Marvel Legends (Giant Man Wave): Red Guardian by Hasbro

Greetings and a very Good Marvel Monday Morning to you all. I’m doubling down on posts today with a look at two more figures from the Giant Man Wave of Marvel Legends so I can get through the tremendous backlog of these figures. I’ve got a quickie this morning with Red Guardian, and then I’ll be back tonight with a look at Nuke.

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Here’s Red Guardian in the package, and yet another example of how Hasbro is willing to play deep when it comes to Legends. He may not be the most recognizable character on the pegs these days, but the Red Guardian moniker is one that reaches far back into Marvel history and is most certainly not a bad choice for a figure. Unfortunately, in this case, it’s just a bad figure.

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I get Hasbro’s need to release at least one budget-conscious figure in the wave. Red Guardian is certainly that, as we’re dealing with a quick-and-dirty buck and shield repaint with a new head. Normally, I’m perfectly fine with that, but if you’re going to do it, Hasbro, you should at least put some effort into that new coat of paint and that certainly isn’t the case here. In Soviet Russia, quality controls you!

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Yes, the paint here is pretty piss-poor. There’s a red smudge on the star on his chest and scratches all over the star on his back. The white on the buccaneer boots actually looks pretty bright and fresh, but those gauntlets are full of bleed through and just look dirty. The paint on the belt is also pretty rough. It’s a shame because the red used for the rest of the costume is quite nice and even includes some decent shading.

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The head sculpt would be OK, if it wasn’t rife with mold flashing. This is the worst flashing I think I’ve ever seen on a production figure. The facial features are a bit soft, but no worse than some of the Captain Americas we’ve seen in the last few years. The paint around the mask is fairly well done, but the white crest is suffers from the same bleeding and dirty look as the gauntlets.

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At least the articulation is good, eh? Well, on paper it is. Red Guardian features all the points I’m used to seeing in a Legends buck. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, swivels in the biceps, and double hinges in the elbows. The legs are ball jointed and feature swivels in the thighs and boots, double hinges in the knees, and hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. There’s a waist swivel, an ab crunch hinge, and the neck is both ball jointed and hinged. What’s the problem? First of all the elbow hinges are as gummy and soft as all hell. Secondly, the left knee on my figure was fused. I had to boil him to get it to work, and even then I thought it was going to snap off.

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Is there anything I like about this figure? Yeah, the shield is pretty cool. Sure, it’s just the standard Cap style shield with the clip and peg on the back, but I really like the paint they did on it. The crimson is a nice deep shade and in the right light, the star actually looks like brushed steel. If they could invest this kind of quality paint in the accessory, why not the rest of the figure?

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Red Guardian is a mess of a figure and almost everything about him shows that Hasbro just didn’t care about this release. I’m all for quick repaints when it suits a character, and this one would have been fine if they had put a little effort into it. I was actually looking forward to getting him in my collection, I’m glad he’s represented, but I just wish he looked better. How about a Legends scale Crimson Dynamo next, Hasbro? And don’t mess him up! Check back later this evening, and we’ll check out Nuke!

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