#2443: Iron Man

IRON MAN — GAMERVERSE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Tony Stark developed his cutting-edge Iron Man armor and helped found the Avengers to protect the world against catastrophic threats.”

As the MCU moves away from the two of them, the Marvel Legends line has to find new ways to keep new variants of heavy hitters like Iron Man and Captain America coming out.  Fortunately, the two of them are still pretty pivotal to the upcoming Avengers game from Square Enix, thereby guaranteeing the two of them another couple of easy-sell variants.  I took a look at the Captain America yesterday, and I’ll be following that up with the Iron Man figure today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Iron Man is the second of the three game-inspired single-packed figures in the Abomination Series of Marvel Legends.  He was actually the first of these figures we saw, before we knew there’d be a full assortment of figures to go with him, back in the fall of last year. He’s again based on the character’s standard design from the game.  While Cap’s design took quite a few more artistic liberties with its implementation, the Iron Man design by and large sticks pretty close to the MCU Iron Man playbook.  It’s a little more streamlined most places, except for some reason the helmet, which is where the majority of the changes happen.  The figure stands just over 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  The movement on this guy is a little stiff, even for an Iron Man figure, with the shoulders in particular being rather difficult to work with.  Also, the decision to give him a torso crunch, instead of the ball-jointed style we’ve gotten with the last several movie Iron Men is rather baffling, especially given that the design has a clear spot for such a joint to be included, but Hasbro still opted for a far more limiting method.  He does at least get to keep the full wrist joints on his arms this time, so it’s not all bad decisions.  This Iron Man is sporting an all-new sculpt, which looks to be fairly faithful to the game.  It’s not bad, and is about on par with the various MCU sculpts in terms of quality and feel.  While I thought Cap’s design translated pretty nicely to toy form, I don’t think that’s quite true with Iron Man, or at the very least his helmet.  It looks fine in the game animation I’ve seen, but I really don’t care for it in toy form.  I think it’s how closely it contours to his face; that visible nose really seems odd for Iron Man, and it ends up making him look fairly alien, which I don’t think was the intended feel.  Other than that, though, the body on this figure does look pretty cool, and the detailing is all pretty sharp.  The paint work is pretty standard Iron Man fare.  The red is molded in that sort of swirly metallic plastic, and everything else is painted.  The application’s pretty clean overall, but there are a few spots of bleed over here and there.  The arc reactor uses the printing technique we’ve been seeing on the faces to give it some more variation, which looks pretty decent overall.  Iron Man is packed with two sets of hands (one in fists, the other in repulser blast pose), two effects pieces, and the left leg to the Abomination Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When this figure was first shown off, I really didn’t have much interest.  We’d just gotten the Mark 85, with is really everything I want in a real-world Iron Man figure, and it looked like this guy might be another one-off release like Spider-Man was, so I was content to pass.  Once he was part of a full assortment, the story changed a bit.  Ultimately, I wasn’t expecting much out of this figure, and that’s for the best.  He’s not bad, but I think the 85 or even the Tenth Anniversary Mk VII are stronger modern Iron Men than this one.  He’s kind of a middling figure for me.

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.

