#2395: Giant-Size X-Men

CYCLOPS, WOLVERINE, COLOSSUS, STORM, NIGHTCRAWLER, & THUNDERBIRD

MARVEL MINIMATES

The first year of Marvel Minimates was all kind of consolidated around the summer of 2003, so it was a little while before we well and truly got a follow-up, but they kickstarted their second year off with a bang.  After focussing purely on the Ultimate incarnation of the X-Men, for their first two entries in year two, DST decided to circle back around and give us classic X-Men in spades.  When it comes to classic X-Men, it’s hard to get more classic than the cover of Giant-Size X-Men #1, which is what the line’s first dedicated boxed set was based around.  So, without further ado, let’s jump right in!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The Giant-Size X-Men boxed set hit in January of 2004, and was the first boxed set to be available through specialty shops.  It (and the AFX-exclusive Professor X and Magneto) introduced the totally windowless packaging that would become the norm for the line for the next four years.  In the case of this particular set, it was probably the nicest box the line produced, replicating the cover to the original issue quite nicely.  I’ve included a shot of it here, courtesy of minimatedatabase.com.  Of the six figures contained in this set, five would eventually be made available as part of a set of Target exclusive two-packs (Thunderbird wound up as the odd man out), with the major difference between the two releases being C3-style feet on the later figures.

CYCLOPS

Already two ‘mates in by this point, this set finally gave us Cyclops with his classic cowled appearance.  It wouldn’t be the last time we’d see it, even just for a short while, but it sure was important at the time.  He’s built on the standard old-style body, so he’s 2 1/4 inches tall and he’s got 14 points of articulation.  He’s got one add-on piece for his mask/visor, which is a pretty nicely sculpted piece.  I always appreciated how the visor on it was so instantly unique from the one on the Series 3 Cyclops.  It was also a nice enough piece that it lasted through to 2010 before being retired.  The rest of things are handled through paint, and admittedly not a lot of it.  Of the six figures included here, Scott was by far the least detailed, with not even chest detailing to make him stand out.  Given how he was always so creatively shaded in the comics, it’s a shame they didn’t go for that here.  They’d end up fixing that on later figures.

WOLVERINE

Already two ‘mates in by this point, this set finally gave us Wolverine with his classic…cowled appearance…wait, I just did this.  Sorry!  I mean, yeah, it’s the same deal as Cyclops, though.  Woverine’s two prior releases lacked his distinctive mask, so this was our first shot at it.  He got a new add-on piece for it, as well as new boots, and the same clawed hands from the two Series 3 releases.  It’s not a bad selection of parts, but it definitely didn’t hold up as well as the Cyclops mask did.  These parts would see only one more use before being retired.  Everything else is paint, and that includes the shoulder pads, which was an…interesting choice.  Clearly, they’re a three dimensional item, but they were just painted on here.  The separate pieces that came later were a better fit.  The rest of the paintwork is pretty decent.  Like Scott, he doesn’t have any sort of musculature on his chest, but he does at least get his tiger stripes, so it’s not a total blank void.

COLOSSUS

Notably missing from the Series 3 X-Men line-up (despite Ultimate Colossus being a prominent member at the time), Colossus made his debut here.  He was one of the most involved ‘mates in the set in terms of parts count, with add-ons for his hair, tunic/belt, and boots.  All of the parts were new at the time, and they’re honestly the best of the parts introduced here.  They just do a really great job of replicating the feel of the character, and I always liked how they bulked him up a bit when compared to the others in the set.  In addition to having the most extra parts, Colossus also had by far the most involved paint work of the whole set, and honestly of most of the line at this point.  The banding on his metal skin wraps all the way around on his arms and legs, and he’s got a fully detailed front and back to the torso block under his tunic.  His face also is just so full of character.  It’s honestly a little shocking that this guy and Cyclops are from the same set.

STORM

Storm had gotten one ‘mate prior to this, but that was a modern design, so the classic was kind of needed, I guess.  Her original costume is pretty darn distinctive, and I think more properly captured that regal side of the character.  She had add-ons for her hair and cape.  The hair is huge, to comical standards, honestly, and makes her quite tricky to keep standing.  The cape, on the other hand, is small and very understated, and rather easily missed, I feel.  That was kind of the nature of the capes, at this point, though, so I can’t really say it was out of the ordinary or weird.  The paint is alright on her, but not the same level as Colossus.  She has the basics, and she does at least get torso detailing of some sort, so she’s a bit ahead of Cyclops and Wolverine.  That said, it’s also a lot messier in application than the others in this set.

