#2013: Corvus Glaive & Loki

CORVUS GLAIVE & LOKI

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Known for his shifting allegiances, Loki faces evil head on when he is confronted by the Black Order — a sinister group of Thanos’ cohorts that includes the menacing Corvus Glaive.”

Hey, I hear there’s like, this movie coming out this week, that’s supposed to be a big deal or something.  You’ve probably never heard of it.  Yeah…

So, Avengers: Endgame will hit theaters this Thursday night, and is already starting to break all sorts of records.  Odds are good that it’s going to be the biggest movie of the year.  As the 22nd entry of the MCU canon, it’s got a lot riding behind it.  Product for Endgame officially started hitting shelves on the 31st of March, and is making its way around right now.  And I’m going to hype myself up for the movie by reviewing some of that product this week.  First up, something that’s not *technically* Endgame-related, Corvus Glaive and Loki!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Corvus Glaive and Loki are a Walmart-exclusive two-pack in the Marvel Legends line.  Though officially based on the characters as seen in Infinity War, the set is part of the official Endgame product, and has been showing up alongside it.  Corvus was shown last year (alongside Ebony Maw, who I’ll be looking at later in the week), but it was not until just a few months ago that we knew he’d be arriving alongside another Loki.

CORVUS GLAIVE

As I noted when I reviewed his minimate release, Corvus Glaive is the Black Order’s least developed member in Infinity War.  And, if you don’t believe me, just read that bio up top from the back of the box.  That’s a Loki bio with “oh, and Corvus, too” tacked on the end of it, despite the fact that Corvus is undoubtedly going to be the main selling point for most buyers.  That said, I think he’s got the coolest name of the bunch, and I liked what I saw of him, so I’m certainly happy to have him cropping up here.  The figure stands 7 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  He ends up being a far more mobile figure than Proxima, which is a definite improvement (Cull gets a pass due to his extra bulk).  There’s some slight restricting on the left arm due to the design of the cape, but that’s a fairly reasonable sacrifice.  Otherwise, there’s a lot of potential with these joints, and he’s a very playable figure.  Corvus is sporting an all-new sculpt, and, of the three members of the Black Order I’ve looked at so far, it’s definitely the most screen accurate, thanks to having an extra year to get everything right.  His sculpt is, in addition to being film accurate, is nice and sharply detailed.  The details of costume in particular are really crisp and really pop out at you.  It’s all topped off with an impressively subtle paint scheme.  The gold detailing on his add-ons, as well as the entirety of his facial detailing, are handled via the printing technique, which gives them a nice amount of depth and realism.  Corvus’ only accessory is an acceptable choice: it’s his glaive, and it’s actually quite a nice piece, and is held well in his hands.  Plus, he can actually properly hold it, unlike the Minimate.

LOKI

Though only a small part in the overall film, Loki’s role in Infinity War is still a very prominent one.  Despite that, the sheer volume of characters in the film, coupled with his coverage in Ragnarok, meant that Loki was absent from IW‘s product line.  It’s not a huge shock to see him crop up in this set, though, especially given he was packed with the completely uniquely tooled figure.  This figure, comparatively, is a straight re-use of the Ragnarok version from 2017.  There are positives and negatives to that, because that sculpt was a bit of a mixed bag in regards to quality.  On the plus side, though, it means the two figures are consistent, so hey that’s cool.  The paintwork has been changed up to match Loki’s more stark green and black garb from the end of Ragnarok and the beginning of Infinity War, meaning we finally have the costume that actually goes with the headgear that came with the prior figure.  Also, I do think these colors work a little better for the sculpt.  Loki is packed with the most natural inclusion for an IW Loki, the Teseract, re-used from the Mandroid Series Red Skull.  It fits surprisingly well in his hand, and I’m glad it got another release.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Hey, wanna guess where I got this Walmart exclusive?  That’s right, a Walmart!  Yeah, when the Walmart around the corner from work put out their Endgame display, this showed up in surprisingly high numbers, so I had no trouble at all getting one.  I’m on record that Corvus Glaive is my favorite of the Black Order members, and I was waiting for him to get his figure due.  I’m quite happy with this figure, and I think he’s probably the best of the three we’ve gotten so far.  The Loki he’s packed with is definitely a space-filler, but he’s a reasonably well chosen one, and honestly I think he improves on the prior release enough that I don’t mind that I had to get a second one to get Corvus.

