Marvel Legends Week Begins… Tomorrow!

Yes, folks, I’m gearing up to write my features on the first wave in the return of Marvel Legends, and I’m pretty damn excited about it. But before getting into the figures, I wanted to have a couple belts of Jameson and say a few things about what the original Marvel Legends line meant to me. I actually started collecting the Toy Biz line back when I was on the hunt for Transformers or GI JOE or Star Wars and couldn’t find anything new. I got tired of coming home from my hunts empty handed and I decided to pick one up. I really don’t remember my first one, but it might have been The Thing because I’ve been a Fantastic Four fan since I was barely able to read a comic and I do remember having a special fondness for that figure. Either way, I brought that figure home and it was love at first sight. I was back at the store that weekend buying everything Marvel Legends that they had. What was at first a consolation prize had become a prized new line of figures.

So here was the amazing appeal of Marvel Legends. The figures used to cost me about $6.88 at Walmart. For under seven bucks you got a huge, super-articulated figure, usually a big diorama style display base or a Build-A-Figure piece, and a reprint comic book. All that for under seven bucks. And we aren’t talking about the ancient days of my youth. This wasn’t all that long ago. Compare that to the nearly ten bucks I’m paying for Marvel Universe figures (no offense, MU) where you get a much smaller, less articulated figure, sometimes no stand or accessories, and no comic book reprint. In retrospect, Marvel Legends was a deal that was almost too good to be true. And the whole idea of packaging a figure and using a comic book as the backdrop is still one of the coolest ideas the toy industry ever came up with.

Of course, then that dark day came when Hasbro took over the license. How could that be a bad thing? Hasbro made so many of the toys that I loved: Star Wars, GI JOE, Transformers. I waited with baited breath to see what was coming and then they started hitting the pegs. And they didn’t look so good. There was no comic book or display base. And the price was jacked up to about ten bucks. I made up my mind right then and there in the toy aisle that I wanted no part of these new Marvel Legends figures. In retrospect, I think I might have been too hard on them. I passed them all up and I even went so far as to sell off my entire collection out of misplaced rage. Well, now they’re back…
And there’s Wave One. Hasbro’s still at the helm and there’s still no comic book reprint or display base, but at least the BAF pieces have returned. I’m not only willing to give these guys another chance, I’m hoping against hope that Hasbro learned from their mistakes and are giving it a better go this time around. Well, starting tomorrow we’ll find out. The first wave consists of Iron Man, Thor, Hope Summers, Ghost Rider, Klaw, and Constrictor. And tomorrow will kick off Marvel Legends week here at FigureFan with a look at the first figure… Ghost Rider.