#3218: Ravager Thor

RAVAGER THOR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Thor wields the mighty Stormbreaker against a terrifying new foe.”

I’m already three figures into this look into the tie-in Legends for Thor: Love and Thunder, and I haven’t yet actually looked at the Odinson himself.  That seems pretty crazy.  There are two of them present in this assortment, and I’m opting to look at the slightly more unique of the pair.  This one, dubbed “Ravager Thor,” no doubt due to its ties to his time with the Guardians of the Galaxy, was the central piece of our first teaser image from the film, so its presence in this assortment isn’t all that much of a surprise.  So, let’s look at how that turned out!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ravager Thor is figure 4 in the Korg Series of Marvel Legends.  As noted above, he’s one of two Odinson Thors in this line-up.  The other is a more traditionally armored take on the character, but it’s got no Build-A-Figure part, so I’m not in a huge rush to pick it up.  This Thor is clearly in his post-workout attire, after he’s gotten back in shape following the events of Endgame.  It’s based loosely on Thunderstrike’s design from the comics, which is a nice touch, and is also a nice sort of half-step between his The Dude-inspired look as Bro Thor and his more classic warrior Thor.  The figure stands about 6 3/4 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  This Thor follows in the footsteps of the Endgame Thor, being closer to actual scale, rather than the exaggerated sizing of prior MCU Thors.  The figure’s sculpt is all-new, and it’s honestly a pretty respectable one.  The head in particular sports probably the best likeness we’ve gotten yet for Hemsworth.  That face just really clicks in a way that previous takes haven’t.  Given how many tries Hasbro’s given it, that’s definitely saying something.  The body sculpt has Hemsworth’s more heroic proportions from the film, as well as a ton of texture work on the outfit.  The vest is a separate, removable piece.  The left arm on my figure comes out, which makes taking the vest off a lot easier, though I don’t know if that’s on purpose.  The color work on this guy appears to be pretty spot on to the film design.  The paint on the face is suitably life-like, and the hair gets some nice accenting, giving it that slightly dirtier look.  He also gets the full detailing on his t-shirt design, which is pretty fun.  Thor is packed with Stormbreaker, as well as the arm to the Korg Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Mostly, I bought this guy for the Korg piece.  That said, I also did quite dig this look from its initial appearance in the teaser photo.  I like how it works with the general Flash Gordon-y vibe of the first film (and, I assume, this one, too).  This figure is honestly pretty fun, and he’s a neat progression from the Bro Thor figure.

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

#3126: Gorr

GORR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Wielding a powerful and terrifying weapon, Gorr will let nothing stand in his way.”

With Loki, the Frost Giants, Malekith, Hela, The Executioner, and Surtur off the table (and the Enchantress effectively adapted into Sylvie in Loki), the Thor franchise had to move to more recent additions for an antagonist in Love and Thunder.  Enter Gorr the God Butcher.  Introduced during Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic’s Marvel Now!-era run on the book, Gorr has no ties to pre-existing mythology, and was a new creation in wholesale.  He doesn’t exactly have a ton of comics appearances, but he played a role in the run that led up to Jane Foster becoming Thor, so including him in this particular story isn’t the craziest idea.  For the film, he’s played by former Batman actor Christian Bale, making him the second live-action Batman to join the MCU as a villain.  Bet George Clooney and Val Kilmer are feeling real skipped over right about now.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Gorr is figure 2 in the Korg Series of Marvel Legends, which is entirely based on Love and Thunder.  This is Gorr’s debut in action figure form, making him the one truly new figure in the bunch, although it was also the first time we’d gotten an MCU Jane.  But this is our first Gorr regardless of universe.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 31 points of articulation.  Gorr’s articulation scheme is slightly more modernized, matching up with robed characters from other lines.  Obviously, he’s restricted on the legs, due to the skirt, but otherwise mobility’s pretty solid on the range front, and he’s also got the pinless joint construction on the elbows and knees.  Gorr’s sculpt is all-new.  It’s not a bad piece.  For the movie-verse, Gorr’s design is slightly less inhuman than his comics-counterpart, largely to keep Christian Bale’s face clearer for the purposes of emoting.  It makes for a slightly less distinctive design, but I’m sure it’ll work better within the movie proper.  The sculpt does a respectable job of capturing the design, at least based on what we’ve seen so far.  The face has a rather spot-on likeness of Bale, and the texture work on the outfit is rather impressive.  I don’t much care for how floaty the cape is, but other than that, the sculpt works well.  Gorr’s paintwork is rather on the drab side, seeing as he’s really just a lot of off-white.  It’s largely molded, but he gets a little bit of accenting on the exposed skin, as well as getting some pretty in depth printing for the face.  Gorr is packed with a black sword, which is presumably All-Black the Necrosword, Gorr’s weapon in the comics.  He also includes the left leg for Korg.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I know nothing of Gorr, at least from personal experience, so I’m pretty much banking off of a hope that I’ll like the character’s appearance in the movie.  Also, I wanted Korg.  So, there was that.  I honestly picked him up for that.  It’s not a bad figure, though.  Design’s a touch on the bland side, but the likeness is really good, and he’s pretty posable, especially on the upper half.