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#1790: Thor: Ragnarok Minimates

GLADIATOR THOR, HELA, BRUCE BANNER, & LOKI

MARVEL MINIMATES

Three Norse Gods and….Mark Ruffalo?  What could possibly go wrong?

The Thor movies have some slight trouble with getting proper toy representation.  The Minimates have done a fair bit of good, but in the case of both of the first two films, last minute cancellations of planned store exclusives resulted in incomplete cast lineups.  Fortunately, Ragnarok was a bit more fortunate.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These four were released in a specialty-exclusive four-pack, released at the same time as the Walgreens and TRU-exclusive two-pack assortments.  Thor and Hela were included in two-pack form in both of those assortments, but Loki and Banner are both exclusive to this particular set.

GLADIATOR THOR

Ragnarok delivered a rather changed-up look for our hero Thor, who had something of an evolving appearance as the film progressed.  This figure represents him from around the film’s mid-point, after he’s arrived on Sakaar and been thrown into the arena as a gladiator.  It’s definitely his most distinctive look from the film, so it’s a sensible inclusion.  Thor has three sculpted add-on pieces to aid in his look.  The first is his helmet.  Thor’s helmet has been frequently overlooked by the film’s and while he doesn’t wear it for long in Ragnarok, it does at least get some focus that it hadn’t previously.  It’s an all-new piece here, and a pretty decent one at that.  The general design of it’s very close to the one seen in the film, and the detail work is pretty solid.  It perhaps sits a little high on his head, but only ever so slightly.  He’s also got a brand new shoulder piece, featuring his shoulderpads and the remaining half of his cape.  It sits well on the body, and doesn’t bulk up the neck too much, so that’s a definite plus.  Finally, he’s got a generic skirt piece, standing in for the bottom portion of his tunic.  Thor’s paintwork is a good recreation of his film design.  The detail lines are nice and sharp, and while the face isn’t the spitting image of Hemsworth, it’s as close as any of the prior attempts have been, and at least this one’s got a good fighting expression.  The tunic features some rather ornate detailing, as do his wrist guards, but I think the little bit of Sakaaran armor on his right leg is my favorite bit.  It’s just so vibrant and genuine.  Since it depicts Thor following Mjolnir’s destruction, this figure doesn’t include that piece.  It does, however, include the two swords he tries to replace his hammer with during his time as a gladiator, as well as a spare hairpiece for a sans-helmet look and a clear display stand.

HELA

After sparring off with one of the franchise’s most forgettable villains for his second installment, Thor was granted a far more intriguing foe in the form of Hela, goddess of death.  She’s still not the Enchantress, but I guess I’ll take it.  Hela is built using two sculpted add-on pieces, for her cape and her distinctive headdress.  Both pieces are unique to this particular figure, though I’m sure they could easily work for a comic book Hela, should DST be so inclined.  They’re both very well crafted additions, capturing the designs from the movie very nicely.  The headdress is sufficiently ornate, and the slight swoop at the bottom of the cape is definitely a nice touch.  Hela’s paint work is suitably bold and striking, even a bit moreso than her onscreen design.  The slightly metallic nature of the green adds even more to the appearance, and I appreciate that the green detailing goes all the way around the legs and pelvis piece.  For accesroes, Hela’s packed with an extra head and hair, depicting her unmasked appearance from her more vulnerable portions of the movie, as well as the usual clear display stand.

BRUCE BANNER

While the two-packs were host to his jade goliath alter-ego, this set gives us a completely un-transformed Bruce Banner.  This is the second such figure we’ve gotten of the Mark Ruffalo version of the character, following his TRU-exclusive release from Age of Ultron.  Banner uses two add-on pieces, for his hair and his jacket.  Both of them are re-used.  The hair is, appropriately, the old Zombie Hulk piece that was used for quite a few Hulks.  It’s a pretty decent match for Ruffalo’s look, especially his slightly shorter hair from Ragnarok.  His jacket is the Ghostbusters World of the Psychic Peter Venkman piece, which has similarly seen a number of uses.  It’s just a basic blazer, so it works well for the look they’re going for.  Bruce’s paint work is perhaps not the most thrilling work in the whole set, but it’s reasonable work never the less.  The face capture’s Ruffalo’s likeness pretty well, and while the shirt lacks the Duran Duran cover from the movie (which I’m certain is a licensing thing), it does at the very least include some wrinkles and folds, so that it’s not just a blank grey block.  Bruce includes a second head, with an angry expression and green pupils.  It’s not the first such piece we’ve seen with a Banner figure, but it’s a welcome addition all the same.  He also includes the usual clear display stand.