NIGHTCRAWLER

Nightcrawler has been pretty sparse when it comes to Minimates.  This was his first, and remained his only until 2011.  So, this guy had to keep us content for 7 whole years.  Certainly, he must have been really good, right?  …Ehhh.  He did get a lot of new parts, with add-ons for the hair, chest cap, and tail, as well as unique hands and feet.  The hair seems a little too demonic, if I’m honest, but the hands, feet, and tail all are pretty dope.  The biggest problem I’ve got with this guy is that chest cap, which bulks him way up, despite the fact that Nightcrawler should actually be the smallest of the six figures included here. Why would they do this?  And then not fix it for soooooo long?  The paint was okay on this guy, at least.  The face again leans more into the demonic thing, but at least that fits okay with the GSXM-stylings.

THUNDERBIRD

The one truly exclusive figure in the set, this Thunderbird wouldn’t see a re-issue at all, and the character wouldn’t appear again until 2016, when we got another GSXM-set.  He’s the one that seems to diverge the most from the comics appearance, falling back more into a general ‘mate aesthetic.  He had a new hair piece and shoulder pads, both of which would remain unique.  They’re…well, they’re there.  Neither’s all that impressive, but I guess they aren’t bad either. The bit of his forehead that’s visible on the hairpiece looks really odd, and he’s missing the feathers from the back of his headband.  The paintwork brings in a few more inaccuracies.  He’s got visible pupils, which he shouldn’t, and his feet are the wrong color (they should be red).  Also, his face just doesn’t feel at all like Thunderbird.  I could see it passing for Warpath, but definitely not Thunderbird.  At least he got torso detailing?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Like a fool, an absolute fool, I passed on this set when it came out.  I saw it at Cosmic Comix, I had the money to spend, and I dropped on the DC Direct import of the Batman Kubricks instead.  Why?  WHY!?!  I was young and stupid, that’s why.  This set’s never been super plentiful, and was going for a bit on the aftermarket for a while, so I just never got one.  I finally ended up getting the Series 68 set, and figured that was good enough, but I still had this little nagging need for this set too.  Fortunately, it came into All Time as part of a big Minimates collection they bought last fall, so, hey, I finally got it.  Honestly, this set hasn’t aged so well, but it’s really worth the price of admission just for that Colossus.  That’s still the best version of him the line produced!

As I mentioned above,  I got this set from my friends at All Time Toys.  They’ve still got a lot of that Minimate collection, and other cool toys both old and new, so please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2367: Colossus

COLOSSUS

MARVEL UNIVERSE (HASBRO)

“When you weigh almost 2,000 pounds and can’t be stopped by any obstacle on Earth, the term ‘fair fight’ doesn’t normally apply…unless your opponent can lift 75 tons and comes encased in impenetrable organic armor.  The unstoppable Juggernaut!  The unbreakable Colossus!  Look out!”

So, that bio might reveal some things about how this figure *should* be reviewed, which is to say with another figure, since he’s clearly part of a two-pack.  But that ain’t how I roll…well, this time, at least, because I just have the one of them.  I definitely dig me some Colossus, and he definitely has a tendency to really rock as an action figure, which really only makes me dig him that much more, and, well, here we are, I guess.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Colossus is one half of a Marvel Universe “Greatest Battles” two-pack, which is what the Comic Packs became after Hasbro rounded out their Secret Wars celebration.  Like the larger-scale set I looked at a while back, this pack paired off Colossus with Juggernaut, in reference to their battle in X-Men #102 (which was, unsurprisingly, the comic that came included with this pack).  This figure would mark Colossus’s third time in the Marvel Universe line, and following a single-carded release based on his Astonishing costume, and a differently colored “classic” Colossus in the Giant-Size X-Men boxed set.  The figure stands 4 3/4 inches tall and he has 25 points of articulation.  This Colossus draws from the same parts bank as his two predecessors, and is in fact sculpturally identical to the GSXM version, which was just a minor retool of the Astonishing version.  A number of these parts would also later be used for Death’s Head, who I’ve previously reviewed.  While the earlier MU sculpts were definitely wonky, but the time that Colossus was introduced, Hasbro had the formula down really well, and it results in a very nice sculpt for Piotr.  Honestly, I think it’s even a little bit better than the recent Legends sculpt, certainly on the head, at least.  Even his poseability is pretty good, especially for his stature.  There’s no real weak points in the movement, and his neck in particular has a fantastic range.  Really, the only downside to the sculpt is the same thing that afflicted so many MU figures: he’s got some real trouble standing.  Even then, it’s not as bad as some figures in the line.  Throw some ankle rockers on this guy and he’d be pretty much perfect.  The only thing that really differentiates this guy from the GSXM release is how he’s colored.  While that one went for a “real world” color with actual silver, this one opts for stricter comic book coloring, so the colors are (mostly) flat.  It’s a different look, and I’m not sure it works quite as well as the straight silver, but I do kinda dig the only slightly pearlescent grey, in a sort of a kitschy-retro sort of a way.  It reminds me of his appearance on Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends, or even the old bendy figure Colossus (which was actually my first Colossus figure).  Colossus included no accessories, unless you want to count that whole second figure that was in the pack.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I didn’t get Colossus new, but I have had him for a little while.  Some time back, Cosmic Comix got a bunch of Marvel Universe figures in loose, and had them all out for pretty good prices.  I had the standard Juggernaut from the line, as well as the Astonishing Colossus, so I didn’t pay this set much mind as a two-pack.  However, this guy on his own, as a easy way of getting a classic Colossus, definitely had some appeal to me.  The sculpt is one of the finest the line produced, and the paint may be a little out there, but I can appreciate him for what they were trying to do.  Maybe he wouldn’t be anyone’s fist choice, but I really like him.

