Marvel Monday continues to take a short sabbatical from the 6-inch Legends line so that I can check out some figures from other corners of the Marvel Universe. I spent a couple weeks with some Sixth-Scale Hot Toys, now it’s time to turn to the other end of the spectrum with the 3 3/4-inch figures. I have to be honest, I’ve been re-evaluating my need to keep collecting this line, but it’s not like there are a lot of releases, so I keep on hanging in there. Let’s see if today’s acquisitions get me any more excited about it…
Oh, look! It’s been re-branded… AGAIN! Gone are the terrible bland and boring black cards of the Universe Infinite Series and in its place we get something a bit better. The cards are still black and bland, but at least we’re back to some original character art on each card. Meh. Nothing beats the colorful old Universe packaging. And wait, these are called Legends now too? But… the 6-inch line… that’s called… OMG, WHAT IN THE NAME OF THE WATCHER ARE THEY SMOKING OVER AT HASBRO THESE DAYS??? Sod it, I’m just going to call them Marvel Universe Legends. I’m going to open up Spider-Man Noir first.
While it’s been quite a few years since his debut, I was first introduced to Spider-Man Noir in the pages of Edge of Spider-Verse and rather enjoyed seeing the exploits of the darker Depression-Era Peter Parker. Hopefully, Hasbro is going to start mining Spider-Verse more for figures and I’ll confess I was very glad to see Spidey-Noir get a release, even if I would have preferred it in the 6-inch line. It’s also a bit of a bummer to not have any enemies from Earth 90214 for him to fight.
Obviously, there isn’t a lot of paint here. He’s black and gray and has silver eyes. Everything on the figure is textured, his boots feature buttons up the sides, the pants are rumpled and include pouches on the thighs. The shirt has sculpted button down flap and a high collar. The hood has sculpted stitching, silver goggles, and a sculpted wrap around the mouth area. He looks like he’s wearing a really creepy gimp mask, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the head sculpt strikes me as a little too soft.
There’s a ton of articulation here, so let’s run through it. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, swivels in the biceps, and hinges in the elbows. The legs have rotating hinges and swivels in the hips, double hinges in the knees, swivels at the tops of the boots, and the ankles are hinged and feature lateral rockers. There’s a ball joint just below the chest and both a hinge and ball joint in the neck. In theory, that’s all great, but I’m not a big fan of these hips and the way the shoulders are designed, you can’t really get his arms all the way down to his sides. He seems like he should be a lot more fun to play with than he actually is. Moving on to Ms. Danvers…
Captain Marvel has become one of my favorite characters in the Marvel Now! era, so it’s nice to see her 6-inch Legends figure getting a 3 3/4-inch companion release. This is a much simpler figure than Spidey-Noir, and I’m rather surprised that Hasbro didn’t just go back to the buck used for the Modern/Classic Ms. Marvels. The costume is almost entirely painted, but the paint looks great and the lines are sharp and clean. Compared to the really rough paint on the past Ms. Marvels, this one is a huge improvement. She wears her scarf tied around her waist, which appears to be the same piece used for the Modern Ms. Marvel figure from several years back. The head sculpt is quite good and looks a lot like the one used for the 6-inch Legends Captain Marvel.
Captain Marvel features a serviceable level of articulation, although it’s limited compared to recent female bucks in the line. In fact, it doesn’t even have the waist swivel from the Modern/Classic Ms. Marvel figures. You do get rotating hinges in the shoulders and elbows, but no bicep swivels, and oddly enough no wrist articulation at all. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, double hinged at the knees, and the ankles feature both hinges and lateral rockers. Despite the reduction in articulation, I actually like this buck a lot. It’s a lot less wobbly than some of the more super articulated MU figures and yet still plenty of fun to play with.
Both Captain Marvel and Spider-Man Noir are solid additions to my Marvel 3 3/4-inch collection, although Carol is my definite favorite here. I expected to like Spidey-Noir a lot more, but in the end he’s just OK. Really, my big gripe with this line continues to be the price. These are going for anywhere from $12.99 to $14.99 on the pegs these days and that’s really steep. Add to that the distribution in my area is atrocious. I was lucky enough to pick these up at the lower end of that spectrum from a really great online retailer, but right now Spidey-Noir is going for upward of $18-20 on Amazon, which is crazy for what you’re getting. Even at the regular price, it’s shocking that Hasbro couldn’t have thrown in a gun for Spidey and an alternate masked head for Carol. I feel sorry for 3 3/4-inch Marvel completists. Lately I’ve just been adopting an attitude of buy what I can get at a good price and just let the rest go.