#2431: Crimson Dynamo

CRIMSON DYNAMO

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Hey, remember how I mentioned Black Widow needing to borrow some foes from Iron Man?  Well, she did it again.  It’s okay, there’s more connective tissue this time.  When it comes to Iron Man foes, it’s a bit tricky for them to really stick.  I mean, how do you manage to become the arch enemy of a guy who’s actually just his own arch enemy?  The spot’s pretty much permanently taken!  There have, nevertheless, been a few characters that have hung on for a bit, including one of his two Soviet counterparts, the Crimson Dynamo.  Dynamo’s a pretty early addition to Stark’s rogue’s gallery, and the original Dynamo is definitely interwoven with Black Widow, who was still a villain at the time.  Of course, there’s been twelve different people in the armor since then…yeah, there are a lot of Crimson Dynamos.  It makes getting decent toys a little tricky, because, honestly, where do you start?  Well, let’s start here, I guess.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Crimson Dynamo is the Build-A-Figure for the titular Crimson Dynamo Series of Marvel Legends.  This is Dynamo’s first time as an official Legends release.  He was originally slated to be part of Toy Biz’s Series 13 “Bring on the Bad Guys” line-up, but was dropped before they went to prototype.  The Valentin Shatalov did get a 6-inch release in the Iron Man: Armored Avenger line that ran briefly after Iron Man 2, but proper Legends was on hiatus at the time.  Now we’ve actually got one.  I know.  It’s a pretty big deal.  There have been 13 different Dynamos over the years, so there are plenty of designs to choose from.  Hasbro opted for the Gennady Gravilov version of the character, which was introduced in the early ’00s Epic Comics miniseries based on the character.  While it doesn’t quite have the staying power of Dmitri Bukharin’s more classic armor, it’s honestly not a bad design at all, and it’s at least one that got a little bit of dedicated focus in the miniseries.  It’s also a slightly more natural fit for a Build-A-Figure.  The figure stands 8 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  There’s a little bit of re-use here: he’s got the legs from the Iron Monger/Mandroid Build-A-Figure.  While not a perfect match for the armor design in the comics, they’re close enough to work, and flow pretty well with the rest of the sculpt stylistically.  The design of the articulation scheme is also really great, so I can’t fault Hasbro for wanting to use them again.  The rest of the sculpt is all-new, and it’s quite impressive at that.  It translates the comics design quite nicely into three dimensions, and there’s a lot of really fun little detail work mixed in.  The slight cracking on various pieces of the armor, the texturing on the upper armor, and the rivets all throughout really give this thing a lived-in appearance.  It’s not a sleek, top-of-the-line Stark design; this thing is built for functionality over appearance.  I was also impressed by how well they worked in the articulation.  I liked the Mandroid a fair bit, but it was a little restricted in its movement, at least on its top half.  This guy, on the other hand, is surprisingly poseable.  He’s also incredibly stable, which I’m all about.  The paintwork on Dynamo is mostly pretty basic.  A lot of the color work is just molded colors.  It’s all pretty clean, and replicates the comic colors well enough.  I really like the clear plastic for the vials on his wrists; it adds some dimension to the figure.  There aren’t any accessories for Dynamo himself, but given the size of this guy, that’s pretty easily excused.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I really like Crimson Dynamo.  I’d go so far as to say he’s probably my favorite Iron Man foe (although I also quite like Titanium Man).  Perhaps my biggest problem with Iron Man 2 was not getting a proper Crimson Dynamo out of it.  I’ve been waiting for a good Dynamo in Legends form for a while, and I was definitely happy to see him crop up here.  Yeah, I still really want the Dmitri Bukharin armor at some point, but this is a really good design, too, and this figure is an early contender for my favorite Build-A-Figure this year.  He’s really solid, and I really like him.

With the movie being pushed back, I think this assortment is one that people might overlook, and that’s actually kind of too bad.  Crimson Dynamo is the definite star for me, and building him was honestly enough to get me on board, but upon completing the set, I find myself enjoying pretty much the whole thing.  The movie figures are all really solid (even if Red Guardian’s not quite screen-accurate), Winter Soldier’s a fantastic solo release, and Crossbones is a good clean update of a pretty important character.  Only Spymaster’s really a drag, and even then, he’s not a *terrible* figure.  I expected very little from this set, but I’m actually really happy with the final product.

#2430: Spymaster

SPYMASTER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“An undercover operative skilled in sabotage, Spymaster possesses superb fighting capabilities.”