#2334: Colossus & Juggernaut

COLOSSUS & JUGGERNAUT

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“1976 Saw the release of X-Men 102, with its iconic cover featuring the mighty Colossus and unstoppable Juggernaut locked in combat, setting the stage for a rivalry that would shake the Marvel universe For decades.”

Do you ever feel like your intro’s been stolen right out from under you by Hasbro’s own copy writers?  Just me?  Yeah, I guess that might be a more exclusively me sort of an issue.  Well, you know, 1976 did see the release of X-Men 102…which, uhh, had this here iconic cover, and it–ah, it’s just not the same.  Look, you guys know the song and dance here.  I’m just gonna get right to reviewing the action figures.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Colossus and Juggernaut are the second of the two comic-based “80 Years of Marvel” Legends two-packs (the other being Wolverine and Hulk).  As with that one, it pairs one BaF-sized figure with one smaller one, although smaller is certainly a relative term in this case.  As the text above notes, the two are themed around their X-Men #102 appearance, though the individual figures do more or less adhere to the line’s already established style.

COLOSSUS

A mutant with the ability to transform his body into metal, Peter Rasputin left his farm community to join the X-Men and fight for good.”

Colossus was a fairly early addition to Legends in the Toy Biz days, appearing just five series into the line.  That figure was one of the line’s best, and replacing him was certainly a daunting task.  When Hasbro finally got around to releasing a Piotr figure of their own, they opted for a more modern appearance that wasn’t actually a direct replacement, but we all kind of knew a proper classic version would come around eventually.  It took three years, but here he is!  The figure stands just shy of 8 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  This guy makes moderate use of the parts from the previous Colossus figure, namely the head, arms, and pelvis.  The torso, wrist bands, belt, legs, and feet are new to this guy.  The new parts are all very nicely handled, and I like the extensive selection of character-specific elements.  The old parts I’m admittedly slightly iffy on.  I liked the previous figure a lot, but he was from three years ago, and even in that time they’ve really made some strides forward, so things like the range of motion on the arms is a little disappointing.  Also, I understand Hasbro opting to re-use the clean shaven head from the last figure, but for me it just doesn’t quite feel right for a ’70s/’80s Colossus.  Were this, say, the Jim Lee design, it would be fine, but he lacks that particular flair of character that Cockrum and Byrne drew him with.  It’s not a bad sculpt at all, but slightly misses the mark for me.  Colossus’s paintwork is clean, bright, and bold, which is honestly a first for a Legends Colossus, since both the Toy Biz one and Hasbro’s prior figure went for a much murkier palette.  I like this look, and it reminds me a bit of the Marvel Select figure, which isn’t a bad thing.  Colossus is packed with two sets of hands, one in fists, and one in an open pose.  They match the hands included with the previous figure, but instead of one of each, now we get matching pairs.

JUGGERNAUT

Cain Marko possesses superhuman strength and extreme durability that allows him to rampage through any situation as an unstoppable juggernaut of force.”

Juggernaut’s last time in Legends wasn’t long before Colossus’s, since he was the Build-A-Figure for the prior year and all.  I reviewed that one back when it was new, and I liked it a fair bit then.  Of course, the trouble with Build-A-Figures is that sometimes one or two of the figures that include their pieces are hard to get, making completing them quite tricky, so Hasbro’s seen fit to do a slight redux of that release for this two-pack.  Like that one, this figure stands 9 1/2 inches tall and has 28 points of articulation.  The sculpt is almost exactly the same.  The helmet is ever so slightly different, being a little smoother in texture than the first one.  He also ditches the original figure’s belt in order to be more accurate to the older Juggernaut appearances.  Further changing things up is the paintwork, which trades in the more strictly brown colors of the last figure for a much redder palette, which is again a far more classic look.  He also ditches the pupilled eyes from the last year for straight white ones, with sort of a shaded effect over the eyes for a slightly more dramatic appearance.  It’s probably the one change I don’t feel is an outright improvement, but it’s not a bad look either.  While the original Juggernaut was a Build-A-Figure, and therefore didn’t get any accessories, this guy actually gets quite an assortment.  There’s an extra unmasked head, a torn up helmet piece to go with it, and a spare set of open hands to trade out for the BaF’s closed fists.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Classic Colossus has been on my list since the more modern one hit three years ago, so he served as the major selling point for me on this particular set, with Juggernaut more or less just being along for the ride.  That said, I definitely dig the two of them being paired together, since it really calls back to their scenes together in Pryde of the X-Men, which remains a defining X-Men entry for me.  In hand, Colossus is okay, but has his definite flaws.  Juggernaut on the other hand takes the already pretty awesome Build-A-Figure and just builds more awesome into it, making this a truly fantastic version of the character.

