#2088: Molten Man

MOLTEN MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Compared to some of the others in this line-up, Molten Man is actually a pretty old foe.  He first appeared just two years into the original book’s run, and sort of followed the flow of fairly straight gimmick characters.  That said, he’s never majorly taken off as a character and has a tendency to sort of go away for long periods of time.  He’s also not generally been very prominent in much of the off-shoot media, though his name at least was used for the fire elemental in the build-up to Far From Home.  Said elemental also serves as the central Build-A-Figure for the latest round of Legends.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Molten Man is, unsurprisingly, the Build-A-Figure for the “Molten Man Series” of Marvel Legends.  As noted in the intro, he’s not the classic Molten Man, but rather the movie’s re-imagining of him.  Where Mysterio stuck pretty close, Molten Man is more monstrous than usual, so slotting him in as his comics-equivalent seems unlikely to work, unless you’re game for a very different take on the character.  The figure stands 7 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Molten Man’s sculpt is a brand-new offering, and a pretty in-depth affair.  By far my favorite piece is the head, which has this really awesome melted look to it, while still keeping his face rather expressive.  The rest of the body continues the fluid, melting appearance pretty well, though it maybe doesn’t work quite as well over larger surfaces.  I do like the melting girders sticking out of his arms, though.  Unlike a lot of Legends, Molten Man is definitely sculpted with a particular pose in mind; he’s meant to be slumped over and leaning on his left side, in sort of an ape like posture.  It works pretty well, and still leaves some room for variance, even if all of the poses still kind of center on one main posture.  The paintwork on Molten Man has its ups and downs.  The torso is the best, being molded in clear plastic, with the gold  being applied over top.  This makes him look like he’s being lit from within in the right set-up, but is unfortunately not carried through to the rest of the parts, where the gold is the base coat, with orange detailing painted over.  It doesn’t look horrible, but it’s not quite as impressive, especially when lit.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Molten Man is another character I don’t have a ton of attachment to, movie or comic-wise, so I wasn’t beating down the door to complete him.  That said, I did think he looked okay in the shots I’d seen.  In hand, I quite like this figure.  He’s a nicely crafted piece, and just a solid big monster baddie. I see this guy being pretty versatile in a display.  He’s definitely one of my favorite Build-A-Figures of the year so far.

Molten Man serves as a nice central point to another surprising assortment from Hasbro.  While I won’t deny there were a few figures that left me slightly cold (namely Stealth Spidey and the Doppleganger), there were far more figures that were a pleasant surprise.  There’s a strong basic Spider-Man, a fantastic new figure for a slightly lesser villain, two great movie villains, and serviceable updates of two more classic characters. Definitely a strong assortment.

 

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#2086: Spider-Woman

SPIDER-WOMAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Julia Carpenter becomes an ally of Spider-Man and the Avengers after she is given spider-powered abilities by a secret government experiment.”

