#2727: Magneto – House of X

MAGNETO — HOUSE OF X

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Magneto forges an unlikely partnership with Xavier in pursuit of a lofty common goal: the protection of all mutants.”

The counterpart to Charles Xavier’s peaceful co-existence philosophy since the very beginning has been the more militant Magneto.  Magneto, however, is a character defined by his tendency to switch sides as his morals check in and out.  Recently, they’ve been checked in more often than not, and he’s spent most of the last decade as an ally of the team, with “House of X” later retconning him as a secret ally the whole time, throwing out all pretense entirely.  At the same time, the comics have become big on going for this whole monochromatic set-up for his costume, because I guess that’s clever.  Or something.  Legends already gave us an all-black Magneto, so I guess it was only a matter of time before we got an all-white one.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Magneto is figure 6 in the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends, and is, like the rest of the set, based on the character’s appearance in “House of X” and the ongoing titles that followed.  It’s not terribly far removed from the character’s handful of Marvel Now! looks, being Magneto’s classic costume set up with a new palette dropped on it.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Like the other two current gen comic Magnetos, this guy’s based on the Spider-UK base body, which continues to be a good base for the character.  He re-uses the cape add-on piece from the 3-pack Magneto, along with an all-new head, forearms, and belt.  The head’s got the separate pieces for the helmet and underlying head, much like the last two releases.  It’s quite similar to, but still distinct from, the calm head from the 3-pack.  It feels like it didn’t need to be new to me, but Hasbro presumably felt differently.  The helmet’s nice, but there’s definitely something a little bit off about the underlying face.  It looks rather goofy, and maybe not as stern as they were aiming for.  The new arms and belt help to bring the figure’s design more in line with the comics appearance, and do their job pretty well.  I was a little disappointed that they didn’t take advantage of retooling the forearms to remove the exposed pins, as they have on a few other recent revisions, but it’s possible it didn’t cost out.  Other than that, the figure’s sculpt is pretty much just business as usual.  In terms of paint, this guy embraces the monochromatic nature of the modern Magneto design, so there’s not a ton of variance going on.  There are some silvers and blacks thrown in for accenting, and they aren’t bad.  The application’s also pretty sharp, which is a plus.  He does ditch some of the ribbing on the sides of his costume, but at least he doesn’t ditch everything wholesale like Xavier did.  Magneto is packed with three sets of hands, open gesture, gripping, and fists.  It’s a nice assortment, and nice to get all the variety.  Additionally, he’s packed with all three of the Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure’s heads.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Magneto’s classic color scheme is really hard to top for me, so I tend to be resistant to current trends of going all black or all white.  The all white look in particular tends to strike me as being just sort of odd for the character.  So, with that said, I wasn’t really feeling this guy when he was announced.  And, if I’m entirely honest, I don’t know how much I’m feeling this guy in-hand.  The 2019 release is just hard to top, and this one’s got the issue of that wonky face to deal with.  It’s not bad, I suppose, just a little uninspired feeling at the end of the day.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2734: Moira MacTaggert

MOIRA MACTAGGERT

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Through the course of many lives and deaths, Moira MacTaggert pursues justice for all mutants.”

