While my favorite Marvel Movie to date is still a running tie between Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, my second pick is easily the superb political action thriller that was The Winter Soldier so it’s only natural that I’m going to be close to All-In with Hot Toys’ figures from this flick and that brings us to today’s feature: Falcon! Portrayed by Anthony Mackie, Sam Wilson’s treatment in the film was just one of the many things that clicked perfectly for me in this movie. Every time I doubt they’ll be able to bring a certain character to the “realistic” Marvel MovieVerse they still manage to pull it off beautifully. It’s a shame that Hasbro didn’t get us a Marvel Legends version of Falcon. With those huge wings, he would have made an interesting BAF. Nonetheless, Hot Toys has never been one to walk away from a challenge (or a chance to charge fanatics like me $250 for an action figure) and so they honored Falcon with the ultimate action figure treatment. And they certainly did him justice!
I absolutely adored the style used for Winter Soldier’s packaging and Falcon’s is no slouch either. It’s tasteful and exciting and features a great picture of Falcon soaring on the front of the box. Lift off the top and you get an illustrated overlay, which in turn lifts off to reveal the tray containing the figure, the huge flight stand, and all the other bits and bobs we’re used to seeing with Hot Toys’ releases. The back of the box has a cast of all the talented people that worked to bring this figure to our greedy mitts. While the presentation of the packaging will never make or break a figure for me, I prefer this high class route over the somewhat cheesy route they took with the Guardians figures. This feels a lot more like the kind of box a $250 collectible should come in.
I love the designs of all the tactical shit that appears in the Marvel films and this figure makes a great showcase for all that great stuff. Falcon comes donning the tactical gear that he wore for the final battles of the film. He has a pair of gray camo pants with all sorts of stitching and pockets, an American Flag and a set of hard plastic knee guards. The pants look great and are just roomy enough to get a wide range of movement out of the figure’s legs without having to worry about tearing the stitching. Up top, Sam is wearing a padded zip down vest with short sleeves, hard plastic shoulder armor, and the somewhat elaborate series of belts and straps that hold on the Falcon jetpack. The fixturing on all the buckles and straps look great and the combination of that and the gold zipper really makes the figure’s otherwise drab military deco pop. As with the loose pants, the lack of sleeves frees up Sam’s arms for a great deal of movement. Indeed, this is one of the most easily poseable Hot Toys figures I’ve had in a while. Yeah, the elbow joints are exposed, which is something Hot Toys likes to avoid to keep from dispelling the realism of these figures, but that doesn’t bother me at all.
The portrait provides a great likeness to Mackie. This is an absolutely fantastic head sculpt on every level. And while there’s only one portrait, the addition of the goggles gives you the options of displaying him with the goggles down or worn up on his forehead. They’re loose enough so that getting them on and off in either position is easy. I prefer them on his forehead just because the paintwork on the eyes look so good that it’s a shame to cover them up. In addition to the great head sculpt, Falcon comes with four pairs of hands. You get the regular relaxed hands, fists, a pair for holding his guns, and a pair for holding the grab-bars of his wings. You also get an extra pair of wrist posts in case you break or lose the main set.
Falcon comes with a pair of Steyr SPP submachine guns. In the movie he bypassed the use of traditional holsters in favor of a pretty nifty spring-loaded wrist delivery system that puts the guns right into his hands when he needs them and Hot Toys did a nice job recreating that here. The guns themselves are everything I’ve come to expect from Hot Toys’ amazing arsenal of Sixth-Scale firearms. They’re beautifully painted and feature removable magazines. They also work perfectly with his gun-holding hands.
The Hot Toys version of the wrist holsters doesn’t feature a working mechanism, which is understandable considering that even the film crew had problems getting the real ones to work. Instead, the figure includes two sets of swappable wrist holsters, one with pegs to hold the guns and one without. The guns peg in securely and the plates that they fit on to will slide forward and back so you can still simulate the action.
Of course, Falcon’s trademark feature is his winged jetpack and Hot Toys spared no expense bringing this thing to the life as a Sixth-Scale accessory. Hell, it’s hard to even refer to something this big and cool as an accessory. The backpack clips firmly onto a plate on the figure’s back, which makes it look like it’s held on by the harness. It also includes a light up feature that causes the thrusters to glow yellow. There’s a removable cover on the top of the backpack that reveals the on/off switch. The retracted wings are side pieces that simply pull out to be replaced with the fully extended wing pieces. Swapping the parts out is quite easy.
The wings are absolutely majestic and so beautifully detailed with every segment splendidly defined. Each wing is about the length of the figure itself, so it probably goes without saying that you need a lot of room in that display case if you’re going to display Falcon with the wings fully extended. The wings are, however, hinged in two places so angling them down gives you some nice options if you’re pressed for space. The wings also include two grab bars that work with one of the sets of hands. You unpeg them from the wings, slip his hands into them and peg them back in.
Finally, Falcon comes with a huge flight stand. It features a hexagonal base that’s dressed up to look like the deck of a SHIELD carrier and has a plate on the front with Falcon’s name and the title of the film. The base includes a heavy duty flexible bar with a spring loaded grab arm that clutches the figure around the waist and supports it in various flight modes. I have to admit that I was skeptical about using this thing at first, but it’s remarkably sturdy and stable and as long as the arm is secured around the figure I don’t foresee any problems with using it indefinitely. It’s remarkably versatile and can be used for all sorts of great poses. As wonderful and value added as this base is, I still would have liked to the standard one that comes with the other Winter Soldier figures. Right now I can afford the space to keep Falcon fully deployed, but I could see a time where I may need to ground him and having a matching stand like the others would have been cool.
Falcon is an absolutely amazing figure, perhaps made all the more impressive by the fact that Hot Toys would pour this much attention into a secondary character. Then again, if they’re prepared to go all out for some of Stark’s armors that were seen for a few seconds in Iron Man 3, there’s no reason that a great character like Sam Wilson shouldn’t get this kind of love. Falcon is also one of the first times in a while that I can honestly say that the price tag on a Hot Toys figure feels like a solid value, at least when grading on the Hot Toys curve. I can almost always justify the money I spend on these things, but here’s one where I don’t even need to try. Considering that most HT figures are starting at the $220 range these days, the added majesty of Falcon’s backpack, plus the robust flight stand makes it easy to see where the money went in this release. That’s two Winter Soldier figures under my belt. Next time I circle back to Hot Toys will be to check out Gamora from Guardians of the Galaxy and after that we’ll look at the ridiculously delayed Captain America in his STRIKE Suit.