Last week I made a terrible mistake! I thought that Puma here was the last figure I needed to open in order to build Kingpin. Of course, after opening him up I reached for my baggie of BAF parts for this wave, only to find I was missing a leg. I looked everywhere, and right when I was convinced I lost it, the back of the package revealed the answer… I still have one more figure to open after this one in order to build Fisk. And there’s even one more figure after that, albeit one that doesn’t contain a BAF part. And so Fisk will have to wait at least a couple more weeks for his time in the spotlight. In the meantime, let’s check out The Puma!
Before we get started, can I say how much I love the presentation here. I’m sure it’s not intentional, but it looks like Puma is stomping on Wilson Fisk’s dismembered torso. It’s amazing! OK, on to Puma… while he appears to be another dude in a kooky costume, Puma is a pretty interesting character, and one that was introduced in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man when I was about 12 years old and at the height of my childhood Marvel reading. Thomas Firehart is a wealthy businessman, one-time owner of The Daily Bugle, accomplished martial artist, and… oh yeah, capable of transforming himself into a Werepuma thanks to generations of careful genetic calculations. In retrospect Fireheart reminds me of a Native American T’Challa and the significance of that has only served to increase Puma’s street cred in my mind over the years. And while Puma has been immortalized in plastic through lines like the Superhero Squad and Heroclix, I can’t recall him getting an actual action figure before, which makes this release all the more of a welcome treat!
I do believe this is the modern look for the character, as I definitely remember him with shaggy shoulders and a blue and red chest piece. This wave has been heavy with modern redesigns, but Puma is the only example in this assortment of a modern look that I actually dig. The costume is much more muted, consisting of a brown and mustard colored top and trousers, which is achieved only through paint on the buck. It’s got something of a brown-costumed Wolverine thing going on, and that ain’t a bad thing. New sculpting for the figure’s costume includes the gold belt, which is attached snugly around the waist, and a pair of gold bands around the lower legs, each of which end in sculpted hair. These pieces are also held on by friction, but they stay put quite well. The costume is rounded out by a gold band on Puma’s left bicep, with two ceremonial feathers coming off the back, and a toothy necklace that rests on his shoulders. Of course, you also get new sculpting for the hands and feet.
Another thing I really dig about this look is how the proportions feel a bit wonky and lend credibility to his animal transformation. The arms seem unnaturally longer, although that may just be an illusion caused by those big grasping claws. The muscles seem extra bulbous too, particularly in the biceps. He has tufts of sculpted hair coming off his forearms, some textured hair on his arms, and those rings of fur on his ankles also reinforce the uncanny look of his profile.
And that brings us to the portrait, which is an absolutely fantastic sculpt. Puma is captured in mid roar with his mouth open wide and showcasing his fangs. He’s got a broad cat-like nose, beady eyes, and pointed ears, along with furry sideburns. His sculpted hair is coiffed close to his skull and there are a pair of ceremonial feathers jutting down off the back. Everything about this head sculpt conveys fierce animal rage, and I love it! If I had one complaint, I think the head should have been a wee bit bigger.
Obviously, I demand my Puma men be agile, and thanks to Legends basic articulation standards, he does quite well in this category. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, double-hinges in the elbows, and swivels in the biceps. The legs are ball jointed at the waist, double-hinged in the knees, and have swivels at the thighs. The ankles have both hinges and lateral rockers. The torso swivels at the waist, has an ab-crunch hinge, and the neck is both hinged and ball jointed.
So far, Puma is my favorite figure in this wave. No, that may not seem like high praise, since Silver Sable is the only other figure here that I really liked. But this guy turned out great! Add to the fact that this is his first release in the Legends line, and that makes him a long overdue character to add to my shelf! The only bad thing here? He’s reminding me how badly I want a Tigra figure in the new Legends line. Let’s go, Hasbro. Make it happen!