#3296: WWII Wolverine & Hydra Agent

WWII WOLVERINE & HYDRA AGENT

MARVEL MINIMATES

In 2009, we weren’t yet into the actual MCU proper, so we had to make due with our only Marvel movie of the year being X-Men Origins: Wolverine.  Dark times, I know.  There was, of course, a proper tie-in assortment of Marvel Minimates for the movie, but the line also had a fair number of Wolverine-themed comics-based ‘mates.  There was a largely Wolverine-themed assortment in its entirety, but then they also worked him into the mixed assortments as well.  For Series 29, there were two sets, focussing on old and new.  Today, I’m looking at the old.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

WWII Wolverine and the Hydra Agent were the variant set for Series 29 of Marvel Minimates.  The Hydra Agent was the shared army builder between the two sets, with WWII Wolverine swapping in for the X-Force Wolverine from the standard set.

WWII WOLVERINE

“Before he joined the X-Men as Wolverine, Canadian soldier James Howlett served alongside Captain America, Bucky and others during World War II – something Wolverine himself only discovered after the memories of his past were restored.”

Wolverine’s past, specifically his service during the second World War, has been a subject that’s been rattling around the Marvel universe since early in his comics career.  With Origins‘ renewal of interest in the era, this made for a sensible choice of design for this assortment in 2009.  The figure is based on the standard post-C3 ‘mate body, so he’s about 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  He makes use of four add-on pieces, for his helmet, jacket, and sleeve cuffs.  He also gets a set of tweaked hands featuring his pre-Adamantium bone claws.  The helmet came from the DC Minimates Sgt Rock, the jacket from Platoon‘s Sgt Barnes, the sleeves from BttF‘s Marty McFly, and the hands from the “Wolverine Through the Ages” Weapon X.  Aside from the helmet not having any trace of Logan’s hair, making him look kind of bald with it removed, the parts do their job pretty well, so that’s actually pretty cool.  The paint work on this guy is pretty drab, but that’s expected.  It’s not a bad look at all, and there’s actually some really nice detail work going into some of it.  The head was consistent with the other comics Logan ‘mates at the time, and he’s even got a fully detailed shirt on the torso block under the jacket.  I also really dig the “X” on the helmet; it’s a fun touch.  Wolverine was packed with an alternate hairpiece (one of the Origins tie-in ones), a spare set of standard hands, and a Thompson machine gun (also re-used from Sgt Rock).

HYDRA AGENT

“The loyal minions of super-villains such as the Red Skull and Baron von Strucker, HYDRA Agents are bent on world domination through terrorist attacks and dangerous experimental technologies.”

The Hydra Agent marked the line’s fourth go at the army builder concept for the re-pack figure.  He’s a pretty classic one, and one that was at the top of everyone’s lists when the concept was first discussed.  It was kind of a big deal, really.  How’d it go?  Umm…about that… So, right out of the box, he’s got six add-on pieces.  All of them are re-use, with the standard full-face mask piece, the DC-style flared gloves, Emil Blonski‘s torso cap, the skirt from BSG’s Laura Roslin, and Assault Punisher’s holster.  They were clearly trying to get the most out of re-used parts here, and it largely works.  The real issue’s with the torso piece, which just doesn’t quite feel like it fits the usual style of Hydra Agents.  The paint is where the mixed bag really comes into play here.  Series 29 and 30 mark DST really trying to go more in-depth on the line-work for Minimates, so there was a lot more smaller detailing and creative shading, and things just generally looking more scratchy and sketchy.  The face on the full face mask for this figure is kind of a victim of that; there’s just really way too much detailing going on, and it gets kind of distracting.  There was a push on these figures to add alternate looks, and that certainly helped this one a little bit; removing the mask, gloves, and torso cap reveals a slightly more classic Hydra Agent, which is generally an improvement.  Unfortunately, due to a mix-up at the factory, this guy wound up getting a head with a peg-hole at the top, which can become just a touch distracting.  Also, I’ve never been much of a fan of the figure’s coloring.  They went for two shades of green, rather than the usual yellow and green, and the two shades are much closer than I’d like.  Throw in that both shades are rather on the dull side, and the whole thing becomes rather muddy looking.  In addition to all the removable add-on pieces, the Hydra Agent also got a pistol, an assault rifle, and Blonski’s night vision goggles, but in a matching green.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I was actually pretty excited about this set when it was announced.  Sgt Rock was one of those unexpected favorites of mine from the DC line, and I liked being able to expand his set-up just a bit with this version of Wolverine.  I’d also really been wanting Hydra Agents for a while.  When I finally got the set, I was admittedly underwhelmed.  Wolverine’s certainly not a bad variant, but he’s also not really meant to be the selling point.  The Hydra Agent showed a lot of promise, but ultimately has a lot of little issues that add-up to him not being so great.  Thankfully, there was a later variant that improved on him, but until then, this was all we had.