LOKI

Loki, particularly Tom Hiddleston’s version of the character, is no stranger to the world of Minimates.  He’s managed to get at least one ‘mate for each of the movies he’s been featured in (well, barring Infinity War).  Ragnarok proved even more generous in this regarding, giving us not one, not two, but three versions of the character.  The one seen here is based on his look from the movie’s final climactic battle.  It’s a look patterned somewhat after his “Agent of Asgard” look from the comics, which is certainly one of his cooler looks.  Loki makes use of three sculpted add-on pieces, for his hair/crown, his cape, and his belt piece.  The hairpiece is unique to this figure, and does a respectable job of capturing the design from the movie.  The crown in particular is quite sharply detailed.  The cape, which is shared with one of the other two Lokis from the movie, is one of my favorite capes, in part because of its rather straight forward nature.  His paint is perhaps the figure’s one real flaw.  For the most part, it’s not bad.  Like Hela, the color scheme is rather striking, and the details on the costume are quite sharp.  In addition, the face is my favorite of the Hiddleston Lokis we’ve gotten to date; that smile is fantastic.  The real trouble is with the hairpiece, where the application is rather sloppy, and in what appears to be an across the board error, his ears have been painted the same gold as his headpiece, rather than the proper peach-tone.  Loki is the lightest packed in this set, featuring only a clear display stand.  I wouldn’t have minded his knives or an extra hair piece or something, but the other three help keep the sting down a little bit.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I grabbed this set from the best Minimate retailer around, Luke’s Toy Store, a few months back.  I actually had fallen behind a bit on releases, so this was part of a catch-up I was doing at the time.  It’s a pretty strong set. Gladiator Thor is one of the coolest versions of the character we’ve gotten in the MCU, and this ‘mate does a great job of translating that.  Hela’s an important character in the context of the movie, and a brand-new character in the context of the line as a whole, plus she’s got a pretty killer look.  Though he’s just a basic civilian, Banner’s a very well-executed ‘mate, and another winning figure in this already quite strong set.  This Loki is really the star Loki figure from the movie, and issues with the paint aside, he’s a pretty darn solid addition to the line-up.

#1711: A-Force

SHE-HULK, SIF, MARVEL’S SINGULARITY, LADY LOKI, ELSA BLOODSTONE, & MONICA RAMBAEU

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Spawning out of 2015’s Secret Wars event was an all-female super team dubbed A-Force.  Gimmicky?  Perhaps, but of course, so was the whole event.  I appreciated it for what it was: a chance to focus on some of Marvel’s fun secondary characters, who maybe get overlooked a little too often.  The event-tie-in got its own spin-off, and ongoing that went 10 more issues.  And, in 2017, the group even got an exclusive boxed-set of Marvel Legends, which I’ll be looking at today!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The A-Force boxed-set was a partnered offering between Entertainment Earth and Toys R Us, which first hit at SDCC 2017, before eventually making its way to Toys R Us retail establishments.  Well, for a little while, anyway.  The set includes six figures: She-Hulk, Sif, Singularity, Lady Loki, Elsa Bloodstone, And Monica Rambaeu.

SHE-HULK

A blood transfusion from Bruce Banner leaves Jennifer Walters with the gamma-powered abilities of the Hulk.

She-Hulk is the one character in this set who’s had a Legends release before.  Three of them, in fact.  But the most recent of those was still a decade ago, so we feel overdue for the update.  She’s also the biggest name in the set, and one of the easier to produce figures just based on parts.  The figure stands 7 inches tall and has 28 points of articulation.  She-Hulk is built on the same body used for both Thundra and Valkyrie, which was debuted on a She-Hulk figure, just not a Jen Walters one.  It’s a decent enough body, though it’s a little out dated compared to the others in the set.  Ultimately, it’s not bad, of course, but the articulation scheme’s a bit archaic.  This body’s definitely the next one that needs replacing.  She-Hulk’s got a new head sculpt, which is very nice.  The expression is perhaps a touch bland for Jen, and nothing’s ever going to top the original Hasbro release for me, but this one’s still very well crafted.  Jen’s paintwork is nice, bold, and colorful.  The paint on the face is very clean, as are the costume’s color transitions.  The metallic purple looks very slick, as well, but then I’m a sucker for metalic purple.  She-Hulk included no accessories, but what would you give her, really?