I got this pair from my friends All Time Toys, where they are currently in stock here If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#1977: Rogue & Colossus

ROGUE & COLOSSUS

MARVEL MINIMATES

The X-Men are a team with distinctive eras.  The late ’80s, just preceding the Jim Lee-designed re-launch of the ’90s, was known as the Outback-era, when the team find themselves in the Australian Outback.  It was during this era that Rogue really came into her own on the team, and Colossus found himself a more prominent figure than before.  How fitting that the pair would make their way into Marvel Minimates‘ Outback-inspired Series 47.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

This pairing was part of the aforementioned Series 47 of Marvel Minimates, which arrived at retail in late October of 2012.

ROGUE

“Unable to touch others, Anna Marie saw her mutant ability to absorb memories, powers and life energy as a curse. But after fighting the X-Men as part of the evil Brotherhood, she later sought them out to ask for help and eventually joined the team.”

Rogue has been a prominent member of the team since Marvel Minimates‘ launch, so she had found her way into the line-up four times before this figure’s release.  This one stands out as distinctly different than the others, calling back to before yellow became a prominent color in her palette.  The figure makes use of one add-on piece for her hair, which was new to this figure.  It’s a nice piece, definitely capturing her ’80s ‘do well.  The squared-off nature of the style actually lends itself quite naturally to the blocky stylings of the Minimate base body.  Beyond that, she’s just a basic ‘mate body, which suits the design.  The figure’s paintwork is clean, and eye-catching.  The metallic green pairs well with the black, and the detail line-work is all sharp and captures her look from the comics well.  Rogue is packed with a flight stand, simulating the powers she got after accidentally drained Ms. Marvel.  We’re still one assortment out from the display stands becoming a standard inclusion.

COLOSSUS

“Piotr Rasputin’s ability to turn his body into organic steel makes him super-strong, nearly indestructible, and able to throw objects a great distance at great speed. When the object is his teammate Wolverine, this maneuver is known as a “fastball special.””

This release marked Colossus’s fourth time as a Minimate, though his first in 33 series, making his re-release quite warranted.  This figure also pulls double-duty, filling a Colossus-shaped hole in both the Outback line-up of this wave, and the Jim Lee looks of Series 34.  He comes packaged in his Lee-designed look, which is really just a minor rework of his original design. Colossus uses add-ons for his hair, torso cap, torso extender, hands, and boots.  All of these were new to this particular figure, and for the most part, they’re pretty decent offerings.  The new hair isn’t that far removed from the prior piece, but is sharper in its detailing and shaping.  The new gauntlets and boots match up well with the design, and fit nicely to the body.  The only slightly troublesome piece is the torso.  In an effort to bulk him up, they’ve made it a whole cap, rather than just focussing on his tunic like prior figures.  The end result makes him look a little bit pudgy, though it’s far from terrible. Colossus’s paint is solid work.  It’s bright and eye-catching, and the detail lines, especially for his metal skin, looks really sharp.  There’s some slop on his torso piece, but otherwise its pretty cleanly done. To facilitate the double-duty being pulled by this figure, he includes a plethora of swap-out add-ons, including a new torso cap, gauntlets, boot cuffs, and standard hands and feet.  It all swaps out to create Colossus’s less covering ’80s look.  He also includes two extra right hands, designed to allow either version of Colossus to perform his signature “Fastball Special” with this wave’s Wolverine, as well as a clear display stand to help keep the two balanced.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was pretty excited for this whole line-up at the time of its release, though this particular set was a little lower on the totem pole than its compatriots.  This Rogue is somewhat removed from the version that most people would consider definitive, but the figure is still a well-put-together ‘mate.  Colossus’s main look may be slightly flawed, but the ability to get a second look out of the figure makes him a strong, and necessary figure.

#1941: Colossus

COLOSSUS

X-MEN (TOY BIZ)

“The strongest of the X-Men, Colossus has the awesome mutant ability to turn his body into living steel! When he is in his living steel form, Colossus can lift as many as forty cars at once. His steel body is so hard that not even a bomb blast can hurt him! Normally Colossus is a quiet and gentle man, but when an evil mutant attacks, Colossus can be as fearsome a foe as any X-Man!”

