#2498: Captain America – Final Battle Edition

CAPTAIN AMERICA — FINAL BATTLE EDITION

S.H. FIGUARTS (BANDAI)

Bandai Japan’s S.H. Figuarts is a toyline that I’ve looked at a handful of times previously on the site, but the very vast majority of the items I’ve looked at from the line have been, rather predictably, I suppose, based on Japanese properties (well, excepting of course Freddie and K-2, but they were sort of stand outs).  They’ve been dabbling in plenty of American properties over the years, but up until now, I’ve been totally content to stick with the domestic options on those.  As of late, they’ve been really getting into the MCU side of things, with Infinity War and Endgame both getting a noticeable focus.  Today, I’m taking a look at their latest take on Captain America, specifically in his Endgame attire.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Final Battle Edition Captain America started showing most places in the last month or so, right alongside the similarly Final Battle-themed Iron Man from the movie.  This marks our second Endgame Cap in the Figuarts line; the first one hit closer to the film’s theatrical release, and featured a much more paired down accessory selection, largely to avoid spoilers and the like.  Even as a basic release, it sold out pretty quickly, so Bandai was fairly quick to get another version out there.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  He’s on the taller side of the Figuarts spectrum (due to Chris Evans being generally a pretty tall guy), but he’s still going to be a little small to scale with Legends.  Obviously, that’s kind of expected.  This release of Endgame Cap appears to be using the same core sculpt as the prior release.  The articulation is a little bit on the obvious side, falling back in line with what I’m used to from Figurarts.  There’s a pretty amazing range of motion, though some of the joints on mine, particularly his left elbow, are a little looser than I’d like.  I do wish the tolerance were just a touch better there.  As with any Figuarts sculpt, it’s definitely got a little bit of a stylization to it, to bring him in line with the rest of the figures.  It works pretty well for Cap, though, and gives him even more heroic proportions than usual. It also looks astoundingly svelte when compared to the Hasbro version, which was itself a bit beefy, I suppose.  It’s not a bad match for Evans’ build in the film, though, albeit in a slightly caricaturized way.  It does manage to get the costume details down a bit more accurately, I think, than the Legends release.  There are three separate heads included with this figure: masked with calm expression, masked with battle expression, and fully unmasked (which also gets its own separate neck post, since there’s a little bit of the helmet visible on the standard neck).  Of the three, I the neutral masked is probably the weakest.  The likeness just isn’t quite there, and he looks a little void of personality.  I really like the other two heads, though.  The intense expression is great for battle poses, and the unmasked head has a pretty fantastic Evans likeness on it.  The paint work on this figure marks a difference from the original release, which gave us a slightly more pristine Cap.  This one takes the “Final Battle” title and runs with it a bit, so he’s got a bit of grime and dirt.  It’s not enough to make him look “damaged”, but it gives him a little extra flavor.  All three heads have printed faces, which look a little wonky from up close, but great at a distance.  The gold color used on the hair of the unmasked head looks a little weird, but after having him in hand for a bit, I don’t actually hate it.  The major selling point of this guy is his accessory complement.  In addition to the three heads mentioned above, Cap also includes five pairs of hands (fists, relaxed, hammer gripping, flat, and with the shield strap in hand), his shield in both regular and broken forms, with interchangeable straps to go along, and Mjolnir with interchangeable energy effects.  The hands offer up some fun posing variety, and the flat palmed ones even have a tab to allow the corresponding strap with hanger on it to be attached, letting Cap actually hold his shield by its edge.  The shield’s straps also allow for use on either arm, one-handed hold, or mounting on his back, again really giving posing options.  Both shields are great pieces, and it’s awesome to finally have the destroyed one in toy form.  Mjolnir practically steals the show here, though, as the swap out panels with the energy effects are pretty amazingly dynamic for posing.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I don’t typically jump into the Figuarts realm for stuff that has other 6-inch lines, but I’ve been kicking myself for passing up the chance to grab the AoU Cap at a good price, and I was a little bummed when I missed the first release on Endgame Cap.  Fortunately, the updated version came along, and he’s even better, so it works out well.  When All Time got these figures in stock, I came very close to grabbing this guy right away, but ultimately held off.  However, Super Awesome Wife was nice enough to work with Jason to get me one for my birthday, and I really couldn’t be happier.  He’s a really fun figure, and goes great with the rest of my ever-growing Captain America collection.