SIF

As a gifted warrior goddess of Asgaard, Sif traverses time and space through teleportation.

Sif is an important character in the world of Thor, but rarely travels outside of that particular realm.  Seeing her interact with others in A-Force was admittedly pretty cool.  Though she may not be the heavy hitter here, Sif is very much this set’s star.  She stands 6 3/4 inches tall and has 27 points of articulation.  Sif is one the newest body in this set, making use of parts from last year’s Angela figure (which I’d predicted back when I reviewed that figure).  She does, however get a new head, upper torso, upper arms, and cape and skirt piece add-ons, all of which add-up to a very different looking figure than Angela.  My main complaint about Angela was not liking the character, so Sif gets an extra leg up here.  This gives the body a new chance to shine, and I find myself really enjoying this figure.  Her paint is very clean, the colors are very bold, and that bright red helps her to be the most eye-catching member of this set.  The blue wash on the fur lining of the cape is perhaps a touch heavy, but I’ve seen worse, and it helps to distinguish it from the rest of the white.  Sif is packed with a sword, which seems pretty sensible to me.

MARVEL’S SINGULARITY

Singularity is a multi-dimensional being whose powers of energy manipulation grant her unique psionic abilities.

Singularity is probably the most obscure of the figures in this set, by virtue of being the only character in the set to have no existance outside of A-Force.  Singularity is sort of a personified walking pocket dimension, and is something of a gender-flipped Beyonder from the original Secret Wars.  While she’s perhaps not the most known character, she’s important to the specific event this set was commemorating, and has the added bonus of an appealing design.  The figure stands 5 3/4 inches tall and she has 29 points of articulation. Singularity is built on the Spider-Girl body, which is always a good one, though its mold might be starting to show its age a bit.  She gets a new head sculpt, which captures the art style of the book pretty well, while also melding well with the rest of the body.  The big thing that sets her apart is her color scheme.  She’s molded in clear blue plastic that has these little metallic flecks all through it, and then has a little metallic purple airbrushed over that in a few key places.  It makes for quite an interesting look, and it’s a great way of capturing how she looks in the comic.

LADY LOKI

A being of Frost Giant descent, Loki also possesses Asgardian powers of shape-shifting and sorcery

Lady Loki is sort of a confusing character in the context of this set, since she’s technically the same person as the usual Loki (who was still running around elsewhere during Secret Wars), and she’s also technically in Sif’s body, but Sif is also in this set.  Best not to think about it too much.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 28 points of articulation.  She’s built on the Black Cat body, which means she’s a fair bit smaller than Sif, who she supposedly shares a body with.  Of course, the armored details and such on the Sif body would have made this impossible to do here, and I’d much rather have an inaccurate Loki than a slightly diminished Sif, so I’m letting it slide.  She *does* share a cape with Sif, though, so there’s at least that.  Her head and her skirt add-on piece are both new to this figure, and they’re both quite nicely sculpted, though as with She-Hulk, I might have liked a little more expression in the face.  My figure had a slight molding issue, which left some noticeable flashing at the bottom of her chin, but an X-acto blade cleared that up fine.  Loki’s paint is probably the most complex in the set, with all the scaling detaining and such.  It’s all pretty clean, and once again the metallic colors are looking pretty cool.

ELSA BLOODSTONE

A gun-toting, foul-mouthed monster hunter, Elsa Bloodstone follows in the family tradition of fighting supernatural evils.

Originally a pretty thinly-veiled rip-off of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, Elsa Bloodstone was re-purposed by Warren Ellis for his cult hit Nextwave series, which completely changed the character, making her far more absurd, and far more entertaining.  Her placement in this set continues the Nextwave appreciation that began with the Dirk Anger head included with Nick Fury.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  She’s built on the medium-sized female body, but since no member of Nextwave is truly complete without their trenchcoat, she also gets the arms and jacket pieces from Scarlet Witch.  In addition, she gets a new head, knees, and feet, as well as a belt add-on with a holster.  The whole thing adds up to another very unique looking figure that’s surprisingly true to her Nextwave appearances.  Elsa is the best accessorized figure in this set, getting both her twin shotguns, as well as an oversized revolver.

