1301: Spider-Man – Homemade Suit

SPIDER-MAN — HOMEMADE SUIT

SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING (HASBRO)

“Peter Parker swings around New York City in a suit he made himself as the web-slinging hero, Spider-Man!”

One of the biggest things to come out of last summer’s Captain America: Civil War was the introduction of Spider-Man to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Tom Holland’s portrayal of Peter was the best to grace the silver screen, and even in a smaller role, he was one of my favorite things about Civil War.  Needless to say, I’m pretty excited for his upcoming solo flick, Spider-Man: Homecoming, which is hitting in July.  The tie-in toys are just starting to hit, and while the Legends assortment hasn’t yet seen a wide release, I did snag one of the figures from the basic line, which I’ll be taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Homemade Suit Spider-Man is one of the four figures in the first series of Spider-Man: Homecoming figures from Hasbro.  As the name notes, he’s sporting his initial homemade costume, seen very briefly in Civil War before he gets a new one from Tony.  It’s looking like this suit will be getting a bigger focus in Homecoming, given its prominence in the various merchandise.  The costume’s pretty nifty; it kind of calls back to Scarlet Spider’s design, but with the colors switched up a bit to make him more resemble the classic Spidey.  The figure stands about 5 1/4 inches tall and has 15 points of articulation.  Size-wise, he’s a little hard to place.  He’s a bit smaller than the Legends stuff, but also a little larger than the old TB 5-inch stuff.  He’s sort of compatible with the more recent Doctor Who figures from Character Options.  Ultimately, he’s kind of close enough to a few lines that you could probably fudge him to fit if you were so inclined.  The articulation is a bit on the basic side, but given the price, it’s actually not bad.  Maybe some hinges on the hips would be nice, but that’s my only real complaint.  The sculpt is a bit more primitive than a Legends figure, but certainly not bad.  All of the important details are present, and the proportions are about right for a skinny teenager.  I like that you can make out his nose beneath the mask.  The paint is probably the one area where there’s some room for improvement.  The molded and painted reds don’t really match up, and the blue seems really pale and drab.  Also, I’m pretty sure the deco on the gloves isn’t quite right, but I’m not 100% on that.  My biggest complaint is the silver paint that’s been used for the web shooters, which doesn’t seem to have adhered very well to the plastic.  It’s been slowly chipping and scraping off since I opened it.  Simply running a fingernail across it is enough to give it a scratch, which is really annoying.  It’s a basic silver, so it’s easy to repaint, but that’s still not something I should have to do with a figure I just bought.  Fortunately, it’s just limited to that one color, so I’m hopeful it’s just a fluke.  The figure’s one accessory is a web attachment, which is kinda cool, though I think it’d be even cooler if the large end of it were a suction cup.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The Walmart near me was in the process of resetting their toy aisle for about two weeks, and they had one of those diagrams hanging to show what was going out, which included the Legends assortment.  I checked back just about every day for about a week and a half, but that one aisle remained un-set the whole time.  I passed up these basic figures a few times while waiting, and on one of my later trips, I finally gave in and grabbed this guy.  If you’re looking for Legends quality, wait for the Legends version of this costume, but if you just want a fun, cheap figure, there are worse things you could do than buy this guy.  Issue with the silver paint aside, he’s a lot of fun, and he makes me nostalgic for my old Toy Biz figures.

#1287: Miles Morales – Ultimate Spider-Men

MILES MORALES — ULTIMATE SPIDER-MEN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“With amazing agility and wall-crawling skills, these young web-slingers take down the bad guys!”

Hey, remember waaaaaay back when I was reviewing Marvel Legends?  It’s been, like, days.  Plural.  I think I might be going into withdrawal.  Could be serious.  Near as I can tell, the only surefire way of avoiding that withdrawal is to review some Marvel Legends.  Oh darn.

