After the high I was on from checking out the three MCU Black Panther figures in this wave, moving on to the next installment is like getting slapped in the face with a rotting trout. I’m not here to rag on Namor. I had nothing but praise for the Walgreens Exlcusive that we got last year, which depicted him in full costume. And maybe that’s the point. Did we really need to double dip on The Sub-Mariner so soon? And if so, did it really need to be dropped into this wave? Obviously, my answers to both questions are no, but I’m pressing on with the review anyway.
Here’s a quick look at the packaging, and straightaway I have a few issues to get off my chest. One, the package says Sub-Mariner on the front whereas it should have read Shuri. Second, the figure inside the box is actually The Sub-Mariner, whereas it should have contained a figure of Shuri. Finally, this figure is clearly a fishy-man-gigolo named Namor and not a spunky, tech-savy Wakandian cutie named Shuri. I’m going to do my best to get beyond each of these critiques and appreciate this figure for what it is… not Shuri.
Now, all kidding aside, Hasbro really went all out on this figure and they did a great job. But I don’t know how much I can possibly say about it. The figure itself depicts The Sub-Mariner wearing only a pair of scaly speedos, arm bracers, and he has the obligatory wings on his ankles. This is about as close to a naked dude as we’re likely to ever get swinging on the pegs in the toy aisle, or at least until we get a Hercules. Yup, this one is a special treat for the ladies. The body is muscular, but not bulky, has some great sculpted muscle definition, and I think it suits the character well.
There isn’t a whole lot of paint here, but what we get is quite good. His trunks are painted with a beautiful metallic emerald finish and has a gold belt with a tiny seashell sculpted in the middle. The wrist bracers are painted gold, and the ankle wings are painted white. Otherwise, you get a fleshy plastic, which granted is a bit glossy, but let’s assume Namor just got out of the water and is all wet.
Where Hasbro really went nuts here was with the extras. Not only did they include the swimming hands from the Walgreens Namor, but we also got two heads with this figure, and neither of those are repacked from the earlier release. The stock head looks like a simpler, more comic booky look than the Walgreens head. When I compare the two the previous release looks like it could pass for a realistic MCU version played by a generic actor. I like this new head a lot, the sculpt is excellent and the paint is perfect. Both heads have the hair trailing back a bit, which makes him look all the more streamlined for zipping through the ocean.
The alternate head features Namor all beareded out and looking like Tony Stark co-splaying as an Vulcan. Again, it’s a great sculpt with sharp and beautiful paint, but I think I prefer my Namor sans beard.
Articulation includes all the usual points. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders, swivels in the biceps, double hinges in the elbows. The wrists are on hinged pegs so they can be swapped out. The legs have ball jointed hips, swivels in the thighs and the lower legs, double hinged knees, and the ankles have both hinges and rockers. The torso has a waist swivel and an ab crunch hinge under the chest. The neck has both a hinge and a ball joint.
If all that wasn’t enough, Hasbro also gave Sub-Mariner a brand new trident. This one is more elaborate than the one that came with the Walgreens Namor. It looks more like a proper trident and less like a spear. This one is cast all in gold plastic and lacks any paint apps, but I really dig it. The sculpting includes a coiled sea-serpent and a pointed fin motif.
If you ever wanted an example of just how delightfully serious and passionate Hasbro is about Marvel Legends, Sub-Mariner here is the figure to look at. I certainly wouldn’t consider Namor an A-Lister, and yet this is the second release of the character in the line in about a year. Does Hasbro know something we don’t? Is Disney going to secretly launch a Sub-Mariner movie to go up against the DCEU Aquaman flick? Probably not, and that’s what makes this release all the more intriguing. Not to mention, they also kitted the figure out with two new heads and a brand new accessory. Now, as much as I admire this figure, I really wasn’t kidding about my feelings that an MCU Shuri should have been in this spot. Hasbro obviously has the likeness rights because they did her in the basic 6-inch Black Panther line. And besides, The Sub-Mariner could have been shoved into any wave and not feel as out of place as he does here. Instead, we have to settle for a comic-based Shuri in one of the upcoming two-packs. That’s not to say I’m not happy to have The Sub-Mariner here, but c’mon Hasbro… Give us a Legends Shuri!!!