ROCKET RACCOON & GROOT
To wrap up this three-day Infinity War thing I’ve got going here, I’ve got one more set of Minimates to look at. Ever. Well, no, not ever. I still have a ton of Minimates to review. There’s over 1000 of those suckers in my collection. No, just the last set from this little sub-set…or something. Anyway, I’ve looked at the more Avengers-themed guys, now I’m going into full cross-over mode, with a pair of Guardians. Let’s have a look at yet another Rocket Raccoon and Groot!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Rocket Raccoon and Groot were originally supposed to be the Toys R Us-exclusive set for the first Infinity War assortment of Marvel Minimates. Then they went out of business and messed that all up. But, before they went out of business, this set and it’s accompanying series were moved over to specialty. What’s intriguing about this particular pairing is that, while it’s totally a natural choice to pack just the two of them together, thanks to use of micro-figures and such, it’s actually the first time we’ve gotten a straight Rocket & Groot two-pack.
After being relegated to being an unarticulated pack-in for his first two releases, we finally got a proper Rocket Raccoon Minimate in Series 71 for Guardians Vol. 2. At first glance, this figure might seem like a straight re-release of that one, but he’s actually a little bit different. He’s still about 2 inches tall and has a reduced 8 points of articulation. He uses the same head, shortened arms, and belt/tail piece. He gets a new set of legs, more divergent from the standard Minimate legs than the last ones, and also swaps out the normal Minimate torso of the last one for the comparatively smaller torso from NBX’s Sally. Both of these are minor changes, easily missed by a quick glance at the figure, but they result in a figure that actually looks a fair bit better than the last release. Rocket’s paintwork is not that much different than the Series 71 release. It’s mostly just amended to fit the newer pieces. Rocket is packed with a rather large rifle (the same one included with all of the other IW Rockets), which is kind of comically huge (larger than the Legends version, even), and pretty much impossible for Rocket to hold.
Groot has a much more divergent design in Infinity War than his pack-mate, so he is fittingly a more unique figure. He uses the standard body as a starting point, but really only keeps the arms and pelvis. The head is a unique piece, which replicates Groot’s noggin pretty well. Likewise, the hands and feet are new, and do a respectable job of translating Groot’s tree-like appendages. He also uses the smaller torso that we saw on Rocket, and swaps out the usual legs for another set of arms. This results in an overall quite slender look, which helps to differentiate him pretty well from the original Groot. His paintwork is pretty standard for this character. Lots of brown, and some decent work on the detail lines. I do appreciate that the arms and legs have different detailing from each other. Groot is packed with a clear display stand…and that’s it. Shame we couldn’t get his portable game or anything.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I got this set at the same time as Spider-Man and Hulk, via Cosmic Comix. I wasn’t totally sold on this set at first, but after realizing how much better the changes to Rocket made the figure, and already being sold on Groot, I decided to grab it. Is it the most thrilling set of all time? Probably not, but it’s a pretty essential version of Groot, and it’s by far the best version of Rocket we’ve gotten.