Today’s figure hails from Marvel’s Ultimate Universe (or at least he did.  It’s sort of complicated).  I’ve only briefly touched on the concept before, but in a nutshell, it was launched in the early 2000s as a more grounded, more accessible line of comics, geared towards newer readers.  After a few years, the universe was suffering from a lot of the same continuity lock-out as the main universe, thereby robbing it of its main hook.  To try and salvage some things, Marvel repurposed the ‘verse, and started using it to try out some more daring story telling.  For instance, in the main universe, killing Peter Parker and replacing him would never stick, but in the Ultimate ‘verse, they were able to do just that.  Following the death of the Ultimate Peter Parker, readers were introduced to his replacement Miles Morales.  Miles was a serious breakout for the Ultimate line, and actually kept it afloat for several years, before he was eventually moved to the main universe.  By virtue of bearing the title “Spider-Man,” Miles has gotten an assortment of figures, one of which I’ll be taking a look at today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Miles was released as part of the illusive Space Venom Series of Marvel Legends, under the title “Ultimate Spider-Men,” which he shares with the ultimate version of Peter.  This is Miles’ second time in this particular style; the first was released as a Walmart-exclusive figure in conjunction with the release of the first Amazing Spider-Man.  That figure was built on a very out of date, very ill-suited body, and was generally not well-regarded with the fans, on top of being nearly impossible to find.  This new one’s better on at least one of those counts.  The figure stands about 5 3/4 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Miles is built on the same base body we saw on the Sam Alexander Nova figure (it actually debuted here, though).  It’s a good, solid base.  Aside from the lack of butterfly joints at the shoulders,  and the addition of cut joints on the shins, it’s very similar to the Pizza Spidey body, which is certainly a plus.  The masked head (which is shared with the Peter figure as well) is also pretty similar to the Pizza Spidey head, though there are some key differences that help bring it more in line with the usual depictions of the ultimate masks.  I really dig the slightly wider eyes; it adds variety.  Miles also sports an unmasked head (putting him ahead of the main universe version of Peter in that respect).  It’s a really nice sculpt, and really manages to capture Miles’ in-comics look without getting too bogged down in any one artist’s style.  The level of detail, especially on the hair, is top-notch, and he’s got a nice, friendly expression that suits Miles really well.  The paintwork on Miles is generally pretty good.  The web pattern is sharp and evenly placed. Some of the reds on the rest of the body are a little thin, and there’s some slight slop here and there, but for the most part it looks pretty good.  The unmasked head is even better, with clean application all-around, even on the eyes!  In addition to the extra unmasked head, Miles also includes three pairs of hands (in fists, open gesture, and web-firing poses), as well as the right arm of the Build-A-Figure Space Venom.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As I’ve noted in a few prior reviews, I didn’t have much luck finding this particular series at retail.  While that was a bummer all-around, the one figure I really, really wanted was Miles here, since I really needed him for my Avengers/Champions line-up.  While on a trip up to see Super Awesome Girlfriend’s dad, I stopped by the local Walmart, and they just so happened to have the remnants of this particular series.  I was initially only planning to get a Miles for my Dad, but Super Awesome Girlfriend insisted on going back and grabbing the second Miles for me.  Because that’s just what she does.  This is definitely a solid addition to the line, and a figure worthy of Miles’ awesomeness from the comics.  He really makes for a fun toy!  Now, if I can just get around to finishing Space Venom…

#1283: Green Goblin

GREEN GOBLIN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“A cackling menace aided by advanced technology, Green Goblin seeks to destroy Spider-Man in the pursuit of ultimate power.”

Wow, I sure do seem to be writing about Green Goblin a lot lately.  Of course, to be totally fair, this is the first proper review I’ve written since September of 2015, so I guess he was somewhat overdue.  Despite being perhaps the most recognizable Spider-Man foe, when it comes to toys, GG almost always ends up playing second fiddle to his successor Hobgoblin.  Of course, now it’s a pretty easy tell to figure out when we’ll see a Green Goblin figure, since he almost always follows the release of a classic Hobgoblin.  When Hobby showed up in the Space Venom Series of Marvel Legends last year, it was really only a matter of time before the original Goblin got a shot.  As a matter of fact, it was only a single series later that he was added, which is a pretty quick turnaround.  It’s almost like Hasbro had this planned from the beginning…