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

#3125: Mighty Thor

MIGHTY THOR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Jane Foster’s life is forever changed when she mysteriously comes to possess the hammer Mjolnir…and the power of the Mighty Thor!”

In two weeks time, Thor: Love and Thunder, the fourth installment in the MCU’s Thor franchise, hits theatres.  One of the film’s earliest selling points was the return of Natalie Portman in the role of Jane Foster, as well as the confirmation that the film would be adapting her time in the role of Thor from the comics.  The MCU hasn’t really touched on the whole concept of other people taking on the mantle of Thor the way the comics had by the point Jane took over, so it’ll be interesting how exactly they handle it on screen.  It’s not like it’s a terribly confusing concept, though, and with Taika Waititi at the helm, I’m sure there will be some humorous quipping about the exact ins and outs of it in the final film.  Whatever the case, there are toys, and where there are toys, there is me, reviewing the toys.  Well, some of the time.  I mean, I don’t buy *everything*.  But I did buy this, so I’m gonna review it!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Mighty Thor is figure 1 in the Korg Series of Marvel Legends, which serves as the tie-in assortment for Love and Thunder.  It’s an assortment entirely based on the movie, which seems to have become the norm after years of mixing MCU and comics stuff.  Jane is seen here in what I can only assume will be her main attire from the film.  It’s a pretty solid recreation of the design she sported in the comics, with the necessary adjustments for it being on a real person and all, as well as tying her in a little more closely with the prior cinematic Thor designs. The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and she has 30 points of articulation.  As with most recent releases, she has the pinless joint construction on her elbows and knees, allowing for a generally sleeker design.  Jane Thor’s sculpt is an all-new offering.  It appears to be a pretty accurate rendition of the movie design, going by what we’ve seen so far.  The detailing is generally pretty sharp, though there are a few soft spots on a couple of the armored parts.  I quite like how the cape has turned out.  There’s a really convincing drape to it, especially given it’s heavier rubber construction.  Jane Thor includes two different heads; one with helmet, and one without.  The helmeted look feels just a touch goony looking; it’s something about how the eyes and mouth work within the context of the whole assembly.  It’s not too terrible, though.  The unmasked head is sporting a respectable likeness of Natalie Portman, certainly on par with the Padme from a few years ago at the very least.  Jane Thor’s color work is at best described as the bare minimum.  Well, okay, it probably goes a little bit beyond that, to her credit.  There aren’t any obviously missing details, but there’s also very little in the way of accenting.  It’s especially notable on the silver section, where some of the sculpted detailing winds up a little lost.  That said, the application is all rather clean, and the face printing makes her look sufficiently lifelike, as per usual.  Jane Thor includes Mjolnir and the right leg of the Korg Build-A-Figure.  Mjolnir is an all-new sculpt, showcasing its reassembled nature in the film.  Interestingly, it’s a larger size than the ones we’ve gotten with standard Thor (and Cap for that matter), making it our third different scaling for Mjolnir within the line.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I myself only had a somewhat passing familiarity with Jane’s time as Thor in the comics, but Jess was a huge fan, and collected the whole run, up through its end.  I know she would have been thrilled about it getting adapted, so that’s kind of translated to me being excited about it too.  I’m hoping that actually giving Natalie Portman a little bit more to do in the role might make her a slightly more compelling character.  The figure’s at least a promising start.  While I’d have liked to see them be a little more in depth with some of the paint, she’s otherwise a pretty solid release, and thus far looks to be the star of the assortment, at least as far as the general public is concerned.

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

#3071: Thor, Thunderstrike, & Kronan Stone Men

ERIC MASTERSON AS THOR, THUNDERSTRIKE, & KRONAN STONE MAN

MARVEL MINIMATES

Remember when Thor actually had a secret identity?  And then he didn’t?  And then he did again, but it was a different guy?  And then he didn’t again, but that guy from before had a *different* secret identity?  Man, Thor comics is weird…

Today, we’re jumping back into the world of Minimates for just a bit, specifically looking over at the Thor side of things, with a Thor variant, a variant of that Thor variant, and a stone guy, but not that stone guy that every one knows.  Confused?  Yeah, me too.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Eric Masterson as Thunderstrike and the Kronan Stone Man were released in the 42nd Series of Marvel Minimates, with Eric as Thor swapping out for Thunderstrike in the one-per-case variant set.  The whole assortment was a split between Captain America and Thor, serving as a loose tie-in to the two characters getting their live-action films in 2011.