So, last year, I returned from my fourth of July review to a set of Spider-Man-themed Marvel Legends with a review of a Spider-Woman figure…and I’m doing that again.  What are the odds?  To be fair, while the codename’s the same, this is a distinct character from last year, specifically the Spider-Woman of the ’80s and ’90s, Julia Carpenter!  Though she’s faded into relative obscurity these days, Julia was a somewhat prominent character for a while there, and even became a member of the Avengers before her predecessor, as well as netting a pretty sweet supporting role in the ’90s Iron Man cartoon, where she was for all intents and purposes merged with Pepper Potts.  After the ’90s, her toy luck wasn’t so great, though, and she’s mostly been relagated to being a quick variant whenever Jessica Drew gets a figure.  Not the case today, though.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Spider-Woman is figure 5 in the Molten Man Series of Marvel Legends, and is the penultimate figure needed to complete the Build-A-Figure.  She’s the most loosely Spider-Man-related of the figures included, bit is still a slightly better fit than Jessica Drew was last year.  She’s wearing her classic costume, which is really the only way to go, as it’s by far her most striking.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  Spider-Woman’s built on the Phoenix body, which is a solid choice for the character, especially since the two characters even shared parts back in the 5-inch line in the ’90s.  She gets a new head sculpt, which isn’t a bad match for her ’80s appearances.  It’s also distinctly different from both Jessica Drews, which is more than can be said for a lot of Julia’s figures.  Julia’s paintwork is actually some quite solid work.  The costume is a nice, stark black and white, which has very sharply defined lines that all work very well.  On the flipside, the hair actually has a lot of accent work going on, which was something of a surprise to see, but definitely a pleasant one.  Spider-Woman is packed with an extra hand with a web attached to it.  The actual web is slightly purple and iridescent, which is a nice change from the basic Spidey webs.  Spider-Woman also includes the torso of the Molten Man Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Pretty much everything I know about this character comes from the Iron Man cartoon.  In the comics, I’ve never had a huge attachment, so I’ve not really gotten many of her prior figures.  I can certainly appreciate her design, though, and after two versions of Jessica, finally getting an update to Julia is definitely nice.  This is a solid figure, and probably the best the character’s ever gotten.

I purchased Spider-Woman from All Time Toys, who set me up with this whole set to review.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2084: Spider-Man Doppleganger

SPIDER-MAN DOPPLEGANGER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Man, can you believe we’re still getting Infinity War tie-ins?  What’s that?  Wrong Infinity War?  Right.  Yes, believe it or not, the title “Infinity War” was not originally attached to Thanos’ quest to gain the Infinity Gauntlet (that was, wait for it, “Infinity Gauntlet”), but was instead a follow-up story centered on Magus, Adam Warlock’s evil alternate persona.  Over the course of the story, Magus created evil duplicates for most of Marvel’s major heroes, including good ol’ Spidey.  Spidey’s Doppleganger stuck around longer than the others (because they didn’t have enough evil Spider-Man equivalents) and actually found his way into a few other stories from around the time, including “Maximum Carnage.”  He’s not the most prevalent character to show up as a toy, but he’s got a few under his belt, and now he’s got a Marvel Legend.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Spider-Man Doppleganger is figure four in the Molten Man Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the second comic figure, and Doppleganger’s third figure overall*.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and has 58 points of articulation.  He’s constructed pretty heavily out of re-used parts, primarily being made from the body of the Kingpin Series’ 6-Armed Spider-Man.  He inherits that figure’s articulation issues on the torso, since no changes have been made to the mold, but at this point I’ve made my piece with it.  He gets a new head, two sets of new hands, and new feet, as well as swapping out the bare secondary arms of the Spidey for the fully sleeved main arms.  The final creation is a decent offering, but definitely comes in a lot smaller and scrawnier than Doppleganger is usually depicted.  There’s a degree of artistic license I suppose, and obviously Hasbro wanted to quickly get a second use out of the new molds.  Also, a slight oddity is that the new head, hands, and feet all have raised weblines (like last year’s Spider-Ham), in contrast to the rest of the body.  It doesn’t stand out terribly in person, but the lighting for the photos really brings it out.  Doppleganger gets a noticeably darker colorscheme than Spidey did, which actually does him some favors when it comes to those unpainted weblines.  I’d still really prefer they were painted, but I’ve made my piece with it.  Everything else is pretty decent, and I particularly like the pearlescent finish on the eyes.  Doppleganger has no character-specific extras (I’m not really sure what he could have gotten), but he does include the right arm of the Molten Man Build-a-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

There was speculation of Doppleganger as soon as 6-Armed Spidey showed up, but I was really surprised by this guy’s presence just one assortment later.  For all of the prior figure’s flaws, I ultimately was quite happy with him, and marked him as a pleasant surprise in his assortment.  Doppleganger I’m not so sure about.  He’s not awful, but he’s really tiny, and still has all the issues from the last figure.  Ultimately, I think he may have been better served as a Build-A-Figure with a unique sculpt, but that’s not how it played out.  As it stands, he’s one of the two weakest entries in a generally pretty strong line-up, so he makes out alright.