Introduced by Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum in X-Men #96, Dr. Moira MacTaggert would serve as a rather prominent supporting character in the X-Men universe until well into the ’90s.  She was a notable human character amongst the book’s largely mutant cast, and even more notably, a human who not only didn’t hate mutants, but was actively seeking to help them….that was, until “House of X” went and revealed that Moira wasn’t a human at all, but was instead a mutant with the ability to reincarnate and relive her life over and over, but exactly in such a fashion that her mutant nature was undetectable through all usual means of detection so as to not openly violate the four decades of history of the character being, you know, not a mutant.  Look, I have feelings about this whole thing, and they’re definitely mixed.  But, I mean, it means that Moira is prominent again, and it means she got an action figure, and isn’t that what matters the most?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Moira is figure 4 in the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends.  Like the others in the set, she’s based on “House of X”, specifically on Moira’s look from her current life/timeline.  While I personally would prefer her jumpsuited look from the ’70s, I guess this one’s okay too.  The figure stands a little over 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Fortunately, her articulation’s more useful than yesterday’s Jean Grey, which is a definite plus.  Moira’s largely built out of the same bank of parts as last year’s Gwen Stacy figure, but with a new head and coat piece, as well as the Peggy Carter shoes again.  The shoes at least make more sense here, and it’s possible their use here is why they showed up on Jean as well.  The re-used parts work well for the look they’re aiming for, and the new head and jacket likewise match up pretty well for the character.  The default head is sporting glasses, which are a thing that Moira had occasionally, though they again aren’t necessarily out of place for the character.  They’re also well-rendered, especially for the scale, and the really look quite nice.  The jacket piece sits just a touch high on the shoulders, but is other wise a nicely sculpted piece. They’ve even sculpted the pens in her pocket.  Moira’s color work is a bit more subdued than the usual Legends figure, but it matches the source material, and it’s again pretty solid for the character.  The paint work is pretty basic, but it hits all the right marks and the application is pretty clean and sharp.  In terms of accessories, Moira’s pretty well packed.  She gets a spare head, arms, hands, and a neckerchief piece, allowing for a rather different second look for the character, based on her less scientific attire from the miniseries.  It’s not my bag personally, but getting an extra look’s really not a bad thing.  Moira also includes a scientific textbook of some sort, as well as the left leg of the Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Moira’s pretty rooted into the ’70s-’80s X-Men run, as well as the ’90s cartoon, which are really my main sources of X-Men, so I definitely like the character, but the concept of getting her as a toy seemed rather unlikely, given her typically less action oriented role in the franchise.  Personally, I’m not much of a fan of the move to make Moira a mutant, as I feel it removes some of what’s special about the character, but at least her increased roll gave Hasbro a good excuse to make a figure of her.  It’s honestly a pretty solid figure, and one of the bigger draws to this set for me.  I’ll still keep holding out for a ’70s version, but given how slim the chances of getting that one are, I can at least make due with this one.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2733: Jean Grey – House of X

JEAN GREY — HOUSE OF X

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Jean Grey leads her fellow mutants to the island sanctuary of Krakoa in a bid to declare sovereignty from humankind.”

After sticking with their matching gear for their first 38 comic appearances, the X-Men finally got their own customized looks courtesy of artist Werner Roth in Uncanny X-Men #39.  While some of the designs (mainly Angel’s really) would be rather quickly ditched, a few of them really stuck in there, and influenced the main looks for the characters going forward.  This was most evident with both Cyclops and Jean Grey, whose main designs, no matter what they may be, have a tendency to call back pretty heavily to these earlier designs.  Jean’s Marvel Girl costume actually got a fair bit of play, even going forward, managing to even get a reappearance during “The Dark Phoenix Saga,” and has once again resurfaced as Jean’s primary design in the new ongoing run of the title.  I have…mixed feelings about that last part, but I do like the design well enough that I won’t complain too much about it getting Legends treatment as a result of its new prominence.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Jean Grey is figure 3 in the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends.  While technically “House of X”-based like the rest of this assortment, this particular figure is a little more multi-purpose, what with the re-used design and all.  This is the second time that this particular design’s been made as a Legends release, following Hasbro’s kind of janky version from that two-pack very early in their run from the license.  This one aims to be less janky.  The figure stands just over 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  In terms of mobility, Jean’s a rather restricted figure by modern standards.  The hair rather predictably blocks a bit of the neck movement, but on top of that, the skirt piece is rather thick and leaves no real movement on the hips, and the way the ball-jointed waist has been sculpted means it doesn’t get much of range either.  In general, it’s not ideal, and makes it tricky to get her to do much other than stand there.  Of course, she struggles with standing a bit, too, so maybe that’s not her strong suit, either.  Movement may not really be there, but does the figure at least look good?  Yeah, for the most part.  She uses the Phoenix body as a loose starting point, which is sensible, and also uses the flared glove forearms from Kitty Pryde.  She also uses the feet from Peggy Carter, which was an odd choice, since it’s clearly got sculpted shoes, and Jean’s clearly wearing boots.  It’s not like there aren’t heeled feet without the shoe line sculpted, so I’m confused by the choice.  Other than that, Jean’s got a new head, torso, and skirt piece.  They may not allow for a ton of movement, but they do certainly look nice, with nice, balanced proportions, and some quite impressive smaller detail work on the folds and wrinkles on the clothes.  The paint work on Jean is pretty simple, largely relying on molded colors and slightly more complex assembly of pieces.  The paint that’s actually there is all pretty cleanly handled, with no slop or bleed over to speak of.  The colors are on the bright side, which generally works, although it does make the purely painted distinction between the boots and the legs a little less noticeable than it should be.  That’s a very minor complaint, of course.  Jean is packed with two sets of hands, one set in fists, and the other in open gesture, as well as a small Krakoa plant.  The plant’s cool, but she does have a little bit of trouble holding it, since neither set of hands is really designed for it.  Also included is the right leg to the Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This is a pretty classic design, and one that’s toy coverage has classically been less than stellar, so I’ve been hoping for a more proper Legends release.  When this set was first hinted at by Hasbro, I was hoping this figure would be in the line-up, and I was quite happy when that proved to be true.  The final figure’s not quite as strong as I was hoping, mostly due to that restricted motion.  That said, she’s at the very least a nice looking figure, which is more than could be said for the last Legends version.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2732: Omega Sentinel