Okay, so, umm, I was doing this thing where I was trying to work through Toy Biz’s X-Men line series by series.  And I was doing pretty good.  And then I was double checking things and realized I jumped the gun going to Series 2, so I have to do just the tiniest bit of back-tracking and take a look at the team’s resident metal bruiser, Colossus!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Colossus is the final figure in Series 1 of Toy Biz’s X-Men line.  At the time of this figure’s release, Piotr had been on the team pretty consistently since his introduction in the ’70s, so he was a natural choice for the line-up.  He’s seen here in his classic costume, which he had just returned to at the time of the figure’s release.  The figure stands 5 1/4 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  All of the figures in the set were originally designed with the lessened articulation, but most of them had it upgraded by the time they hit stores.  Colossus, for whatever reason, was one of two exceptions to this rule.  His sculpt is definitely scrawnier than later Colossi, but honestly he’s not that bad, especially in comparison to the rest of the assortment.  He’s actually a lot more proportionately balanced than most of them, so he looks pretty decent.  He’s rather pre-posed, in order facilitate his action feature.  What is this amazing action feature, you ask?  Well, there’s this lever on his back, and when you pull it down, his arms lift upward, in a weight-lifting sort of action.  I don’t know that it’s really worth the investment the figure gives it, but it’s not the worst.  The paintwork on Colossus is clean and bright.  It’s pretty basic, but it works.  Colossus is packed with a large weight, in order to help sell that weight lifting feature.  It’s a little tricky to keep him standing with it, but it’s doable.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Colossus was not part of my collection growing up.  He was, however, part of my brother’s collection.  And as of late, my brother’s been purging a lot of his old figures, and Colossus was the only one I was missing, so, hey, that worked out pretty alright.  There have been better Colossus figures, but as far as 5-inch figures go, he actually still brings quite a bit to the table.

#1814: Colossus

COLOSSUS

X-MEN (TOY BIZ)

“Born Peter Rasputin and raised on a Siberian farm, Colossus’ humble roots could not have revealed the life he would one day lead! Recruited by Professor X, Colossus left his home to begin a new life of danger and adventure alongside Wolverine and the X-Men! A powerful mutant, Colossus can transform his body into living metal, giving him a physical strength and invulnerability matched by few! But with all his power, Peter Rasputin is an artist at heart, and resorts to using his mutant gifts only when they are needed in the service of his fellow X-Men.”

Colossus is undoubtedly one of the coolest members of the X-Men, and has been a prominent one at that, but for whatever reason, he always seems to draw the short stick when it comes to media adaptations.  Well, at least the Deadpool movies have helped there, right?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Colossus was released in the “Battle Brigade” series, the 14th series of Toy Biz’s X-Men line.  It would mark Colossus’ second figure in the line, following his appearance in Series 1.  That figure was more classically inspired, while this one aims more for the super exaggerated, rather imposing Colossus that’s become all the rage since the ‘90s, meaning he fits in a little better with the line’s post Series 10 direction.  The figure stands 5 1/2 inches tall and he has 11 points of articulation.  While he lacks elbow movement, he does instead get a much wider range of motion on his shoulders, as well as cut joints on his wrists, which seems like a decent enough trade off to me.  Colossus’ sculpt was all-new, and it’s certainly…something.  I’m not entirely sure what.  He’s definitely large.  He’s definitely imposing.  But he seems a little wide for Colossus, at least by my eye.  There are, of course, a number of different interpretations of the character, but I can’t say this really matches up with any of the ones I’m really familiar with.  Something about the facial expression seems very un-Colossus-like to me.  I don’t dislike it, but he feels a little off.  Also, can we address that his hands are bigger than his waist?  That’s definitely a new issue for Colossus, who had traditionally been pretty thick in the trunk.  This…like I said, this is off.  (quoth Super Awesome Fiancee: “He’s a Dorito”).  The one area of the figure that’s decidedly not odd is the paint, which is actually pretty respectable…or at least it was before foolish child Ethan took him and played with him, thereby messing up a lot of the silver.  Why would I do that?  That’s so irresponsible!  Colossus was packed with an assortment of clip-on armor, which I don’t feel he’d have much use for, but hey, there it is.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Colossus didn’t begin as my figure.  He was actually my Dad’s, purchased alongside the Archangel from this same assortment, in one of the earliest memories I have of us getting figures right from the case.  When my Dad got the Collector Editions Giant-Sized X-Men set, he upgraded to that Colossus, and I got this one.  Admittedly, not the best of the Colossuses to be offered by Toy Biz in this era, but he has his own sort of awkward charm.

#1270: Marvel’s Colossus

MARVEL’S COLOSSUS

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Colossus transforms his body into armored steel to become a nearly indestructible force in combat.”

