Dipping back into those pesky variants, today’s figure is Madame Masque, which also shares the slot in Wave 2 with Viper. But to complicate things even more, this variant comes with a variant of the BAF piece too! Madame Masque is the regular version, which comes with Arnim Zola’s torso, but if you pick up Viper you get the torso with Red Skull’s face on it instead. Oh, Hasbro… you’re killing me with this stuff!
Hasbro got rather cheeky with the packaging this time, as the name on the package is simply “Marvel’s Madames” with the card art showing both Madame Masque and Viper (aka Madame Hydra). It was a clever way to go, considering these variants are completely different characters. MM is packaged in a rather neutral stance, holding her assault rifle across her chest and with her pistol mounted on the tray right beside her head. The BAF piece, Zola’s torso/face rounds out the contents of this bubble rather nicely.
No one need ask Madam Masque where she got her name, as she a copper colored mask stuck to her face to avoid showcasing her horrible scarring. You could argue that MM’s head sculpt is a little lacking compared to some of the other figures in the line, but I think its more because of the simplicity of the mask than anything else. Personally, I think Hasbro did an excellent job here, as the eyeholes are clearly defined with flesh paint around the holes and the eyes, and her ears are even sculpted way back under her hair. The hair is soft enough so it doesn’t interfere with her neck articulation too badly.
The rest of MM’s body is fairly simple, both in terms of paintwork and sculpt. Her gauntlets are sculpted, but the tops of her boots are just painted on. You get sculpted shoulder straps on her torso, but they aren’t painted. You do, however, get a sculpted and painted zipper running up to her neck. I’m not all that crazy about the blue wash used on the white parts of her costume. I suppose its better than leaving it completely white like they did with Spidey, but the overall affect doesn’t look all that great. It kind of reminds me of the blue wash Hasbro used on the Stormtroopers in their Star Wars comic packs.
MM has a separately sculpted belt that hangs around her hips and includes a functional holster for her pistol. I really like the pistol as its cast in the same color plastic as her mask and looks a bit like a Luger. She also comes with an assault rifle with an equally impressive sculpt and paintwork on the stock, grips and magazine.
As with Hope Summers in Wave 1, MM reflects a slightly lower standard of articulation for the females in the line, and this will invariably bug some people to no end. She has a ball jointed neck, minus the additional hinge present we’ve seen in Spidey, Drax, and Bucky Cap. Her arms feature ball jointed shoulders, swivels in the biceps and in her gloves, but only one hinge in the elbows. Her legs feature ball joints in the hips, swivels in the thighs, double hinged knees, and hinges and swivels in the ankles. Her torso has a ball joint, and no waist articulation. Honestly, you can still get plenty of cool poses out of MM, but she’s definitely missing a point of articulation here and there.
Madame Masque is a solid figure, but not necessarily a stand out in the line. She looks good, has some nice weapons, and a passable level of articulation. I think the character was a good choice, as she hasn’t appeared in Marvel Universe and she’s a relatively high profile villain that was in desparate need of some action figure loving. On the other hand, she is a bit bland, and I’m not overly impressed with the paintwork here. She’s definitely one of the few variants in this wave that I’m actually going to make an effort to hunt down at some point during the future, as Viper seems like an overall better looking figure.
Tomorrow… Daken, aka Dark Wolverine!