#3291: Tactical Wolverine & Marvel Now Magneto

TACTICAL WOLVERINE & MARVEL NOW MAGNETO

MARVEL MINIMATES

For the last few years of Fox’s hold on the X-Men film rights, Disney actively discouraged licensees from doing any direct tie-ins with Fox’s movie releases.  So, while we got tie-in assortments for both X-Men Origins: Wolverine and The Wolverine from Minimates, the last of the solo Wolverine films, Logan, went without.  To tie-in with the general themes, however, there was still a comics-based Wolverine assortment in the main line, as well as a corresponding TRU-exclusive.  Today, I’m looking at the TRU-exclusive.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Tactical Wolverine and Marvel Now Magneto were released in the 23rd TRU-exclusive assortment of Marvel Minimates, alongside two shared sets from Series 72 of the main specialty line.

TACTICAL WOLVERINE

“A verteran of many wars, the slow-aging Logan has acquired a great many human combat skills to complement his natural animal instincts.”

As the 65th version of Wolverine to grace the line, Tactical Wolverine definitely comes from a place of “what more can we do to make different versions of this one guy?”  The answer, as it turns out, is add a headband and a vest.  Very exciting stuff, really.  The figure is based on the standard post-c3 ‘mate body, so he’s about 2 1/4 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  He’s got add-ons for his hair and vest, plus the adjusted hands and feet with the claws and signature boots.  The hair is the same piece unmasked hair piece that had been in use for a few years at this point, and the hands and feet were the same set-up.  The vest appears to be a unique part.  It’s alright.  Kinda soft on the details, but not the worst.  The paint work on this guy gives him his brown costume, and it’s actually pretty crisp and clean.  I definitely dig the extra stubble on his face; it looks really cool.  For accessories, he’s packed with a mask piece, so that you can convert him to a proper Brown Costume Wolverine, as well as a clear display stand.

MARVEL NOW MAGNETO

“Max Eisenhardt has been both friend and foe to the X-Men over the years. His magnetic powers make him one of the most powerful mutants on Earth.”

Ah, yes, Marvel Now.  Or, I guess Marvel Then at this point, since none of it stuck.  Well, except for Magneto going monochromatic, I guess.  Yay.  Glad that stuck.  Big fan of that.  There were a few different versions of his costume in play.  This one’s sleeveless and black.  He’s got add-ons for his helmet, cape, belt and wrist cuffs.  The belt and cuffs appear to be new, while the cape is a re-use from the Avengers Vs X-Men Scarlet Witch and the helmet is from the Series 50 Onslaught.  The parts are all pretty respectable matches for the source material, so that’s cool.  His paint, monochromatic though it may be, is pretty crisp and clean, and just quite nice looking.  His head gets full face detailing, as well as ears, since Magneto was bald at the time he had this look.  He’s still got the hole in his head, of course, but, you know, there it is.  Magneto’s packed with both a flight stand and a clear display stand.  The flight stand is a bit too small, so his foot doesn’t actually securely stay put, which makes balancing him a real…well, balancing act, I suppose.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

None of these sets really appealed to me at the time of their release, largely due to me not having a whole lot of money to throw at Minimates.  I got these for the same reason I got most of the Minimates of the same era: TRU was going out of business and they were cheap.  Both figures are pretty nice, all things considered, but they’re also both non-essential looks, which makes this set as a whole kind of extraneous.  Still, they’re not bad.

#3171: Savage Wolverine & Reaper

SAVAGE WOLVERINE & SAVAGE LAND REAPER

MARVEL MINIMATES

In 2013, Marvel decided to a soft re-branding of their comics, under the banner “Marvel Now!” which would do new and and innovative things with the line.  Like giving Wolverine another book!  Nobody had done that before!  Okay, so Savage Wolverine may not have been the most unique thing, but it did get some decent buzz, thanks to Frank Cho’s name being attached to it. When DST put together some complimentary assortments of Minimates, Savage Wolverine got not one, but two packs dedicated to it.  I looked at the first, which featured Shanna the She-Devil (Wolverine’s co-star in the book) and a Savage Land Reaper, back in January of 2018.  Today, I’m looking at Wolverine proper…and the Reaper again…

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Savage Wolverine and the Savage Land Reaper were released in the 16th TRU-exclusive series of Marvel Minimates, which was TRU’s equivalent to the 51st specialty assortment.  The Reaper was the only cross-over between the two assortments, and is the same figure between both of its pack-outs.