Remember what I was saying yesterday about Widow’s supporting characters not being quite so developed?  Well, we’re back to that.  Switching over from Captain America, we now move to Black Widow’s Iron Man ties, taking a look at Spymaster, a character whose ties to Widow are pretty much limited to “they both fought Iron Man.”  And they’re spies, I guess, but honestly, that’s practically the same as saying “they both fought Iron Man;” guy fought a lot of spies.  Spymaster’s primary claim to fame is his role in the “Armor Wars” storyline, where he was responsible for giving Tony’s designs to Justin Hammer.  Beyond that, there’s not a lot to this guy.  Well, now he’s got a Legends figure.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Spymaster is figure 6 in the Crimson Dynamo Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the final single-packed figure in the assortment.  I know, I’m as disappointed as you that this is what we’re wrapping up with.  Talk about going out with a whimper.  It’s okay, the Build-A-Figure’s tomorrow; he’ll make up for it.  This guy stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  He’s built on the Bucky Cap body, and boy is this thing showing the wear on the mold.  The gaps between the torso and the shoulders are really getting pronounced, to the point that I initially thought my figure might be misassembled.  I’m thinking this thing is hitting its end of life really fast here.  It’s still not a terrible base, of course, and build-wise it fits Spymaster just fine.  He gets two new pieces, for his head and his belt.  In both cases, I was genuinely surprised.  The belt can at least be chalked up to there not really being a piece that properly matches, but I fully expected the head to be another re-use of the Blizzard mold, since it’s just a masked head.  The fact that they went to the trouble of sculpting in the mask’s details, and actually changing the very structure of the mask and how it lays on the face is a very nice touch that I think pretty much everyone is going to miss.  Spymaster’s paintwork is decent enough.  It’s a little sloppy at the changeovers, but not terribly so, and the color scheme is at least pretty bright and eye catching (which, admittedly, doesn’t seem quite right for a guy who’s a spy, but what do I know?  I’ve never stolen Tony Stark’s designs, now have I?).  Spymaster is packed with a recolor of Yon-Rogg’s gun (the same one Crossbones used), as well as the right leg to the Crimson Dynamo figure.  Let’s be real here: that’s what everyone’s gonna buy this guy for.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Spymaster’s a character I was “meh” on back when he got a Minimate, so the Legend likewise doesn’t exactly spark me into a verbal frenzy.  He’s a pretty by-the-numbers figure of a pretty by-the-numbers character, though the fact that his mold isn’t in the best shape hinders him even a bit further.  I was impressed by how much new work went into this guy, really, and on that front he’s a little bit better than I’d expected him to be.

Spymaster 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.

#2335: Iron Man

IRON MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS

Tonight’s drunk review is brought to you by watching Paprika, the acid dream trip of an anime movie, you can only view this movie while extremely inebriated. AND ETHAN HAS PROMISED ME THAT HE WON’T EDIT THIS POST, EVEN TO MAKE IT READABLE. If he edits this review before it publishes then he won’t be getting any action figures for a month. I’m not drunk enough for this limp noodle asparagus. Apparently I don’t write “coherent enough reviews”, well I’ll show ya coherent!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

This is some Iron Man from some Hasbro Marvel Legends line. Oh! Oh! I got it! He’s unpainted robot Iron Man before he does the red/gold color scheme from the 365th Marvel Legends line. Just kidding, I pulled that out of my derrière. I’m really craving Jade Hibachi now, that cheap hibachi place across the street from Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina. I miss them… 😦

Look at that Punisher though! FRANKIE!!!! MY GUN TOTTING CINNAMON ROLL!!!! He’s got his murder face on–GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRHHHHH! And look, he’s right next to the Iron Punishmenter. Then there’s robo Iron Man next to acid green Spidey. Then there’s jacked up white space football Spidey. And the crew is rounded off with horse rancher Wolverine, who retires to a horse farm after losing Jean for the 34th time. If you can’t see the picture I’m talking about, it’s I’m assuming all the figures from the line all…lined up. Pffft.

Anyways, Im going off the books. Is there every really a script for these reviews, at least the ones that I write? This robot looking Iron Man, loo i know they all look like robits, but this one especially with the cold grey color scheme, has like 54 points of articulation. He’s about the size of my hand, about some 6 inches and some change.