ERIC MASTERSON AS THOR

Introduced as a supporting player in the book, Eric Masterson took over as Thor’s human host, after Thor had been without one since he and Don Blake had split a few years prior.  Eric was a different sort of Thor, a more working class sort of character.  Also, he had a beard, which was a departure at the time…not so much any more.  This is not the first time we received an Eric Masterson as Thor ‘mate; the first one was also a variant set, released alongside the main version of Thor waaaaaaay back in Series 16.  The figure is built on the standard post-C3 base body, which stands about 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Thor has seven add-on pieces, for his helmet/hair, cape/shoulderpads, arm bands, belt, and boots.  With the exception of the armbands, which, like the original Thor ‘mate, are re-used from DC’s Stargirl, and the belt, which is also from the original Thor, the pieces were new to this figure, or at the very least the wave, since there were a few shared parts going around.  Due one would assume to budgetary reasons, the original Masterson Thor used the same helmet as the standard, with only paint to replicate his signature armored mask.  This figure, however gets his own uniquely sculpted helm, with hair designed to work in conjunction with the high sitting cape.  It’s a very impressively detailed piece.  The cape itself is a somewhat impressive piece.  Prior Thor capes seemed to lack some of the grandeur of how his comics incarnations tended to look, but this one does its very best to live up to it, swooping up and out from his shoulders in quite a dynamic fashion.  It can at times make him a tiny bit top-heavy, but for this look, I think it’s worth it.   The prior Thor used a very bulky set of boots, which made posing his legs very awkward.  This figure uses the streamlined style of boot introduced with the Secret Invasion set’s Wolverine, which results in an accurate, detailed depiction of Thor’s footwear that isn’t too restricting.  Thor’s paintwork is quite nicely handled.  The basic colors are all a good match, and I quite like the way they’ve made his…torso circles (?) reflective.  By far the best part is the face that’s under that mask.  Not only is it perfectly aligned to the mask, but it also gives us a very expressive, very angry looking Masterson.  Thor is packed with one accessory: his hammer Mjolnir.  It’s the more sizable model introduced a few years prior with the Reborn Thor, but this time it has “Whosever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of THOR” written on its side.  A small, but fun change.

ERIC MASTERSON AS THUNDERSTRIKE

When it was decided that the original Thor was going to return, Marvel didn’t want to just shunt Eric off to the land of forgotten comic book characters, so a new weapon, Thunderstrike, was created for him, and he took on the name to match.  As Eric’s main identity, Thunderstrike served as the non-variant set’s anchor.  Thunderstrike, like Thor, uses seven add-on pieces.  The armbands and belt are the same ones used for Thor, and he gets a new hair piece, vest, and boots.  These new pieces are all excellently sculpted, featuring quite a bit of detailing, not always seen on prior figures.  The vest’s collar is popped up, as was Thunderstrike’s style, and his pony tail has been smartly sculpted to match.  It does make posing the head a little bit tricky, but not impossible.  The boots are designed in a fashion similar to the Thor figure, but since Thunderstrike’s boots are intentionally bulkier, they wrap a bit around the sides of the leg as well.  Thunderstrike’s paintwork is a good match for Thor’s.  It’s similarly clean, and crisp, and the differing way of handling his chest detailing reflects how things were handled in the comics.  The face is slightly different from the one under Thor’s mask, but the details make it clear that this is the same guy, just with a slightly different expression.  The cool thing is that you can swap the heads between the two, resulting in a calmer Thor and an angrier Thunderstrike, which is definitely a nice little bonus.  Thunderstrike is, unsurprisingly, packed with his mace Thunderstrike, a unique sculpt for this set.  It’s a reasonable match for the weapon from the comics, though doesn’t quite have the imposing power of Mjolnir.