Does he really turn into steel?  That doesn’t seem right.  Sorry, critiquing the bio again.  Gotta stop with that; it only leads to madness. Today, I’ll be continuing my look at the latest X-Men-themed series of Marvel Legends, with a look at everyone’s favorite metal skinned Russian, Piotr Rasputin, aka Colossus!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Colossus is figure 1 in the Warlock Series of Marvel Legends.  This is Colossus’s third time as a Legends release, but the last one was an X3 figure, meaning there’s only one prior comic Colossus, who was released a whopping 14 years ago.  Needless to say, an update was long overdue.  Colossus is presented here in his costume from the Utopia era of X-Men, which is…well it’s hardly anyone’s first choice.  Hasbro’s released a handful of characters from this era (last series’ Kitty Pryde figure is one, technically), so it’s not like he won’t fit in, but it’s also not one of his more more memorable designs, and looks a tad more generic than some of the others.  The thing that really bugs me about it is the black chevron on the torso.  Why is it there?  As it stands, it really just looks like an arrow pointing to his crotch, which is just odd.  Without that, I think it’d be a lot better.  It’s worth noting that this is the design that got used for Avengers Alliance, which seems to be a major influence on Hasbro’s costume choices.  There’s also a good chance that we’re seeing something of a trial run with this figure, and that a more classic Colossus will show up in short order.  The figure stands just shy of 8 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Colossus is debuting a new base body, which looks to be a replacement for the Wrecking Crew body in terms of scaling.  It’s about at the mid-point between Hyperion and Terrax.  It’s a pretty decent sculpt, with a nice, solid foundation.  It feels a little lightweight to me, but it’s certainly a step-up from the bodies on either side of it.  I look forward to seeing what else it might be used for.  Colossus gets character specific arms and boots, as well as an all-new head.  The arms are really nice, and I quite like the posing on the hands.  The bracers are separate pieces, so clearly Hasbro’s made it easy to swap them out should these arms be used for one of the other Colossus designs.  The boots are a decent enough recreation of the comic design, but for me the best part of them is how flat the bottoms are; this guy is really sturdy on his feet once you get them posed the right way.  The basic head is an okay piece on it’s own, but it sits a little high on the neck for my taste.  Some people have modded it so that the socket for the neck peg is a little further in, and it definitely improves the overall appearance, but it’s a slight bummer that he isn’t quite correct right out of the box.  Fortunately, there’s also a second head included.  This one is based on Piotr’s bearded look from Extraordinary X-Men, which is suitably unique.  The beard’s a good look for him, and the head sits a lot better on the neck.  This will definitely be my go-to for this figure.  The paint on Colossus is pretty solid overall. The best work is definitely on the metallic skin, which is not only clean, but also gets some great accent work.  The costume is a bit more prone to slop here and there, though nothing too bad.  It’s nice and bright, which is good.  In addition to the previously mentioned extra head, Colossus also includes not one, but two pieces of the Build-A-Figure Warlock.  One of them is his head, which means there are three heads in the packaging.  It doesn’t quite top the last Venom figure with his four heads in one package, but still.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I noted in my Polaris review, I called upon the help of my parents to track down the Warlock Series.  While I found a second Polaris, I’ve actually yet to see Piotr at retail, as he’s easily the set’s second most popular after Cyclops.  So, this guy got mailed to me (along with a few other awesome figures that’ll be showing up here in short order).  The Toy Biz Colossus was easily one of my favorite TB Legends, so this guy had a high bar to clear in that respect.  When the figure was first shown, I was a bit letdown by the costume choice, but I think that actually works in his favor.  With the new costume and the bearded head, this Colossus is suitably different from the last one, which means he not so much a replacement as he is just a brand new figure.  That’s sort of forced me to weigh him on his own merits.  He’s definitely a fun figure, and probably my second favorite single release in this series.  I look forward to the eventual classic version down the line, but am content with this one for as long as I need to be.

#1259: Colossus

COLOSSUS

MARVEL BOOTLEGO

Hey, remember when I reviewed those knock-off Lego mini figures last week?  Well, how about one more?  Last week’s mini figures were based on Game of Thrones, which is a property that Lego doesn’t, and never plans to, hold the license for.  Today’s focus, is a slightly different story, hailing from the Marvel side of things.  Of course, it’s still a character that doesn’t yet have an official Lego figure, which is why I’m reviewing a less legitimate version.  Without further ado, here’s that merry metal mutant, Colossus!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