If you’d like a Cap of your own (or the Iron Man that goes with him, perhaps), he’s still in-stock at AllTimeToys.com. And, if you’re looking for other cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2454: Captain America & Peggy Carter

CAPTAIN AMERICA & PEGGY CARTER

MARVEL MINIMATES

Even in these times of uncertainty for the line, Marvel Minimates has a fairly steady stream of new product always coming from at least one retailer…provided you can actually find any of that new product.  Walgreens has been great for getting lots of new ‘mates on the books, but in 2018, they started kind of having a bit of a back-up in their distribution process, and two years later we’re still kind of feeling it.  Officially hitting at the end of last year, Series 11 has a decent mix of things going for it, including today’s set, Captain America and Peggy Carter!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These two were part of the 11 Walgreens-exclusive set of Marvel Minimates, and are animation-based, specifically hailing from the Avengers Assemble show, though in the case of both ‘mates featured here, the movie-inspiration is also pretty strong.

1940s CAPTAIN AMERICA

“Given enhanced strength, speed and durability in a top-secret experiment, Steve Rogers became a symbol of hope for Americans in World War II.”

We’ve had a couple of these MCU-esque ’40s Caps in the line, and this one’s just another.  This marks the first time he’s been animated, though!  Structurally, Cap’s just got the one add-on piece for his helmet.  It’s a re-use from the ’40s Cap in the Series 55 assortment, which is fair enough.  That piece has always looked a bit better than the one we got from TFA‘s line, and its slightly streamlined appearance works a bit better with the more vanilla nature of this figure.  Everything else here is paint.  This is the animated recreation of the film design, so it dispenses with a number of the details for something a bit cleaner.  I rather like it, honestly.  There’s a definite simplicity to it, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad in the slightest.  Cap is packed with his shield, a spare hand with a connection for it, an alternate hair piece for an unmasked look, and a clear display stand.

AGENT PEGGY CARTER

“Peggy Carter, a British agent who knew Captain America during World War II, was briefly brought from 1949 to the present day by Kang the Conqueror.”

Since Minimates had claim to the only Peggy Carter action figure on the market for a good eight years,  I guess it’s only fitting that when Legends got in on the game, they would double their efforts…literally.  This is our second Peggy ‘mate, and our third Peggy figure, ever, so that’s all pretty cool.  What’s more, it takes my complaints about wanting the Hydra base-storming gear from the end of TFA into account!  More looks for Peggy!  Yay! Peggy is a pretty basic ‘mate in terms of construction.  She’s got the hair piece, and that’s really it.  It’s a new piece, and definitely goes with that animated style, but it certainly fits the character.  In fact, I like this piece a bit more than the one used on the movie Peggy.  It just really feels like it gets the character down.  Again, the heavy emphasis here is on the paint.  As with Cap, she’s definitely got a very simplified look about her, but that said, the face still looks remarkably close to Haley Atwell in terms of likeness.  It also seems a little less void of expression than the last ‘mate.  The detailing on the jacket is all pretty sharp looking as well, and this has got to be one of the few times that the somewhat washed out nature of the animated ‘mates didn’t feel totally out of place. What really makes Peggy shine are her accessories.  She gets a hat-wearing hairpiece, a spare torso and arms, and a skirt piece, which effectively allow you to build a second figure, of Peggy in her trench-coated appearance.  It’s another quite distinctive look, and another really strong design for the character.  It also really adds some serious value to a figure that was already really cool, and distracts from the always present issue of the Walgreens sets not getting guns by giving Peggy a much preferred replacement.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve kind of been falling out of Minimates (which is only fair, since so has DST, if I’m honest), but Max has been keeping me at least a little bit invested, and he was nice enough to hook me up with this set earlier in the year.  Cap is kind of a nifty figure, presenting something of a what-if scenario where the line hadn’t evolved so much by the time the MCU films rolled around.  He’s kind of a movie Cap via Minimates Year One, and I think that really works for him.  I’m getting real Series 5 Cap vibes off of this guy.  The prior Peggy was good for the time, and had the novelty of being the only one for a while, but this Peggy is pretty much the ultimate version of the character, with two really great looks and a pretty spot-on likeness.  This set is pretty much all win.

#2442: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA — GAMERVERSE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Injected with an experimental Super-Soldier Serum, Steve Rogers has the peak potential of strength, endurance, and dexterity.”