OMEGA SENTINEL

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Harnessing the power of enhanced sensors, flight, and nanite regeneration, Omega Sentinel dispatches enemies with ease.”

In the ’90s, the giant, lumbering, mutant-hunting robots the Sentinels found themselves upgraded for the times, becoming the Prime Sentinels, a merging of humans with robotic components and programming.  Amongst this new breed of Sentinels was Karima Shapandar.  Karima was a reluctant foe of the X-Men, and would ultimately work by their side a handful of times over the years, taking on the name “Omega Sentinel”.  More recently, her Sentinel programming has taken over more and more, leading to her playing the role of antagonist during the “House of X” story line.  Hey, it got her a figure, at least, right?  Full disclosure: I have virtually no first hand knowledge of Omega Sentinel, and am entirely operating off of what I could find online for the purposes of this review.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Omega Sentinel is figure 2 in the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends, and is the only non-team member included in the line-up.  She’s shown here in her more fully Sentinel-ized appearance, as seen in the mini-series, which is a fairly distinctive appearance, and certainly on-brand with the current set-up of figures.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Omega Sentinel is sporting an all-new sculpt, just for her.  It’s a tiny bit surprising, especially given how a Xavier wound up on the Pizza Spidey body, but it means that all of her costume elements can be actual sculpted elements, as opposed to relying more heavily on paint.  It’s actually a pretty nice visual set-up, and generally gives her a little more pop than she might otherwise have.  By far, the most impressive piece of the figure’s sculpt is the arms, which have that proper mechanical design, and a lot of very nice smaller detail work.  Her standard head out of the box is based on her primary look from the mini-series, which had her bald, as she has been a few times prior.  It’s really the coolest look, I think, and it presents well here.  Omega Sentinel’s paint work is pretty standard Legends fare; base work that’s generally pretty well applied.  There’s a little bit of missed coverage on her upper legs, but otherwise my figure’s pretty solid, and it’s a pretty striking color palette.  Omega is packed with both an alternate head and lower arms.  The head is supposed to be Karima from earlier in her career, before the whole bad guy thing, and it’s not awful from a sculpting stand point, but the coloring is just plain wrong.  Karima’s supposed to be Indian in the comics, and has classically been depicted with close to black hair and a darker complexion.  This one goes for more of an auburn hair color and a much lighter skin tone, making her look rather caucasian, which is just inaccurate.  I’m not exactly sure why they went this direction with it.  I prefer the other head anyway, but it still would be nice if this one was accurate.  On the plus side, the alternate arms are far cooler, and haver her lower arms shaped into weapons of some sort.  I like them a lot, and they’re going to be my default set-up for the character.  In addition to the character-specific pieces, Omega Sentinel also includes the torso for the Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I noted in the intro, I had no prior knowledge of Omega Sentinel prior to this figure’s announcement, and actually had to look her up when she was shown off.  I was honestly not really much looking forward to this one, and expected her to kind of be the week point of the set for me.  However, I did some reading up on the character, and I can get behind the concept, and I can also get behind actually getting some new characters in figure form.  It helps that, in hand, I found myself quite liking this figure, and she’s far from the dead weight I thought she would be.  She’s honestly just a pretty nice figure, and I look forward to putting her with my Prime Sentinels once they arrive.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2731: Charles Xavier – House of X

CHARLES XAVIER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Xavier reveals his master plan … one that will bring mutants out of humankind’s shadow and once again into the light.”