As noted in the intro, this guy’s an unofficial product.  As such, he’s not strictly part of any series or assortment.  Also, unlike the prior BootLegos, he’s not part of a larger set that I can find.  The figure’s about 3 inches tall and has 5 points of articulation (though, there’s not really much movement in the neck, thanks to the hair).  If the height didn’t already cue you in, he’s patterned on the “Big Fig” body that was first introduced for the Avengers mover version of the Hulk.  While Colossus is usually depicted a little slimmer than the Hulk, this is actually how the character was depicted in Lego Marvel Superheroes, which gives him an extra sense of officialness, since any legit Colossus seems likely to be built this way.  What I personally find interesting is the fact that this guy’s a wholly original sculpt.  Every other one of these I’ve picked up has uses stock Lego pieces, but this guy’s totally unique.  I’m honestly curious if there’s actually a Colossus in the works from Lego, since it just seems odd for this one figure to be all-new.  If he really is a unique sculpt, he’s a very good forgery.  The sculpt is pretty solidly done, with all of the proper details outlined.  The only real issue I have is the hair, which has actual texture, which just doesn’t seem right for Colossus; it really should just be smooth.  A closer look at the piece makes it look like it might be an upscaled basic spiky hair piece, modified to fit the body.  That would certainly explain the extra details.  As nice as the sculpt work is, the paint does seem to be a slight step down.  red seems a bit deep in shade, and the edges are all pretty sloppy.  There’s also a splotch of red on his right arm, which is super distracting.  Lego’s well-known for their high standards of quality control, so this guy’s lack of said QC kind of shatters the illusion.  I mean, he’s not terrible, but he could be better.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked up this guy at the same time as the GoT mini figures.  The vendor had a special deal for three basic mini figures and one Big Fig, which is what I opted to go for.  Colossus is one of my favorite X-Men, so I was hardly going to turn down the chance to get a Lego version of him.  He’s not quite as good as the other three, but he’s still pretty fun!

#1208: Colossus

COLOSSUS

MARVEL SELECT

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Wow, it’s been a really long time since I’ve reviewed a Marvel Select figure. <Looks back at reviews>  Holy crap, it’s been 506 reviews since I last looked at a Marvel Select figure.  That’s quite a while.  Well, why not pull something out of the archives, then?  Today, I’ll be jumping over into the world of Marvel’s merry mutants, the X-Men, and looking at one of my personal favorite members of the team, Piotr Rasputin, aka Colossus.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

colossusmswilsonColossus is the 75th figure in Diamond Select Toys’ Marvel Select line, released in 2012.  He’s one of only two figures to hit that year, largely due to the focus on a certain team of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes who happened to have a movie released that year.  He continued the trend of X-Men based upon the early ‘80s line-up of the team (the other X-Man from 2012, Storm, also followed this trend).  The figure stands almost 9 inches tall (he’s a big guy) and he has 30 points of articulation.  He’s one of the earlier instances of near-Marvel-Legends levels of articulation for a Select figure, and it’s genuinely impressive just how much movement they were able to get into this guy, given his mass.  Colossus sported an all-new sculpt.  It doesn’t appear to be based on any particular artist’s rendition of Piotr, but it does lean a little more modern in terms of design sensibilities than a lot of Colossus figures do.  This is most notable in the face, which lacks the usual rounded features in favor of something more sharp and angular.  While I can’t say it’s my go-to Colossus look, it’s certainly not a bad looking rendition of the character.  The body continues some of the stylization present in the face; earlier renditions of Colossus tended to be more consistent in build, but this guy’s definitely favoring his upper body.  He’s almost sporting Bruce Timm anatomy (though he’s definitely not Bruce Timm styled).  There’s one oddity about the body sculpt, specifically the upper body: the upper portion of his tunic is separate from his actual torso.  While it’s not out of the ordinary for such an element to be a separate piece, the fact that it’s not actual fixed in place in any way is slightly odd.  There’s a fully sculpted torso under there, which leads me to wonder if there was a scrapped variant of this figure sporting his outback costume.  Regardless, you’ll only really notice the separate tunic piece when picking the figure up, and it stays in place well enough.  It also adds an extra dimension to the figure, which is always cool.  In terms of paint, Colossus is very nicely rendered.  The colors are all nice and very vibrant, and everything is very cleanly applied.  There’s a nice subtle accenting to the yellow portion of the tunic, which keeps it from being too plans.  I also quite like the metallic work, especially on the arm bracers.  A lot of the X-Men Select figures included a section of the Danger Room as a display base, and Colossus was no exception.  Well, generally speaking.  He comes with a spike wall, clearly meant to be from the Danger Room, but it’s not exactly a stand, since it doesn’t really support him.  Still, it’s a cool piece, and a nice addition to the armory.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Colossus was my second Marvel Select figure, picked up during Cosmic Comix’s Biggest Sale of the Year in 2012.  I had initially been planning to pick up Ultron during that year’s sale, but I got a subscriber coupon a week prior and got him then.  I still wanted to take advantage of the sale, and I’ve always liked Colossus, so this guy was my next choice.  The old Marvel Legends figure has always been one of my favorites, so this guy had quite a bit to live up to, and I think he did just that.  He’s really just a very fun figure.

