I did some reorganizing in the closets this weekend and found some stuff that I never got around to reviewing and set aside a small stack of goodies. Among that pile is Super7’s stab at creating a stylized and articulated 7-inch version of the Legendary Defender of the Universe, Voltron, for their Ultimates line!
Everything about this packaging screams premium! You get classy angled edges and a swank glossy black sleeve with foil lightning bolts surrounding a foil Coat of Arms. Lifting off the sleeve reveals a foil window box with Voltron and his accessories filling out the inner tray quite nicely! The rainbow Voltron logo is situated below the figure and the back of the package has the opening narration of the cartoon series. Everything is collector friendly, and that’s a wonderful thing, because this is a figure I intend to display in the packaging. Let’s get him out and have a look!
Obviously, this is a Voltron figure that does not separate, which allows for creating a sculpt with all the stylish flare of the big robot’s animated appearance. And I’m happy to say that Super7 took full advantage of it! The limbs are devoid of the more unsightly lion kibble, with those details softened and blended into the robot. The arms are a bit more rounded, while the legs are left more boxy. Meanwhile, the torso is perfectly proportioned. And while the goal here was to create a simpler and more animated look, there’s still plenty of nice detail, particularly in the lower legs, the “belt,” the chest crest, and of course the head sculpt. Along with a solid sculpt, the colors are vibrant with a mix of metallic and matte finishes to offer some nice contrast.
Unfortunately, as I really started to scrutinize the figure, the cracks in the foundation began to show themselves. There are some weird imperfections in the plastic, like creases and blemishes showing some problems with the molding process. Likewise, the paint application shows a lot of inconsistencies. It’s sharp in some areas, messy in others. There are a number of flubbed areas where brush strokes and swirls can be seen. No single one of these nitpicks is terrible, but when they all form together, the figure just doesn’t stand up to careful inspection.
But where this figure really flops is in the articulation. Now, Super7 is a stand up company, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they did a complete run down on the articulation when they solicited it. But, I bought mine from an online retailer, which simply listed it as Super Articulated. What I got was profoundly disappointing. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders, there are swivels in the biceps, hinges in the elbows, and rotating hinges in the wrists. All that is pretty good, although the shoulders tend to look rather awkward when angled out. It’s the legs that really hurt the figure. The hips have front and back rotation, and that’s it. No lateral movement at all. The figure is sculpted with a bit of a wide stance, but again… that’s it. The knees are hinged. You do get rotation in the waist and the neck. Voltron can achieve some decent looking modest poses for display, but sadly I did not find him to be a fun figure to play around with.
As for accessories, you get two extra hands, with the lions’ mouths open. Why Super7 didn’t just hinge the mouths is beyond me. Maybe they felt the hinge wouldn’t hold the accessories well, and that’s fair enough. The regular lion hands have soft mouths to grip the accessories pretty strongly.
Naturally, Voltron comes with his Blazing Sword and Shield and these accessories are absolutely gorgeous! The sculpts are great and they are actually vac metalized so they have stunning silver finishes. As mentioned, the grippy lion head hands hold them extremely well, although the joints in the shoulders and elbows aren’t always up to the task to hold their weight for long.
And finally, you also get a Summoning version of the Blazing Sword with a blue hilt and a glow-in-the-dark blade. Necessary? Nope! But it sure is a heck of a nice bonus!
I was really excited to finally open this figure, but I’m sorry to say it did not live up to my expectations. You get some stellar packaging and a figure that looks pretty good just standing on the shelf, but I found him to be frustrating to pose in any meaningful manner, and in severe need of some lateral hinges in those hips. Added to that, the strange imperfections in the molding, and some sloppy paint just doesn’t reflect the $45 price tag. There’s definitely some stuff to like here, but not enough to make this a happy purchase.
guess Super Articulate is a matter of perspective 🙂 From the photos, it doesn’t seem that bad.