MONICA RAMBEAU

Gifted in her control of the electromagnetic spectrum, Monica Rambeau uses powerful blasts of energy to shut down her enemies.

Ah, it’s Monica Rambeau, aka Captain Marvel, aka Photon, aka Pulsar, aka Spectrum, aka the most unlucky superhero ever when it comes to keeping a code name.  She’s a favorite of mine and a lot of other fans, and probably one of the bigger draws for this set.  Also, like Elsa, she’s a member of Nextwave.  Two members in one set!  Alright!  Of course, Monica’s not quite in her Nexwave gear, instead wearing her Ultimates costume that she had at the time of the event.  Still, that’s a costume that’s very Nextwave-inspired, so I’m calling it a win.  Monica uses the same basic construction as Elsa, but with standard leg pieces and without the holster.  She also gets a new headsculpt, which is tied with Sif for nicest in the set.  Monica’s paintwork is mostly black and white, which looks very striking, and is in keeping with the design.  There’s a slight pearlescent finish to the white sections, which adds a nice energy-like quality to her design.  She came with no accessories, which is a little disappointing.  Not even an energy effect?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Okay, you saw who was offering this set, so you probably know how I got it.  Yep, this was another Toys R Us liquidation purchase.  I’d seen the set when it was new, but only felt like I really needed three of the six figures included, so the price was a bit prohibitive.  I decided I would wait it out, and if the set ever came down in price, I’d get it.  I firmly set my entry price at 25% off and waited.  When the liquidation began, my store still had a whole stack of this set, and they didn’t really move any faster, but I stopped by one day and they only had a single set left.  What was the discount? 30% off.  So, home with me it came.  Sif is this set’s star, with Elsa and Monica picking up right behind her.  They were the three I wanted, and I’m very happy with them.  Loki and Singularity are both pretty nice as well, but as more event/time specific characters, I have less need for them.  She-Hulk’s the real weak link here, but even as the weakest, she’s still a very nice figure!

#1389: Loki

LOKI

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

““Forever a trickster, Loki’s allegiances are often unclear. However, one thing can be said for certain: Loki always looks out for Loki’s best interests.”

Summer’s on it’s way out.  So, move over summer blockbusters!  It’s time for…the fall blockbusters?  We’ve had Guardians Vol. 2 and Spider-Man: Homecoming.  Now it’s time for the next Marvel entry, Thor: Ragnarok!  After being slightly underwhelmed by The Dark World, I’m hoping that Ragnarok can deliver something a bit more enjoyable.  The Dark World had only an incredibly modest offering of toys, but Ragnarok is getting a little more coverage.  The first of the product is just starting to hit retail now.  Today, I’ll be looking at the trickster god Loki!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Loki is figure 2 in the Ragnarok assortment of Marvel Legends.  This is actually the first time Hiddleston Loki’s been given a proper retail release, since the Avengers was only available as a Walmart exclusive, and then was re-released as part of the European version of the Hulkbuster assortment.  This one is, obviously, based on his Ragnarok appearance, which seems to have been somewhat influenced by the Lady Loki design of all things, along with a touch of the “Agent of Asgard” look.  It’s not a bad look.  The figure stands about 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  His sculpt is new to this figure.  It has its ups and its downs.  By far, the best part is the head sculpt, which has quite a nice likeness of Hiddleston as Loki, slight little sneering grin and all.  I also quite like the hands, which are a nice open gesture, thus adding a lot of character when you pose him.  I’m a bit iffy on the torso, which seems slightly oddly shaped and kind of rudimentary.  Compared to some of the other Legends of late, this feels like a bit of a step down.  I’m also not a fan of the floating skirt piece on the waist.  I feel like a fixed piece would look better, and be less annoying when posing the figure.  Lastly, I don’t care for how the cape attaches.  Maybe it’s just my figure, but I found it to be rather difficult to bet both clips properly seated on the shoulders, and even once they’re in place, it doesn’t take much to knock one or the other out of place.  It gets a little frustrating.  On the plus side of things, the paintwork on Loki is pretty strong.  The best work is definitely the face; this is my first experience with the “printing” technique that Hasbro’s started to use on the movie figures.  Photos online had me skeptical about the process, but it person it looks really good.  The rest of the paint is pretty straight forward stuff.  The colors seem to match the movie design, and the application is all pretty sharp.  Loki includes his “helmet”, which has been streamlined down to more of a headband with horns attached.  It’s a little bulky, but fits on his head pretty well. He also includes the left leg of the series’ Build-A-Figure, Gladiator Hulk.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This guy snuck up on me.  I barely even knew of his existence when I found him at one of my local Targets.  I was actually looking for the Homecoming figures, which I still haven’t had any luck finding, when I came across this guy.  I was pretty excited to find him (and I’ve already tracked down a duplicate for Super Awesome Girlfriend).  Ultimately, he’s a bit of a mixed bag.  The torso on this guy is really poorly designed, just all-around, which is a real surprise from Hasbro these days.  Still, the good does outweigh the bad on this guy, and the end result is an overall nice figure.  He’s not going to be figure of the year, but he’s far from terrible. 