This review is painful and it doesn’t help.  No, that’s the Egg. Anyways, this figure is a repaint of some other Iron Man figure, which is why i get to review him. Apparently, it’s a repaint of Invincible Iron Man. Did he have a better looking butt though? I don’t like his spine, it’s weird and makes me uncomfortable. Like dude, seriously, put that spiny boi away. No one wants to see that! I don’t know how I feel about this figure. He doesn’t have a distinguishable mouth. WHERE DOES HE BREATHE?!?!?!? Anyways, this boi is painted grey, like steel metal grey that reminds you of cold heartless metal. Yes, metal can have heart, just look at the Iron Giant. This Iron Man is a cool grey with subtle vibrant (those words don’t really go together do they?) blue that outlines and accents things, like his face and spine. Maybe that’s why I don’t like his spine, because it’s all bumpy and super detailed. The blue accenting while cool in some places looks really sloppy in others, like spray paint without the drip lines and super blotches. Maybe the blue is supposed to be like spray paint, which in that case it looks convincing, but if not it makes the figure look sloppy. Also my nails are really long and are making typing kinda hard. This Iron Man’s butt is kinda disappointing, like leagues under America’s Butt, though the plastic does look like he’s got dimples on his metal cheeks. Male action figure butts are always disappointing and flat. Like female figures and statues have nice bubble butts, but most males look like deflated flabby balloons and it makes me sad. This Iron Man’s spine has more definition than his butt does.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This isn’t my favorite Iron Man. I don’t actually know if I do have a favorite one, but this one would definitely be at the bottom of the list. He looks too much like a cold heartless robot that Ultron could take over and use to kill people. I like the color combo of blue and grey, but the blue on this figure looks sloppy and incomplete in some places. His spine really creeps me out and i don’t know why exactly. Overall, this isn’t one of my favorite figures. I can’t remember where Ethan got this figure, but I’m like 98% sure that it wasn’t from Walmart or Toy-R-Us [it was from my friends at All Time Toys –Ethan]. The former he doesn’t shop much in and the later died a slow agonizing death, but not as slow as K-Mart, gods bless their journeys’ to the afterlife. And now I’m just typing even more nonsense so that the review doesn’t stop on a six hundred and six after sixty word count. That’s the mark of the devil, and while I’m not super religious, our roommate has had the worst luck and I want to be cautious!

There, I’m done. Your regular review reading program will come back tomorrow–don’t worry!

#2291: Iron Man

IRON MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Tony Stark gears up in his highly advanced Mark LXXXV armor.”

When Iron Man first appeared on the big screen in 2008, he did so in a suit of armor that was a respectable recreation of his then current armor in the comics.  It was sensible from a marketing standpoint of course; having your character in the same basic costume across different forms of media is typically a good idea; but it was also sensible from the angle of making him work in a real world setting.  As cool as Tony’s classic armor may be, it’s hard to sell an audience on the classic skin-tight-looking design existing in the real world….or is it?  After 10 years with various modern reinterpretations, Endgame‘s Mark 85 armor, much like Cap’s new and improved uniform, finally got us something much closer to that classic Iron Man design.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Iron Man is part of the “Thor” Series of Marvel Legends, the third Endgame-based assortment of 2019.  As noted in the intro, he’s sporting the Mark 85 armor, which made its debut in Endgame and is heavily inspired by Tony’s 60s/70s armor from the comics.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 31 points of articulation.  The Mark 85 is an all-new sculpt, unsurprising given that this particular armor design is the most divergent standard armor from a design standpoint.  That said, its heavily rumored we’ll be seeing a lot of the sculpt turn up again for some sort of final battle release in some sort of exclusive or boxed set form.  Joint layout and integration on this figure is pretty similar to the Mark 50, but the actual construction of the figure feels a lot more solid, and the joints get a bit more range.  The all-new sculpt does a pretty respectable job of capturing the design of the armor from the movie in plastic form.  The decision to push him back to the third assortment was a solid one, since it allows for the figure to be more accurate to the final film design than other film Iron Men.  It’s still not perfect; like the Mark 50, it’s still not quite as sleek as the final film design, but it does still manage to land a bit closer.  The detail work is all pretty sharp, though, and the figure is as a whole a very cohesive sculpt.  He’s one of the most solidly assembled MCU Iron Men, really rivaled only by the Mark VII figure from 2018.  The paint work on Iron Man isn’t too complicated, but it gets all of the important details and, unlike the 50, it manages to actually stick to the movie’s color scheme.  I appreciate sticking with the painted gold as well; it ends up making for a nicer looking final product.  One of the biggest flaws with the Mark 50 was his lack of extras, and in that regard, the 85 definitely does a little better.  He gets a spare set of repuslor hands (which finally have actual universal joints on the wrists again, after far too many figures with simple cut joints on the extra hands), plus four repulsor effects, meaning you no longer have to choose between using them for the hands or feet.  That’s just what he gets for himself; he’s also got some extras for other figures.  The first is the other arm of the Thor figure (complete with a spare hand with the time travel device), and the second is an alternate nano-tech gauntlet for last series’ Hulk BaF.  It’s a little weird that he gets the gauntlet for another figure and not for himself, but that sort of adds fuel to those rumors of a second version of this armor.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I wanted two things when I walked out of the theater after seeing Endgame the first time.  The first was Cap’s new costume.  The second was this guy.  As much as I like Iron Man, and as much as I can appreciate the various MCU armors purely aesthetically, by around Iron Man 3, I was really longing for a proper classic Iron Man, which resulted in each successive MCU figure not quite hitting the way I wanted.  Once this design was unveiled, I knew I wanted it, and I was definitely happy when he was shown off with this assortment.  He’s a really nice figure, and a great basic, clean Iron Man figure, easily rivaling the Mark VII in terms of being the best MCU Iron Man figure.  Definitely this assortment’s star piece.