I purchased Doppleganger from All Time Toys, who set me up with this whole set to review.  If your looking for other Legends or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

*Interestingly enough, this isn’t the first time that Doppleganger and Hydro-Man have been part of the same assortment.  They both made their toy debuts in the “Spider Wars” series of Toy Biz’s ’90s Spider-Man line.

#2083: Hydro-Man

HYDRO-MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

The last time I reviewed a Hydro-Man figure, I discussed his nature as sort of a poor-man’s Sandman.  He wasn’t necessarily meant to be one, but that’s definitely where he tends to find himself, especially when it comes to other forms of media outside of the comics.  His biggest claim to fame was definitely courtesy of his stint on Spider-Man: The Animated Series, where he was really only featured because Sandman was off-limits.  By the time lines like Marvel Legends came along, Sandman found his way back into the spotlight, and poor Hydro-Man was back to playing second fiddle.  Fortunately things seem to be turning around, especially depending on how Far From Home plays out for him.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Hydro-Man is figure 3 in the Molten Man Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the first comic-based figure from the set, though he was undoubtedly chosen due to the character’s presence in the upcoming movie.  Unlike his last 6-inch figure (from more than a decade ago), this figure actually puts Hydro-Man in his classic black t-shirt and jeans combo, which is a good start.  He stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  The arms are a little restricted, especially at the elbows, but he’s otherwise quite posable and nowhere near as badly restricted as prior Hydro-Men.  The arms are actually some of the small handful of new pieces this guy gets, along with his head.  The rest of the figure is re-used from last year’s Netflix Luke Cage.  It was heavily rumored that those parts would be making their way onto a Hydro-Man, so nobody is super shocked to see that pay off here.  It’s worth noting that it’s a good fit for Hydro-Man, who is classically depicted as large, but not supernaturally so.  I was a little worried that there might be an attempt to re-use some Sandman pieces for him, which would not have worked at all.  The new parts jibe pretty well with the old, with the arms doing a pretty convincing job of the whole water thing and the head doing a pretty convincing job of the whole smarmy douchebag thing.  Hydro-Man’s paintwork is pretty straightforward, but definitely well-rendered.  It’s clean, and certainly hits all the major points.  He’s packed with two water effects pieces, which clip over his feet in much the same way as the parts included with the comics-styled Mysterio last year, and are a slightly better solution than the immobile lower half we tend to see.  Hydro-Man is also packed with the head to the BaF Molten Man.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I have an unabashed love for Hydro-Man, so I’ve been waiting for him to get decent Legends treatment for quite a while.  I was never big on his more “costumed” appearance, and was definitely happy to see this figure show up when this line-up was announce.  I think this figure turned out very well, and he’s easily the best Hydro-Man figure ever released.  He’s maybe not the most essential Spidey foe, but he’s still a very good figure.

I purchased Hydro-Man from my friends at All Time Toys.  If you’re interested in buying Marvel Legends figures, or are looking for other cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2082: Spider-Man

SPIDER-MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

What’s a Spider-Man movie without at least one variant on the main character’s costume?  Well, Spider-Man 2, I guess.  That doesn’t really sell my point very well, though does it?  Let me come in again.  What’s an MCU film without at least one variant on the main character’s costume?  Poor marketing synergy, that’s what.  For Homecoming, we got both Peter’s Stark-designed suit and his personal prototype suit, both of which got their appropriate due in the film proper.  For the follow-up, we get another two (at least, though there may be more), with an update on his main design, and a more stealthy option, presumably given to him by his new friends at SHIELD.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