#1300: Loki

LOKI

AVENGERS (HOT TOYS)

Would you look at that?  Seems I’ve made it another hundred reviews.  As I noted in my Thor review, I’m honestly getting to the point where 100 reviews isn’t that much of a milestone.  This particular review will mark the thirteenth time I’ve done it.  Still, it’s worth noting it, right?

In honor of getting though another hundred of these things, I’ll be doing another of my milestone deluxe reviews, focusing on one of my higher end figures.  Like almost all of my high-end reviews, today’s figure is from Hot Toys, and is yet another figure from their impressive Marvel Cinematic Universe subset of offerings.  For the last monumental review, I looked at Thor, and today I’ll be following up on that with a look at his mischievous brother, Loki!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Loki is figure 176 in Hot Toys’ Movie Masterpiece Series, directly following the Avengers version of his brother and immediately preceding the Dark Knight Rises re-release of the Batpod.  The figure hit around May of 2013, a full year after the release of the film he was featured in.  As with Thor, Loki is based on his appearance in 2012’s Avengers, specifically his fully armored appearance, seen during the film’s big climactic battle.  Initially, Loki was to be done in his armored look from 2011’s Thor, and a finished prototype even showed up a few places, but in an effort of finish out the Avengers set and be a bit more timely, he was re-fitted into his later costume.  It’s for the best, really, since I think his Avengers look is his best to date, and a more fitting adaptation of his comics design.  Loki stands a little over 12 inches tall and he has “over 30 points of articulation” according to the Sideshow solicitation for him.

Loki’s head was the source of some strife amongst fans and Hot Toys.  There was a debate about how exactly his helmet should be handled.  The final solution was a removable helmet, which not everyone was thrilled with, due largely to the necessary compromises for both the head and the helmet.  The head did actually turn out pretty well.  The Hiddleston likeness is one of HT’s best, at least as far as the face is concerned.  The compromises, of course, really come into play with the hair, which ends up a little matted down to the head.  Admittedly, Loki’s hair in the movie doesn’t have a ton of volume, but it’s still a little more present than what we see here.  It’s still very well sculpted, and quite realistic, but it’s undeniably sculpted to sit best under the helmet.  He’s not really designed with an un-helmeted appearance in mind.  Which, if I’m honest, results in a bit of disappointment when you finally get the helmet placed on the head, which is no easy feat, let me tell you.  It’s two pieces that pop apart; the bottom is supposed to slide up under the head and the top goes over top and then you snap the two pieces back together.  I’ve never been able to get a perfect fit, and the difficulty involved means that you really aren’t going to be taking it off a lot. This whole two piece construction is meant to give the helmet a tighter fit (which is also true of the actual film prop as well), but due to the scale, it’s still noticeably thicker than Loki’s helmet from the film.  To be fair, it’s mostly only an issue when viewing the figure head-on; in profile or even three-quarter view, it looks pretty good.  The detailing on the helmet is the usual HT-quality, of course, which is nice.  Ultimately, it’s far from terrible, but I just really feel the figure would have benefited from two separate heads to depict him with and without the helmet (especially since in the movie the helmet just magically appears on his head; we don’t see him carrying it around or anything).  The paint on both items is up to the usual HT standards; the face is incredibly lifelike, and the helmet looks suitably weathered.