Iron Man 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.

#2173: Iron Man

IRON MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Genius industrialist and inventor Tony Stark creates a suit of armor for himself, powered by the arc reactor in his chest, becoming the hero, Iron Man.”

When I opened up my last 6-inch-scaled Classic Iron Man review of the year, back in February, I remarked that a re-do of Tony’s classic armor hadn’t crossed Hasbro’s list for Marvel Legends just yet.  Well…I was wrong as you can see.  A week later, they unveiled the figure I’m looking at today, which just makes me look good and foolish, doesn’t it?  Well, if looking good and foolish means that I get a cool new Iron Man figure, I guess I won’t complain so much about it.  Best not to look a gift horse in the mouth and all that.  So, hey, let’s look at this here Iron Man, shall we?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Iron Man is the second of the two single-packed “80 Years of Marvel” Legends figures. Like Thor, he’s available at mass retail and ships in a case all to himself.  He’s based on Tony’s classic armor, which is the one he wore for the better part of 20 years, making it a natural choice for a celebration of Marvel’s history.  It’s a look that’s never too far from the line.  Toy Biz, of course, kicked off the line with their take on it, which was kind of the gold standard for a while.  Hasbro themselves have tackled this design before, with a two-pack release in ’07, and then a repaint of that sculpt in ’13.  Both of those sculpts are definitely products of their times, though, and another go seems appropriate.  This figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Iron Man is an all-new sculpt, and oh boy is it a nice one.  This one takes the general larger size of the original Toy Biz figure, and gives it the slightly better proportions of the first Hasbro attempt, and the end result is something that looks a fair bit more human, but also still looks like it could conceivably house a human being.  It’s also our first comics Iron Man in a bit that’s not completely dwarfed by all of the Captain America figures Hasbro’s offering.  While there’s a bit of a theme to the trinity of Avengers released here being based on the art of Alex Ross, Iron Man takes a bit of a deviation, at least in regards to how he is straight out of the box.  The head he comes wearing doesn’t actually follow Ross’s take (which is itself a bit of a deviation from usual illustrations), and instead goes for a more standard “classic” Iron Man head, representing his helmet post horns and rivets, going for that nice, sleek 70s style.  I’d hasten to say it’s the best rendition of this helmet we’ve gotten on an action figure.  There’s a second helmeted head, which is more directly based on Ross’s illustrations, which draw a little more inspiration from the time when Tony added a nose to the helmet in the mid-70s, all because Stan Lee made some one off remark about some of the art coming back.  While I certainly appreciate the aim to more closely capture the Ross art, and I like Ross’s work on the page, I don’t really know that the helmet translates all that well into an action figure.  Iron Man’s paintwork continues the trend we saw with Thor and Cap, where it’s a little more subdued in its coloring than other figures from the main line.  It’s a little less noticeable with Iron Man, since metallic colors aren’t too out of the ordinary for him, even on a classic-inspired figure.  It certainly looks clean and sleek, which is always what you want with this particular design.  Iron Man is packed with one more head, this time unmasked.  It again follows the Ross stylings, which means that it’s a Tony Stark that’s heavily modeled on Timothy Dalton.  Honestly, it’s something of a Legends tradition, so I’m all about it.  It’s technically a little large to properly fit within the helmeted head, but I don’t mind too much, because it’s really just so nice.  Iron Man is also packed with two sets of hands in fists and repulser hand poses, as well as two repulser effects pieces, which take a page out of the Siege playbook and can be broken down into three separate pieces each.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I love me some classic Iron Man, and I really wanted a solid version for my Legends shelf, enough so that I was willing to go outside of Legends for the Mezco version.  As it turns out, that one was more of a place holder for this guy.  I honestly didn’t expect Hasbro to turn him around so quickly, but I’m really glad they did.  I dug the Mezco version for what it was, I dug the Toy Biz version for being as cool as it was for the time, but this is my definitive Iron Man.  There’s just so much I like about this figure, and he’s got to be one of Hasbro’s most cleanly put together sculpts.  I hope we can at least see a Stealth variant, because I love this sculpt so much.  Definitely the highlight of the three 80th singles, and that’s coming from someone who loved Cap and Thor a lot as well.