This version of Spider-Man (which gets no notation of his varation in his name proper; he’s just “Spider-Man”) is figure 2 in the Molten Man Series of Marvel Legends.  He’s the third, and final, movie-based single release in this assortment.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Peter’s had a number of stealth suits in the comics, but this one seems to actually take a lot of influence from the Spider-Man Noir design (the comics one, that is, which is a little different from the one seen last year in Into the Spider-Verse), which kind of works if this is in fact a SHIELD design, and is therefore from an entirely different source than his usual costume.  It’s not a bad look all things considered.  That being said, it doesn’t seem to have made the transition to figure all that well.  It’s not terrible, but I don’t think it’s nearly as strong as the basic Spidey. The biggest issue, no doubt, is the neck, which is way too long.  Clearly, this is a production error of some sort, but it’s a pretty bad one, and throws the whole figure sort of into disarray.  Beyond that, the rest of the sculpt is a little better, but really feels devoid of detail when compared to the other figure.  There’s a lot of smooth surface, and a lot of very flat areas, making him look particularly toy-etic.  It’s possible this costume is just less texture heavy than the standard costume, but it seems kind of lackluster here.  There’s not a ton going on with the paint work on this figure; mostly, he’s just molded in black plastic.  There’s some slight variance in finish, which breaks up the monotony a bit, plus the silver for the eyes and peach-tone for the hands.  It’s accurate, so I can’t fault them there.  He’s packed with two sets of hands (fists and thwipping) and an extra head with the goggles flipped up.  The second head seems to sit a little better on the neck, but it’s still a bit high for my taste.  Spidey is also packed with the left arm of the BaF Molten Man.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This guy is kind of the reverse of the previous Spidey.  I was kind looking forward to him, and hoping he’d be new and different.  In hand, I was rather let down.  The neck issue is the biggest thing for me, because it’s hard to overlook it, even with posing.  Were that not present, I think I’d like him a lot more.  Ultimately, he’s probably not going to be a huge part of the film, so it’s not the end of the world, but that doesn’t make the figure magically better.

I got this figure from All Time Toys, and he can still be purchased here.  If you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2081: Mysterio

MYSTERIO

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

The master illusionist Mysterio battles his foe Spider-Man using his wits and the technology embedded in his suit.”

Whoa guys, spoilers.  Are you telling me that this Mysterio guy is actually a bad guy?  That’s a crazy, shocking, and completely unpredictable twist.  Which is exactly why every news site announced Jake Gyllenhaal’s casting in the film as “Jake Gyllenhaal cast as villain in next Spider-Man movie.”  To throw us off the scent.  I mean, I guess it’s always possible they *could* do a Skrulls-esque switch-up and stick to that heroic thing and throw us all off, but somehow I doubt it.  Does this guy look heroic to you?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Mysterio is officially figure 1 in the “Molten Man Series” of Marvel Legends, since Spidey was technically un-numbered.  This marks his second Legends figure in just over a year, since he just got a comics release in last year’s Lizard Series.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Mysterio is sporting an all-new sculpt, based upon his movie design.  Said design is actually a pretty nice translation of the comics design; not a spot-on recreation, but definitely a design that hits all of the major notes. Based on what we’ve seen in the trailers, the figure appears to be a pretty close recreation of the film’s design.  I’m sure there are some details that have been tweaked here and there, but it works well enough for me.  The detailing is nice and crisp, especially on the texturing of his underlying jumpsuit.  The articulation is a little limited at the shoulders, but he’s otherwise pretty posable.  While the comics Mysterio had an underlying head, and a helmet/cape combo, this figure separates the cape and the helmet, and makes the helmet a solid head piece.  I don’t mind this so much, because as cool as the underlying head is in theory, it never really works out in practice.  At least this figure can look good in his standard layout, without any needed compromise.  It also allows for the cool starfield sort of affect they’ve molded into the plastic, which is a fun new take on Mysterio’s usual smoke-filled dome.  The rest of the color work is pretty straight forward.  The painted applications are pretty clean, and the metallics work well on this figure.  I also really appreciate that they painted all of the green details on his cape, because that’s the sort of thing that’s usually first on the chopping block.  Mysterio is packed with two sets of hands, one in fists, and one in open gesture.  He is also packed with left leg of the BaF Molten Man.  It’s a shame we couldn’t get an unmasked head, but I think the Cosmic Spider-Man unmasked head makes for a nice stand-in.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I really feel like I *just* got the comics Mysterior….probably because I kinda did, since I got him a good six months after the rest of the line-up.  Because of that, I can’t say I was in as dire need of Mysterio as I have been some other figures, but I was certainly intrigued to see how this guy faired when compared to the comics version.  I think the comics version is better in terms of really capturing the look, but this figure’s definitely the far more playable option, especially with the solid construction on the helmet.  Which one you prefer is really going to be dependent on what you want to get out of the figure.