Loki’s outfit is something of a mixed media effort, though not quire so much as Thor.  Most of the base clothing is actual cloth, with plastic boots and armor plates.  The plastic bits are all exquisitely sculpted, and the cloth sections are generally pretty well tailored.  The coat(s) sit really nicely, and I really love the way the cape hands.  Easily the best cloth cape I’ve ever seen.  My one real complaint is the weird bead things that line the edges of the coats.  In the movie, they look to be a zipper or something, but this figure uses these needs that look like those things that banks use to make sure you don’t steal their pens.  It’s not bad from far away, but looks rather hokey when you get up close.  I’m not sure why they were handled this way, rather than the way most zippers are handled at this scale.  I mean, they don’t ruin the figure, but they do just look weird.

Loki includes the following accessories:

  • 11 interchangeable hands
  • 2 versions of this scepter
  • 2 daggers
  • Shackles
  • Muzzle
  • Display stand

The hands come in relaxed (R and L), fists (R and L), dagger holding (R and L), gripping (R and L), gesture (R and L), and larger gesture (L).  All of them are very nicely sculpted and they suit the character.  They swap out pretty easily, but there’s an extra set of wrist pegs as well, just in case something goes wrong.

The scepter comes in both short and long configurations, which is nice, I guess, but in this get-up, he really only needs the larger one.  Still, both are very nicely sculpted, and it’s nice to have the option.

The daggers are both the same piece, and are just as well sculpted as the scepters.  They don’t get much use in the film, but they’re still a cool extra to have.

The shackles and muzzle allow for Loki’s look from the final scene of the movie, when he and Thor go back to Asgard.  It’s nice that they included them, and they allow him to pair up nicely with Thor and the contained Tesseract.  Technically, like the short scepter, they don’t really go with this costume, but the inclusion’s still nice.

Then there’s the stand, which is the same basic stand we’ve seen over and over again.  There’s a logo for Avengers and Loki’s name is on the front.  It helps him not fall down.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When the Thor version of Loki was first announced I was really excited, because I really like Hiddleston as Loki, and was bummed he wasn’t one of the first two released.  When that figure was re-worked into this one, I was initially uncertain about getting it, but ultimately decided he still looked cool enough that I’d kick myself if i didn’t get him.  In the ensuing months between pre-ordering him from Sideshow and his release, I grew to like the Avengers design even more, and I’m ultimately pretty happy that this is the one they went with.  The figure is not without his issues, but I think he’s still one of the coolest HT figures in my collection.  He’s just hard not to love.

#0096: Thor & Loki

THOR & LOKI

MARVEL MINIMATES

Hey look guys!  It’s Minimates!

This time around it’s another peak at the earlier days of Marvel Minimates.  We’ll be jumping all the way back to wave 16 for this review.  I’ll be looking at the very first Minimates of Thor and Loki.  It’s shocking to think that these two didn’t see a release until 16 waves in, but they were hardly the household names they are now.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These two were released as part of the 16th wave of the Marvel Minimates line, which was an Avengers themed wave.

THOR

First up, it’s the God of Thunder, Thor!  Thor is depicted here in his classic costume.  He’s built on the basic Minimate body, so he stands 2 ½ inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  3 of those 14 points are rendered pretty much motionless by the hair and boot sculpts.  Thor’s sculpted pieces include: Hair/helmet, torso cover/cape, wrist bands, boots and belt.  I believe that all of these pieces were new to Thor, but a few of them would see some reuse later down the line.  The sculpts are all reasonable for the time, but they seem a little soft by today’s standards.  They also seem a bit boxy compared to more recent stuff.  Structurally, they all look good, and work really well for the character.  The paint is fairly minimal, with some minor base work on the areas such as the clack on the top of the legs and the silver on the chest and helmet.  These look fine, and don’t seem to have too much slop or any fuzzy lines.  Detail lines are present on the face, torso and boots.  They’re all sharp, and look pretty good, although the face does leave a little to be desired.  In an effort to make it fit without being obscured by the helmet, they kind of squished it, which doesn’t really work for Thor.  It was extremely common to see another face subbed in for this one back when this was the only Thor on the market.  Thor includes his trust hammer Mjolnir, which was a new sculpt.  It’s a bit on the simple side, but it worked well for the time.