I picked up Iron Man 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.

#2108: Senate Hearing Tony Stark & Mark I Iron Man

SENATE HEARING TONY STARK & MARK I IRON MAN

MARVEL MINIMATES

Though the first Iron Man got a pretty solid coverage of Minimates, by the time of Iron Man 2, the brand had moved to new heights and reached new audiences, and was just much larger in general.  The IM2 assortments had to pull double-duty, covering not only Iron Man 2, but also playing some slight catch-up on the first film for new fans.  Today’s set follows that, giving us new versions of the suited Tony Stark and his original Mark I armor.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

This pair was released in the first TRU-tie-in assortment of Marvel Minimates for Iron Man 2, alongside the more outwardly new Black Widow and Mark II pairing.

SENATE HEARING TONY STARK

Tony’s irreverent performance at the Senate hearing was heavily featured in the trailers leading up to IM2’s release.  As such, the appearance of his attire from that scene in this line wasn’t a huge shock.  Tony uses add-ons for his hair, jacket, and tie.  All three of these were re-used.  The hair is from the first film’s Tony, which is a good fit.  The jacket is from the “World of the Psychic” Peter Venkman; this was its first re-use, but it’s gone on to become a very common-place item.  Lastly, there’s the tie, re-purposed from the Spirit boxed set.  Again, the first re-use of many.  The willingness to use these new pieces, especially the sculpted tie, adds some quality to the figure that might have otherwise been missing.  The paintwork on Tony is pretty decent.  The big, goony grin on his face is certainly unique, and adds an extra bit of character to this particular figure.  There’s some impressive work on the pelvis piece, as well, delivering details that weren’t commonplace at the time.  They’re certainly appreciated here.  Perhaps the only other thing I’d have liked to see would be proper detailing under the tie on the torso, but that’s a minor flaw.  Tony included no accessories.  I can’t say I can think of what could have been included, though, so I can’t really hold it against him.

MARK I IRON MAN

The Mark I armor was one of the first Iron Man assortment’s real gems (really, only rivaled by Iron Monger), and he was also extraordinarily heavy on essentially one-off parts, so a re-release was warranted.  Like the first Mark I, he uses sculped add-ons for his helmet, chest plate, upper arm and leg armor, gauntlets, and boots.  The pieces are some of the finest sculpting from the line, especially from the period in which they appeared.  They were great the first time around, and this figure is the same.  The paint on the armor this time is somewhat changed.  It’s less silver and more of a gunmetal grey, with more wear and tear.  It loses some of the other colors, which is a shame, but it overall feels a lot more accurate, and differentiates the figure more than you might think.  What differentiates the figure most, however, isn’t what’s on the surface, but rather what’s under it.  The original Mark I gave us a pretty awesome captive Tony.  Through use of a spare hair piece, hands, and jacket, this one loosely replicates Tony’s entrance at the beginning of IM2, giving us Tony in a tux.  Sure, he was wearing it under the Mark IV in the movie, but this is still really cool.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I found these new, and I was definitely more interested in the other exclusive two pack at the time, but there’s no denying that this one is a lot better than anyone expected.  Senate Hearing Tony’s not an essential figure by any means.  He certainly could have been drab and boring, had DST just phoned him in.  Fortunately, they didn’t, resulting in a pretty nifty little ‘mate.  This Mark I could have been a simple retread of the original release, but he gets a lot of added value from the alternate look.