KRONAN STONE MAN

The Kronan Stone Men, or as they were then known, the Stone Men of Saturn, were Thor’s very first antagonists, appearing alongside him in Journey into Mystery #83.  Though never incredibly prominent, they’ve been hanging around the Marvel Universe ever since, and, most recently, gained a little bit of notoriety via Korg, the goofy, inept stone man from Planet Hulk and Thor: Ragnarok.  Though I’ve no doubt their presence in Thor’s debut certainly played a part in getting them this slot, I’d say the biggest push to include them in this series was parts re-use. Apart from the head, which is a unique piece depicting the Stone Man’s pointier noggin, these pieces were all sculpted for prior figures.  The bulk of the pieces come from the re-worked Thing minimate from Series 37.  Technically, the hands are new, since they didn’t make it onto the production version of that figure, but they were certainly sculpted for him.  Given the similarities between the Thing and the Stone Men, the re-use is certainly sensible.  The skirt piece is from waaaay back in wave 1 of the line, borrowed from Elektra.  It’s a somewhat archaic piece, and certainly more geometric and flat than more recent offerings, but for the Stone Men it works.  The Kronans’ paintwork is decent enough.  Not particularly thrilling or anything, but that’s the Stone Men.  They’ve gone with their brown/tan coloring from JiM #83’s interiors, rather than the green from the cover.  This also allows for an easy enough conversion to a comics version of Korg, which is a nice bonus.  The Stone Man is packed with two different styles of blaster, in both large and small sizes.  Both were new to this particular figure, and the pairing allows for some different options for army building.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked these sets up, along with the rest of the assortment, from Luke’s Toy Store, back when they were new.  Though not a new figure, Eric Masterson Thor was certainly a very welcome redo, and trumps the original release in just about every way.  He may be an off-shoot variant, but he’s one of the best Thors available.  It’s always nice to get a new character, and Thunderstrike was definitely a very welcome addition to this line-up.  He perhaps lacks some of Thor’s flair, but that’s a bit by design.  A few series after introduction of the army builder idea to the line, DST seemed to hit a bit of a low point, running out of exciting choices.  The Kronan Stone Man, while not an *awful* choice was kind of a little bit that way.  Technically, it’s a fine figure, and it’s a credible character choice, but it’s really just hard to get excited.  They can’t all be winners.

#2971: Thor

THOR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Armed with Stormbreaker and Mjolnir, the son of Odin steps onto the battlefield to face Thanos one final time.”

Happy Thor’s Day, everyone!  Man, it’s been too long since I’ve gotten to use that one.  I blame my own poor forward planning when it comes to review schedules.  But I totally remembered this time, so a-ha!  Though Avengers Endgame got a lot of coverage in Marvel Legends, the nature of a good chunk of the designs either being downplayed for the Quantum Suits, or kept completely secret until the film’s release, like Thor here, meant that there were still a number of designs still left out in the cold.  Thor effectively has three main looks during the film.  His pre time-skip look, which we got with the Infinity War stuff, his post-time-skip “the Dude” look, which we got as a Build-A-Figure in 2019, and his final battle attire, which we’ve just gotten now!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Thor is the last single-release standard figure for the Infinity Saga sub-line of Hasbro’s Marvel Legends.  He’s one of three items in the sub-line based on Endgame, which is the movie with the heaviest coverage here.  The figure stands about 6 3/4 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  After years of the MCU Thor’s being almost comedically larger than the rest of the figures, it seems they’ve begun to slightly down-size him, ever so slightly, for more proper scaling.  So, this Thor is actually a little smaller than prior versions, but that’s actually more accurate to Hemsworth’s relative height to everyone else.  In terms of articulation scheme, this figure more or less sticks to what the Infinity War versions of him had, albeit slightly more restricted by his added bulk.  He does get the pinless construction on his elbow and knee joints, however, which is pretty cool.  Thor’s sculpt is all-new; the arms look similar to the IW ones, but, as noted previously, they don’t have exposed pins on the elbows, so they’re new too.  It’s a pretty solid sculpt overall.  Since it’s being released two years after the film, it doesn’t have to worry about odd preliminary design details that got changed, meaning it matches up pretty well with the design seen in the finished movie.  The head sports a respectable likeness of Chris Hemsworth, which, much like the Bro Thor, I think is aided a bit by the more distinctive features of the more disheveled appearance.  I quite like the detailing on the braided beard, and they’ve done alright with capturing the more scraggly-looking hair.  The body gets the slightly heftier build down pretty good, and the texturing and small detail work on the outfit’s all rather nice.  The paint work on Thor is generally pretty basic.  Most of the outfit and such is just molded colors, with more of the intricate work on the head.  The head ends up doing the same thing that the three-pack Infinity War version did, going for a more “powered up” appearance.  While I’m not opposed to the general concept, or even how it turned out on the figure, it’s a little bit limiting of a choice for the only included head.  Maybe at least throw us an extra head with standard eyes?  Like I said, it does at least still look pretty cool, so I can’t entirely fault it.  Thor is packed with both of his hammers, done up in clear blue to somewhat match his powered-up look, as well as two sets of hands (gripping and open gesture), and two lightning effect pieces.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was honestly a bit surprised when we got the full-on Bro Thor before this one back when the Endgame product was first hitting, and even more surprised by the complete and utter lack of this figure in any of the immediate follow-up.  I was at the very least expecting some sort of multi-pack with the big three in their final battle attire or something.  Honestly, I wasn’t expecting a single release on him, but I can’t say I was disappointed by the choice.  Thor’s a pretty solid figure.  He’s a bit late to the party, perhaps, but that means we only have to contend with just the one of him from the start.  It’s certainly nice to get another final battle figure.