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Green Goblin is figure 1 in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  Finally, Goblin comes first…ignoring that this is the sixth series of this particular iteration of Marvel Legends, of course.  Goblin is no stranger to Legends, with two figures during the Toy Biz era, and a build-a-figure from Hasbro back in 2014.  That being said, the last Goblin was the Ultimate Universe version of the character (bleh), so this is the first “classic” Goblin since the Bring On the Bad Guys version from 2006.  Admittedly, that figure still holds up as one of Toy Biz’s best offerings, so the need for a replacement was a bit lower than some of the other redos as of late.  But, eleven years is still a pretty long time in collecting years, and it’s safe to say there are a lot of people collecting now that weren’t in 2006, so the new one is far from extraneous.  The figure stands about 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  From the neck down, he’s mostly the same figure as the Space Venom Hobgoblin, which is sensible, since the suits are very similar.  The only difference is the belt, which has been swapped out for Daredevil’s.  The body’s got an interesting lineage.  It’s technically a variant of the Bucky Cap body, by way of using the Doctor Strange body as a starting point.  However, since that figure had a unique torso, and this figure swaps out the arms and legs for new pieces, the only actually shared piece between this figure and Bucky Cap is the pelvis.  Funny how that works out.  The arms and legs are solid additions to the body, and add a lot of texture and flair.  The opt for the modern, more pronounced take on Goblin’s scale-mail, which is perfectly fine, since it helps differentiate him from the Toy Biz version a bit more.  I’m curious to see how these parts looked on Hobgoblin (I’ve still yet to see him or the majority of the rest of the Space Venom Series anywhere), as they work really well for Norman’s Green Goblin, who I generally think of as being a bit scrawnier than any of the the Hobgoblins (well, barring Phil Urich).  The satchel is a separate piece, which can be removed.  It’s not affixed in anyway, which is rather annoying, as it moves around a bit too much for my liking.  Still, it’s not a terrible piece.  The one new piece on this guy is his head sculpt.  Like the scales on the arms and legs, the head goes with a more modern take on GG’s design.  The face is more angular and caricature-ized, and he has the tassels on his cap that were added in the early ’00s.  By and large, the figure looks the be at least somewhat modeled on Norman’s Goblin King appearance from the end of Superior Spider-Man.  As much as I love the old Toy Biz figure, one issue I had with it was the subdued nature of the paint.  This figure does a little better, I guess.  He could still stand to be a little brighter in my opinion, but seeing as he’s a more modern incarnation, it’s not too off.  I do wish the eyes were a little less out to the sides, but they look pretty good from just about every angle but dead-on.  GG is packed with one of his pumpkin bombs, as well as his trusty Goblin Glider.  The glider is rather on the small side, and also pretty flat, but as I noted in my last Friday Addendum, Goblin Gliders are almost always a little bit off.  Green Goblin is also packed with not one, but two heads for the Build-A-Figure Sandman.  While they were throwing those extra heads in there, I sort of was hoping he might get an unmasked head of his own, but I guess they felt four heads in one pack would be obscene.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While I was able to grab most of this series at Walgreens during their Marvel Legends sale, Goblin was not amongst the selection of figures they had.  It would appear he’s this series’ in-demand figure.  Goblin came to me courtesy of my parents.  Amusingly enough, they picked him up from the K-Mart 15 minutes from where I live, but they were on their way home, so he made the 10-hour journey back, just to be mailed all the way back to me.  I will admit, this figure had a pretty high bar to clear, since the TB version is still one of my favorites.  Unlike some of the other recent replacement Legends, I don’t know that he’s truly displaced the prior figure as my go-to, but a lot of that is due to his slightly different execution.  I’m still more of a classic Goblin fan, but for a modern take, this one’s pretty solid. 

#1282: Spider-Man 2099 — Multiverse Spider-Men

SPIDER-MAN 2099 — MULIVERSE SPIDER-MEN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

EDIT: I know, it’s Alien Day, and I didn’t review anything Aliens-related.  That’s because I’ve reviewed almost every Alien and Aliens figure in my collection, and have nothing new.  Next year, maybe I’ll remember to save something.

“Across time and space, these web-slinging wall crawlers take on the bad guys and fight for universal justice.”

Spider-Man 2099 is undoubtedly the break-out star of the whole 2099 venture from the ‘90s, which is probably why he’s the only 2099 character who’s still even remotely relevant.  Since 2013, Miguel’s been stranded in the current-day Marvel universe, which has given him even more of an excuse to remain relevant, which is probably a good thing for him.  Miguel’s no stranger to action figures; it’s not exactly hard to sell buyers on a Spider-Man variant with a kick-ass design.  He got a Marvel Legend back in 2014, but since then, he’s gotten a costume change, which means he just *has* to have a new figure, right?

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Spider-Man 2099 is figure 2 in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  His official name is “Multiverse Spider-Men,” a name he shares with the previously reviewed Spider-UK.  This guy is based on 2099’s latest costume design, which he got with the launch of his “All-New, All-Different” title.  It’s not a bad look, but I’ve still got a soft spot for the old one.  I feel like this one’s too short on blue.  Regardless, it’s his new main design, so it’s only fair it see action figure form.  The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  The last 2099 was built on the Pizza Spidey body, which was fine for a classic version of the character, but these day’s Miguel’s looking a bit more robust, so this figure debuted an all-new base body.  Thanks to the weird distribution of this series, I’ve already reviewed, via Sunfire.  I liked it there and I like it here.  I’m really happy to have a middle ground between Bucky Cap and Pizza Spidey, and this new base is a great balance of sculpting and movement.  Those shoulder joints are absolutely fantastic, and feel more sturdy than the Pizza Spidey joints, which always give me pause.  In a lot of ways, this body feels like the true successor to the old Bullseye body, and that’s a definite compliment.  2099 gets a unique head, forearms, and feet, all of which are great fits for the body.  The head in particular is really nice; it’s a very clean, sharp sculpt, and I really appreciate how well you can make out Miguel’s face under the mask.  That’s some really great detailing.  The forearms are decent enough, though the spikes are a little on the soft side.  The feet being unique is a bit strange if I’m hones.  They’re not really that different than the ones on Sunfire, just with some extra etched-in details.  I’m certainly not complaining.  The paint on 2099 is pretty good, though not without some minor issues.  There’s a little bit of bleed over here and there, and the white paint on his legs seems a bit prone to chipping.  On the plus side, the metallic red they’ve used looks really, really slick, rivaling the last figure’s metallic blue in terms of coolness factor.  2099 includes no accessories of his own.  Some extra hands showing off his talons would have been cool, or even an unmasked head, but he was technically an all-new sculpt, so I guess it’s excusable.  Oh well.  He does, however, include the right arm of the Sandman BAF.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I picked up Spider-Man 2099 from an out of the way Walgreens, at the same time as the last three figures.  That $12.99 sale really made buying these guys easy.  I will admit, I wasn’t initially sold on this guy.  I’m at best a moderate 2099 fan, and I was really happy with the Hobgoblin Series figure.  Upon seeing this guy in person, I had a hard time saying no.  This may not be my go-to 2099 design, but this figure is super, super fun.  Despite not being super familiar with this iteration of the character, I find myself picking this guy up and reposing him a whole lot, which is really the gold-standard for an action figure.  This guy was another pleasant surprise in a series pretty much constructed out of pleasant surprises.

