#2469: Thing & Dr. Doom(s)

THING & DR. DOOM

MARVEL MINIMATES

While the first year of Marvel Minimates certainly gave us an impressive spread of Marvel characters, there were some very notable areas of the universe left completely untouched.  This included Marvel’s own first family, the Fantastic Four, who, like Captain America signaling the first of the the Avengers, were first inducted into the line via Series 5, with the group’s most marketable single member The Thing facing off against their greatest foe Dr. Doom!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The Thing and Dr. Doom marked wrapped up the line-up for Marvel Minimates Series 5, also taking the variant slot for this particular assortment.  The standard pack had Thing vs a fully-armored Doom, while the variant swapped out Doom for an unmasked version.

THING

For his debut ‘mate, Ben gets a fairly classic Thing design.  He’s orange, he’s rocky, and he’s wearing blue shorts.  Sure, the shorts aren’t quite standard FF-issue, but they’re close enough for a single release.  He’s built on the standard long-footed body, of course, so he’s 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Like Venom, Hulk, and Juggernaut, Ben’s a large character who’s not very large.  That said, with the head piece and the sculpted “Thing Fists”, he actually makes out the best of the bunch in terms of relative scaling.  He’s got cartoonish proportions, of course, but he doesn’t feel quite as scrawny as the others.  It helps that the sculpting is really good on the new parts.  It also helps that the paint does an incredibly impressive job of conveying Ben’s rocky skin, and the painted features end up matching pretty darn well to the sculpted rocks on the head and hands.  The only slight nit I have with the paint is that the face is just a touch too high on the head, which means that it doesn’t *quite* interact correctly with the head piece.

DR. DOOM

Marvel’s greatest villain was a pretty natural choice for inclusion here, but his variant ultimately falls into the same level of “this wouldn’t be a separate figure”-ness that Unmasked Daredevil had.  Whichever version you look at, he’s got the same two sculpted add-ons, one for his cloak, and the other for his belt/skirt.  The cloak is actually kind of nice, and concise.  It’s maybe not the greatest for posing, but I find it less obtrusive than the versions that followed.  The skirt piece doesn’t work quite as well, being really flat and without flow.  Even with the much more streamlined philosophy of the earlier ‘mates, it seems a bit lacking.  The paint on everything but the head is identical between the two releases.  It does okay for the most part.  The armored detailing on the arms and legs is definitely the best work.  Comparatively, the tunic feels kind of devoid of detail, but again, that’s owing a lot to the early style.  The standard Doom gets his mask, which is nicely detailed, and matches up with the rest of the armor’s details.  It’s limited to just having details where the hood reveals it, which isn’t surprising, but does mean displaying him without the cape doesn’t really work.  For the variant, we get to see Victor Von Doom’s scarred face.  It’s a more minor scarring than some depictions, but it’s still there.  Unlike the masked head, this one has detail that goes all around, even under the hood, which is actually pretty darn cool.  It just would have made much more sense to include the extra head with the standard release, is all.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This is another one of those sets that I had as a kid, but I lost most of the parts to over the years.  I was pretty rough on these early guys.  Of course, I only had the standard Doom, so I was able to go back and get both versions when I tracked them back down again.  Thing’s not a bad little version of the character, especially within the confines of the early line.  Doom isn’t quite as cleanly interpreted here, but I think he works well-enough, and while he has some trade-offs, so would all of his eventual follow-ups.  They wrap up Marvel Minimates‘ first oddball assortment pretty nicely.

#2309: Doctor Doom

DOCTOR DOOM

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Victor Von Doom uses his incredible intelligence and mystical abilities to oppose the Fantastic Four.”

