes him look nice and icy.  The sculpt is pretty strong.  He suffers from some of the same wonky proportions as Cyclops, but once again the face sculpt is spot on, depicting an nice cocky grin beneath his snowy exterior.  One minor complaint I have is that the ice blasts are permanently affixed to his hands, which does ruin his play factor a bit.

ANGEL

THE FIGURE ITSELF

And, saving the best for last, it’s everybody’s favorite angelic millionaire, Warren Worthington, aka Angel.  Angel is, in my opinion, the best this set has to offer.  He doesn’t suffer from the wonky proportions that seem to plague this set.  He’s got a perfect expression for that “I’ve got so much more money than you” millionaire look.  Plus those wings!  Those awesome articulated wings!  The figure also is somewhat of a rarity in that it depicts a pre-archangel Warren, which is always a nice change.  If I had one complaint, it would be that the figure is a bit difficult to keep standing, mostly due to the wings, but it’s nothing that I can’t deal with.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This is another set I remember being quite excited about, though not as excited as I was for the Avengers set.  I think it was probably because I had most of these characters already from Toybiz’s extensive X-Men line.  I believe that this set was a Christmas gift, though I don’t remember who it was from (probably my parents).

I also have spare set of this one, thanks to my Angel figure going missing not long after I got the set.  Having gone without him for so long probably just makes me appreciate him more now (That sounded weird…).