Last Monday I checked out Thor from the Age of Ultron Marvel Legends 4-pack and today I’m moving on to Black Widow. While Hasbro has been under attack lately for a perceived slight on female action figures, truth be told the Legends line has been producing its fair share of femme fatales. Yes, you can argue that even after being in a slew of MCU movies, this is only the second such release of Natasha in the current Legends line, but then again this is also the first time we’re getting Legends MCU versions of the boys in this box too. What’s my point? I dunno. Let’s look at the figure.,,
Widow’s costume didn’t change too much from Avengers 1 to Avengers 2, but the AoU version is still my least favorite. I don’t hate it, but at the same time I’m just not a big fan of the added light effects for her widow’s sting. That all having been said, I was expecting a straight repaint from this figure and was surprised to see that wasn’t the case. Instead, she’s a kitbash between Winter Soldier Widow and the Maria Hill that came in the Agents of Shield 3-pack. As a result, the two Black Widow figures look very similar upon a cursory glance, but under scrutiny, there’s a fair amount of difference. The biggest changes are in that taught little tummy era. The WS version had her Widow emblem sculpted into the middle of the zipper and there was texturing on the suit itself. Here the suit is smooth and the widow emblem is gone and it’s all just zipper.
The belt is the other easily notable change. Previously, the belt was part of the buck. Now it’s a separate piece, attached to the holsters, and just sort of floats with the articulation. Also, the widow emblem resurfaces here on the belt buckle. Everything else is more or less the same. The flat circles are still on the shoulders where the SHIELD patches were on the previous figure, but now they’re just left blank. Also, the finger-less gloves from the WS version are now full gloves. And yes, the biggest bummer about the figure hasn’t been fixed, her Glocks are still sculpted into the holsters and are not removable. BOO!
The head sculpts on the two Widows are very close. Keep in mind, WS Widow came with two portraits, one from the first Avengers and one from Winter Soldier, and I’m comparing with the Avengers head because the hair is the same shorter style. And while the two heads are fairly close, the head on the AOU version is still notably better. The eyes are sharper, the contours of the face are a little better, and the lips a little fuller. She also lost the odd spray-on tan that the previous figure had. It’s actually quite a nice likeness for this scale and price point.
Articulation here is identical to the previous Widow, but it’s been a while, so let’s run it through. The legs feature ball joint in the hips, double hinges in the knees and ankles with both hinges and rockers. There are swivels in the thighs, but the holsters impede that movement a bit. The arms feature rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists. Yes, the wrists are still pegged in, so if you want to swap the hands out with the previous Natasha… go for it! Lastly, you get ball joints in the torso and the neck. Of course, it helps to have a figure stand handy, as those tiny feet don’t support her that well in action poses. Normally my clear NECA stands work fairly well for Legends, but in this case the pegs were too loose, and I had to dig out some of my Legends hexagon stands.
Widow comes with her pair of taser batons. I really don’t like these, either in execution or concept. As accessproes. they’re just crappy little pieces of plastic painted blue at the ends. They’re very bendy and they don’t look like anything. Also, since she comes with gun hands (and remember, no guns!) she can’t even hold them well. It doesn’t matter. The widow sting shouldn’t require batons and these babies are going to the Tote of Forgotten Accessories.
I was not expecting a lot out of this figure and she actually surprised me. Sure, it’s just a kitbash with some new paint effects, but the figure works surprisingly well and getting an improved head sculpt was a nice treat. And while I’m still not a big fan of the added light effects to the costume, I’ll admit the paint used for them looks rather striking on the figure. I can now retire the Avengers head on my older Widow and pop the Winter Soldier head back on it. So far this set is a solid two for two… next Monday, I’ll move on to Bruce Banner!