On this Valentine’s Day, I’m examining the truest love of all: the love of hating one’s enemies and watching them unquestionably defeated by circumstances that you and you alone control.  A love that Victor Von Doom, greatest villain in all of comics, has been striving for since his introduction in 1962.  But that curse-ed Richards just keeps preventing him from attaining it.  How dare he?  Alas, Doom will just have to settle for the love of having the best action figure in the latest assortment of FF-themed Marvel Legends.  It’s the small victories that keep you going.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Doctor Doom is figure 1 in the Super Skrull Series of Marvel Legends, a great example of Hasbro knowing to lead with their best foot forward.  Alongside the Thing, Doom is one of the double-packs for this assortment, again an example of Hasbro knowing what’s up here.  While Victor Von Doom returned to Legends last year as a Walgreens exclusive, it was under his Infamous Iron Man moniker, and as cool as that figure was, he wasn’t classic Doctor Doom.  We haven’t gotten one of those since 2012, and even that one was a re-used mold from ’08.  The need for a proper update, especially in light of the FF getting classic-inspired updates in the Walgreens line-up.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.   Doom gets an all-new sculpt from head to toe, and it’s one of Hasbro’s most impressive sculpts, pretty much in their entire time on the license.  It takes the classic Doom design and effectively just translates it to how it would look if manufactured in real life.  The armor has rivets, seams, and leather straps and clasps, and under the main plates, you can clearly make out a chain mail under suit.  Even under the skirt of the tunic, the armor remains fully detailed, even though there’s absolutely no reason for it to be.  The tunic is appropriately detailed in its own way, with a distinct fabric texturing sculpted in to differentiate it from the armored segments.  At first glance, I felt the skirt of the tunic was too long, but after messing with the figure a bit, I’m actually quite happy with the length, and also pleasantly surprised by how posable the hips remain even with it in place.  On the back of the torso, there are jet thrusters, as have become customary for Doom figures.  He’s also got a very nicely detailed belt, with a fully working holster.  There are two different heads included with the figure.  He comes wearing the more modern design of his mask (seen in the shot with Wilson), but also includes a more Jack Kirby-inspired head.  Both are beautiful pieces in their own right, but the Kirby head is my favorite by far.  Doom’s paintwork is pretty solid.  While a lot of the colors are just molded, there are never the less plenty of spots where paint *could* have been missed but wasn’t, especially with those straps on the sides of the armor plates, which again continue up under the tunic.  Truly impressive.  In addition to the previously mentioned extra head, Doom also includes his signature Luger, plus two sets of hands (fists, and a trigger finger/open gesture combo).  He also includes the leg of Super Skrull.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Doctor Doom is my favorite comics villain ever, and frequently a favorite of mine when it comes to action figures.  Since completing the Walgreens FF, I’ve been patiently waiting for this guy.  As soon as he was shown off, I knew he’d be my favorite in the set, and in hand he absolutely lives up to my expectations, and makes for the perfect counterpart to my FF.  This figure is clearly a labor of love for Hasbro and I’m very glad to have him.

I picked up Doom from my friends All Time Toys.  If you’re looking for other cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2064: Infamous Iron Man

INFAMOUS IRON MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Once one of the world’s most evil villains, Infamous Iron Man Victor Von Doom has a change of allegience and assumes a new identity as the tech-powered hero, Iron Man.”

Victor Von Doom (not to be confused with Victor *con* Doom, which is Victor with Doom, and is what my computer wanted to put there), better known as Doctor Doom, is perhaps the Marvel Universe’s greatest villain.  And, of course, being the top villain means also getting a story evry so often where you stop being a villain and try to be a hero.  Doctor Doom’s actually been there a couple of times, but was there most recently after the fallout of 2015’s Secret Wars, which eventually led to him taking over the role of Iron Man for a bit.  That’s the source of Doom’s latest figure, dubbed the “Infamous Iron Man.”