SAVAGE WOLVERINE

Wolverine has had a lot of Minimates.  This particular one was his 48th.  It’s a derivation of the John Cassady Astonishing X-Men design, which had gotten a number of tweaks from several artists at this point.  This one marked his most current at the time, and it remained his most current until his padded number from the “Payback” story.  The figure is based on the standard ‘mate body, so he’s 2 1/2 inches tall and he has 14 points of articulation .  Wolverine uses add-ons for his mask and belt, as well as “unique” pieces for the clawed hands.  The mask was the first actual, proper update to the mask we’d gotten since the Series 26 version, and I quite like it.  It’s got a unique shaping to it, and I dig the sculpted seams running along the head.  The belt, which I believe was new to this figure, but it can be hard to tell, is another nice piece, full of lots of fun details.  The hands are the same hands used initially on the Series 47 Wolverine, and they’re my favorite of the clawed hands we’ve gotten.  The paint is my favorite aspect of this figure, because at the surface, it’s just a basic Wolverine paint job, but there’s so much else going on.  The yellow with black in place of blue makes for a figure that’s quite striking, and while there are still some spots of slop on some of the edges, the small detail work is crisp, and very plentiful.  The face gives us a great, intense, Wolverine-style snarl, the hair on the arms is sharp and well defined, the muscles are subtly handled in a fashion that mimics Cho’s artwork pretty well, and they’ve even included all of the laces on his boots.  There’s a ton of attention to detail, and a lot of details that could have easily been overlooked.  Logan is packed with an extra hair piece and a clear display stand.  It’s a shame they stopped giving Wolverines extra, non-clawed hands, but at least in this one’s case, it won’t be hard to find a pair that matches.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I wasn’t really intending to get this figure when he was shown off, since who really needs the 48th version of Wolverine?  Well, me, apparently.  Once packaged shots surfaced, I found myself really liking the look, and at the time, it was easiest to just order a whole assortment from TRU.com, to make sure you didn’t randomly get the wrong pack in place of what you actually wanted.  Wolverine pairs off well with this same assortment’s version of Captain America.  He’s a variant of an A-lister that no one was necessarily asking for, but DST put in some of their best work here, and the end result is a figure that really rocks.

#3156: Street Fight Wolverine & Shingen

STREET FIGHT WOLVERINE & SHINGEN YASHIDA

MARVEL MINIMATES

In a line-up that was actually pretty focused and on-point, there was one pack from the tie-in assortment for 2013’s The Wolverine that just seemed…non-essential?  Redundant?  I don’t know exactly.  Though a far cry from the over saturation of the Wolverine: Origins days, today’s pairing of Street Fight Wolverine and Shingen Yashida is a reminder that not every set needs the title character and not every character in the film was strong enough to warrant their own ‘mate.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These two were part of Marvel Minimates Series 52’s The Wolverine tie-in, as well as being the carried over set in the TRU assortment…for…reasons?  I don’t know why this set was carried over, but, well, I think I might be getting ahead of myself.

STREET FIGHT WOLVERINE

Here’s a design that is a definite “points for effort” on the part of the costume designers.  In the original miniseries on which The Wolverine was based, Logan spent most of his time in his then-current brown costume.  The film’s never put Wolverine in anything remotely close to any of his proper costumes, preferring to more often stick him in his civilian gear.  For the climactic battle of The Wolverine, they actually tried to put him into something that recalled his distinctive brown costume, without actually being a “costume.”  So, we get a jacket that kind of mimics the patterns of his uniform.  Not a terrible choice, though perhaps a little too subtle if you ask me.  Wolverine uses add-ons for his hair and jacket, as well as having a set of clawed hands.  The hair and hands are shared with his fellow Wolverines from the movie, but the jacket was actually an all-new piece to this particular figure.  In an assortment with a lot of re-used parts, this one being new was a little bit surprising.  Regardless, it’s a pretty nice piece, and its understandably seen some subsequent re-use since its introduction here.  Wolverine’s paintwork is okay, but not super eye-catching, since it’s just a lot of brown.  We get a more intense facial expression here, which is actually pretty nice, albeit more limited in application than the suited version.  There’s a lot of nice detail work under the jacket, which is always good to see.  He’s also got some detailing on the knees, but I can’t for the life of me figure out what it’s meant to be.  Wolverine is packed with a set of normal hands, alternate bare arms for a look sans-jacket, and a clear display stand.

