The Avengers: Iron Man ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

This is finally it… Kotobukiya’s ArtFX+ Avengers have finally assembled with the release of the final statue, Iron Man. I’ve been loving each and every piece in this line, but I was getting really excited to finally get the team on display together. Iron Man was available in two decos. You could go for the comic accurate black and gold Marvel NOW! version or the more traditional red and gold variant. I’m actually a fan of the black and gold look, and if this was a stand-alone piece, I probably would have gone for that one. In the end, I picked up the variant only because with Hawkeye, Black Widow, and Thor sporting so much black I wanted to add a little more color to the team display.



I don’t really have anything new to say about the package. It’s a colorful and attractive fully enclosed box that protects the goods really well and looks damn nice on the shelf. I also dig the fact that the variant is what’s actually pictured on the box. Sometimes these things will simply be denoted with a sticker. Inside are two clear plastic trays securing all the parts to build Iron Man, including the torso, head, and all four limbs. Everything fits together snugly and I had no issues assembling my figure.




Koto has been quite conservative with the composition of these statues going more for iconic character poses rather than originality and Iron Man is certainly no exception. He stands with his right arm stretched out about to fire off a blast from his palm repulsor. He has a moderately wide stance and his left arm is balled up into a fist. Sure, we’ve seen Stark in this pose a thousand times, but I still love it and I think it’s particularly effective for a statue meant to be displayed with the entire Avengers team.



I’m also a fan of the style of this Marvel NOW! armor. I can see a lot of influences in it and in a way it strikes me as a more angular Extremis armor with the circular chest repulsor (my favorite) as opposed to the triangle. It features all the necessary segmentation between the plates and rather than go with a bunch of panel lines, the plates themselves are smooth and featureless giving it a very pleasing comic book vibe.



Koto rarely skimps on the paint quality, so it should be no surprise that Iron Man features a gorgeous coat of metallic red paint with gold metallic trim. The paint lines are clean and precise and there’s just a few very minor blemishes that I could spot under close scrutiny. The one area where the coloring on this piece isn’t all it could be are the repulsors on the chest and hips. These appear to be stickers and aren’t terribly convincing. They look rather Hasbro-ish to me, which is a tad disappointing in a fifty dollar collectors piece. Oddly enough, this is one the rarer instances where I think they look better in pictures than in person.


As always, you get the simple black square base. It’s metal and designed to work with the magnets in the statues feet. You can adjust him anywhere you want on the base or even connect the bases together and have him straddle two of them. Of course, Iron Man can stand just fine on his own too.


With the team all assembled, I have to say I’m so very glad that I started down this road last year. While any of these statues would work just fine as stand-alone pieces, nothing beats having them displayed together and Koto designed them with that in mind. There are a few ways to go when displaying the set, but I used the lineup on the back of the boxes as a guide and I think it looks pretty damn great. And they look all the better lined up on the shelf right above my ArtFX+ Justice League!



At $50, Iron Man is second only to The Hulk in price and about ten bucks more than I paid for the others. The main reason I paid so much for Iron Man was because I was worried about limitation on the variant so I pre-ordered rather than shop around for a deal. That still seems to be the going price, but that’s subject to change after he’s been out for a little bit and as of now you can still grab all of these statues at or below their original MSRP if you hunt around. Forty to forty-five bucks is definitely the sweet spot for me and these ArtFX+ statues, but I don’t mind going over now and again if I have to because they are indeed awesome display pieces. It’ll be a little while before I revisit the Marvel ArtFX+ collection, but when I do it will be with none other than Deadpool!

The Avengers: Hawkeye ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

I started collecting Kotobukiya’s Avengers ArtFX+ line back in April of last year with The Hulk and now with only two more statues to go, I’ve reached the home stretch. I’ve been putting off looking at Hawkeye until the release of the final statue, Iron Man, drew closer and now that Mr. Stark has hit my Pile of Loot, I figured it was time to get Hawkeye his due. No disrespect to Hawkeye, but this was the statue in this line that I was least excited about. I don’t mind Hawkeye’s Marvel NOW! Look, but compared to the likes of Hulk, Thor, or even Black Widow, it isn’t the most exciting thing in this lineup to me. Still, there was never any doubt that I would get him to complete the set. Let’s see if this statue can hit my mark.



The statue comes in a completely enclosed box with some great shots of the piece itself set against a monochrome collage of comic art. I’ve been a big fan of these boxes as they’re not only collector friendly, but they display really well too. On the downside, each box has been individually sized to fit each statue, so they don’t really stack evenly or line up all that well on the bookshelves. But hey, they’re sturdy and I can rely on them for storage if I ever move or have to rotate these pieces out of my current display and that’s mostly what I’m looking for in my statue packages.




