MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)
“An expert horseman and superior swordsman, Black Knight has a checkered history as a powerful combatant with no clear allegiance.”
“No clear allegiance”? Are we all talking about the same Black Knight here? Because this is supposed to be a Dane Whitman figure, and apart from a case of mistaken identity early into his first appearance, he’s been pretty firmly allied with the side of good for his 50 year-career. <sigh> I’m critiquing the bio again, aren’t I? I really gotta stop doing that.
Black Knight’s a character that doesn’t get lots of toys. I’d chalk that up to him being relatively minor, though he does have a pretty solid fan-following. To date, he’s had five figures, and I’ll be looking at the most recent of those today!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Black Knight is one of the two comics-based figures headlining the Cull Obsidian-series of Marvel Legends. He was actually the first figure we saw from the line-up, back in October. This is Black Knight’s second Legends figure, but it’s been 11 years since the last one, and that one was never particularly good in the first place. That one was also based on a more modern, and ultimately more forgettable design, while this one goes back to the classic appearance. The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation. Black Knight is similar to the recently reviewed King Cobra, in that he’s *technically* built on the Bucky Cap base, but he uses mostly derivative parts of that. He’s got the Bucky Cap pelvis and boots; that’s it. Beyond that, he’s got the Hob/Green Goblin arms and legs, Dr. Strange’s torso, US Agent’s flared gloves, Zemo’s loincloth/belt, and Polaris’s cape. This is the same construction that was used for the Raft boxed-set’s Dreadnought, which is what was expected. It’s a good combo of parts, and, like with King Cobra, it shows how far you can get with just re-used parts. In addition to all the re-used parts, Black Knight also gets three newly sculpted heads. The first two are based on two variations of Dane’s helmet. There’s a first appearance-based one with wings on the sides, as well as the more streamlined design that became his go-to later on. Of the two, the winged one is my favorite, which surprised me a little, since I tend to like the streamlined look a bit more. I think it’s partially to do with the facial expressions. The streamlined design has a teeth-gritted, angry expression, while the winged one has a calmer look that I just prefer for the character. If I had one minor complaint, it would be that the expressions can’t be swapped between the two helmets; I think that would add a lot to the figure. The third head isn’t Dane, but is instead the fully-enclosed helmet of his Arthurian-era ancestor Sir Percy of Scandinavia. Technically, it’d not a perfect match for the body, but it’s close enough to work, and it gets us an extra character. The figure’s paintwork is pretty solid; it’s more subdued than what we saw on the Marvel Universe figure in terms of coloring, but it still works. The application is mostly pretty clean, though I did notice a few small spots of slop. My only real complaint is that his neck peg is molded in the dark blue plastic of his torso and helmet, so it sticks out against the otherwise silver neck. It can be hidden with careful posing, but it’s still annoying. In addition to having the two extra heads to swap out, Black Knight also includes his Ebony Blade, which is a unique sculpt (at least as far as I can tell). He has a little trouble holding it in his right hand (since it was originally sculpted to hold a gun), but it’s not terrible, and it can also be stashed on his belt. Black Knight also includes the leg of the Build-A-Figure Cull Obsidian, who I’ll be looking at later this week.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I enjoy Black Knight a lot as a character, and I’m always down for new figures. His last Legends release was a disappointment, and contributed a bit to me falling out of collecting the line. So, the announcement of this guy was definitely exciting for me. I’ve been anxiously awaiting his release, and was pleasantly surprised to have found him so early!
In addition to the excitement of getting Black Knight, I have another exciting announcement! Black Knight was purchased from The Figure in Question’s official sponsor All Time Toys. All Time has been one of my go-to places for all sorts of cool action figures since they opened in 2007, so I’m thrilled to be working with them in a more official capacity. If you’re local to the Ellicott City, Maryland area, you can visit them in person on Main Street, or you can also view their sizable online catalogue via their eBay store front!