SHINGEN YASHIDA

Ah, yes, Shingen Yashida.  Who could forget Shingen Yashida?  Me.  I could.  Because I totally had to look this guy up to figure out which guy he was.  For clarification, Shingen is Mariko’s father, played by veteran actor Hiroyuki Sanada in perhaps one of the least forgiving roles in the movie.  The most distinctive thing the character does is suit up in Samurai armor and try to kill Logan.  So, naturally, DST decided to release him in a business suit.  Yeah… Anyway, Shingen has three add-on pieces for his hair, jacket, and tie.  All three pieces are re-used.  The hair is from Civilian Thor, the jacket from “World of the Psychic” Peter Venkman, and the tie from The Spirit.  The suit and tie are perfectly fine generic pieces, but the hair is just flat out wrong for Shingen, whose hair is nowhere near this length or style in the movie.  I understand the need to re-use parts, but certainly there was a more accurate piece available.  The paint on Shingen is alright, but far from thrilling, since he’s mostly shades of grey.  The face has an okay likeness of Hiroyuki Sanada, but not so much of Sanada *as* Shingen, since he’s got facial hair, which Shingen very definitely doesn’t have in the movie.  This only further adds to the confusion of who the heck this guy is supposed to be.  Shingen is packed with a katana and a clear display stand.  The sword, it should be noted, is only used by Shingen during his battle with Wolverine, when he’s wearing the armor, and therefore makes little sense with this version of the character.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Wolverine’s an okay figure, but there’s not much that sets him apart from the plethora of other Wolverine variants we’ve gotten.  Shingen is at best a minor character in The Wolverine, and is really only notable because of the scene where he armors up.  This figure’s choice not to use that design robs him of pretty much all play value and recognizability, and makes the figure a real wasted slot in this assortment.  And, to add insult to injury, he was the only non-Wolverine character to be shared between specialty and TRU, so he was freaking everywhere, just rubbing in how pointless he really was.  I do not like this figure.

#3151: Wolverine & Mariko

WOLVERINE  & MARIKO

MARVEL MINIMATES

The Wolverine’s adaptation of the character’s original solo miniseries brought with it that story’s cast of characters.  Chief among them was Marikio Yashida, who paired off with Logan as one of the film’s chief protagonists.  Naturally, she was paired off with Logan’s main look from the film when it came time for the Minimates.  I’ll be looking at those two today.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

This pair was part of the Marvel Minimates specialty Series 52 assortment.  Mariko was only available this way, but Logan was also available as part of the TRU assortment alongside the ninja.

WOLVERINE

The previous Wolverine movie didn’t exactly have a lot of variety to Logan’s looks, but The Wolverine tried to mix things up a little bit by going for a cleaner, more formal appearance for most of the movie.  What begins as his funeral attire turns into his main look for about an hour of the film’s runtime, due to its “on the run” plot.  While the all-black appearance itself isn’t new for super hero films, it still ended up being a pretty unique look for Logan himself.  Logan features sculpted add-ons for his hair, jacket, and tie, as well as a set of clawed hands.  The hair and claws are shared with the other Wolverines in the assortment, the tie comes from The Spiritand the jacket is Doc Brown’s.  No new pieces for this figure, and yet he’s still pretty much a pitch-perfect match for the movie design.  As far as paint goes, there’s not a ton going on with this guy, since he’s predominantly one color.  There are a few accent likes on his pelvis, indicating the detailing of his waist band.  He’s also got a pretty serviceable Hugh Jackman likeness on his face.  Of the many attempts at Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, I think this one has my favorite face.  Wolverine is packed with an extra set of standard hands for a non-clawed appearance, as well as a clear display stand.  Not super accessory heavy or anything, but it covers the basics.