Charles Xavier, more commonly referred to as Professor X, doesn’t, in his default state, tend to make a classically exciting action figure.  Bald guy in a suit and tie, sitting in a wheel chair isn’t exactly getting kids to go crazy for the toys (unless they’re some weirdo kid who wants Xavier before Wolverine and Magneto because he’s far more plot important and is less likely to get  another toy as quickly, and why don’t you understand that, Nana?…sorry, I went places there…).  Because of this, various media does have a tendency to give Xavier excuses to put on slightly more toy-etic gear.  Most recently, Xavier’s ditched the suit and the wheelchair, and is wearing something more classically comic-book-y, I guess?  Well, there’s a toy of it, so let’s check that out.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Charles Xavier is figure 1 in the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends, and like Wolverine, he’s officially “House of X” branded.  Xavier is in his current default attire, which puts him in a spandex jumpsuit, and makes the Cerebro helmet a more permanent fixture.  It’s a different visual for the character.  I don’t know that it’s all that different a visual for the formerly-idealistic-now-morally-grey-leader-of-the-team-following-a-relaunch, since it’s rather thematically similar to Cyclops’ Marvel Now appearance.  But, maybe that’s on purpose?  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Xavier is built on the Pizza Spidey body…which is an interesting choice.  I guess it’s not the worst, as Xavier’s been depicted as rather svelte, especially recently, but it feels weird for Professor X to be on a Spider-Man body, to me.  They’ve replaced the hands with ones from the suit body, so that fixes those slightly cartoonier proportions, but the feet remain the same, so that’s still going on.  He’s got a new head sculpt wearing his new helmet.  It’s an okay sculpt, and certainly is the most visually intriguing portion of the figure.  Paint on this guy is exceedingly basic.  There’s paint on the visor of the helmet.  That’s it.  The body’s all black plastic, which isn’t technically accurate; there should be some piping or minor detailing on the suit.  There’s also been inconsistency about whether Xavier has gloves on his suit or not;  I would have preferred not, since it would break up the colors a bit.  Xavier has a decent selection of accessories, with two sets of hands (in relaxed, and pointing/telepathy hand combo), an alternate un-helmeted head with a telepathy effect, and the right arm to the Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure.  The alternate head’s definitely the coolest part, especially given it’s potential uses with the previous Professor X figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Xavier’s newest design is one of the more drastically changed ones, but I find it to be too drastically different to really feel like Xavier.  When it comes to more action-oriented Xaviers, I’ve always been more partial to the tactical gear in the hover chair look from the ’90s, and I’m still waiting for that one to get some proper toy coverage.  But that’s not what I got here, and I suppose I shouldn’t hold it against him.  Of course, what I probably can hold against him is the slightly phoned-in nature on this guy.  The extra head’s cool, but there’s not really much else about him that really speaks to me.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2730: Wolverine – House of X

WOLVERINE — HOUSE OF X

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“With adamantium claws unleashed, Wolverine is prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice in the fight for freedom for all mutants.”

Last year’s main X-Men-theme per Marvel Legends was very event-based, specifically centering on 1995’s “Age of Apocalypse” event.  For the first X-themed assortment of this year, Hasbro is once again going event-based, but this time around is something far more recent, this time being 2019’s “House of X”, the event which served as the launching point for the Jonathan Hickman-driven current era of X-Men.  A lot of the team’s biggest names were central to both that event and what’s followed in the on-going books, making this a nice way of refreshing some of the X-Men’s heaviest hitters.  You don’t get much heavier hitter than Wolverine, I guess, making him a pretty solid starting point if I do say so myself.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Wolverine is part of the Tri-Sentinel Series of Marvel Legends, and is officially branded as “House of X,” much like the rest of the assortment.  He’s the only non-numbered figure in the set, as the only figure not to include a Build-A-Figure part.  He’s sporting his current costume design, first showcased in the event.  It’s an update on his brown costume, with a little bit of the Black/Grey X-Force layout worked in.  It’s not a bad look for the character, and really checks a lot of the classic Wolverine boxes.  The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Structurally, he’s built on the modern Wolverine base first introduced in the Juggernaut Series.  He uses the more utilitarian gloves and boots from X-Force Wolverine, which are good match for what he’s sporting in the comics these days.  He’s also got a new head sculpt, and an add-on for his belt, both of which are pretty decent pieces.  The head in particular I quite like, as it’s got him actually cracking a smile, which is a nice change of pace for a Wolverine figure.  I also like that the mask is differently shaped than other Wolverine figures, and that they’ve included all of the seams and such on the cowl that help to “modernize” this design.  Wolverine’s paint work is generally pretty solid.  He follows the established color scheme from the comics well, and there’s no notable slop or bleed over, so that’s good.  I do like that they actually went to the trouble of differentiating the browns on the main costume vs the accessories.  The arm hair detailing on the arms is about the same as other recent Wolverines, which works from a consistency stand point if nothing else. Wolverine is the lightest figure in the assortment on the accessory front, due largely to the lack of a Build-A-Figure part.  He does at least get an extra head, based on his time as “War” in the future sequences of “Powers of X.”  The main difference is the presence of a beard.  Very different.  It’s a decent extra, I suppose, although the likelihood of getting the other three horsemen seems slim, giving this particular piece limited applications.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The whole House of X thing just sort of happened around me, I guess.  I read it, and I was familiar with the whole concept, and I’ve stuck with the comics since then.  The designs are generally pretty decent, and Wolverine’s a good, fairly standard Wolverine.  The figure doesn’t really do anything new, but he’s not bad, either, and certainly has more reason to exist than some of the other recent Wolverines.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2711: Toxin