#1281: Marvel’s Jackal

MARVEL’S  JACKAL

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Sharp claws, pointed ears, and super speed turn Miles Warren into the Super Villain known as Jackal.”

Wow, talk about tip of the iceberg.  I mean, sure, those are all words that describe Jackal, but oh boy is he way more complicated than this one sentence bio makes him out to be.  The average person probably isn’t super familiar with Jackal, but he’s actually a pretty integral character in the Spider-mythos.  He’s the creator of both Ben Reilly and Kaine Parker (both Scarlet Spiders) and a major driving force in the infamous “Clone Saga,” but he’s also responsible for the introduction of the Punisher, and has been a major part of several big Spider-themed cross-overs, including “Spider-Island” (my personal favorite Spider-Man story in recent years) and the just finished “Clone Conspiracy.”  Despite all of this, up until recently he’s only had one single action figure, and it was just a crappy repaint at that.  Fortunately, he was among the figures chosen for the most recent Spider-Man-themed series of Marvel Legends.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Jackal is figure 6 in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  There are a few different versions of Jackal out there to choose from in terms of design.  This figure more or less goes with the classic guy in a furry suit look, though he looks to take more specific influence from Stefano Caselli’s rendition of him during “Spider-Island.”  It’s a versatile look, fitting in with a large number if different eras, so it’s a good choice.  Plus, you just can’t beat the classics.  The figure stands about 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 30 points of articulation.  Jackal is 100% a new sculpt.  He also appears to be remaining a unique sculpt, at least for the time being, which is a little surprising for a character like Jackal.  I personally was expecting him to get re-purposed as a Perez-styled Beast, but Hasbro themselves have ruled that one out on the basis of him being too small.  Perhaps we’ll be seeing Werewolf By Night and Vermin in upcoming assortments.  So, how is this all-new sculpt?  Actually pretty awesome.  The texturing on the fur parts is really nicely rendered, and the different spots even have the fur hanging different ways. Even lesser-detailed the shorts have some  decent work on the folds and such.  The proportions on the figure The figure’s build feels rather similar to the Spider-UK body, though he’s a bit broader in the shoulders.  The neck is a tad skinny, and the head sits a little oddly on it, but a good crouching pose is enough to hide those issues.  Atop that neck is a pretty fantastic head sculpt, sporting a sharp maniacal grin, and those goofy, pointy ears.  Jackal’s paintwork is pretty solid work; for the most part, it’s just molded green, but he’s also got a little bit of brown accent work, which makes the fur look a bit more believable.  The rest of the work is all pretty clean, continuing the trend of the last few series of Marvel Legends.  Jackal includes no character specific accessories.  To be fair, I’m not really sure what you could give him, and he is an all new sculpt.  Maybe an alternate unmasked Miles head might have been cool? He does come with the right leg of Sandman, which is decent enough for what it is.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

My first introduction to Jackal was via that first action figure of his, included in the big-box store-exclusive Maximum Clonage set.  I knew nothing about him, and that figure didn’t do much to enamor him to me.  I’ve long since parted with that figure (rather foolishly, it would seem, given the aftermarket value of the set).  In the mean time, a subscription of Dan Slott’s run on Spider-Man has given me a much greater appreciation for ol’ Miles Warren, so when this figure was announced, I was actually pretty excited.  The final figure is definitely a strong entry in the line.  Solid sculpt, fun design, and great execution.  The Jackal has finally been given his due!  Now, how about a “Clone Conspiracy” Jackal?

#1280: Marvel’s Shocker

MARVEL’S SHOCKER

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Herman Schultz suits up in battle armor that produces intense shockwaves, earning him the notorious name Shocker.”