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

#2937: Surtur

SURTUR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Empowered by the Eternal Flame, the demon Surtur rises from the ashes to unleash his fury upon Asgard.”

As I discussed on Monday, Thor: Ragnarok is really the only one of the Thor films to truly get a proper spread of figures in Legends form.  In fact, it’s really got one of the better spreads of any of the Marvel films, since we’ve gotten the whole principle cast, as well a a couple of the notable supporting players.  Despite how thoroughly covered the film has been, Hasbro decided they just weren’t done yet, so we’ve got yet another figure to look at!  I suppose it’s really only fair that in your tie-in toys for a movie called Ragnarok, you include Surtur; he’s kind of important to that whole thing, really.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Surtur is a mass-release part of the Infinity Saga sub-set of Hasbro’s Marvel Legends line.  He’s at his own price point, above even the usual deluxe price point.  Hasbro definitely seems to be using this line to explore some more flexible price points.  The figure stands just shy of 13 inches tall measured from the top of his horns, and he has 31 points of articulation.  Surtur’s a pretty sizable guy in the movie (he actually grows in size as his powers increase, so there’s some variation there), and the figure does what it can to replicate that.  He’s technically a few inches too short for even his smallest size in the movie.  That said, he’s way larger than any of the other figures from the set, so the effect still works out.  His articulation scheme is generally pretty good for a figure of this sizing, though it has some notable restricted spots.  The shoulders don’t have a ton of up and down, due to how they’re designed, which is definitely the biggest issue with the figure.  Slightly less of an issue, but still a bit of an issue, are the hips, which, at least on my figure, are a little sticky when it comes to posing.  They feel like they should have some sort of a drop hip set-up based on the way they move, but there’s not one there, which does give me some pause about the long term durability of the figure’s pelvis.  Otherwise, it’s decent set-up, and he’s even got the pinless elbow and knee set-up.  Surtur’s sculpt is all-new, and it’s a pretty solid matchup to how he was depicted in the film.  There’s quite a bit of sculpted texture work going on, which gives him that appropriate molten skin appearance that the film gave him.  The head sculpt opts for an angry, shouty sort of expression for him.  It’s perhaps a little more limiting in terms of what sorts of poses he can go into, since it doesn’t really fit the lounging about version of the character seen earlier in the film, but we don’t have throne or anything for him anyway, so it makes him a better end of the movie Surtur, I guess.  It helps that it’s quite a nice sculpt.  It’s very dynamic, and looks more unique compared to other, more neutral expressions.  Surtur is molded in a translucent orange plastic, in order to aid in that molten appearance.  The shade of orange shifts a bit on the actual flame parts, going from more of a red to a yellowish hue, as they get nearer the edges, which looks fairly convincingly like actual flame.  There are large patches of darker paint, not actually dry brushed, but designed to simulate such an effect.  It works pretty well.  Surtur is packed with two sets of hands (gripping and a open gesture/fist combo), as well as his sword, which is almost as tall as he is.  Getting a picture of him holding it was no small feat, let me tell you.  I suppose it would have been nice to also get maybe his crown, separate from his head, as it’s seen in the film, but since we don’t even have a proper opening scene Thor, its applications might be a bit limited.  The sword and hands are pretty useful directly to this figure, at least.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

It’s hard to say I’ve been heavily campaigning for anything more from Ragnarok, since it did get a good selection of figures and all.  Moreover, I figured Surtur’s size would be his undoing anyway, since even scaled down he’s a hard sell.  This guy being shown off earlier this year was a bit of a surprise to be sure, but certainly a pleasant one.  The figure has some issues, especially when it comes to the articulation, however the sheer size and detailing on him is enough to make him a worthwhile purchase.  And hey, here’s another Ragnarok figure!