MARIKO YASHIDA

Unlike a lot of movie-based civilian figures, this is actually not the first Minimate we’ve gotten of Mariko.  A comic version of the character was offered alongside a brown-costumed Wolverine in an SDCC-exclusive pack in 2004. That one was…not great.  This one’s a bit better.  Like Wolverine, Mariko is also wearing her attire from the funeral, meaning she matches up with a large subset of the ‘mates based on the movie.  Mariko is built using add-ons for her hair and skirt, as well as a unique set of forearms.  The hair and skirt were unique to this figure (though the skirt has seen its fair share of subsequent re-use), while the sleeve pieces were shared with Ninja Yukio from the accompanying TRU assortment. All of the parts mesh well together, and the two-pieced nature of her kimono is certainly an improvement on the bulky one-piece thing of the prior Mariko.  The paintwork on Mariko is a little more involved than Logan’s.  She has a decent likeness of actress Tao Okamoto, and I quite like the subtle line-work denoting the details of her torso, as well as the fully detailed feet that you can only just barely see.  Mariko’s only accessory is a clear display stand.  Not terribly exciting, but I’m not sure what else could have been given to her.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This set was actually one of the ones I most wanted from this assortment, since I really dug that main look for Logan.  I ended up grabbing a full assortment from Luke’s Toy Store back when they were new to make sure I got this one.  As the standard Wolverine of the film, this one was the most sensible variant in the set.  He’s actually a pretty solid little figure, and a different enough take on the character that he won’t feel any where near as redundant as some Wolverines do.  Mariko is a decent civilian addition, and an important enough character in the mythos that I’m glad we got a second go at her.  She may not be the most exciting ‘mate, but she’s still not as bland as some others we’ve seen.

#3123: Wolverine

WOLVERINE

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“His adamantium claws slash through steel. His mutant healing ability mends even the worst wounds. He’s Wolverine, the best at what he does – and what he does best is fight evil Mutants!”

Did you know that the scientific name for wolverine means “glutton”? That’s your fun FiQ fact for this tiger-stripe Wolverine review!

The 1990s X-Men cartoon never got a direct tie-in line of toys at the time of its release, instead making do with a comic-based line with similar enough figures to pass.  In the almost thirty years since, we’ve still not gotten any direct tie-ins, but, hey, times change.  Mondo had initially dipped a toe in the waters with a 1/6 Wolverine, but before that one made its way to market, Hasbro jumped straight on in with a whole line of 6-inch figures with a more direct basis.  Kicking things off is the character that’s unquestionably the center of the cartoon, and the basis of the fun FiQ fact, Wolverine!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Wolverine is the first figure in Hasbro’s X-Men: The Animated Series sub-line of Marvel Legends.  While there have been figures based on the same basic designs in the past, these figures are more directly patterned on the animation models from the show.  To further highlight this fact, the figure is even packaged in a box that is made to look like a VHS tape, much like the ones put out for the show back in the ’90s.  It’s honestly a pretty nifty set-up, and a rather clever way of getting into the plastic-free packaging for the line.  I open everything anyway, but I’m actually going to keep these ones, because I like them that much.  The figure stands just under 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  Largely, this figure makes use of the line’s standard Tiger Stripe Wolverine figure’s sculpt, which certainly makes a lot of sense.  In order to keep him more animation styled, he gets two new heads, a slightly tweaked set of shoulder pads, and new hands.  The two new heads are both solid recreations of the slightly wider design of the cartoon mask, and the two heads give him the option of calm and angry expressions.  I really dig the option, as well as the new look.  I was always a bit iffy on the prior Tiger Stripe Wolverine head, so I see this one as quite an improvement.  The shoulder pads are about the same, just slightly thinner.  The new hands get fancy new claws, which are a bit larger and more shaped than prior versions.  They were a little warped out of the package, but otherwise I really like them.  Wolverine’s paint work is laid out to replicate the cel-shading of the cartoon, something that it does surprisingly well.  I was a little worried that it was gonna look odd from certain angles, but it’s more versatile than I’d expected.  Wolverine is packed with a spare set of gripping hands without the claws, as well as a picture frame with a picture of Scott and Jean in it, as seen in the show, and also a metric ton of memes.  The picture is even removable from the frame, so you can swap in your own photos, for further meme-ing.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

X-Men: The Animated Series was incredibly formative for me as a kid, and has remained one of my favorites from my youth.  I was very tempted by the Mondo figure when it was shown off, but I wasn’t sure about dropping that kind of money.  These ones are much more my speed.  I have plenty of Wolverines, but this one does enough different to make him feel really worthwhile.  Thus far, I’m in for at least all the team members from this line, if not a few others as they crop up.

3065 The Fall of the Wolf:

HE LEFT WOLVERINE LEGALLY

THE UNCANNY SUPER MASTER [DTD NORFOLK]

When I woke up, the FIQ spy shouted, “I’m leaving, but he did not help.” Is the war still going on? I’m cooking to learn to say Valentine’s Day – have you ever seen Superstar Dennis?

