On the last Mythoss Monday, I checked out the mighty skeleton warlord, Mandibulus, and mentioned that I had yet to review his two siblings. And that makes this as good a time as any to rectify that, starting with today’s look at his brother, Malleus!
Malleus hails from the very first assortment of figures offered in the original Kickstarter. Unfortunately, he didn’t make the budget cutting that I had to do to get what was going to be an enormous expenditure down to a slightly less enormous expenditure. Luckily, Malleus was offered up again as part of the third assortment of All-Stars and he finally landed in my collection.
One of the two sons of Necronominus, he is billed as a devout enforcer of his father’s teachings. Because this figure comes from the original batch, there’s nothing here that we haven’t seen before many times over. But, that doesn’t make him any less great. Malleus’ armor is a combination of the knightly torso, belt, sash, and hip pieces and the more crude Orc shoulders, collar, gauntlets, boots, and lower leg armor. The upper portions of his skeletal limbs are exposed to show off that he is indeed a boney fellow. The knightly pieces of armor are given a green wash, perhaps suggesting an original brilliant emerald color that has long faded, along with the green sash to match, and brass painted rivets. Meanwhile, the Orc pieces are presented in their usual black iron finish with all those lovely nicks and pitting in the sculpt. I really love this combination, as it gives him a battle-ready ruggedness with a hint of style to make him stand out as a noteworthy warrior.
The Four Horsemen are masters at sculpting these 6-inch scale skulls, and Malleus’ features a lot of personality. The bone has a brown finish to suggest the rotting flesh that once covered it, and there are all sorts of cracks and fissures to make the skull look ancient. The jaw is hinged, so Malleus can let loose a mighty war cry, and his imperfect teeth just add to the individuality of the sculpt. The skull looks particularly sinister when nested in the middle of the wickedly spired battle collar, ensuring that no one is going to get in a decap-attack!
Malleus’ sidearm is the trusty cruciform sword we’ve seen many, many, MANY times throughout this line’s history, and as you all may know by now, it’s still one of my favorites. Painted entirely in silver, the sword features a straight cross-guard and a disc pommel. It isn’t at all fancy, but rather just the sort of trustworthy and serviceable design, that a seasoned warrior would depend upon.
But, sometimes you have to make a bigger statement on the battlefield, and to do that Malleus comes with the first wave’s ubiquitous battle axe. At one point it seemed like TFH were handing these out to the figures like a bank hands out personalized pens to perspective clients. I’ve probably said this before, but at one point I was getting a bit tired of seeing these, but I was genuinely pleased to see it again when I opened this figure, because it really is a tremendous design and a great sculpt. The battle axe can be configured to be single, or double-bladed, with a small spike to replace the off-blade. But, let me ax you a question… Do you ever deploy your skeleton warrior to the battlefield and think, Oh shit. I should have had him bring TWO axes?
Well, TFH have you covered, because they not only included two of these beauties with Malleus, but they each have the option to be single or double-bladed. Personally, I think wielding two of these at once may be a bit much, but I’m not going to say no to an extra accessory.
At this stage of the game, some may look at Malleus as a bit of a been there, done that kinda figure. And to be fair, he was released way back when, and I’m certainly late to the party with this review. But, I can honestly say, I didn’t feel any of that when I opened this guy up. Malleus is comprised of an excellent and well thought out selection of parts, and he makes for another awesome skeleton warrior to add to my shelf. Next week, we’ll check out the sister of this trio!… Morgolyth!