#2096: Rescue

RESCUE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Since she donned the Mark 42 armor in Iron Man 3, there’s been a real underlying desire to finally see Pepper Potts suit up as Rescue, her armored identity introduced in the comics in 2009.  Fortunately, the MCU paid things off in Endgame‘s final bout, giving us Pepper in all her armored glory.  Toy companies have jumped right on the design, and a couple of figure offerings are already on the slate.  One of the first to hit shelves is the Legends offering, which I’ll be taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Rescue is officially figure 1 in the Hulk Series of Marvel Legends, and is the second movie-based figure includes here.  She’s also our second movie Pepper (following the IM3 variant from last year), and our second Legends Rescue (following the Marvel subscription incentive figure).  The figure is just under 6 inches tall and has 31 points of articulation.  Rescue is a brand new sculpt, and seems to be a reasonable recreation of the suit as it looked in the movie, which is certainly an improvement on the usual pre-production influences we tend to see on the MCU armors.  There are some spots where the design could be a bit more streamlined relative to the film, but by and large, it’s a solid sculpt.  There are some slight limitations to the articulation on the arms, especially the wrists, but for the most part the figure’s ‌movement is also quite well implemented and doesn’t require breaking up the sculpt too much.  There are two different back pieces included, one with the “wings” deployed and the other more compact, allowing for a variety of looks.  While the deployed version is my preferred, and certainly the more dynamic of the two, having the option is nice.  The colors on Rescue represented a notable change up from the comics, where she’s rocking red and silver.  Here she has a indigo and light gold combo, which I really dug in the movie, and I think looks really slick on the toy.  The addition of the incidental details, like the labels adds a nice finish as well.  Beyond the interchangeable backpacks, Rescue’s only extra is the torso to the Hulk BaF.  It’s too bad we couldn’t get a Paltrow head, or maybe some extra hands, because she feels a little light.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Rescue is definitely a design I walked out of the theatre wanting as a toy.  I definitely wasn’t alone, and it’s great that Hasbro was able to turn it around so quickly.  There are a few small issues with this figure, mostly having to do with the accessories, but overall I’m quite happy with the final product.

#2074: Hostile Takeover

PLAYBOY TONY STARK, RAZA, BATTLE-DAMAGED IRON MAN MARK III, & IRON MONGER

MARVEL MINIMATES

There was a bit of hoopla going down when it was announced that DST had not acquired the license for Spider-Man: Far From Home and Marvel Minimates would subsequently be skipping the film.  It caused some drama amongst the fanbase, largely because for the first time, after a whopping 22 films and 11 years, an MCU film would not be getting any Minimates.  That’s kind of a big deal, since Minimates got in on the ground floor, with by far the most expansive product offering for 2008’s Iron Man.  It played a definite part in getting them back out to a more mainstream audience, and even had a role in getting them back into Toys R Us.  There was a main assortment of four two-packs, plus a TRU-exclusive two-pack, and then finally a boxed set to fill in the only real remaining holes in the line-up.  I’m looking at the boxed set today.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The “Hostile Takeover” set was officially the final item in DST’s coverage for Iron Man, available exclusively through Action Figure Xpress, DST’s go-to retailer for exclusives at the time.  The set featured a pair of slight redecos (Battle-Damaged Mark III and Iron Monger), plus one new look (playboy Tony), and one all-new character (Raza).