This Mysterio, like the last one, was purchased from my friends at All Time Toys.  If you’re interested in buying Marvel Legends figures, or are looking for other cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2080: Spider-Man

SPIDER-MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Going into Avengers: Endgame, the only MCU film we knew would be following was Spider-Man: Far From Home, the follow-up to 2017’s Homecoming.  We didn’t even know for sure whether it was pre or post-Infinity War (though we all had a pretty solid hunch), but the first trailer post-Endgame made it very clear, as well as follow-up comments that have confirmed that Far From Home will be serving as Phase 3’s proper send-off.  The movie’s set to hit theaters next week, and to get us all in the Spider-Man spirit, Hasbro is particularly on-the-ball with their Legends tie-ins.  I’ll be kicking my reviews of those off today with the Friendly Neighborhood hero himself!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Spider-Man is part of the “Molten Man Series” of Marvel Legends, which is the second Spidey-themed assortment of the year.  This guy is the extra sans-BaF-piece figure for the assortment, which has been the running trend for the movie line-ups (and Spider-Man line-ups, for that matter).  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  As we’ve seen from all the promo material, Peter’s got yet another new suit this time around.  It’s got a fair bit in common with his Homecoming look, but switches the blue out for black (ala his earliest comics appearances) and streamlines a few more elements.  It also looks to have picked up a few elements from the first Superior costume, as well as his appearance from the PS4 game.  Despite all the little changes, it still reads as undeniably Spider-Man.  As with the Iron Spider figure from Infinity War, while this figure has a lot in common with the main Homecoming release aesthetically, he’s actually an all-new sculpt.  I’ll admit, I was actually quite surprised to discover this, and it wasn’t until I compared the two releases in hand that I realized there were no parts at all shared between them.  This figure takes a design that’s closer to the Homecoming figure and applies it to an articulation scheme and base body layout that’s much closer to Iron Spider, and it really works out well.  As much as I liked the Homecoming figure, he was definitely working with some slight iffy pieces he’d inherited from his Civil War predecessor.  The fact that this one starts from scratch removes all those issues outright, rather than trying to work around them, and the end result is a very playable figure.  The attention to detail on the smaller elements of his costume is also quite impressive, with elements such as the mechanics surrounding his eyes standing out, especially given their absence from prior figures.  On the flipside, the paint’s a bit of a step down.  It’s not terrible; all of the basic elements are there, and they’re reasonably well applied.  There’s some slop on the edges, but nothing terrible.  For me, the biggest loss is the outlining for the weblines.  This detail was also missing on the Infinity War release, but seemed less glaring there.  Here, especially when compared to the Homecoming figure, it really seems to stand out.  Spidey is packed with two sets of hands, one set thwipping and the other gripping.  The choice of gripping instead of fists is interesting, since he doesn’t have anything to hold or anything, but hey, at least he got extra hands, right?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this figure, since I initially thought it would be a pretty heavy re-use of the Homecoming parts.  When I brought this set home, I didn’t really think much of this guy, but was pleasantly surprised by him when I opened the box.  I think this is probably my favorite of the three MCU Spidey designs, and the figure, while not perfect, is the best basic MCU Spidey you can get.

I got my Spidey from All Time Toys, and he can still be purchased here.  If you’re looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.