THE FIGURE ITESELF

Infamous Iron Man is the latest Walgreens-exclusive Marvel Legends release, and he started hitting stores in early May.  As a Doctor Doom-variant, he’s well at home with the Fantastic Four-theme that’s persisted through the last few years of Walgreens exclusives.  Like his team of nemeses, Victor’s been away from Legends for a little while, with this being his first figure in seven years.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  In the comics, Victor’s Infamous Iron Man suit was a re-working of Tony’s most recent ANAD armor, and the figure follows true to that, re-using the molds of the Okoye Series Iron Man.  It’s honestly my favorite Iron Man sculpt in recent years, so I don’t mind seeing it crop up again, especially since it’s accurate to the source material.  The base figure is mostly identical between the two of them, with only the head getting a slight tweak to the back to allow for the hood to be attached.  Speaking of the hood, both it and the cape are new parts.  The appearance is nice, and I certainly dig the sculpted texture, but I don’t know how crazy I am about the implementation.  The hood is permanently affixed to the head, but the cape isn’t actually attached in any way; it just rests there.  And while the hood can hold it in place in most poses, it still slides off more often than I’d like.  The paint on Victor is the main change-up, since it transitions him into his more classic “Doom” colors, being predominately grey and silver.  The application’s mostly pretty good, but there’s something about the outlining on the face plate that looks a little goofy to me.  Doom is packed with two repulsor blast hands, and matching repulsor blasts, as well as the lightning effects in a matching purple, and an unmasked Victor Von Doom head.  The unmasked head is definitely my favorite piece, and I only wish it was easier to use it in conjunction with the cape.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This one is technically Max’s fault, but he gets a bit of a pass, since it’s mostly circumstantial.  I fully intended to buy this figure on my own, but he happened to find one before me, and was nice enough to pick it up for me.  There are a few notable issues with this figure, however they mostly get a pass from this guy being undeniably a placeholder for the inevitable classic Doom figure down the road.  As it stands, he’s more fun than frustration, which I can get behind.

#1886: Mr. Fantastic & Dr. Doom

MR. FANTASTIC & DR. DOOM

MARVEL MINIMATES

The Marvel Minimates Best Of assortments frequently paired off classic Marvel characters and their greatest foes, but what happens when the foe is actually the foe to a whole team?  You compromise, I guess.  At least in the case of the Fantastic Four, Reed Richards does have the slightly more personal connection to long-time foe (and greatest villain of all time) Dr. Doom, so he was the one who got the slot.  Good for him!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Mr. Fantastic and Dr. Doom were part of the second Best of Marvel Minimates series, which hit stores in early 2013.

MR. FANTASTIC

Second only to The Thing in terms of number of Minimates, this particular Mr. Fantastic was his sixth time in this particular style.  He’s sporting his classic black and blue gear, based on his look from earlier in his career. Curiously, there are, to date, no other members of the team with uniforms to match this one.  Not even the Ben from Series 1 of the Best Of line. This is something of an odd development.  In his most standard configuration, Reed is built on the basic Minimate body and uses just one add-on piece, for his hair.  It’s the Frank Wemple piece, which saw a lot of use right around this time.  It’s definitely well-chosen for Reed. Of course, since Reed’s powers make for a pretty versatile look, the figure has multiple other configurations.  DST experimented a bit with TRU Series 6’s Stretch-Attack Mr. Fantastic, which gave us a stretched out base piece to swap out for the lower legs.  This figure includes that extra, along with several new ones to match.  There’s an extended neck and stretched out arms, which can be mixed and matched into all sorts of different configurations.  Perhaps my favorite part is that the open hand on the right arm is perfectly sized to grip a standard Minimate torso.  Reed’s paintwork is fairly clean, and the color choices are bold.  He’s more colorful than his TRU Series 8 counterpart, but the blue isn’t quite as deep as the original Reed figure.  He’s somewhere between them.  I already chronicled the extra stretchy parts, but Reed also includes a standard display stand, if you want to be silly and not display him with that sweet stretched out base piece.

DR. DOOM

Victor Von Doom actually has his nemesis beaten in number of Minimates available, with eight releases under his belt.  This one was the seventh, and actually came out in rather close proximity to the Marvel vs. Capcom version, which it is quite similar to.  Most of the similarity between the two Dooms is in their sculpted parts.  Doom uses add-ons for his cloak, belt/skirt, gloves, and boots, as well as non-standard upper-arm pieces.  All of these were used on the prior figure.  They work decently, though the cloak runs into the same problem that prior Dooms have run into, with limitations being placed on his mobility.  It also makes him quite top heavy. And, in conjunction with all of the other sculpted parts, it generally creates a figure that’s not great for much other than standing.  The main change-up between the two Dooms is paint.  While the MvC release was in more game accurate colors and featured metallic armor, this one goes for a more print-styled flat color scheme.  It works well enough, and it’s definitely a more unique take on the character, compared to what we tend to see.  I think it helps the detailing on his faceplate stand out better, but leaves the arms and legs looking slightly bland.  Doom is packed with three accessories: a pistol, and alternate head with Doombot detailing, and a clear display stand.  I really like the Doombot head.  It’s a quite fun touch, and seems to especially work well without the cloak over top, thereby making the figure a good deal more playable.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I grabbed these two back when they were new, from my regular Minimate haunt, Cosmic Comix.  Reed is a solid figure, marred not by anything about this figure himself, but rather by the lack of any other members to match him.  Ben’s an easy enough fix if you just want to swap out the pelvis, and Johnny’s just really a head swap, but there’s no matching Sue, and that’s a little sad.  So soon after the MvC version, this Dr. Doom felt a little redundant, and ultimately inherits all of that figure’s flaws without any time to have fixed them.  That said, the Doombot head does quite a bit to salvage this guy.  Overall, he’s a decent offering.