If there’s one thing I’ve noticed about Hasbro’s latest iteration of Marvel Legends, it’s that the current development team definitely has some favorite team line-ups, and they sort of have running themes in each assortment to finish up some sets.  One of the favored teams over on the Spider-Man side of things is the Superior Foes of Spider-Man, the stars of the eponymous book by Nick Spencer and Steve Lieber.  It all started with Boomerang (who was himself granted a slot courtesy of being part of Jeff Parker’s Thunderbolts, another favorite team) back in the Ultimate Green Goblin Series.  Then we got both Beetle and Speed Demon (*and* the head of Silverman) in last year’s Absorbing Man Series.  Now we’ve gotten probably the most recognizable member of the team, Shocker!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Shocker (who get’s the “Marvel’s” description, which is sort of amusing to me, since it kind of sounds like Marvel’s flipping me off) was released in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  This is Shocker’s first time as an official Marvel Legend, though he was released in Toy Biz’s Legends-compatible Spider-Man: Classics back in 2006.  Of course, that was 11 years ago, and Shocker was one of the many villains from that line to be hampered by a gimmicky action feature, so a new figure is very much appreciated.  The figure stands about 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  Included in that articulation? Elbow joints!  Shocker seems to lose those a lot, so it’s nice that this figure is different.  He’s seen here in his most recent costume, which is the one he was sporting during his time with the Superior Foes, as well as his tenure with the Thunderbolts a few years back.  It’s different from the classic costume stylistically, but very similar in spirit.  I dig it.  The figure is built on the Bucky Cap body.  While I personally tend to think of Herman as being a little bulkier (especially with all that padding), he’s certainly been drawn a size similar to this on more than one occasion.  In a perfect world, he’d get unique tooling to capture the quilted texture of the costume, but that’s not where Legends is right now, so he makes due with the standard pieces.  He also gets a new head, forearms, hands, and knees.  The forearms and hands add Shocker’s signature vibro-shock gauntlets, which feature a really awesome sculpt; there’s tons of little dings and such that really add character to the figure.  The kneepads seem a little out of place on the otherwise streamlined design of the figure, but they’re true to the comics.  The head is surprisingly well-done.  Masked characters don’t tend to gent noticeable expressions, but Herman’s got something of a bewildered look that just seems perfectly in character for the Spider-Verse’s resident punching bag.  This is how you sculpt a fully face-masked character!  Shocker’s paintwork is passable; it has to handle all of the quilted parts of the costume, which look pretty decent here.  The changes from the yellow to brown could probably be a little cleaner, but they aren’t too terrible.  I do really like the pearlescent white they used for the eyes; it really makes them pop.  There’s a running change on this guy, which adds a belt buckle with the Thunderbolts logo on it, allowing him to officially be the Thunderbolts version as well.  My figure is the earlier, non-Thunderbolts version.  No clue which of the two will be the rarer one, but I’m happy with the one I got.  Shocker includes the energy pieces used by Havok, Wonder Man, and Polaris.  I lamented their overuse in my Polaris review, and it seems even more egregious here, since the pieces don’t actually make any sense for Shocker’s powers.  The gauntlets cause vibrations; there’s no “energy” component to them at all.  I honestly would have preferred an unmasked head, but I guess the that would have cost too much.  Shocker also includes the left leg of the BAF Sandman.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve been hoping for Shocker since Speed Demon and Beetle were first announced.  Superior Foes was one of my favorite books when it was coming out, so I’m happy to have most of the team.  With that being said, I didn’t really know what to expect from this figure.  Shocker’s not a particular favorite of mine or anything, but the figure looked kinda cool.  I ended up finding him at the same time as Spidey, for the same low price, which was enough to push me into grabbing him.  He’s sort of the anti-Black Spidey: a figure I wanted but didn’t need, but who ended up being one of my favorites from the series.  I’m glad I picked up this guy, because he may actually be my favorite of the Superior Foes sub-set.  Now, what are the chances of getting an Overdrive?

#1279: Spider-Man

SPIDER-MAN

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

“Stealthily dressed in black, Spider-Man possesses incredible web-slinging, wall-crawling powers.”

Hey guys!  Guess what I’m reviewing for the next week!  Something new and exciting and…yeah, okay, it’s more Marvel Legends.  Look, I picked up three series of these suckers last month.  There’s a lot of them sitting here waiting to be reviewed.  So, let’s jump on into Sandman Week, shall we?