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

#2834: Civilian Thor & Asguardian Guard

CIVILIAN THOR & ASGARDIAN GUARD

MARVEL MINIMATES

The first Thor movie’s two Toys R Us-exclusive two-packs are a rather polarized ordeal.  The first included two fan favorite characters, Lady Sif and Volstagg, who had exciting designs and had never received Minimates before.  Today, however, I look at the second set, which includes a civilian variant of the main character and an unnamed guard.  It’s a well-meaning set, no doubt, but perhaps doesn’t possess the same flair present in the other pairing.  Perhaps DST’s attention to the little details can salvage it!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

As noted above, these two are one of two TRU-exclusive packs of Marvel Minimates designed to coincide with the release of the first Thor film.  Only half of the set’s truly exclusive, though, since the Guard was actually a straight re-release of the single-packed Asgardian Guard from the army builder case, but as an army builder, the double-packing does make some sense.

CIVILIAN THOR

One of two Thors in this assortment, this figure represents Thor as he looks on Earth, which is a pretty decent chunk of the film’s run-time.  It’s not an overly unique get-up, being just a t-shirt and jeans, but that *is* what he looked like in the film.  He’s built on the base ‘mate body, so he’s about 2 1/4 inches tall and he has 14 points of articulation.  The figure gets one sculpted add-on, for his hair.  Surprisingly, this is NOT the same piece used on the single-packed Thor.  It’s very similar, but has some more length at the bottom, since there’s no cape to contend with.  As with a few other lines from around this time, there are a few notable things going on with the plastic used for the Thor ‘mates.  Firstly, the necks were shorter, and the feet a little shallower, which makes them look a little more top-heavy.  Fortunately, with Thor, that’s not so big a deal.  The other issue is one of quality of plastic.  For whatever reason, the plastic quality was much lower on the these guys, making them feel rather waxy, and making the overall detailing of the sculpted parts a little softer.  It’s not quite as impactful on the sculpt, but it does impact the paint.  Said paint is decent enough in application, but the plastic is more absorbent than usual, which renders the detail lines much duller than we’ve come to expect.  It’s especially notable on the torso, where it’s hard to see there’s any detailing at all.  The colors of the plastic, particularly the peach-tone of his skin, are also much drearier, making him look almost a little sickly.  He’s not hit quite as badly by this as other ‘mates from the same time, but it’s still noticeable when you place him with other MCU ‘mates.  The thing that saves this figure from being mediocre is the accessories. He comes with Mjolnir (the same one included with the standard Thor and *almost* every MCU Thor since), and even cooler, he also comes with a mound of stone that’s molded to fit around the head of the hammer, just like it’s seen in the film.  Definitely a very fun extra.

ASGARDIAN GUARD

Asgardian Guard is a bit of a mouthful, isn’t it?  As the Asgardian Guard guards Asgard–I’m getting distracted.  The Guard has four add-on pieces, for his helmet, breastplate/cape, and wrist guards.  All four pieces were new to this particular ‘mate, and seem to be a decent match for the source material.  The breastplate/cape combo tends to look a little bulky, but with that sizable helmet, it ends up evening out pretty well.  The detailing on all the sculpted bits is quite sharp, and doesn’t seem to be quite as negatively impacted by the lower grade plastic as some of the others in the assortment.  The Guard’s paint is slightly more exciting than Thor’s, but has its own assortment of issues.  There’s a lot of slop on the cape, especially around the collar.  It’s bade enough on mine that I don’t actually know where the paint was *supposed* to go.  The gold on the back of the cape is a little better at staying where it’s meant to, but the actual application is rather thin and inconsistent.  The tampo work is a little better, with the armor detailing on the legs in particular looking quite sharp.  Unfortunately, the lower grade plastic strikes again on the flesh-toned bits, causing that same waxy appearance and washed out face print we saw on Thor.  In addition, my figure has some sort of mis-print or flaw in the plastic that leaves a dark streak down the center of his face.  For accessories, the Guard includes a sword and a staff, which aids in his army building capabilities, since you can arm him however you like.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I don’t actually recall exactly when I got this set, but I know I got it new.  It’s not terribly exciting.  Civilian Thor, taken purely on the quality of just the figure, seems like a little bit of a waste, especially when there are prominent characters who are still unreleased (poor Fandrall and Hogun).  That said, the hammer and stone base do at least offer a cool diorama, proving that there’s more to him than you might initially think.  The Asgardian Guard is a figure that was great in theory, but marred a bit by the execution.  He’s still far from awful, but he could have been a lot better.  DST really tried, but their factory let them down.

#2594: Thunderstrike

THUNDERSTRIKE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Kevin Masterson follows in the noble footsteps of his idol Thor—because the world still needs heroes.”