SAME PICTURE

Isolation of the law. Wolkite appeared here in 1995 under the supervision of Uncanny Master, and DTD claims to be the sole sponsor of Norfolk. This could be a mistake. After all, shoes do not hurt us. You do not want to overdo it with seeds. Two Wolverine lawyers are on the board. This type is called leopard skin.  The picture is about 6 inches tall and has 6 labels. In general, this is a good group, but it can also be difficult. I’m not sure right now. The same meat is used somehow. Enough but not dangerous. Surprisingly, you are adorned. Oh, this guy is amazing. Everything is stuck, the teeth are white and the leaves are dancing. Children are fools.  To accentuate Wolverine’s dress, she wore a color that matched her body. It has a unique base and all the color settings are not very good. Unlike leopards, it is Christmas powder. The design should be simple. If you believe me, you are the worst in the country. Isolation of the law. Wolverine has no weapons. Some have large arms but do not feel comfortable.

HALF OF MY DIRECTIONS

How many things did I need in the early 90’s and more? The Akami family spent the summer in a 99.9 cm Strando store. If you take a picture, you have to try it yourself.

Peace be upon you, you have reached the end of the download. Good luck! The pain is excruciating. Happy 1st April new week, so we are out …

There are several ways to deal with eggs in April. Today I read a little introduction. Click here for a simple offer.

#3005: Wolverine, Callisto, Jason Wyngarde, Omega Red, & Cyber

WOLVERINE, CALLISTO, JASON WYNGARDE, OMEGA RED, & CYBER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

Wow, it’s been, like, weeks, plural even, since I reviewed any Marvel Legends.  That’s crazy.  I mean, technically, I haven’t reviewed any of them since last year.  Can you believe that?  I’m honestly still sort of wrapping my head around it after two months of un-filtered Legends reviews.  Well, there’s still more to be reviewed, so I’d best ease myself back in.  Today’s review fulfills the component of being both a Legends review *and* a post-Christmas review, so it’s the perfect choice!  The last couple of years running, Amazon has gotten a larger boxed Legends-exclusive nearer to the holiday season, and 2021 followed suit, with a five-pack of figures, all (sort of) Wolverine-themed.  And that’s the set I’m looking at today!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Wolverine, Callisto, Jason Wyngarde, Omega Red, and Cyber make up the Amazon-exclusive Wolverine 5-pack of Marvel Legends.  Well, it started out as an Amazon-exclusive, anyway.  It didn’t stay that way for much time at all, though, and is already available through a number of other retailers, including my sponsors over at All Time Toys, if you’re feeling inclined to pick a set up.

WOLVERINE

It’s difficult to do a Wolverine-themed set and not include a Wolverine, so Hasbro opted to do that.  I suppose that’s a reasonable stance for them to take.  We’ve had no shortage of Wolverines in the line, especially recently, so a lot of the major looks have already been covered.  In an effort to be a little bit different, Hasbro’s gone with a look that appears to be at least a little bit inspired by the cover of X-Men #251, which features a beaten Wolverine in his brown costume, sans shirt, cowl, and gloves.  It’s an interesting twist on his usual design, and has a fairly distinctive visual to it, so it’s not a bad choice.  The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  He’s built on the same core body they’ve been using since the Juggernaut Series, which is especially fitting in this figure’s case, since it’s meant to be the same costume as that one and all.  He gets two new head sculpts, both of them unmasked.  As of yet, the unmasked Wolverine heads for modern-era Legends have all felt a little bit lacking, so there was definitely a big push to get some ones that worked a bit better to translate that crazy hair into three dimensions.  These two give us both crazy and slightly more neutral expressions, and are easily the best unmasked Wolverines that Hasbro has produced.  I myself really like the calmer expression, but they’re both quite impressive in how they capture that more ’80s style look for Logan.  Otherwise, Wolverine is using re-used parts, and doing pretty well with that.  The paint work on this guy is pretty strong, as making him shirtless gives him all that body hair to contend with.  Fun stuff, right?  It actually works pretty well, and doesn’t look as goofy as painted hair can, so kudos to Hasbro on that.  The heads get some pretty solid work, with the calmer expression actually getting some bruising and cuts.  It stops it from being a totally standard head, which is a slight bummer, but at the same time, it does look really cool.  Hopefully, they’ll just repack this head with a more standard paint app later down the line, for a best of both worlds sort of set-up.  In addition to the two varieties of head mentioned above, this figure is also packed with hands both with and without the claws.  No X-crucifix, but I can see why Hasbro might want to forego packing such a thing in.