The first figure I’m looking at is none other than Marvel’s biggest cash-cow pretty much ever, the Amazing, the Sensational, the Spectacular, the Peter Parker, yes it’s Spider-Man!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Spider-Man is figure 5 in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and has 32 points of articulation.  As you’ve no doubt deduced from the images and the bio, this figure is based on Spider-Man’s symbiotic black costume.  Believe it or not, this costume hasn’t been released in Legends form since 2008’s Red Hulk Series.  That figure was built on the Bullseye mold (and not even the slightly updated version that Iron Fist got!), so an update was more than warranted.  More importantly, he’s really the last major Spidey design to be moved to the Pizza Spidey body.  This figure not only makes use of the now standard Spider-Man bod, he also re-uses the head of the Rhino Series’ Scarlet Spider figure, making him 100% recycled parts.  Of course, this is a figure that kind of warrants being recycled parts, doesn’t he?  Pizza Spidey’s not a perfect body, but it’s a solid build for Spider-Man, and it even looks like Hasbro’s tweaked it ever so slightly to offer a little more motion in the hips.  The Scarlet Spider head is a good choice; the change of color is enough to make it look sufficiently different.  The paint on this guy is pretty standard fare for this design.  They’ve gone for the simple black and white, no accenting, which is, in my opinion, always the way to go with this design.  Blue highlights and the like always end up messing the whole thing up.  The logo on my figure is pretty clean, but it’s worth noting that I’ve seen a number of figures where that wasn’t the case, so be careful when grabbing this guy.  Oh, and a cool, minor, almost nonexistent thing I noticed?  The black plastic used for this figure is a cooler black, rather than the usual warmer black used on most figures.  This means if the light catches the figure juuuuust right, he’s got the slightest bit of a blue sheen.  It’s so minor, I’m not even certain it was intentional, but I think it’s cool regardless.  Okay, I love this figure, but there’s one area where it’s a letdown, and that’s the accessories.  He comes with two sets of hands: fists and open gesture.  Yes, just those two.  Not the web pose ones.  Now, it’s true that when Spidey had the symbiote, he didn’t need to do the usual pose to fire his webs.  The thing is, after ditching the symbiote, Peter actual sported a cloth version of this design for a little while, and used his usual web shooters, so the hands would still be accurate.  Plus, he’s already a total re-use, the very least you can do is throw in one more set of hands, especially when they’re already tooled.  Not to mention, the last two Spider-Men on this body both came with all of the extra hands *and* a spare head. There was some hope that this figure might at the very least have that unmasked Peter had we’ve all been waiting for, but no such luck.  It just feels a bit weak.  He does at least include a pair of swap out hands for the Sandman BAF, but he really should have had more.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

After the previously reviewed Ms. Marvel figure, this guy was probably my next most wanted from the Sandman Series.  I actually saw him at the same time as Kamala, but I just couldn’t bring myself to pay a premium price for a figure that didn’t actually offer anything new.  It seems that was the right call, as I found this guy at a slightly out of the way Walgreens while they were running their $12.99 sale on all Marvel Legends.  Score!  The accessories are super annoying, and all, but honestly, I was just happy to finally find this guy, and for a price I haven’t paid for a Legends figure in like a decade.  The actual figure is exactly what I’ve been hoping for ever since the Pizza Spidey body was introduced.  I’m glad we finally got him!

Flashback Friday #0012: Green Goblin

Hello and welcome to another Friday at the Figure in Question!  It’s time for another Flashback Friday Figure Addendum!  Today, I’m taking a look at another Green Goblin figure, specifically the one from the ‘90s Spider-Man line.  This is from back *before* he was Willem Dafoe.