Inside the box, Hawkeye comes pressed between two clear plastic trays and does indeed require some assembly. You have to connect the top and bottom half together at the waist, his left arm at the bicep and equip him with his bow, quiver, and arrows, all of which are separate pieces. Yes… I was delighted to see that each arrow (eight in all) is separate rather than just having the ends molded into the top of the quiver! I may have underestimated just how cool you’re going to be, Hawkeye. The assembly here is a tad more involved than any of the others, mostly because of the bow, but everything still goes together easy-peasy.




With Hawkeye all set up I’ll confess to being surprisingly impressed with the Koto’s execution of this statue. I think what really makes it stand out is the way they did all the gear. The pistol actually looks like it could be removed from the holster (even though it can’t) and the way they designed the bow to peg together in his hand is rather clever. It reminds me of the way they did the lariat for the first Bishoujo Wonder Woman statue. Had they gone with one single assembly for the bow, arrow, and draw arm I don’t think it could have possibly came out as credible looking as it did. Even the way Clint is knocking the arrow (any one of them will do) works beautifully. Hawkeye’s pose has him on the move as he’s preparing to shoot. It’s nothing original, but it works well for the character. At this point, I’d dare say it’s an iconic look for him, and it displays beautifully from virtually any angle.


The portrait is clean and definitely represents a little Marvel NOW! And a little Jeremy Renner. The sunglasses are part of the sculpt and the texturing in the hair looks great. My one complaint here would be the back of the neck where it’s pretty obvoius that the hair is a separate piece as there’s a channel running between hair and skin making it look artificial from the back. Also, as good as the head sculpt looks, I still can’t help be reminded of Albert Wesker from Resident Evil whenever I look at it. That’s not really a criticism of the sculpt, but rather the character design.



The coloring here is mostly black with a little purple to pay fleeting respect to Hawkeye’s classic comic outfit. While the potential was there for the costume to be rather drab and boring, Koto mixed up the black with a matte finish for the outfit itself and a glossy finish for the pouches, belt and holster. You also get a little gray on the buckles and straps. The paint lines are sharp, even around the fingerless gloves and the hairline.


As always, the statue comes with a plain black metal square base that interacts with the magnets in the statues feet to keep him secured while on display. This comes in handy if you want to put all the bases together to make one large platform and have the statues overlap on different bases.





So, yeah, I wasn’t expecting much from this one. I bought Hawkeye mainly to complete the Avengers team, but he turned out to be a very pleasant surprise in the end. In fact, right now I’d probably even rate him in higher standing than Thor, even though I think both are great pieces. The wizards at Koto obviously looked at what made Barton unique and put a lot of their efforts into that aspect of the statue, meaning his bow and arrows. Hawkeye would have been an easy one to phone in, but instead they turned it around and delivered something special. He set me back just a smidge over $40, which makes him a little bit on the low end of what I’m averaging for these pieces and he was well worth every penny. And that brings me to the last release in the ArtFX+ Avengers series. Next week, we’ll check out Iron Man!

The Avengers: Thor ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

It was way back in October when I looked at my last acquisition in Koto’s Avengers ArtFX+ Statues. I’m digging this series a lot, but I managed to let the last two releases fall under my radar. Now that the Holiday craziness is past, I took the time to pick up my next two figures in the series… today we’ll be checking out The Mighty Thor!


I was a little surprised by the size of Thor’s box, but it makes sense that it should be a little bigger than Black Widow’s or Cap’s, both because of his bulkier size and the nature of his pose. I’ll go ahead and mention once again that I like these more conventional boxes a lot better than the fragile clear plastic boxes that Koto used for their DC ArtFX+ line. They may not be as flashy or artsy-fartsy, but they’re durable, colorful, and I’ll certainly be keeping them in case I ever need to put the statues in storage or for the next time I move. Inside the box, Thor comes between two plastic trays and in five parts (legs, torso with cape, two arms, and head) with an additional two parts that make up Mjolnir. Yes, as with The Avengers, there is some assembly required. Luckily, Thor is pretty much plug-and-play. Each part features a tab that is shaped to fit in specific socket and while some of the fits are rather tight, everything went together without a hitch.