TOXIN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“The 1,000th symbiote in a lineage that includes Carnage and Venom, Toxin is feared by many to be the strongest and most dangerous.”

After the craziest of the symbiote-overload in the ’90s died down, Marvel decided they wanted to try again.  So, Carnage once again had some spawn, but just the one this time.  The end result was Toxin, who, in contrast to Venom and Carnage, was not an inherently malicious creature.  Initially bonded with police officer Patrick Mulligan, Toxin served as an ally to Spider-Man, rather than either of his progenitors.  After Mulligan’s death, Toxin was then shifted over to usual Venom host Eddie Brock for a bit, as Eddie moved his way through a handful of symbiotes.  Toxin’s been privy to a few figures over the years, twice now getting a Legends release.  The first one wasn’t much to write home about, but maybe this new one will change things up a bit?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Toxin is the latest Deluxe-sized offering for Marvel Legends.  He follows the trend set by Apocalypse, being a new larger scale figure, as opposed to a reissue of a prior Build-A-Figure.  Toxin’s had a few somewhat divergent looks over the years, and this one grabs a few elements from each of them and merges them all together into one thing.  He’s definitely more monstrous than Mulligan usually was, and the face is definitely lifted from Brock’s time with the symbiote, but the general appearance is still definitely an earlier Toxin look.  The figure stands 7 3/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Toxin is built on Monster Venom body, which seems a little bit on the large side for Toxin’s usual depictions, but it’s honestly a little on the large side, even for the two Venom figures it was used for.  The symbiotes just tend to get sized up a bit, I guess, when it comes to toys.  The Monster Venom body remains a very impressive piece of work, and I can understand Hasbro wanting to get more mileage out of it.  To change things up, Toxin gets a new head, and a slightly tweaked back plate, as well as tendrils.  So many tendrils.  More tendrils than we have room for.  Elevendrils.  It’s really intense, and it really works.  Certainly continues the dynamic nature of the Monster Venom body.  The tendrils are popped on in stages, so you can kind of tweak just how tendril-y he is if you like.  It does mean they pop off on their own occasionally, but it’s overall not too bad.  Toxin’s paint work is generally decent.  The red’s very bright, which I rather like; it contrasts well with the black on the other portions of the figure, and makes him more eye catching than Hasbro’s last attempt.  The transition from red to black is also pretty nicely handled, managing to be pretty subtle, and to maintain a consistent look across multiple pieces.  The red sections could, I suppose, stand to have a little more accenting on them, but that’s about the only thing I can really knock.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

My actual experience with Toxin is pretty limited.  I’m familiar with him as a character, and I know the toys, but I don’t believe I’ve actually read any of his comics appearances.  He’s got a halfway decent visual, though, and this figure using the Monster Venom body, which I really quite like, gave him some points in his favor.  The end product’s pretty nifty.  If you like Symbiotes, you’ll like this one, and he’s certainly a step-up from the last version.  Now, if we could get the slightly less monstered out Mulligan version at some point, that’d be pretty sweet too.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure 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.

#2710: Firestar

FIRESTAR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Angelica Jones soars into battle harnessing the power of microwaves to combat evil as Marvel’s Firestar.”