Alright guys, after a brief stop over into the strange bizzaro world of The Stapler in Question, we are back at home with the action figures. Yay! So, back in the 90s, the 5-inch scale Marvel figures, produced by the very much at the height of their game ToyBiz were totally my jam. The figures were (at least loosely) based on the then current cartoons. Amongst those cartoons was Spider-Man: The Animated Series, which ended up with a fairly nice toyline of its own, at least for a few series. So, let’s have a look at one of Spidey’s greatest foes, the Green Goblin, as he was presented in said line.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Green Goblin was released as part of Series 3 of ToyBiz’s Spider-Man line. The cartoon did this odd thing where Hobgoblin preceded Green Goblin, which resulted in Hobs taking the Goblin slot in Series 1. And Goblins never go for even numbered series. That’s just not how they roll. The figure is about 5 inches tall, with 9 points of articulation. He’s pretty much standard for a ToyBiz figure of the time. He’s based on the character’s animated appearance, which itself was a fairly faithful recreation of the comics design. Mostly, it just comes down to style cues, resulting in a slightly “friendlier” looking Goblin. Surprisingly, Green Goblin got his own sculpt, which shared no pieces with Series 1’s Hobgoblin. I think that may be the only time these two have both appeared in a line with no re-use at all. Impressive. The sculpt itself ends up being quite impressive, with not only some pretty good proportions, but also some killer texturing, especially on the scaly arms and legs. They aren’t super-detailed like some of the sculpts that followed, but they are a great example of using just enough detail to suggest the rest (which, incidentally, is how Goblin was drawn for most of his classic appearances). Also, it’s an odd thing to point out, but this figure has some of the best hand sculpts of any figure from this time. Most were molded in a generic clasping positon, but Goblin has one splayed as if it’s just thrown a pumpkin bomb and one in a pointing position. I don’t know what he’s pointing at, but at least it’s different. Goblin’s paintwork isn’t quite up to the same level as the sculpt, but it’s pretty much on par with just about everything else being offered at the time. The colors match up pretty well to the show’s design. The colors don’t so much match up to themselves, however. The purple ends up changing a few times over the course of the figure, which is rather distracting. There is also some rather noticeable bleed over around the edges of the gloves and boots, and the edges on the shorts aren’t even close to being even. Green Goblin included his faithful goblin glider (which even launched missiles) and a pumpkin, but pesky child-Ethan lost them!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As into the ToyBiz Marvel stuff as I was as a kid, I actually ended up avoiding a lot of the Spider-Man line. The cartoon never really gripped me like the others, so I just never really had the connection. So, Goblin here wasn’t part of my “initial collection.” He was a later acquisition, fished out of a bin of low priced figures at a nearby comic book store sometime around the mid-00s. I don’t know exactly why I picked him up, but I imagine I was just filling in some gaps in the collection at low prices. Going back to review this guy, he surprised me. With most of the 5-inch figures, the nostalgia filter is firmly in place, but not for this one, and yet he still impressed me. That really says something.

Ah yes, this was the first review following 2015’s “Stapler In Question” gag, which was my second April Fools Day post.  I had originally pegged this figure as the subject of that year’s gag post, but I couldn’t come up with any good gimmicks, so he was pushed back a day, and the Stapler replaced him.

My review for this guy was pretty on point.  I had thoroughly shaken the off slump that plagued a chunk of my 2014 reviews, and was back to having some more fun with the writing again.  It probably helps that he immediately followed my SiQ review, which really reignited my writing spirit.  It should be noted that this was my second-to-last review to be published using one of my old catalogue shots.  He still had a Wilson photo I’d shot later, but I apparently deemed the original lead photo as “good enough.”  Not something I’d do nowadays, or even a month after for that matter.

Missing from my original review were his Goblin Glider and pumpkin bomb.  They cropped up during The Find.  Still don’t have the glider’s missiles, and technically there should be a second bomb, but I’m calling this close enough.   The glider is a little on the flat side, but not a bad piece for the time, and it’s honestly not noticeably worse than any of the other pack-in gliders we’ve gotten (barring the Famous Covers one, because that thing is goddamned perfection).  The pumpkin bomb could actually plug into the base of GG’s right hand, allowing for some pretty sweet posing options.  Nice forethought on that guys!

I was pleasantly surprised by this guy when I reviewed him the first time, and I’m still surprised by how much I like him now.  And, as an added bonus, he’s even more complete!

Flashback Friday Figure Addendum #0010: Green Goblin

Oh yeah, it’s Friday!  You know what that means: it’s time for another installment of Flashback Friday Figure Addendum!  Today, we flip back over to the Marvel side of things, with long-time Spidey foe Green Goblin, from back when he was Willem Dafoe!

The first Spider-Man movie may have been surpassed by other superhero movies in recent years, but when it was released it was my favorite superhero movie, and remained in that spot until it was dislodged by its sequel. The movie was also one of the earliest comicbook based movies to get a decent tie-in toyline, on par with, and perhaps even better than the comic stuff at the time. I’m certain it surprises no one that I owned a few of the figures from that toyline, and today I’ll be looking at one of the figures of the film’s big bad, the Green Goblin.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Goblin was part of the first series of Spider-Man movie figures. The figure stands 6 inches tall and features 38 points of articulation. He has an all new sculpt based on Willem Dafoe’s performance as the character in the film. It’s a pretty good sculpt and, whether you like the suit or not, it’s a good representation of the suit’s design. Under the figure’s removable mask is an unmasked Norman Osborn head, which bares more than a passing resemblance to Dafoe. The resemblance might be a bit closer were it not for the slick back hair style, but it was necessary in order to facilitate the removable mask feature. The mask is a well done piece and is essentially a scaled down version of the real thing, though it is missing the backing it had in the movie. This is once again to aid the removability. The paintwork is cleanly applied, with no real issues with slop or bleed over. His skin tone is a tad too yellow for my tastes, but only a tad. The figure came packaged with his goblin glider and a flight stand, but both of mine have been lost. Sorry!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got Green Goblin from the KB Toys in my local mall shortly after the first series was released. That would have been a few months before the release of the movie. For some reason, I wanted Green Goblin, but none of the other figures in the series. So, I only had the Goblin for a while. He’s a quality figure for sure, but that goblin costume looks worse every time I see it.