Cards on the table, Thor’s Marvel NOW! design is not one of my favorite looks for the character, although now that I mention it, Thor is currently a woman, so this version is actually already out of date. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike it at all, I just think the black tunic is a little bland compared to other treatments of the character, especially when everyone else’s costume seems to be getting panel lined up the ass. Also, does The Odinson really need a “T” on his belt buckle? That’s just tacky. But hey, I’m not here to pick apart the character design, but rather take a look at what Koto did with it, and it will probably be no surprise to anyone reading, that I think they did a splendid job.




Some of the high points of the costume sculpt include the chiseled muscles showing through the tunic, as well as the checkered pattern making up the texture on his arm and leg armor. The circular points of armor on his chest look sharp and there’s some truly impressive scrollwork carved into his his belt. The flares at the tops of his boots look great and I really dig the sweeping motion of his cape, which adds just the right amount of energy to what is a powerful, yet static pose. And how about that pose? He’s got Mjolnir held out in front of him and his off-hand balled into a fist. The composition works well when viewed from several angles and I always take that as the sign of a well thought out piece.


The portrait on this statue is possibly a bit narrow, but it’s nicely counterbalanced by the beautiful job they did on his helmet. I love the rivets and panel lines as well as the majestic placement of the side fins. I could have gone for a little more ferocity in his expression, but what’s here works fine for me.



The paintwork on this statue is mostly solid. I’ll nitpick a little that the matte black used for the tunic shows a little inconsistency to the finish. Maybe that conforms to the fact that it’s supposed to be cloth or leather. There are also a few stray black marks on the leg armor. Otherwise the what’s here is pretty great. The metallic silver they used looks spectacular, particularly on the helmet and armor circlets and it all contrasts quite nicely with the matte black of the tunic and red of the cape. The fleshtone is clean and the paintwork on the face is immaculate.




As always, the statue comes with a metallic black square base that works in conjunction with the magnets embedded in Thor’s boots to hold him upright. Although, honestly, Thor is stable enough to stand just fine on his own.


I picked up Thor for right around $40 and that sure is a fantastic price for what you get. If you’re a statue collector on a budget or don’t have the expansive space necessary for the Sixth-Scale or Quarter-Scale pieces this Tenth-Scale line simply can’t be beat. Thor continues the expectation of quality and workmanship in Koto’s Avenger’s ArtFX+ line and I’m as excited as ever to complete this collection. My next look at this line will be Hawkeye, and he’s already in my collection and waiting for his chance at the spotlight. The final release, Iron Man should be following along sometime next month!

DC Comics: ArtFX+ Batgirl Statue by Kotobukiya

If you haven’t heard, Batgirl is getting a costume makeover and so I’m starting to snap up whatever statues and figures I can that are based on her previous New 52 design because, well, I really dig it. In fact, it’s probably my favorite New 52 costume. A couple of weeks back we looked at DC Collectibles’ Batgirl figure and now it’s time to look at Kotobukiya’s effort with their ArtFX+ treatment of Babs Gordon. Yeah, I said I was going to stop collecting these once I finished the core Justice League team, but these little 1/10 Scale statues are such a great value for the money I can’t resist them and my ArtFX+ Catwoman was looking rather lonely on the shelf anyway because the Justice League was shunning her.



As with the other DC ArtFX+ statues, Batgirl comes in this clear box that practically doubles as a display case. The left side panel has some translucent artwork and the back panel is frosted over, but otherwise it gives you an unprecidented opportunity to inspect the statue while still new in the box. I really like this packaging design in theory, but it’s not terribly practical. The sides are prone to scratching and the corners are easily crushed and chipped. I usually save my statue boxes, but these just aren’t worth taking up the space because frankly I don’t think they’ll survive storage for any length of time. Unlike some of Koto’s ArtFx+ statues, there’s no assembly required here, you just get her out of the box and stand her on her base.




At 1/10 Scale, Batgirl stands at about seven inches, which is a really comfortable size that allows for just the right amount of detail without taking up a ridiculous amount of space. Koto has kept the DC statues in this range in museum-style poses, which works for me as long as they continue to remain consistent. Batgirl is standing with one hand on her hip and the other on her belt and shifting her weight to one side. It’s a nice, heroic stance and maybe just a wee bit coy. The cape is mostly form fitting, bellowing out a little at the bottom, but her hair is windswept to the side so you do get a little bit of energy conveyed in the composition.


The portrait here is quite good. It still sports a bit of the anime vibe that we’ve been seeing in this line since the beginning. That style made the other characters look appropriately younger, but I think here Batgirl looks older than she should be. Still, that’s the only thing I can gripe about, so all in all not bad.




