MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)
“Bombarded by cosmic rays, Ben Grimm develops thick, orange skin and superhuman strength.”
In 2017 and 2018, the Walgreens-exclusive Marvel Legends component gave us our first Fantastic Four Legends in a long time. It was a slow build, one member at a time way of building the team, but it was nevertheless quite a rewarding experience for the FF fans who were able to play the waiting game. However, the downside of the whole thing was that by the time they released the final member of the team, it was kinda hard to track down the preceding three, and I know that put some people off of the whole venture. Still, it was a very well received set of figures, and proved that there was still a market for some FF figure love, so one of our first assortments right out of the gate for 2020 is a proper Legends assortment devoted to the FF. I’m kicking things off with the last of the four to be added to the Walgreens set, the ever-lovin’, blue-eyed Thing!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
The Thing is figure 5 in the Super Skrull Series of Marvel Legends, which is our first FF-themed series of Legends since Hasbro’s own Ronan Series back in 2008. To say they’ve improved their process since then is something of an understatement. All of the FF members in this assortment are based on their current costume designs from Slott and Pichelli’s recent relaunch of the book. For Ben, it’s not as drastic a change; mostly he’s just got that more prominent belt. The figure stands 7 inches tall and has 28 points of articulation. For the most part, he’s re-using parts from the last Thing, which was a brand-new sculpt at the time. They *are* the same guy, and it makes sense that Hasbro wants to get another use out of the mold. I’m certain this won’t be the last time we’ll see it either. It was a great sculpt the first time around, and it remains a great sculpt now. He gets an all-new head sculpt, and I actually think I might prefer this one to the two from last time. It’s got that extra prominent brow that they were both missing. It also maintains that slightly calmer look for Ben, which is my preferred look for him. Whatever the case, it’s a very strong sculpt. He also gets a brand new belt piece. Though it’s a separate piece, it’s not designed to be removable and won’t be coming off without damaging it. That said, it would be easy enough to take off permanently, if you really don’t like it. The paintwork on this figure marks another notable change in the figure, as Hasbro’s way of accenting Ben’s rocky features is a little different. On the previous figure, they more or less outlined the rocky elements, darkening the recesses, while here they instead highlight the higher points with a lighter shade. It’s not a bad look (though I wouldn’t mind if the coverage were a *bit* more extensive), but the downside to this change in styling is that you can’t swap the heads between the two releases, meaning you can’t put this head on a more classic Ben. Alas. The prior Thing release had his own selection of accessories, with a spare head and an extra set of hands. This figure gets nothing for himself, but does include the two heads meant for the Super Skrull Build-A-Figure, so it’s not the worst trade-off.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I picked up all of the Walgreens releases, so I didn’t *need* the main four from this assortment. That said, I’m a big FF fan, and if nothing else, I want to support the prospect of more FF-centric assortments. If that means getting a few variants of the main team, so be it. It helps that I really liked Ben the first time around, and that the changes made here are subtle enough that he still works as a standard Ben, while still being prominent to give me something “new.” It’s also nice that Hasbro’s giving the fans that couldn’t get the Walgreens set another chance at the core team.