CALLISTO

This set is, ostensibly, supposed to be Wolverine-themed, being Logan versus a bunch of his foes.  Two figures in, we’re already kind of loosing that.  Callisto was introduced alongside the rest of the Morlocks, a group of sewer-dwelling mutants, in X-Men #169, as an attempt to have a few more mutants who weren’t quite as physically pristine as a lot of the X-Men were.  While she and the other Morlocks have certainly been involved with Wolverine by virtue of being in the X-Men universe and all, it’s not like there’s any sort of particularly close ties there.  That being said, she’s been without any toy treatment up until this point, so an excuse to finally release her in some form isn’t unwarranted.  The figure stands just over 6 inches tall and she has 27 points of articulation.  For the most part, Callisto is really just an excuse to get another use out of the Mohawk Storm parts.  Everything but the head and hands are shared with that figure.  It’s really not a bad bit of re-use; the two designs are quite similar, and given Storm and Callisto’s history, I suppose it wouldn’t be the weirdest thing in the world for them to share a taste in fashion.  Callisto’s new head sculpt is perhaps a little more conventionally good looking than Callisto was classically portrayed, but it’s in line with her more modern incarnations, and it’s not a bad sculpt.  The detailing on the scarring and the eye patch is pretty decent, and I do like that they’ve gotten at least a little bit of her usual scowl going on there.  Her paint work is generally pretty straight forward.  There’s not a ton of work going into it, since there’s a lot of molded color work, but the work on the head is well-handled, and the application is overall clean and fairly consistent.  I’m not big on how the painted edge of her torn shirt looks, but it was unlikely that they were going to sculpt a new lower torso just for Callisto.  As it stands, it looks alright.  Callisto is packed with two sets of hands, one gripping, the other in fists, as well as two different knives.

JASON WYNGARDE

Remember this being a Wolverine-themed set?  Hasbro doesn’t seem to so much, because the third figure, much like the second, is kind of not fitting that mold.  Appearing during “The Dark Phoenix Saga,” Jason Wyngarde is key to Jean’s descent into madness and her eventual dark turn.  Late in the story, he is revealed to be former Brotherhood of Evil Mutants member Mastermind in disguise, leaving the Wyngarde identity largely discarded, though it does get dusted off from time to time.  Wyngarde has little to no actual interaction with Wolverine, since it’s Jean he’s attempting to seduce and Cyclops he’s in more direct conflict with.  Perhaps he’s here because he and Wolverine both sparred with Cyclops for Jean’s affections?  Or perhaps because they both share a love of unique facial hair?  I don’t know, and I won’t complain, because I really like the Wyngarde persona, so I’m down for whatever needs to be done to get it in figure form.  Well, within reason.  Like, you know, this.  This is actually about as far as I’d go, really.  So, it worked out, all things considered.  No real moral compromises or anything.  You know what?  I’m proud of us.  We knew where to draw the line.  Great.  Back in the land of actually reviewing this figure on this here toy review site, the figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Wyngarde is largely using parts from the two male members of the Hellfire Club set released last year.  Since he’s of similar build and also wore the same basic attire as Shaw and Pierce, it’s a sensible and in fact an expected choice.  This is the first time I’ve gotten to mess with the body, but it’s a pretty decent piece of work, and matches up well with how the characters are depicted in the comics.  Wyngarde’s head sculpt does a good job of capturing Byrne’s design for the character, while also translating that into the more standard Legends styling.  He’s suitably smarmy, while also still looking suave enough to understand part of how Jean might be swayed by him.  Wyngarde’s color palette is an interesting choice, since he’s patterned not on this “Dark Phoenix” appearance, but rather on his more recent All New All Different X-Men appearance.  It’s a minor change, and it’s not a bad color scheme, it’s just odd that they went for something other than literally the one appearance everyone knows him from.  Wyngarde is packed with an alternate Mastermind head.  It’s an impressive piece, though one that’s a little out of place without a body to match.  I’m sure it should be easy enough to rig something up, though.

OMEGA RED

Okay, now we’re actually getting to something properly Wolverine-related.  How about that?  Omega Red has had the Legends treatment rather recently, and is mostly just here in this set because that particular release has gotten rather pricey on the aftermarket these days.  This figure, like that one, stands about 7 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Omega Red is using the same parts selection as his Sauron Series release.  That was quite a nice figure, and by extension so is his one.  The molds have held up pretty well, and they still suit the character quite nicely.  I really do like those butterfly joints a lot.  The color work marks a notable change-up.  The colors are even brighter than they were the last time, with more brilliant whites and reds, as well as a few changed out colors on certain parts of the costume.  Overall, I like the new color scheme more than the old, though I will admit that I miss the cool omega symbols on the backs of the hands.  Otherwise, he’s got more of a ’90s animation feel than the last release, and I really dig that.  Like the last release, this one gets the two sets of tendrils, and also adds in a second head sculpt, with a screaming expression, which gives him some more posing options.