#1128: Colossus & Nightcrawler

COLOSSUS & NIGHTCRAWLER

MARVEL MINIMATES

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The X-Men line-up presented in Giant Size X-Men #1 undoubtedly gave us some of the more memorable X-Men.  Obviously, there’s the likes of Storm and Wolverine (even if he did appear elsewhere first), but it also gave us both Colossus and Nightcrawler.  While they may not be quite as big as some of the others (and poor Colossus has been woefully overlooked when it comes to the cartoons), they’re still pretty popular with the fanbase at large.  They also happen to be two of my favorite X-Men, so packing them together is pretty awesome!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Colossus and Nightcrawler are part of Series 68 of the Marvel Minimates line, which is based around GSXM #1.  Both figures are based on their Dave Cockrum-designed looks, but it’s worth noting that these two stuck with these particular looks for a good long while.

COLOSSUS

nightcrawlercolossus3Colossus has had a few different ‘mates over the years.  That being said, this is the first one to directly retread on previous territory, being a pretty straight re-do of the GSXM boxed set version (the alt look for the Series 47 version came pretty close, but was actually based on his slightly tweaked ‘90s look).  The figure is built on the standard ‘mate body, and as such stands about 2 1/2 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Colossus features add-on pieces for his hair, wrist bands, torso cover/belt, and boots.  The hair and gauntlets were both used on the 47 Colossus; they worked well there and they work well here.  The torso piece and boots are both new to this ‘mate.  It’s interesting: after getting several attempts at handling the torso piece a “better” way than the GSXM set’s version, they just went back to essentially the same style.  I’m certainly not complaining!  I do like the subtle hints of musculature on the chest piece, which make him seem larger than the others, but prevents him from looking puffy.  I’m not 100% sold on the boots.  Something about the knee pads seems off to me.  There’s certainly been worse, though.  Colossus’s paint is very impressively handled.  The colors are nice and bold, and he really pops.  The line work is very sharp, and the details, the face in particular, are a very good rendition of Cockrum’s Colossus.  I was very happy to find out that the actual torso has full detailing, allowing you to display Colossus shirtless, if you so choose (some people like that sort of thing).  Colossus’s only accessory is a clear display stand, which feels rather light.  Obviously, the parts for an un-armored Piotr would make him essentially a second figure, but the fastball special hand should have been included at the very least.  Oh well.

NIGHTCRAWLER

nightcrawlercolossus2Amazingly enough, this is only the third time we’ve gotten Nightcrawler (and the third time we’ve gotten this exact costume too, no less).  I thought the Excalibur set version had him pretty well covered, but it’s been over five years since that one was released, so another version feels warranted.  Nightcrawler has  unique hands and feet, as well as sculpted add-ons for his hair, shoulder pads, and tail. The tail remains the same piece used on both prior Nightcrawlers (and his dad Azazel), but everything else is new to this figure.  Personally, I prefer the Wolverine-style shoulder pads from the last Nightcrawler to the ones featured here (I like the neck to be left unencumbered as much as possible), but they’re a decent enough piece, I suppose.  The hair, hands, and feet are all improvements over what we’ve gotten before (the hands especially, since the prior hands are huge) and are just well sculpted all around.  The ears could maybe stand to be a little more pronounced, but that’s the only real negative I’ve got.  Nightcrawler’s paintwork is pretty good, but not without its issues.  The basics are all pretty good.  The color palette is bright and bold, and the colors accent each other well.  His basic head has a frightening expression we haven’t yet seen on a Nightcrawler ‘mate.  It’s a good rendition of the earlier, scarier NIghtcrawler, and it makes this figure a little more specific to those appearances (thus giving the figure a bit more reason to exist).  Unfortunately, the application of a lot of the paint, especially the red, is a little uneven.  The red detailing on the edges of the gloves and boots is far too thin, resulting in an obvious line where the underlying colors switch from white to black.  That, coupled with the fact that the glove trim stops abruptly for the inner half of the arm, makes him look a little unfinished.  Nightcrawler includes an extra head with a more jovial expression (my preferred of the two faces), a cutlass (finally!), a “bamf” stand, and a clear display stand.  All of these are pretty cool, except the “bamf” stand, which is more than a little frustrating, since the peg is too small for either foot, and it also requires him to stand with both feet together, a rather un-Nightcrawler stance.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Though I missed out on the GSXM set, I wasn’t missing either of these characters, having picked up their subsequent releases.  Colossus was a pleasant surprise.  There was something missing from the ‘mates since the GSXM version, which I think has been found again with this guy.  He’s the perfect embodiment of the character.  I don’t see him being replaced any time soon.  Nightcrawler is a more mixed figure than Colossus.  I’ve never really cared for the original ‘mate, but the Excalibur version was pretty solid.  This one adds some nice stuff (the extra head, the new hands and feet, and the cutlass), but also takes a few hits (the paint, the effects base, and, if I’m being really picky, the shoulder pads).  The good outweighs the bad, but he could still be a bit better.