Today, I’m jumping in the Wayback Machine and setting the destination to Unfinished Business! Averaging one Marvel Legends review a week is not nearly enough to keep up with this prolific toy line, and waves do sometimes fall by the wayside. Some of these I may let go, but others I plan on getting back to. And since it’s The Fantastic Four‘s 60th Anniversary, why not return to the Super Skrull Wave! Marvel’s First Family remains one of my all time favorite comic books for the majority of my life, and along with Spider-Man, it was the first Marvel Comic that I began reading regularly when I was a wee lad. There was no way I wasn’t going to come back to these figures eventually!
I had planned on doing all of the Fantastic Four in one review, but I’m coming off a brutal six-day work week, and I just didn’t have the time to complete it, so today I’m taking what I do have, and having a look at Reed Richards and Johnny Storm! We last saw these characters in Marvel Legends as part of a series of Walgreens Exclusive releases, where they turned up in their Classic blue and black uniforms. Now we’re getting them in their more moden black and blue uniforms! Let’s start with Reed!
The body here seems to be mostly recycled from the previous Mr. Fantastic, which means the costume is achieved mostly through paint, and that works. We do get some new sculpting in the feet, including their weird spikey boots. Honestly, I don’t dislike the costumes, as they’re kind of a palate swap with a few added stylistic flairs, and the blue and black still look quite striking when contrasted off each other. That’s not to say these come even close to the classic costumes in my realm of personal taste. They aren’t as drastic as The Future Foundation re-design, nor are they terrible like the red and black re-design. They’re just different. As for the painted costume on the figure, well the paint lines could have been sharper, the blue scratches pretty easily, and the lower pins in the elbows aren’t painted to match. In short, it’s OK, but nothing special.
It remember it took me a while to get used to Reed with a beard, but I got eventually warmed up to it. Still, I’m not crazy about how it turned out on this figure. It looks like an odd mix of sculpt and paint, and the gray printing doesn’t look natural, and I think the mustache looks the most off-putting. This isn’t a terrible portrait, but it’s not a great one either. Legends has proven itself capable of much better, and I vastly prefer the classic portrait on the Walgreens Exclusive figure.
Articulation holds no surprises, so let’s jump straight to the effect parts. This version of Reed comes with stretchy fingers. Yeah. extra hands with stretched fingers. These are friggin creepy and I don’t like them. The previous release of Mr. Fantastic had some cool and massive stretched arms. These just feel like a huge step down in comparison. Reed Richards has one of the coolest and most useful super powers out there and here it looks like he’s about to use them to reach up the chute and steal candy bars from a vending machine. Thank you, but no sir.Let’s have a look at The Human Torch.
The Walgreens Exclusive gave us Johnny Storm in full Flame On! mode, so I was excited to get this release of him just wearing his costume. And it’s a pretty solid figure. Everything I said about Reed’s costume holds true here, although the blue didn’t hold up quite as well on this one. I do have to give Hasbro credit for not cheaping out and using the same body for both figures. Johnny actually features the lateral crunches in the shoulders, giving him a bit more articulation. Otherwise, there’s not much else to say here.
The portrait is decent, but again not exceptional. I like that they gave him a little smirk. The hair is sculpted separately from the rest of the head, giving him a seam for a clean hairline. The eyes could have used a bit more precision when they were painted, but all in all, this isn’t bad.
Johnny comes with swappable flame hands, a right fist and an open left, as well as flame effect parts to snake around his arms. They are kind of subtle, but I think they look great. Of course, if you have the previous release, you can mix and match for some real fun.
The heads do indeed swap and the shoulder flame piece fits just fine. I really love the way it looks on this figure. And you can also plop this head onto the fully flamed Johnny as well. In the end, though, this release really just makes me wish Hasbro had given us a Johnny Storm in the classic suit.
There’s another flame piece included that is designed for the Super Skrull BAF, but it can also be used with Johnny to give him some extra oompf.
I may sound like quite a downer in this review, but to be fair the Walgreens Exclusive versions were a tough act to follow. The classic suits meant that I was always going to like those better, and there’s nothing about this pair that makes me want to love the modern suits on these figures. I haven’t priced the Walgreens figures lately, but if they’re crazy money these days, at least these guys can fill that Fantastic Four shaped hole in your collection without breaking the bank. Next week, I’ll have a look at Sue Storm and The Thing!