Alright, I took a bit of a break for the weekend, but let’s jump right back in to Marvel Legends, shall we?  I looked at the comics-based half of the most recent Avengers set last week, so now I’m jumping into the video-game-based segment, all of which hail from Square Enix’s Avengers game, originally due out this May, but recently delayed until September.  I’m kicking things off with the game’s altered take on Captain America!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America is the first of the three Gamerverse-specific figures in the Abomination Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s based on Cap’s standard design from the game.  All of the core team designs have been fairly highly criticized, and Cap’s probably got the worst of it, with the general consensus being that it looks a little bit low-rent cosplay for a Cap design, especially in contrast to the MCU’s far better recieved “real world” adaptations of his classic comics get-up.  I don’t hate it quite as much as others, but I definitely have my qualms with a few of the design choices.  Still, it’s not the worst choice for toy coverage.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Cap’s sporting a brand-new sculpt to replicate the game design.  It’s a pretty spot-on recreation of the models we’ve seen so far, for better or for worse.  It honestly benefits a bit from being seen in three dimensions, as the depth to the various parts of the costume is a little better viewed this way.  Some of the iffier design choices, such as the larger head wings, also look a little less odd here.  His face does seem maybe a touch square, and his hands seem a little small by my metrics, but I do generally like the look of this figure, and Hasbro certainly took advantage of the extra costume details to help keep the sculpt interesting.  The paintwork on this guy is pretty decent, with a little bit of a caveat.  There’s nothing wrong with it from a technical standpoint.  The application is all pretty clean, and they even used the face printing to make him a little more lifelike.  He’s an accurate recreation of the colors from the game.  There in lies the problem.  While the design looks better on the figure from a sculpting standpoint, the colors don’t translate so well.  They’re really just too muted, and I’m not super crazy about some of the color placement.  In particular, I think he’d look better if the white on the shoulders and the blue on the biceps were swapped, and if he had more red overall on the costume.  As it stands, he looks a bit more like an adaptation of Cap’s Secret War costume, rather than his more classic gear.  Cap is a bit light on the accessories front, with just his shield.  It’s an all-new sculpt, representing the slightly tweaked design from the game.  While it’s not a bad design in its own right, it doesn’t stay on his arm very securely, which is a little frustrating, but it does at least plug into his back without any trouble.  Not giving Cap one of the BaF parts is okay, but it’s a shame he didn’t at least get some extra hands or maybe an unmasked head to help fill out the package a little bit more.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While I wasn’t immediately won over by this design, I don’t think it’s the worst thing ever, and I’m a sucker for a decent Captain America, so I was certainly interested in this guy from the get-go.  He wasn’t as high on my list as, say Mar-Vell, but I was a little excited.  Ultimately, he’s not going to win everyone over, but I do think he makes for a really solid Captain America figure, and I think he’s going to look pretty cool alongside Hasbro’s new G.I. Joe line.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this guy to review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2429: Crossbones

CROSSBONES

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Crossbones makes it his mission to take out Captain America, no matter the loss of life at stake.”

Though Black Widow’s cast of supporting characters isn’t quite as widely developed as some of Marvel’s other heroes, she’s spent enough time around both Cap and Iron Man that slotting in some of their characters into her tie-in assortment’s really not the worst fit.  Take, for example, Crossbones, whose bio even mentions his Cap connection.  That said, her time in Cap’s book during Brubaker’s run, as well as both of their turns in the MCU has given them enough connective tissue that Crossbones’ appearance here doesn’t feel all that forced.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Crossbones if figure 5 in the Crimson Dynamo Series of Marvel Legends.  This is Crossbones’ third time getting a comic-based Legends release, all three of them coming in under the Hasbro banner.  The first two, however, were exclusives, making them both rather tricky to get a hold of, even when they were new.  They were also built on the Hulkling body, so they looked more than a little outdated.  This one opts for a more classic take on the character, pulled straight from his ’80s appearances.  The figure stands 6 3/4 inches tall and he’s got 32 points of articulation.  He’s built on the Hyperion body, which I was a little skeptical about, especially since he’s still using the old “pectoral shelf” torso piece.  His design, especially the coloring, does manage to hide it better than most uses of the body, so it’s not terrible.  I may end up throwing Nuke’s tactical vest on him to hide it, though.  He gets a new head and lower legs, as well as new add-ons for his belt/holsters and his wrist pouches.  They all fit well with the body, with the head in particular sitting better on the body than a lot of the ones that have been designed for it.  It’s a fairly nice, fairly basic assortment of parts.  The boots are actually really detailed, and I was a little surprised that they didn’t just leave him with the standard feet for this body.  I’m hardly complaining.  His paintwork is pretty basic as well.  It’s fairly clean overall, though the nose detail on mine is slightly crooked.  Crossbones is packed with two of Cable’s Barrel Break-inspired guns, as well as two of Yon-Rogg’s more sci-fi-y pistols, which look a little more normal sized in Crossbones’ hands.  He also includes the right arm to the Crimson Dynamo Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Crossbones is definitely a formula figure.  He’s a stock body with a few new parts, and stock accessories.  The thing is, this isn’t really an issue for a character like Crossbones, especially a classic Crossbones, so he’s honestly a pretty great way to fill out the assortment without going too crazy on the tooling budget.  I don’t think he’s going to be topping anyone’s list, or anything, but he’s a solid stock figure, and a great addition to the Cap Rogues Gallery.

Crossbones was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2369: Secret War Captain America

SECRET WAR CAPTAIN AMERICA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Recruited by Nick Fury for an undercover mission, Captain America serves SHIELD in the pursuit of justice.”