#0956: Doctor Doom

DOCTOR DOOM

MARVEL SUPER HEROES SECRET WARS (MATTEL)

DoomSW1

If you asked me who I though the greatest super hero in comics was, I probably wouldn’t be able to give you a single answer. Maybe I could give like a list of five or so, but that’s the best I can do. The best super VILLAIN in comics, though? That’s easy. It’s Doctor Doom. No question. He’s as good as it gets, mostly because he doesn’t shy away from being an absurd comicbook caricature. He’s ridiculous, his plans are over the top and needlessly complicated, and he likes to speak in the third person a lot. He’s just a very fun character. Of course, movie makers decided that they could “improve” on that, resulting in two rather terrible live-action takes on the character, but I digress. Despite being the number one foe of the Fantasic Four, who were all represented in Mego’s World’s Greatest Super Heroes line, Victor Von Doom wouldn’t get his first action figure for another decade. I’ll be looking at that figure today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

DoomSW2Doctor Doom was released in the first series of Mattel’s Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars line. Doctor Doom has an interesting place in the line. He had a rather prominent role in the tie-in comic series produced by Marvel, but it’s worth noting that three of the four members of the Fantastic Four were also prominent in the series, yet Doom is the only FF-related character that the line released. Slightly odd if you ask me, but given how much of this line relied on using the same basic pieces for every figure, I guess Mattel just didn’t want to justify the costs of new molds for the likes of Sue or Ben.  Anyway, this figure stands 4 ½ inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation. Rather than going with the classic Doctor Doom design (because, hey, it had only been around for 20 years. Nobody was attached to it or anything), this figure gets a Mattel original design. It keeps a lot of the same basic cues as the usual Doom look, but gives him a more generic battle armor sort of look. To be fair, the design did appear in the comic tie-in towards the end, but I feel that was more to tie-in with the toy than working the other way around. Despite the line being mostly built on the same basic body, Doom actually uses none of the standard parts. That’s not to say he’s totally unique; he shares his arms and legs with Iron Man. Though Doom’s armor is usually not as sleek as Iron Man’s, but they’re close enough that it works alright. The right leg has been slightly tweaked to add a leg strap (apparently Doom was ahead of the ‘90s pouch craze), which works well enough. Doom has a unique head and torso, which are…decent? They don’t suck. There are even some fun little details, such as the jetpack on the back of the torso and the little rivets on the faceplate. Individually, they really aren’t bad, but they don’t work very together. The weirdest thing is the head, which has Doom’s signature hood, which ends rather abruptly. It’s almost as if it was sculpted to rest on top of some sort of cape piece, but no such piece was included. At one time, Doctor Doom had a rather complicated paint scheme on the torso, but Secret Wars figures are notorious for their paint wear, and this figure was no exception. As it stands, my figure’s only paint is on the head, for the eyes and mask, which are basic, but pretty well handled. Doctor Doom originally included two blasters and one of the wonky lenticular shields that all of the line’s figures had.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked up Doctor Doom last weekend at Balticon. I got him from the same vendor’s table where I got Bane, so he was another $2 figure. Secret Wars really isn’t a line I saw myself getting very invested in, but I keep finding them for pretty good deals. Doom is probably the weakest figure I’ve looked at so far. He really shows off a lot of the line’s flaws, especially with the toy-original design. Still, he’s not the worst figure I’ve ever owned, and I like having him for the novelty.