Comics adaptations introducing characters that circle back around to the comics proper isn’t an uncommon thing, going back as far as the Superman radio serials and their creation of Jimmy Olsen.  Over at Marvel’s side, things were a little bit later game for them, but one of their first instances of this was Angelica Jones, aka Firestar.  First appearing in Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends in 1981, Firestar was created when the television rights for the Human Torch couldn’t be acquired.  She found her way into the comics four years later, in Uncanny X-Men #193, as a member of the Hellions.  From there she got her own mini-series, joined the New Warriors, and even had a stint with the Avengers.  She’s never been quite as prominent in the main universe as she was in the cartoon, but she’s certainly stuck around, and made her way into most of the major Marvel scales, including, most recently, Marvel Legends.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Firestar is her own standalone Marvel Legends release, which started hitting retail last month.  She’s another Fan Channel figure, so she won’t be hitting major big box retailers, but will be at specialty shops and the like.  She features her own separate branding, which neatly avoids the issue of whether she should be grouped with Spider-Man, X-Men, or Avengers. Firestar’s had a few different designs over the years, but she generally tends to circle back to variants of her original animation design, which is what this figure wisely opts to go for. The figure stands just over 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Firestar is built on the Phoenix base body, which is thematically appropriate, I suppose.  It’s also just a pretty good match for Angelica’s usual built.  She’s got a new upper torso piece, which adds her collar piece.  It’s pretty basic, but hits the spot.  Firestar includes two different head sculpts, based on two differing looks.  The one she comes out of the box wearing is slightly more modern-inspired, and has more wind-swept dynamic hair, and a slightly more rounded mask.  The second head is a bit more directly based on her animation design, with a more geometric mask, and slightly less mobile hair.  Of the two, I personally prefer the more modern head, but they’re both quite nice, and I like having the option.  Firestar’s paint work is basic, bright, and clean, which are really all the best things for a Legends figure.  I appreciate that they actually did the darker accents on the hair for the animation head, keeping it properly show accurate, since those tend to get overlooked.  Firestar has a pretty nice accessory selection.  In addition to the extra head, she also gets two sets of hands (both fists and open gesture), two effects pieces (borrowed from the Infinity War Scarlet Witch), and, coolest of all, Ms. Lion, the trio’s pet dog from Amazing Friends.  Ms. Lion even gets a ball-jointed neck for full posability.  How about that?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Firestar’s always been a favorite of mine, thanks to the handful of Amazing Friends episodes I had on VHS as a kid.  I didn’t manage to get her Toy Biz figure until late in the game, and that one’s, admittedly, a little phoned in, as was the later Marvel Universe figure.  I’d been hoping for something with a little more effort for Marvel Legends, and that’s what I got.  This figure’s a really nice, very cleanly done take on the character, and a fantastic way of rounding out this trio in Legends form.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2685: J. Jonah Jameson

J JONAH JAMESON

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Tough, gruff, and loud, J. Jonah Jameson is a force to be reckoned with in the boardroom and on the front pages of the Daily Bugle. As the newspaper’s editor-in-chief, Jameson is a perennial thorn in the side for both Peter Parker and Spider-Man.”

Not quite a villain, but certainly an antagonist, J. Jonah Jameson has been part of the Spider-Man mythos since almost the very beginning.  As really just a guy in a suit, though, you wouldn’t exactly expect him to be a very frequent part of the tie-in toys.  You would, however, be surprised by just how often he actually winds up getting proper action figure treatment.  He’s almost got Mary Jane beat!  What he’s never officially had, however, is a Marvel Legend, though he’s gotten close, since he had a 6 inch movie figure back in the Toy Biz days, and was also one of the extra heads included with Chameleon.  But now he’s official.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