Comics like to re-use names.  Take, for instance, this figure, and the story he’s sourced from.  Is “Secret War Captain America” from Secret Wars, Marvel’s cross-company event designed to help sell action figures?  Or perhaps Secret Wars II, its sequel?  Or how about Secret Wars, the 2015 cross-company event designed to help sell that comics were still a relevant thing and these crossovers were still totally worth doing and you should really buy them all?  It’s a resounding “no” to all three.  No, he’s from Secret War, a Brian Michael Bendis-written event from 2003, which, despite its name, is completely and totally unrelated to the three other events I listed.  Oh, Bendis.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Secret War Captain America was part of the Abomination Series of Marvel Legends, which was the last of the three Cap-themed Civil War tie-in assortments released in 2016.  Hasbro was eager to get as much mileage as possible out of the new Cap pieces they’d tooled up for the Reaper body, and also needed a third Cap variant, so this guy got the nod, being based on Gabriele Dell’Otto’s stealth uniform Cap from the previously mentioned event series.  Cap’s costume from this series is apparently a favorite for toy companies, since its had both a Legends and a Minimates release, while none of the other heroes costumes have graced toy form.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  As I noted above, this guy was built on the Reaper body, specifically the one with all the Cap-specific parts that was first used for the Cap-Wolf figure.  That means he’s got the flared boots and gloves.  He also re-uses the head from the RoML Ultimate Captain America, since it lacks the 3D head wings of Cap-Wolf’s standard head.  Also, doesn’t have that same horrible, hideous face, so that’s a plus.  He does get one new piece, an add-on for his belt, which appears to be fairly accurate to the source material.  Of all the things to spring for new tooling on, this one seems a little odd, but to be fair, it’s really the only new piece he needed.  The main changes are made via the paint, which really gets the stealthier colors of the design down. He’s still got the trappings of your standard Captain America color scheme, but toned way down to allow for something slightly stealthier…even if it’s not like he’s really actually hiding who he is.  Whatever the case, it looks cool.  Cap is packed with the same shield as all of the post-Reaper Caps, and also includes the throwing effect for the shield, which I reviewed with the 80th Cap, but was debuted with this particular figure.  As I noted in that review, it’s a fun extra piece, and definitely added some pop to what could have been a drab release.  Cap was also packed with the right arm of the Abomination Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

At the time that this assortment hit in 2016, I was kinda between jobs, so I didn’t really have the funds to go all-in on it (nor did the line-up or the Build-A-Figure really inspire me to do so), meaning I only picked up the figures I really, really wanted.  Cap didn’t quite make it on that list, and I just never saw him in person again by the time I had the money to spend on him.  Fortunately, All Time managed to get a few of them in as part of a trade, and so I was able to grab one for my Cap collection.  He’s not a standard version of the character, but the stealth look is a cool one, and he was certainly an improvement on the Cap Wolf figure.

Cap was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys. If you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2290: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The all-American hero Captain America charges into battle for justice.”

Back in 2012, Marvel Legends was kind of in hibernation, meaning the main line of Avengers figures were in the smaller 3 3/4-inch scale.  Walmart, however, carried an exclusive line of Legends-styled figures for the movie, to at least give us (most) of the main cast.  These figures were still a little rarer than the usual release, however, and over the course of the last eight years, Hasbro have done what they can to get some of those figures (or at least those looks) back to market.  A lengthy flashback sequence (plus an involved fight scene) in Endgame proved a fairly good excuse to put back out the first movie’s take on Cap.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America (affectionately referred to as “America’s Ass” Cap by the fanbase, due to the movie’s commentary on the costume’s…benefits to Cap’s physique) is part of the third Endgame-themed series of Marvel Legends.  While the assortment was officially a fall 2019 release, there was a definite split in distribution, which caused a lot of the figures to be pretty scarce until around the first week of 2020.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  As far as the sculpt is concerned, this figure’s completely re-use, though not all from the same source.  The majority of the figure is the old Walmart release, with the head of the Quantum Suit Cap (which I had pegged for re-use when it debuted).  The head was the most inaccurate part of the original figure, so the replacement is certainly an improvement.  Unfortunately, while the head may work in modern times, the body, though good in 2012, is really out of date eight years later.  The articulation on the hips his definitely the weakest bit, but the lack of proper wrists also holds him back, as does his limited range of the shoulders.  The head also sits a little high on the neck, and takes some pretty careful posing to not look super goony.  Also, despite the whole “America’s Ass” commentary from the movie, the old sculpt definitely doesn’t do that aspect of the costume any favors.  Obviously, Hasbro was looking for a figure to save some tooling costs on, but ultimately, this is a figure that should have warranted an all-new body sculpt; the old one just doesn’t quite pass muster anymore.  The paintwork on this figure changes things up a bit from the original release; the brighter colors of the Walmart figure have been toned down a fair bit, resulting in a more film-accurate color scheme.  Additionally, he’s got the face printing on the head, making the figure look a little more lifelike.  Cap gets the upgraded shield from the 10th Anniversary line in place of the old one, as well as one of the arms for the Thor Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This Cap figure fills me with mixed emotions…which seems to have been a running theme for Cap Legends in 2019, honestly.  I never hated the 2012 costume the way others did, so I’m not put off by the prospect of an update, especially given it’s prominence in Endgame.  The 2012 figure certainly wasn’t bad for his time, and I reviewed him quite favorably when I looked at him back in 2018. Unfortunately, the rehash feels kind of hollow, especially when compared to some of the other work Hasbro put out last year, and it’s also hard not to view this figure as taking the regular retail slot from the standard Endgame Cap, who would have made far more sense in one of the standard assortments, and who still proves particularly hard to acquire for a lot of fans.  Obviously, there are things behind the scenes at Hasbro that I’m not privy to, so I can’t know exactly why they chose to do things this way, but it doesn’t stop this Cap figure from feeling somewhat lackluster, and not quite what I wanted.