#0719: Clone Commander Doom

CLONE COMMANDER DOOM

STAR WARS: THE BLACK SERIES

CommanderDoom1

DOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!! Yes it’s DOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!! So, hey, you know one cool thing about Disney owning both Marvel and Star Wars AND Hasbro holding the toy licenses for both of those properties? They can do cool combo stuff, like today’s focus, Clone Commander Doom, who began his life as a minor, cool little reference character, who I’m sure no one ever thought would get an actual figure with that name. But, here he is! Isn’t that cool?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

CommanderDoom2Commander Doom was released in the second series of the 2014 round of the 3 ¾ inch Star Wars: The Black Series figures. Did you get all that? Should I repeat it? Yeah, Hasbro’s release schemes are just a tad confusing. Commander Doom here is based on his appearance in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode “The Unknown,” where his animation model was based on Dr. Doom, the Marvel Comics character. One has to wonder if Commander Doom has some sort of rivalry with Clone Commander Fantastic; that would be nifty. The figure stands just over 3 ¾ inches tall and has 24 points of articulation. Sadly, it seems that Hasbro’s cutting back on the articulation of the smaller-scale Black Series stuff again. Doom loses both the ball jointed hips and the mid-torso joint of prior Clone Troopers, which is a bit of a bummer to say the least. It might be hard to tell under that non-standard paintjob, but Doom’s armor is mostly standard issue stuff. He’s wearing a modified form of the Phase II trooper armor, with a visor/antenna added to his helmet (in a similar fashion to Commander Cody) and a battle “skirt” thing, which has holsters for his blasters. It’s worth noting that, while Doom hails from an animated show, this figure has been sculpted to fit in with the more realistic figures that make up the rest of the line. With that in mind, Doom’s sculpt does a pretty good job of taking his design from the show and translating it into “real life.” The sculpt is a little softer than I’d like in some areas, but it’s nicely handled overall. I’m still not 100% sold on the look of the wrist joints, but that’s a minor issue, and the movement they provide is certainly enough to warrant their inclusion. Now, this is a Hasbro figure, which means that, no matter how good the sculpt may be, the paint is likely to be a letdown. While I certainly wouldn’t say this figure has the worst paint I’ve ever seen on a Hasbro figure, he’s still got more than a few occurrences of bleed over and slop. Also, his arms and legs are just molded in a slight off-white, as opposed to being grey due to scuffs and dirt, which robs him just a bit of his uniqueness. Aside from those issues, I will say Doom’s a pretty vibrant figure, especially for a Star Wars figure, and I enjoy how the various customizations to his armor have been carried out. Doom is packed with a pair of blaster pistols, which can be held or stored in his holsters. This feels a little light, especially for the higher Black Series price.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While I was out looking for new stuff on Force Friday (and also visiting Super Awesome Girlfriend for the weekend), one of the Walmarts I stopped by happened to have some of the pre-Force Awakens Black Series figures in stock, this guy included. I had actually been hoping to find this guy ever since I stumbled upon the pictures of his prototype online, so I was pretty happy about stumbling across him. Doom has his share of issues, but he definitely stands out from the rest of my Star Wars figures, and he’s a shout out to one of the best characters in comics to boot!

CommanderDoom3

#0012: Dr. Doom

DR DOOM

FANTASTIC FOUR (TOYBIZ)

Today, we look at another figure from Toybiz’s Fantastic Four line from the 90s.  Yesterday, we looked at Reed Richards, today we look at his arch nemesis Dr. Victor Von Doom

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The patriarch of Latveria was released in the first wave of figures.  He’s based on the character’s look on the cartoon, which was obviously based the comic book look.  The figure stands 5 inches tall and has 8 points of articulation.  He has a removable cape and a spring loaded right hand.  The hand is launched by pushing the extremely obvious lever on the shoulder.  It’s kind of an odd feature, as I don’t recall Doom ever doing anything that resembled what this figure seems to emulate.  I guess maybe if he were a Doombot, but it just seems like an odd choice for a figure that would have probably been better without it.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Dr. Doom was a great figure.  I remember being pretty content with this figure, and as a kid he was one of my go to bad guys for whatever hero I was playing with that week.  I think he still holds up pretty well for the time, aside from the odd action feature.