After Walt Simonson’s run on Thor cemented the concept of someone other than the God of Thunder himself (or Don Blake, his usual alter ego) being able to wield the power of Mjolnir, passing the hammer onto other wielders became a recurring feature.  Not terribly long after Simonson’s run ended, Eric Masterson was introduced as a supporting player in Thor.  He was then promoted from supporting player to alter ego for Thor, then just to being Thor proper for a time, and then eventually was given his own, separate identity as Thunderstrike.  Eric’s story ultimately ended with his demise, and eventually his hammer was passed onto his son, Kevin, who took up the identity for himself.  Thunderstrike’s an intriguing alternate to Thor, and makes for a good figure to fill that “Thor” slot in an assortment, which is just what he’s doing here.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Thunderstrike is the fourth figure in the Joe Fixit Series of Marvel Legends, and also the final of the comics-based figures in the assortment.  This marks Thunderstrike’s first time getting the Legends treatment, although Hasbro’s done him before in their 3.75″ line.  In stark contrast to the name attached to the bio, this Thunderstrike is very definitely Eric’s version of the character, not his son Kevin.  Clearly somebody didn’t double check the wiki there.  It’s perfectly alright, however, because Eric is certainly the more logical choice for inclusion, given he’s the one everyone thinks of when they hear the name.  The figure stands 7 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  Thunderstrike makes use of a surprising amount of new parts.  At first glance I’d expected him to be fairly heavy on the re-use, but on the final product the only re-used parts are the arms (which are from the 80th Thor), and the vest (which is from Rage, a parts share that existed in the smaller line as well).  Everything else is new.  It crafts a pretty spot-on recreation of the character’s design from the comics, for what that’s worth.  It’s…not the greatest design, but it’s certainly very indicative of the time it hails from, so I guess there’s that.  The ball joint for the mid torso certainly works out well, and looks better aesthetically as well.  The head’s got a rather dynamic flair to it, with a quite intense facial expression.  It’s different, and I do like the change up, but it’s also a touch limiting when it comes to posing him.  At least it’s pretty well suited to the character.  Thunderstrike’s paint work is pretty basic stuff.  The application’s clean, but the brown sections could certainly use some sort of accenting.  As it stands, some of the details get a little bit lost.  Thunderstrike is packed with his hammer of the same name, as well as two different left hands (the same two included with Thor), and the head to Joe Fixit.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Thunderstrike is a character that’s kind always been just outside of my area of interest.  I’ve got nothing against him, but I’ve also got no real attachment to him (hence why I never grabbed his smaller figure, even after seeing it on clearance all over the place).  His inclusion in this set was kind of a middling moment for me, but I can’t say it’s a waste of a space or anything.  He’s at the very least a pretty solid figure, and another rather classic character for the line-up.

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.

#2393: Secret Strike Loki

SECRET STRIKE LOKI

THOR: THE MIGHTY AVENGER (HASBRO)

“Loki prefers to test his wits against his enemies.  Coercion and mischief are his tools for victory.”

If nothing else, this dearth of things to review right now does give me an excuse to dust off my old randomized list of old things to review, which I haven’t made nearly enough use of in recent years.  Gosh, remember when I would reference that thing on the regular?  What strange times are upon us.  Well, the randomized list has pulled a figure from 2011’s Thor film for me today.  So, without further ado, let’s take a look at Secret Strike Loki!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Secret Strike Loki was part of the first series of Hasbro’s Thor: The Mighty Avenger line, which was designed to tie-in with the film.  He was the standard Loki for the line, based on the character’s slightly more dressed down appearance from earlier in the film, specifically the younger Asgardians’ trek into the realm of the Frost Giants.  It’s a more unique look compared to the others, plus it was the one from early promotional work, so I guess it worked alright, even if it did lack that awesome helmet.  The figure stands 4 1/4 inches tall and he has 27 points of articulation.  As I mentioned when I reviewed Axe Attack Thor, this line was one of the last movie lines from Hasbro before they started cutting articulation, so this guy actually has quite a bit.  Perhaps too much, maybe; his legs can be a little bit of a fiddly mess with all the joints, and keeping him balanced can be a little tricky.  It’s not terrible, though.  Loki’s sculpt started off as a unique affair, but had gotten a full repaint by the end of the line (dubbed “Sorcerer’s Fury”) and had also been scavenged for parts by his hard to find, fully armored varian.  This sculpt is a pretty decent one, truth be told.  The likeness on the head isn’t a perfect match for Hiddleston or anything, but I’d say it’s at least as good as the Hemsworth likeness on the Thor figures from this same line.  Loki’s slight frame does seem a little bit exaggerated by this figure, as well, but it adds to the general styling of the line, and means he can slot in alright with the comic-based stuff Hasbro was producing at the same time.  The paint on Loki is generally pretty decent, matching up with what we see in the film.  There’s one pretty glaring issue, though.  For some reason, they decided to mold his neck joint in the green that makes up his torso, rather than matching it to the fleshtone of his head.  Seems like a pretty silly choice to me, and it means that he looks pretty off from a lot of poses.  Loki includes two unique small blades, as well as the gimmicky “Secret Strike” thing, which starts out as a ridiculously large sword, and then splits off into two tonfa-style things.  Yeah, I don’t get it either.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked up this Loki and a standard Thor the first time I saw them at retail, which was prior to seeing the movie.  I was pretty excited for it, and wanted at least the pair of them.  Little did I know that they would be all I would see at retail for, like, the next three years or so?  Man, these guys sure were persistent.  Loki’s really not a bad little figure, though, and I still do like him, even if he’s not my preferred look for the character.