LOKI

Next, Thor’s villainous brother, Loki!  Like Thor, Loki is depicted in his classic Kirby costume.  He too is built on the usual body for the line, so he has the usual height and articulation.  Fortunately, unlike Thor, none of Loki’s articulation is impacted by his sculpted pieces.  Speaking of sculpted pieces, Loki has two of them: his helmet and his cape.  The cape was previously used on wave 9’s White Queen Minimate, but the helmet was brand new to Loki.  The cape is a bit questionable, but it looks okay, and it’s easily removed if you don’t like it.  The helmet looks spot on to the one Loki wore in the early comics.  Like with Thor, paint is at a relative minimum with Loki.  He’s mostly molded in the appropriate colors, but he’s got some yellow paint for his gloves, boots and such.  Loki has detail lines denoting his face and the texturing on his torso.  The face looks appropriately sinister, though it does kind have the same squashed look as Thor.  The texturing is nice, and it looks accurate to the look they were going for.  Loki includes a chalice, painted in the same yellow as is present on the figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

These two were part of wave 16 of the Marvel Minimates line, which was not only a turning point for the line itself, but also for my involvement in the line.  Wave 16 represents the first time I eagerly awaited the release of a set of minimates, and the first time I bought an entire set of them, instead of just a random set here or there.  While they seem a bit dated now, Thor and Loki were a big deal at the time, and they helped put the Avengers a lot closer to a formidable presence in the line, an idea that seems absurd nowadays.  This was the wave that showed that this line could go the distance.  And boy, did it…

#0092: Loki & Heimdall

LOKI & HEIMDALL

MARVEL MINIMATES

So, the sequel to Thor, entitled Thor: The Dark World was released this past November.  I very much enjoyed the first Thor, so I was quite excited for the sequel’s release.  Well, sometimes, things aren’t quite what you hoped they’d be.  I saw The Dark World, and while it wasn’t a bad movie by any stretch of the imagination, it was far from what I’d hoped it would be.  In particular, I found the villains lackluster, which is why my first review of the recently released minimates from the movie is not of Thor & Malekith, the hero and villain of the film.  I didn’t particularly need another Thor, and Malekith wasn’t interesting enough for me to feel the need to buy him.

Regardless, the movie did have its good parts, and two of the best parts are contained in this set here:  Loki & Heimdall!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Loki and Heimdall were released as part of the 53rd wave of Diamond’s Marvel Minimates line, the wave released to coincide with Thor: The Dark World.

LOKI

First up, it’s the guy you love to hate or hate to love, Loki!  Loki is presented here in his more cleaned up look that he sports for most of the movie.  He’s built on the typical Minimate body, so he stands about 2 ½ inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Loki has 4 sculpted add-ons:  Hair, coat, and bracelets.  The coat is brand new to this figure, and it’s quite well done.  All the different layers are defined well, and it looks quite sharp.  The hair and bracelets are reused.  The hair has been used a few times before, and the bracelets were last used on the Avengers version of Loki.  Loki’s main detailing is on his face and legs.  The legs have a nice subtle line work detailing the tops of Loki’s boots.  The face is fairly sharp;y detailed and has a decent resemblance of Tom Hiddleston.  Loki includes a set of Asgardian handcuffs and a clear display stand.  The handcuffs are much appreciated, as Loki spends a good portion of the film in them, and I’m really glad the clear stands have become a standard accessory.

HEIMDALL

Next, it’s the guy cancelling the apocalypse.  Wait, sorry, wrong movie.  It’s Idris Elba’s other big role this year:  Heimdall!  Like Loki, Heimdall is built on the basic Minimate body, so he’s got the usual height and articulation.  Heimdall has 6 sculpted pieces:  helmet, torso cover, bracelets, and boots.  All of these pieces are brand new to Heimdall, and all of them are expertly handled.  The ornate detailing of the armor is impressive.  The basic paint work on the sculpted parts is pretty well done.  Not perfect, but certainly passable.  Detail-wise, he has detailing on his face, arms and legs.  The arms and legs offer some nice texturing, and the face offers a rather good likeness of Idris Elba.  Heimdall includes his sword and a clear display stand.  The sword is as impressively sculpted as the rest of Heimdall, and really fits the figure well.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked this set up from my local comicbook store Cosmic Comix.  I really like this set.  It’s nice to get Heimdall after he was overlooked in the first Thor movie, and Loki is definitely the best version done so far of the movie version of the character.  I almost wonder if Diamond may have done themselves a disservice packing these two together, as they are hands down the two best Minimates in the wave.