Cap was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys, and he’s currently in-stock at their store, here. And, if you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2140: Captain America & Peggy Carter

CAPTAIN AMERICA & PEGGY CARTER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

When it comes to the MCU, I’m a very big Captain America fan.  His solo outings are all highly ranked among my favorites, with The First Avenger and Winter Soldier being two of my very favorite amongst the line.  I have a particular soft spot for TFA, which helped to remind me just how much I liked the character, and is my go-to MCU film for re-watching.  The fact that the Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years sub-line only gave us Red Skull left me really feeling the lack not just of one of Cap’s coolest looks, but also of one of the MCU’s most important characters.  Fortunately, the 80 Years of Marvel line is swooping in and offering up both of those very things, in one convenient package.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Cap and Peggy are one of the two exclusive 80 Years of Marvel two-packs (the other being Iron Man and Iron Spider from Infinity War), and they are available via Amazon.  While I’m still iffy on how many of these things are being handed off as exclusives, at least this one is relatively easy to acquire.

CAPTAIN AMERICA

Driven to help out his country during World War II, Steve Rogers enlists in the military as part of Project Rebirth. After he impresses the scientist in charge of the project, Steve is injected with Super Soldier Serum, increasing his strength and physique. He becomes the patriotic hero Captain America, fighting for freedom throughout the world.”

Before he became a full-fledged costumed hero, but after he’d given up being a patriotic monkey, Steve throws togething this distinctive number to go and rescue the POWs from the Hydra camp, in perhaps my favorite sequence of the movie.  Hasbro wasn’t doing dedicated Legends for the movies when The First Avenger hit, so obviously there was no chance for a Rescue Cap there, but even worse, they didn’t even include one in their smaller-scale line.  To get this look previously, you either had to settle for the Minimate or shell out the big bucks for the Hot Toys version.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Cap is sporting an all-new sculpt, though it’s one that’s already been earmarked for re-use for the upcoming Legendary Riders WWII Cap figure.  It’s clearly been designed for accuracy to this particular look first and foremost, however.  After a number of MCU Cap figures that were a little bit scrawny, this one does a respectable job of looking the part.  The neck is a touch longer than I’d like, and some of the details on the uniform are softer than other recent offerings, but by and large, it’s a solid sculpt, and does the design justice.  Cap includes two different heads, which are slightly difficult to differentiate at first glance.  The one he comes wearing is a more straight-forward un-helmeted head, which has Evans with his pre-Winter Soldier hair.  It’s a decent likeness, though again softer than some recent sculpts.  As an added bonus, it’s the first Evans head to be compatible with the Quantum Suit body, which I was certainly happy about.  The second head has a far more compact hairstyle, meant to fit under the included helmet.  While they could have probably gotten away with just including a separate head with the helmet permanently attached, this way he can carry the empty helmet when using the non-helmet haired head.  I can certainly appreciate that.  Cap’s paintwork is all pretty standard.  The basics are all covered, and he’s using the face printing technique, which works pretty well here.  He’s packed with his original shield, a pistol, and a knife.  Both the pistol and the knife can be stashed on the figure, while the shield pretty much always goes on the arm.  Also included is the unpainted version of his standard shield.  It’s just a repaint of the Studios shield mold, meaning it has the star at the center, which isn’t technically accurate, but it’s close enough for such a relatively minor extra, and I’m honestly just happy to see it turn up at all.

PEGGY CARTER

A British agent with the Strategic Scientific Reserve, Peggy Carter is a capable soldier and strategist. She is part of Project Rebirth, which developed the Super Soldier Serum that was injected into Steve Rogers. When Project Rebirth ends, Peggy continues to assist Steve as he becomes the world’s first superhero, Captain America.”