Okay, so first of all, I feel the need to apologize for the complete lack of a shot of his unmasked face in the original review.  I’m not sure how that got completely left out.  It’s now been added as part of his Wilson photo.

This was another short review, though it does hit on most of the major points.  Perhaps I should try for brevity more often? Nah, that’s silly!  Anyway, as nice as the actual details on the costume are, the actual body they’ve been placed on is rather oddly proportioned, and suffers from a lack of any useful articulation on the torso.  Still, he’s on par with most of the early Marvel Legends and Spider-Man Classics, so he’s not awful.  Missing from my original review was his Goblin Glider, which I discovered during The Find.  It was actually split between several different boxes, so finding the whole thing was quite an accomplishment.  It’s honestly one of the best parts of this figure.  There’s a ton of detail and it’s not undersized like so many of the gliders end up being.  There’s even some slight articulation, so you can get him posed on it just right.

This guy feels a lot more complete now.  His design’s still really, really goofy, but this was a pretty fun figure for its time, and it was honestly the best Goblin Toy Biz put out until the Series 13 Legends release.

#1252: Ms. Marvel

MS MARVEL

MARVEL LEGENDS (HASBRO)

After sorting out their issue of not ever being able to hold onto a character named Captain Marvel by promoting the original Ms. Marvel to Captain, Marvel ran into another problem:  what do they do about the Ms. Marvel name they just vacated?  They kind of need to have a character using that name, lest some distinguished competition steal it out from under them.  While they had solved the first problem by promoting an old character, the Ms. Marvel problem was solved be creating an all-new character entirely.  Enter Kamala Khan, a Pakistani-American teenager, who also happens to be an Inhuman (though that doesn’t really get brought up much; if she’d been introduced five years prior she would have just been a mutant) who possesses shape shifting abilities.  Not gonna lie, I like shape shifters, so that was a good start.  She hit the ground running with one of Marvel’s better solo books back in 2014, and she’s even made her way into the Avengers and the recently re-launched Champions.  And now, she’s got the very best thing of all: an action figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ms. Marvel was released in the Sandman Series of Marvel Legends.  It’s either the last 2016 series of Spider-Man Legends or the first 2017 series, depending on how you want to look at it.  The figures started hitting at the tail end of December (which is how I got Spider-UK), but a lot of places are only just starting to see them show up.  Why is Ms. Marvel in a Spider-Man series?  Your guess is as good as mine.  As far as I know, there aren’t any strictly Avengers-themed sets planned for a while, and she certainly fits in better here than with the X-Men or Guardians stuff.  A figure’s a figure; I’m certainly not going to complain.  Her figure stands about 5 1/2 inches tall and she has 29 points of articulation.  Kamala is built not the Spider-Girl body, which is always a good starting point in my opinion, and is a good fit for the character.  She gets a new head, and upper and lower torso pieces, as well as add-ons for her bracelet and scarf.  All of the new pieces are really solid additions; Ms Marvel has a pretty distinctive art style, which kind of informs how the character should look, but can also be tricky when trying to have her fit in with an established line.  You never want to go too artist specific with a line like this, but you also don’t want her to end up too bland and generic.  She walks the line pretty well; she’s clearly taking inspiration from her solo book, but she also feels right at home with the rest of the line.  I sort of wish her face were a little more expressive or goofy, since that’s sort of her character, but I can see why they’d want something slightly more neutral.  It’s a nice sculpt regardless.  My one minor complaint is just an issue with my figure; one of her ankle joints is pretty well stuck, and it’s made keeping her standing quite the difficult task.  Kamala’s paint is nice, bold, and bright, which is definitely appropriate for her.  The gold in particular is a really nice shade, and doesn’t appear to be the sort of gold that will start to degrade over time. Application is mostly pretty sharp, with only some minor slop, mostly around the edge of her sleeves.  Shapeshifting can be a difficult power set to show off in toy form, but Hasbro’s given it their best go.  Kamala includes an alternate pair of foreams, which are enlarged and stretched out.  While they loose the wrist movement, they are otherwise really fun pieces.  This is probably the best way of handling the shapeshifting thing, and I hope they do something similar when they tackle Mr. Fantastic.  In addition to the extra arms, she also includes the torso the the Series’s Build-A-Figure, Sandman.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Kamala was definitely at the top of my want list from this series.  I’ve been following her comic since issue 1, and I’ve really enjoyed the character.  I was bummed back in December when I thought I’d missed her figure.  Fortunately, I ended up finding her and the rest of the series at a local K-Mart.  Unfortunately, K-Mart seems to have started hiking up their prices, and were asking for an extra $5 per figure.  Not worth it for the others, but I didn’t mind so much in Kamala’s case.  This is definitely a solid figure, and another win for Hasbro!