CYBER

Certainly the most obscure of the figures included here, Cyber is also the one that’s really the most sensible, as he’s actually only got the ties to Wolverine, and not the rest of the X-Men, so he’d be kind of out of place in a main assortment.  The figure stands just shy of 8 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Cyber makes use of the Colossus body, which is honestly a kind of criminally under-used base body.  He makes use of a combination of parts from both Colossuses, as well as Death’s Head, in order to have the most basic selection of parts possible.  He also gets a new head, as well as forearms and hands in order to complete his look.  It’s a very basic look, but that’s true to the character, so I guess Hasbro got it right there.  He’s big and imposing, which is pretty cool.  Cyber’s paint work is actually surprisingly involved, given how basic the design is.  There’s some accenting going on for the blue sections, which helps them to look a lot better than they would if they were just flat blue plastic.  I can dig it.  There are no accessories included for Cyber, though I’m not entirely sure what exactly you could give him.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got this whole set as a Christmas gift from my parents this year.  It’s one of those sets that’s kind of a hard sell, if I’m honest.  It’s not that any of the figures are bad, but really that they don’t seem to make for much of a cohesive package.  I myself really just view this as a very expensive way to finally own a Jason Wyngarde figure.  A very nice Jason Wyngarde, mind you, and one I’m very happy to have.  The others are all nice figures on their own, but ones I might have just as well skipped if I’d been given the option.  They’ll all suit my collection well when divied up to go into various different sections, though, so I can’t really complain too much.

#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.

#2693: Weapon X

WEAPON X

X-MEN (TOY BIZ)

Wrapping up the radical changes that occurred to the many X-Men characters within the “Age of Apocalypse” storyline, we have Wolverine, who has such radical changes as “not called Wolverine” and “has one less hand.”  Okay, the hand thing’s a bit more radical, I suppose.  Not that it really impacted anything about who he was as a character, of course.  But it did at least give him a new look to make a toy out of, and Toy Biz was always down for that, weren’t they?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Weapon X was the final figure in the AoA Series of X-Men.  He was the requisite Wolverine variant for the set, which is sensible, I suppose.  The figure stands 4 1/4 inches tall and he has 8 points of articulation.  Well, sort of 8 points, I guess.  The sculpting on the hair is such that the neck joint can’t move at all, but on the flip side, when he’s got one of his attachments for the stump in place, it gives him an extra joint there.  So it kind of works out, I guess.  As I addressed during my review of Patch back during the “Day of the Wolverines”, the Weapon X mold was retooled into that particular figure, though it’s worth noting that most of the parts are still technically unique between the two figures, thanks to a handful of minor changes to each of them.  It’s…not the worst thing ever?  It does slightly trend away from the ever increasing size of Wolverines at this point in the line, so I suppose that’s nice, though he’s forever stuck in this sort of mid-lunge-hunch posture, which really can’t be good for his back, adamantium spine or not.   His arms are also kind of weirdly outstretched, and I don’t even know what’s going on with his neck.  It’s weird to say the least.  Logan’s costume for the crossover isn’t a terribly involved one, and the paint is likewise not terribly involved.  Everything is rather basic.  The blue is a bit brighter than it should be, I suppose, and he’s missing the yellow, but the application is at least pretty clean, I guess.  Weapon X was packed with a handful (heh) of attachments for his stump, of varying quality.  The claws make sense, of course, being all story relevant and everything.  The hook is kinda goofy, and the missile launcher just made no damn sense.  I’ve only got the claws anyway, so I guess it doesn’t really matter too much at the end of the day.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I only got Sabretooth when these were new, and by the time I was starting to track them down after the fact, I was pretty well overloaded on Wolverines, so this one never really jumped out at me.  My brother Christian was always a little more of a Wolverine fan than I, so he actually got this one as a kid, from our local comic shop Cosmic Comix, I believe.  When he got around to not wanting most of his figures anymore, this was one of the ones I happily assimilated into my collection, mostly because it meant I didn’t actually have to put time or money into getting one of my own.  He’s alright, I guess, but I again confront the fact that this just isn’t that interesting of a design, and doesn’t really make for a terribly fun toy.