The lack of a proper Peggy Carter figure has been one of the most glaring problems for just about every MCU-based line (barring Minimates, which was previously the only way to get Peggy).  Heck, we got a figure of the MCU version of *Sharon* Carter before Peggy.  Do you know how crazy that is?  It’s mega crazy, let me tell you.  It’s about time she finally got her due, with a figure based on her primary appearance from The First Avenger.  The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and has 29 points of articulation.  While she has the expected issues of restricted hip articulation thanks to the skirt, beyond that she’s actually surprisingly well articulated.  The waist joint in particular has some really solid range, effectively negating the lack of any mid-torso joint.  Definitely a good example of tailoring the articulation to the design.  Peggy’s sporting an all-new sculpt, and one I don’t imagine we’ll be seeing again soon (unless Hasbro feels like giving us a TV show Peggy, which I certainly wouldn’t mind).  It’s another strong offering, working the articulation in well, while still getting down a pretty realistic set of proportions and properly adapting the details of the uniform.  While the head’s not a spot-on Hayley Atwell likeness, it’s strong enough to sell who this is meant to be, and it’s about on par with the Evans likeness on Cap.  Peggy’s paintwork is decent for the most part.  The face paint is a bit messy on mine, and there was some excess glue from the hair, but boy do I love that the got the seams on the backs of her legs.  That’s a really cool touch!  Peggy includes a Thompson machine gun, or at least I’m saying that she does.  It’s packed next to Cap in the packaging, but Peggy clearly is meant to hold something, and does use a Thompson in the film, so I’m counting it as hers.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I love The First Avenger.  I love Rescue Cap.  I love Peggy.  There was no way I wasn’t buying this set as soon as I got the chance.  That made it slightly distressing when we went so long without any release information on this set.  It was one of the first 80 Years offerings shown off, but ended up as one of the last to be placed.  It kind of worked out in my favor, though, since the announcement that it would be at Amazon came alongside it being in-stock at Amazon, meaning I had it two days after it was officially solicited.  That was very nice.  This set isn’t without flaws.  Cap’s sculpt is a little softer than I’d like, and Peggy’s face paint is iffy, but honestly I’m just beyond thrilled to finally have both of them in my collection.

#2133: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“As World War II unfolds, and super-powered beings emerge across the world, the patriotic hero Captain America is revealed, ushering in a new age of Marvels.”

It seems like not too long ago, in a review of another Captain America figure no less, I discussed the ramifications of making a good figure into a store exclusive.  Really, when your get down to it, it’s not really about being exclusive to any store at all, but more one store in particular, who seems to be getting a lot of exclusives at the moment, and doesn’t have the greatest history of backing toy exclusives.  The store, of course, it Walmart, who for some inexplicable reason have managed to net their second Captain America exclusive of the year in a year when Captain America hype is about as high as its ever been.  Seems like poor planning if you ask me, but no one did, so I guess I’ll stop rambling about it.  How about I ramble about something I’m a little more qualified to ramble on about: actual toy reviews!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America is part of the Marvel: 80 Years sub-line of Marvel Legends.  The 80 Years line is effectively just taking the place of last years Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years line, but with comic figures thrown into the mix as well.  Alongside Iron Man and Thor, Cap is part of a trio of figures inspired by the work of famed comics painter Alex Ross.  While those two are standard releases showing up pretty much everywhere, he’s only at Walmart.  Since there’s no markings of him being an exclusive, there are rumors that he may be offered up to other retailers at a later time, but as of right now they’re just unfounded rumors.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and has 32 points of articulation.  The last couple of comic-based Caps were based on the Reaper body, and this figure is at the very least Reaper adjacent.  He shares his forearms, legs beneath the hips, and his belt with the Red Onslaught Cap (and by extension Red Guardian and Secret War Cap).  Those are the good parts of the Reaper body, so that’s all well and good.  He then gets a new head, torso, upper arms, pelvis, and hips, which make him look sufficiently new.  After years of the thug face (which hit critical mass with the Red Onslaught Cap), we finally get a new set of features for the comic book Steve Rogers.  There’s some definite Ross-influence occurring here, and that’s certainly a plus, since it plays true to the classic version of the character.  It’s a nice sculpt, and more than just the face, I also really like the texturing and stitching on his mask.  The new torso and shoulders give us a detail we haven’t seen on Cap since the early Hasbro days: sculpted scale-mail.  The lack of the scales was one of the major prevailing complaints about the RO Cap (well, after that hideous head), and Hasbro had even addressed it somewhat with the paint change-up on the Vintage reissue of the figure, but this time around they’ve gone all out and actually sculpted them properly.  As someone who runs hot and cold on the scales, I have to say, they really add a lot to this figure, as goes that three dimensional star.  There’s just a lot of pop.  Cap’s paintwork continues the Ross inspiration, going for a slightly darker palette than we usually see for a comics Cap.  It’s not a bad look, but I honestly wouldn’t mind seeing a repaint in slightly brighter colors.  As it is, there’s plenty of very strong work on this figure, and I definitely dig the metallic accents on the scales.  Cap is packed with two sets of hands, his trusty shield, a throwing effect with hand attached, and a second head.  The usual gripping hands are included here, but in addition, we *finally* get some fists for a Reaper-based release, which was majorly overdue, and is low-key one of my favorite things about this guy.  The shield is the same one Hasbro’s been using for a few years for the comic figures.  It’s a little undersized, and the star is off-center on mine, but it’s a serviceable piece.  It can be mounted on the throwing effect, which is the same one first introduced on the Secret War Cap, and is definitely a fun extra.  The second head gives Cap a slightly more stern expression.  I’m not certain if it’s based on a specific take on the character, but I don’t like it quite as much as the standard.  I honestly would have preferred an unmasked head, but I can see this one getting some play if you’re really jonesing for a John Walker Cap.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Since being disappointed by the Red Onslaught Cap, I’ve been waiting for Hasbro to do a more proper Classic Cap, and when this figure was shown off at Toy Fair, I was psyched.  I was less psyched when he was confirmed as a Walmart-exclusive.  While this one ended up being much easier for me to find than the Endgame version, it was still a little bit of a hassle tracking him down, and I can foresee him being one that a chunk of people miss.  Hopefully Hasbro will have another release of this mold in their back pocket for those who can’t track him down.  In the meantime, this is the best comic-styled Cap we’ve ever gotten, and I really dig him.