J. Jonah Jameson is in the same boat as yesterday’s Black Cat figure; he’s a standalone release for the Retro Collection sub-line of Marvel Legends.  He’s also the third civilian release under this particular banner, so I guess the exciting package is good for something, huh?  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Jameson is built on the suit body, specifically the variant of the suit body that was used for Klaue, which is specifically designed for that vested appearance.  He additionally uses the Jameson head that was previously included with the Chameleon figure (taking a page out of the Toy Biz playbook), which was a pretty solid piece it’s first time around, and remains a really great character piece for Jameson.  In order to become sufficiently Jameson-esque, the body gets an assortment of new parts, including a new set of forearms, a new tie piece, and an add-on for the vest.  This vest/tie combo works better to help the body not be too bulked up, as it was on the Klaue body.  This set-up pretty nicely matches with Jameson’s usual newsroom appearances.  Additionally, the vest piece is open, so it can easily be removed, adding for an extra set of looks for the figure.  Jameson’s paint work is generally pretty decent.  It’s rather monotone, but that’s true to the character’s usual looks.  I quite like the pattern on the tie, and the application on the head is much improved over the one included with Chameleon.  Jameson gets a pretty solid selection of accessories to top everything off.  He’s got two sets of hands (one gripping, the other pointing/fist combo), the rolled up newspaper we saw included with Gwen (it makes way more sense here), and an unrolled copy as well, which features a ton of fun little references and in jokes.  Now, why it’s so much wider than the rolled up one is anyone’s guess; maybe it’s the proof they assembled before they sent it to the printers?  Actually, that would probably make a lot of sense, wouldn’t it?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Jameson is one of those essential characters that you just forget you don’t have a proper figure for.  The extra head was cool, but none of the available bodies really seemed to fit the character.  Getting a full figure for him wasn’t expected, but was certainly appreciated.  In hand, he’s a bit of an unsung figure, I think.  He’s quite nice, and he’ll go great with a display, but he doesn’t quite pop the way some of the costumed figures do.  Still, he’s definitely cool to have.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this guy for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2684: Black Cat

BLACK CAT

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Black Cat is the most confident, cunning burglar the world has ever seen! Donning a black costume and mask, heiress Felicia Hardy changes into her Super Hero persona and prowls the streets with Spider-Man at her side.”

A definite fixture of Spider-Man’s supporting cast (thought not truly consistently a rogue), Black Cat has had her fair share of toys over the years.  Perhaps it’s the striking visual that helps, but it could also be that she’s probably Spidey’s most notable female rogue…that is, when she’s being a rogue.  She’s gotten more prominent in the toys as she’s grown more prominent in the comics.  While she had just one figure during the Toy Biz 5 inch days, and just one more when they moved to 6 inch, Hasbro’s now coming in on their third time doing the character since they relaunched Legends in 2014.  Not a bad set up for her, now is it?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Black Cat is part of the Spider-centric Retro Collection sub-line of Marvel Legends.  At this point, Hasbro doesn’t really seem to be focussing on assortments for this style, so much as just dropping new figures one at a time when they feel like it.  Black Cat was, subsequently, her own solo release.  Black Cat has had a few looks over the years, and she pretty much gets a different one every time she gets a new figure.  This one in particular goes for her early ’90s variant on her classic look, which was also the design used for her appearance in Spider-Man: The Animated Series.  That’s proved a major influence on most of these Retro Collection figures, so it’s a sensible choice.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and she has 29 points of articulation.  The vast majority of this figure’s parts come from the Skyline Sirens version of the character from 2014.  That one was built on the Moonstone base body, and generally did a decent job of capturing Black Cat’s usual figure.  It’s not quite as well articulated as more recent bodies, however, which can be a bit of an issue when it comes to posing.  My figure in particular wound up being rather bow-legged.  Since this version of the costume doesn’t have the fur collar, the figure swaps out the upper torso for the basic Moonstone body piece.  She also borrows the calm head from the Dark Phoenix figure, as well as the studded collar from the Hellfire Club Black Queen figure.  She’s really going for that evil Jean Grey vibe, I guess?  The head sits a touch low on the neck, but overall it’s a nice selection of parts, and adds up to a decent recreation of the design they’re going for.  It’s amazing what you can do with nothing but re-used parts, huh?  The paint work on this figure is overall pretty basic and straight forward.  I do like how crisp and clean the detailing on the face and mask is, and the very slight accenting on the fur works quite well to showcase the sculpt.  It certainly looks a bit better than the blue from the earlier figure.  Black Cat is packed with the same whip as the Sirens figure (albeit in different colors), and a recolored version of Goose, this time as a…black…cat.  Actually having a cat’s more of a Catwoman thing than a Black Cat thing, but she’s already copying DC’s homework, so let’s just roll with it.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was fortunate enough to actually get the Skyline Sirens Black Cat at retail, but a lot of people weren’t, which meant a lot of people’s only viable Black Cat was the Kingpin Series one.  It’s not a terrible figure, but it’s not a classic Black Cat by any stretch.  With the real push for that ’90s Spider-Man vibe, a redo of some sort felt pretty essential, and here she is.  She’s a decent figure.  Nothing amazing, or definitive, but a solid take on the character, and another somewhat unique costume for this scale.  At least this one’s a bit easier to get.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for Marvel Legends, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.