PLAYBOY TONY STARK

After the lead-in which established the cause of his abduction and injury, the movie flashed back, and reintroduced us to Tony Stark, who we meet in a Vegas casino, wearing the number we see here.  It’s a pretty distinctive look, so the main line’s decision to go with a more standard suit-ed look for civilian Tony was seen as a slight missed opportunity (but only slight).  Its presence here is probably one of the few civilian Tony looks that was actively campaigned for.  The figure is built on the usual body, so he’s 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Tony made use of re-used parts, with the hair from Admiral Kirk and the jacket/shirt from 1984 Biff Tannen.  The hair’s not quite a perfect match for Downey’s hair in the movie, but it gets the job done and is easily swapped out if you don’t like it quite so much.  The jacket piece, though, is a pretty brilliant re-use, and I imagine that this piece’s very existence probably paid a large role in getting this figure made.  The paintwork is more involved than you might think.  Rather than just being straight black, his pants are a dark brown, and even have some detailing on the bottoms, which is a cool touch.  He didn’t originally have the detail lines on his torso, though; I added those after the fact. He included no accessories, but I’m not sure what he would have been given.

RAZA

Raza was the set’s one unique character.  As the leader of the “Ten Rings,” there was a lot of speculation at the time of the that he was going to be the movie franchise’s Madarin.  Ah, simpler times.  Prior to this set’s release, he was the only notable character from the film who hadn’t been released, so there was a lot of excitement about him being included.  Raza got the only new parts in this set, with a brand-new jacket/skirt combo.  It’s kind of bulky, and a little restricting, but otherwise a solid recreation of his garb from the film.  His paintwork is actually rather involved.  The stubble on the face is very nicely rendered, as is the camo on his jacket.  That goes beyond the level of detail we tend to see.  Raza was packed with an assault rifle, which was actually unique to this set, which is a little bit surprising, but cool nonetheless.

BATTLE-DAMAGED IRON MAN MARK III

Tony’s main armor, the Mark III, takes quite a beating over the course of Iron Man, so it’s probably one of the most sensible battle-damaged variants ever.  It also gave DST another chance to re-use the new armor tooling, which I’m sure was their primary rationale.  The figure makes use of all re-used parts, as you might expect.  That includes the helmet, chest piece, gauntlets, and armored-up legs of the standard Mark III (and Mark II and Stealth Armor too).  They were an amazing addition to the line at the time, and they’ve actually held up alright.  They merged the armored suit with the ‘mate style better than later offerings would, at least from my view.  The removable faceplate is also still really cool.  The paint work for this figure took the standard Mark III paint and messed it up, adding cracks, scuffs, and even a few bullet holes.  It’s a very convincing assortment of damage, and actually stands out very well from the standard detailing.  Like all of the armored figures from this movie, this guy has a complete alternate look, allowing the armor to be stripped down.  There’s an extra set of legs and hands, as well as an alternate hair piece, which showcase a seriously pissed off Tony Stark.  This figure also adds in the repuslor gauntlets, break fins, and blast base from the Stealth Armor, this time done up in the standard Iron Man colors.

BATTLE-DAMAGED IRON MONGER

Last up is the figure that’s possibly the least essential in this set.  While Obidiah Stane’s Iron Monger suit takes a little bit of damage over the course of the film’s final battle, it’s nowhere near the level of what happens to the Mark III, nor is it particularly notable when compared to the standard figure.  He’s using all the same parts as that release, which certainly plays to his favor, since the original Iron Monger was the star of the original Iron Man line-up.  It’s a good sculpt, and a wonderful miniaturization of the film design.  The thing is, this is the second time we got it, so it did feel a bit redundant, especially so close to the original release.  Pretty much, they added some slightly darker patches, and that was it. Under the armor, things are slightly different.  There’s still a fully detailed Obidiah Stane, but this one’s a little angrier, and has a few rips on his jumpsuit.  But, the most important addition?  The standard flesh-toned hands, which were missing from the original release.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Iron Man Minimates were some of my favorites, so I was determined to put together a full set.  This one ended up being a Christmas present from my parents.  I can’t say I had much investment in this set beyond just getting everyone.  Raza was unique, and the Tony was certainly an improvement over the first one, but for me the real star was actually the Battle-Damaged Mark III, who does a very good job of justifying his own existence.

#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.