MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)
“Genius industrialist and inventor Tony Stark creates a suit of armor for himself, powered by the arc reactor in his chest, becoming the hero, Iron Man.”
When I opened up my last 6-inch-scaled Classic Iron Man review of the year, back in February, I remarked that a re-do of Tony’s classic armor hadn’t crossed Hasbro’s list for Marvel Legends just yet. Well…I was wrong as you can see. A week later, they unveiled the figure I’m looking at today, which just makes me look good and foolish, doesn’t it? Well, if looking good and foolish means that I get a cool new Iron Man figure, I guess I won’t complain so much about it. Best not to look a gift horse in the mouth and all that. So, hey, let’s look at this here Iron Man, shall we?
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Iron Man is the second of the two single-packed “80 Years of Marvel” Legends figures. Like Thor, he’s available at mass retail and ships in a case all to himself. He’s based on Tony’s classic armor, which is the one he wore for the better part of 20 years, making it a natural choice for a celebration of Marvel’s history. It’s a look that’s never too far from the line. Toy Biz, of course, kicked off the line with their take on it, which was kind of the gold standard for a while. Hasbro themselves have tackled this design before, with a two-pack release in ’07, and then a repaint of that sculpt in ’13. Both of those sculpts are definitely products of their times, though, and another go seems appropriate. This figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation. Iron Man is an all-new sculpt, and oh boy is it a nice one. This one takes the general larger size of the original Toy Biz figure, and gives it the slightly better proportions of the first Hasbro attempt, and the end result is something that looks a fair bit more human, but also still looks like it could conceivably house a human being. It’s also our first comics Iron Man in a bit that’s not completely dwarfed by all of the Captain America figures Hasbro’s offering. While there’s a bit of a theme to the trinity of Avengers released here being based on the art of Alex Ross, Iron Man takes a bit of a deviation, at least in regards to how he is straight out of the box. The head he comes wearing doesn’t actually follow Ross’s take (which is itself a bit of a deviation from usual illustrations), and instead goes for a more standard “classic” Iron Man head, representing his helmet post horns and rivets, going for that nice, sleek 70s style. I’d hasten to say it’s the best rendition of this helmet we’ve gotten on an action figure. There’s a second helmeted head, which is more directly based on Ross’s illustrations, which draw a little more inspiration from the time when Tony added a nose to the helmet in the mid-70s, all because Stan Lee made some one off remark about some of the art coming back. While I certainly appreciate the aim to more closely capture the Ross art, and I like Ross’s work on the page, I don’t really know that the helmet translates all that well into an action figure. Iron Man’s paintwork continues the trend we saw with Thor and Cap, where it’s a little more subdued in its coloring than other figures from the main line. It’s a little less noticeable with Iron Man, since metallic colors aren’t too out of the ordinary for him, even on a classic-inspired figure. It certainly looks clean and sleek, which is always what you want with this particular design. Iron Man is packed with one more head, this time unmasked. It again follows the Ross stylings, which means that it’s a Tony Stark that’s heavily modeled on Timothy Dalton. Honestly, it’s something of a Legends tradition, so I’m all about it. It’s technically a little large to properly fit within the helmeted head, but I don’t mind too much, because it’s really just so nice. Iron Man is also packed with two sets of hands in fists and repulser hand poses, as well as two repulser effects pieces, which take a page out of the Siege playbook and can be broken down into three separate pieces each.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
I love me some classic Iron Man, and I really wanted a solid version for my Legends shelf, enough so that I was willing to go outside of Legends for the Mezco version. As it turns out, that one was more of a place holder for this guy. I honestly didn’t expect Hasbro to turn him around so quickly, but I’m really glad they did. I dug the Mezco version for what it was, I dug the Toy Biz version for being as cool as it was for the time, but this is my definitive Iron Man. There’s just so much I like about this figure, and he’s got to be one of Hasbro’s most cleanly put together sculpts. I hope we can at least see a Stealth variant, because I love this sculpt so much. Definitely the highlight of the three 80th singles, and that’s coming from someone who loved Cap and Thor a lot as well.