#2085: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA

AVENGERS: UNITED THEY STAND (TOY BIZ)

“One of the original members of the Avengers, Steve Rogers – better known as Captain America – has always been the ultimate Wielding Soldier. Wearing the patriotic colors of the American flag, and wielding his trusty shield, he fights alongside his teammates in the name of truth and justice.”

Well, this isn’t a Spider-Man review.  What gives?  Fear not, dear readers, the Molten Man series reviews will return tomorrow,  but I’m taking a slight detour in honor of Steve Rogers’ birthday, July 4th!  Oh, also it’s some American holiday as well.  Whatever the case, I’m taking a look at a Captain America figure, because that’s how I do.  In the ’90s, Captain America figures were nowhere near as plentiful as they are now, and somewhat astoundingly, Toy Biz’s huge 5-inch line only spawned five figures of him over the course of the whole decade.  Today, I’m looking at one that just barely squeaked in under the radar in 1999, as part of the tie-in line for Avengers: United They Stand.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America was part of the first series of the Avengers: United They Stand line (though, like other Toy Biz tie-in lines from the same time, both Series 1 and 2 hit shelves simultaneously).  Though not a series regular in the cartoon, Cap did have a prominent guest star appearance, and would have been joined by fellow guest star Iron Man had Series 3 ever been produced.  The figure stands 5 3/4 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation.  If the sculpt on this guy looks familiar, it’s because I’ve looked at most of it before.  In a line otherwise made up of entirely new sculpts, Cap re-used the body of the Electro Spark Cap from the ’90s Spider-Man line.  Sort of an interesting choice, since it didn’t really match Cap’s design from the show, and all of the packaging actually showed the Marvel Vs Capcom Cap instead.  As I noted the first time I reviewed the sculpt, It’s quite large and exaggerated, which does make him look rather goofy.  He gets a new head and an Avengers belt buckle to differentiate him.  The head is a decent enough piece, and certainly feels more like your usual Captain America than the Electro Spark one, but it’s also really small, especially when compared to the body.  This only furthers the body’s proportion issues.  Cap’s paintwork is actually quite bright and eye-catching, and an improvement over the prior use of this mold.  There are some minor issues with bleed-over, but they’re as prefaced: minor.  Cap was packed with his usual shield, once again saddled with a gimmick, but this time not one that total destroys the aesthetics.  It’s just got a little magnet imbedded on one side, which triggers an “explosion” on the included droid accessory, where part of it pops out.  It never worked super well, but it also didn’t really ruin the figure, so I can’t complain.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The United They Stand figures were pretty hard to find when they were released, so I got them as I found them.  Cap was nearer the end of my completion of the set, fourth to last.  I found him on a trip with my parents to a Kmart, which was sort of out of the ordinary for us.  It also marked an important change in my collecting, as my parents both tried to assure me that I pretty much already had this figure.  They were right, but still bought the figure for me, starting me down a path of buying nearly identical variants of the characters I like.

#2061: Captain America

CAPTAIN AMERICA

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Steve Rogers prepares for the ultimate battle to save the universe and channels all of his strength as Captain America.”