#2296: Thor

THOR

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

The Thor abides.  Sorry, was that too goofy?  I couldn’t use my usual “Happy Thor’s Day” gag for this one, so I was trying something else out.  I won’t let it happen again.

In a film with a lot of closely guarded secrets and spoilers, Thor’s transformation during Endgame’s five year time jump is arguably a fairly minor one, but it was nevertheless one of the most closely guarded elements of the film, with nary a hint of its existence present anywhere in the marketing.  We were led to believe that Thor would spend the three hour film continuing his Ragnarok look.  This made the depths of his depression and the toll it took on him all the more surprising when it occurred on-screen, in many ways far more properly capturing the feel of what it’s like in real life when someone you care about similarly deals with a serious case of clinical depression.  But, lest we get too serious here, it also let Chris Hemsworth continue to be a bit of a goofball.  It proved a pretty popular incarnation of the character with audiences, and there’s been some sizable demand for him in toy form.  Perfect time a Marvel Legend.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Thor is the Build-A-Figure for the third Endgame-themed assortment of Marvel Legends from last year.  Officially, he’s just titled “Thor”, rather than the more commonly accepted “Bro Thor,” since it appears the second Pop is the first official use of that name.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  He’s sporting a brand-new sculpt, seeing as we haven’t gotten a chubby guy in sweats out of the line previously.  The figure represents Thor at his most Dude-liest, with pajama pants and bathrobe.  Not exactly what you would think of for adventuring garb, but it’s what Thor wears during the film’s big time heist nevertheless.  The sculpt does a solid job of capturing Thor’s dressed down appearance, with some really nice detailing on the various parts of his attire, such as fully detailed crocs, and some very effective layering on his sweats and robe.  He’s also got what’s probably the best Hemsworth likeness we’ve gotten so far; admittedly, there’s more character details to help sell the appearance this time around, with all the hair and the bushy beard.  It’s even further helped on the second included head, which also adds his sunglasses to the mix.  Whatever the case, it’s still my favorite Hemsworth Thor head we’ve gotten so far.  The paintwork on Thor is decently handled; for the most part, it’s just large swathes of color, but he does get the face printing, as well as the plaid pattern on the pants, which keeps things pretty interesting.  Though an accessory himself, Thor makes out alright on the extras front, with the previously mentioned extra head, a second left hand with the time gizmo Tony invented, and an all-new sculpt for Stormbreaker.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

He’s a Build-A-Figure, and I just spent a week reviewing the figures that built him, so where I got this figure seems pretty self-explantory.  When the first round of Endgame product was so Quantum Suit heavy, I was assuming our first LegendsThor would be an inaccurate team suit figure, like in other toy lines.  The complete lack of Thor in the first two assortments did give me hope that we’d see at least a proper final battle Thor.  Getting full-on Bro Thor was a pleasant surprise, and the final figure is the definite highlight of the assortment that builds him.  I’m now hopeful for that final battle look to round things out.

This assortment of Legends was certainly more singularly focused than some from last year, with all of the figures being movie-inspired, rather than our usual mix of figures.  Thor’s the definite star overall, with Iron Man being the standout of the singles.  Heimdall is certainly a welcome addition to the line, and a solid figure to boot, and even Valkyrie and Iron Patriot are valid re-dos of the characters.  Vision doesn’t offer much to people who already have the two-pack, but then not everyone does, so a re-issue is acceptable, if not incredibly exciting.  Cap is unfortunately a slightly out of date figure, and just not really the version of the character that should have been in this assortment.  As a whole, it’s a focused, if not incredibly exciting assortment.