I’m continuing to cherry-pick this wave of Spider-Man figures, and while I started out a week ago by looking at the Amazing Spider-Man 2 figure, Superior Spider-Man was the figure I wanted the most. Dan Slott got me back into reading the Amazing Spider-Man on a regular basis. It wasn’t always my favorite comic, but it kept me coming back and I was glad it did, because it would eventually set up the events that lead to what has been one of my favorite comics in recent years: Superior Spider-Man. With a decidedly groan-worthy and clichéd premise of body swapping, in this case between Doc Ock and Peter Parker, Superior Spider-Man is wonderfully written and takes the premise in directions that make it feel like a totally original idea. It’s also one of the only comics I’m reading right now, where I couldn’t wait for the trade releases so I’ve been reading them digitally as they come out and getting the trades later for my bookshelf. And that brings us to today’s figure!
There’s the new Marvel Legends Infinite packaging and I’m still digging it quite a bit. It’s technically a window box so it’s totally collector friendly, but it’s compact enough to hang easily on a peg like the old Legends packages while still taking up less room. Spider-Man is positioned in his tray beside the BAF part and his extra pair of hands.
When Doc Ock took over as Spider-Man in Peter’s body, the suit was redesigned to reflect the new mind at the helm. Spidey’s new suit deco went from blue and red to black and red and with an emphasis on the black over the web pattern. The chest emblem also got a lot bigger and more intimidating. Hasbro’s new figure recreates the overall new deco pretty well. Unlike the Amazing Spider-Man figure from this wave, this figure doesn’t suffer from unpainted joint syndrome. It also doesn’t make any use of texturing either, giving the figure a cleaner look. The buck used here is very similar to the one used for the Amazing Spider-Man figure. He’s maybe a bit more muscular, but the height is about the same, and he scales much better with my other Marvel Legends than the Big Time Spidey, Future Foundation Spidey, or Scarlet Spider figures.
That having been said, the figure stumbles on a few little points. The head sculpt looks good, although the paint for the eyes is a strange choice. It’s either dark brown or dingy copper when it really should just be white or maybe pearlescent. The other missed opportunity is in the feet. In the comics, the Superior Spidey costume features Japanese style tabi boots, whereas the figure’s feet are just flat and don’t feature the split in the toes. Neither of these points ruins the figure for me, but they still seem like obvious details that shouldn’t have been missed.
As with the last Spidey figure I looked at from this wave, Superior Spidey includes an extra pair of thwipping hands. Oddly enough, the figure comes with a pair of griping hands that look like they were designed to hold weapons. I presume these were reused from another figure, but I would have much preferred fists and I doubt I’ll ever display the figure with this set of mitts. The thwipping hands even feature tiny barbs sculpted into the extended figures.
If you read my piece on the Amazing Spider-Man figure, than you’ll already be familiar with the articulation here as the two figures feature identical points. The shoulders feature ball joints as well as hinged crunches. The arms have swivels in the biceps, double-hinged elbows, and hinges and swivels in the wrists. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, have swivels in the thighs, double-hinged knees, and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. Spidey can swivel at the waist, has a hinged ab crunch, and both a ball joint and hinge in the neck.
As much as I love the Superior Spider-Man comic, this isn’t my favorite Spidey Suit design, but it certainly fits the change in direction of the comic. It’s more sinister, but not overtly so. A major force in the comic is the ambiguity of Ock’s role as Spidey and the suit properly reflects that. That having been said, it’s always a beautiful thing when we can get a figure based on the character as he is currently appearing in the comics. It’s doubly sweet when it’s a comic as good as Superior Spider-Man. Oddly enough, this figure seems to be one of the more common and less desirable figures in the wave so he’s readily available at a lot of online retailers below the usual $20 that these figures have been commanding on the pegs. I’ve got one more figure in this wave that I’m actively gunning for and that’s Black Cat and I’m going to wind up paying through the nose for her, but I guess the money I save not buying the rest of this wave will help defray the costs.