When is an amazing figure not an amazing release?  When the circumstances surrounding that release mean that not everyone who wants it is going to be able to get it.  Exclusives became the nature of the collecting beast years ago, as big box stores began to throw their buying power into guaranteeing they’d have something you couldn’t get anywhere else.  Walmart in particular has a reputation of refusing to carry certain toylines at all until they are granted an exclusive.  They didn’t carry initial assortments of Toy Biz’s Marvel Legends for this very reason, and it was because of this that Best of Marvel Legends came to exist.  Later in the line, they would get an entire series (the Giant-Man Series) to themselves, and boy was that just a pleasant experience for everyone involved.  And if you believed me there, I have a one-handed Giant-Man I’d like to sell you.  I assure you, he’s much better than one with both hands.  In recent years, Walmart exclusives have become less of an issue, but less because they actually got better at making them available and more because toymakers have started giving them less-essential stuff when possible.  I’ve not had too much trouble with the last few Legends releases, but then again, I’ve not felt like they were essential either (I also didn’t have the nightmarish experience getting Corvous Glaive that some collectors did).  Then today’s figure was announced, and I was again less than enthused by this whole exclusives game.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Captain America is the third Walmart-exclusive Legends release this year, but he’s actually the second to hit stores because, as of this writing, their Captain Marvel exclusive still hasn’t been seen anywhere domestically.  Cap actually has had a pretty fast turnaround, as we only found out about his existence two weeks ago, and he seems to be be arriving in full force, at least in physical stores.  He’s based on his newly-designed costume from the final battle of Endgame, and is what I’d classify as the “definitive” Cap look for this movie.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  Since Winter Soldier, all of the standard MCU Caps have been built on the same body.  While I loved it when it was new, that body has grown more and more out of place as the line has moved forward.  We got a taste of something new with the Infinity War Cap last year, which was part of why I was so disappointed when the Marvel Studios release went right back to the WS body, rather than retooling the new one.  I was crossing my fingers that Hasbro wouldn’t make the same mistake when it came time for this costume.  I’m happy to report they didn’t, and, in fact, they’ve given him an almost entirely new sculpt.  From the thigh down, he shares his legs with the IW release, and he has the helmeted head from the Studios offering (which is one of my few nits with this figure, because it means he’s got the smaller ball-joint of the WS body, meaning we once again have a Cap whose heads aren’t compatible with the Quantum Suit body).  Beyond that, everything else is new to this figure.  There’s a second head included, with another go at an unmasked Steve Rogers.  I liked the Studios unmasked head a lot, but I think this one beats it.  They really got Evans’ look from the movie down.  The build of the body takes note from the IW release, and bulks Cap up a fair bit, so he no longer looks quite as shrimpy when compared to the other MCU releases.  The detailing on the uniform is some of the best we’ve seen on a  Hasbro Cap, with the “scales” on his torso and shoulders being a real highlight of the figure.  I also quite like how they’ve made the shoulder pads floating pieces, so that they can slip over the torso when you’re posing him.  It helps to preserve the look and avoid restricting his motion on his shoulders.  The paintwork on this Cap is pretty good, thought I will say parts of it are a step down from other recent releases.  Both heads make use of the face printing, which looks very nice as always.  The paint on the helmet is also improved from the Studios release, which I was quit happy about.  The rest of the body is far more basic in its application, and also quite sloppy in several spots, especially on the abdomen.  It’s not as bad as some of the stuff we used to get from Hasbro, but it could definitely be much better.  In addition to his unmasked head, Cap also gets two more extras.  The first is his shield, which uses the sculpt from the Studios release, but this time has a fancy battle-damaged paint scheme.  Unfortunately, his left hand is still in a fist, so he can’t quite hold it right.  Fortunately, the hands can be swapped between this and the IW release, should you want a gripping hand.  His final accessory is rather cleverly hidden behind his shield in the package.  It’s Mjolnir, which he wields in epic fashion during Endgame‘s final battle.  It’s just a re-use of the previous MCU mold, but it’s still a fun inclusion, and it was nice of them to hide it in the package.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I noted in my review of the basic release of this costume, I walked out of the theatre ready to buy a figure of this design.  It was my assumption that he’d be showing up in one of the regular assortments later down the line, but I did have a little concern in the back of my mind that he might wind up as an exclusive of some sort.  I was non-plussed to find out it was Walmart.  Fortunately, I found him with only a few stops, but it did require me buying a figure with a sincerely jacked up package.  This figure is a really, really good figure, and the MCU Cap I’ve been wanting ever since Hasbro stepped up their MCU game.  He’s the definitive MCU Cap, and making him an exclusive to a chain who is notoriously bad about actually getting their exclusives out there seems like a serious misstep on Hasbro’s part.  My only hope is that they have some sort of an ace up their sleeve on this one.  He’s got a lot of new parts for a one-off release, and I can’t stress enough that he really feels like too big a figure just to be a Walmart exclusive.  Time will tell.  Until then, hopefully this figure won’t be too hard to find.