This line has been pretty great about showcasing the New 52 costumes. Yeah, I get it, not everyone likes them, but I don’t have a big problem with them and I’ve already mentioned that I love this look for Batgirl. The suit features all the sculpted panel lines and scalloped armor, as well as the segmented belt and those adorable little bat cutouts at the tops of her boots. Every detail in the outfit is part of the sculpt, even the bat symbol on her chest, which is something that DC stipulated way back in the first printings of the comics. The bat clasp on her cape is present, but not painted, which is technically not accurate to the art, but I do prefer it. If you glance back at my review of the DCC Batgirl figure, you’ll see I’m not a big fan of having that bit painted.


The DC statues in this line have all featured metallic paint finishes and Batgirl here is no different. The high gloss black for the body suit looks great and it contrasts beautifully with the matte black used for the cowl and cape, with the interior of the cape painted metallic purple. The boots, gauntlets, belt, and insignia are all painted with a beautiful metallic gold. Some may argue that it should be yellow, but in fairness different companies have portrayed it both ways in the past. These were yellow on the DC Collectibles figure, but gold on Mattel’s DC Unlimited figure. Normally, I think I prefer the yellow, but I think the gold works best here given the metallic finish of the piece. The overall paint quality here is almost perfect. My statue had a white spot on the back of her head, which might have been a chip. Either way, it was easy to fix with a black modeling marker.


As always, you get a simple, black square stand, which is made of metal to work with the magnets on the bottom of Batgirl’s feet. It’s nice to get the support, but in this case Batgirl can also stand quite well on her own without the magnetic assistance.



As much as I’m looking forward to Batgirl’s chic new redesign, I’ll still be sad to see this costume get retired. I now have three different examples of it in my collection, and I’ll likely go for the Cover Girls of the DC Universe statue before moving on. As for the DC ArtFx+ line, I’d like to say I’m done with it now, but truth be told when I come across these in the $35 range, they’re just too hard to resist. They’re gorgeous little statues with great craftsmanship for the cost. In fact, I’m still eying up the Supergirl and Nightwing, and the upcoming Green Arrow will be a definite “must have” for my shelf.

The Avengers: Captain America ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

I’m double dipping on Marvel this week because The Big M got shafted here for the last couple of weeks. Plus, I’ve had this Cap statue sitting on my receivings pile for so long that the next statue, Hawkeye, has already started shipping. It’s long past time I get Steve here under the FFZ Spotlight. If you haven’t been keeping score, I’ve already looked at Koto’s entire run of Justice League ArtFX+ statues and Cap is the third release in their Avengers Marvel NOW! Line. These statues are roughly 1/10 scale and have been absolutely stunning. If you aren’t up to date with this line, you might want to check out The Hulk and Black Widow first, otherwise let’s jump right in and see what Cap is all about…


Cap comes in a very traditional and enclosed box. The deco consists of a combination of concept art and photos of the statue with monochrome comic panels making up the backdrop. I know some collectors were smitten with the snazzy clear plastic packaging Koto used for their DC ArtFX+ line, but I much prefer these Marvel boxes. They’re far more sturdy, more collector friendly, and I am keeping them whereas the I pitched all the fragile DC boxes.


Inside the box are two clear plastic trays which contain the statue’s four pieces and the base. Each piece is carefully wrapped in plastic. Assembly consists of plugging the legs into the torso and the arms into the shoulders. Getting the legs into place made for a rather snug fit, but the arms went in fine. Once together everything stays put, although you can still take the statue apart fairly easily for storage.



While the Justice League statues featured what were more or less museum poses, Koto has been having a little more fun with the composition of this Avenger’s line and I like it a lot. Cap strikes a rather heroic pose, leaning forward on his left leg with his shield held down by his hip, but ready for action at a moment’s notice. His left arm is slightly bent at the elbow with his hand balled into a tight fist. His expression is one that I would describe as stoic determination. It’s all about courage and patriotism, soldier! And this statue has it in spades!




The sculpting here is beautiful and really accentuates the tactile nature of his modern costume. The only part of the outfit that isn’t reflected in the sculpt is the midriff area, which gets by with simple paintwork. The pants feature scupted piping, knee pads, and ribbed areas behind the knees. The boots include sculpted laces and what appear to be extended spats. The belt is understated with a selection of small pouches. Ah, but what I really love is the sculpted honeycomb pattern in his chest and shoulders. It not only adds a some complexity to what is a fairly simple costume design, but it makes the star on his chest and back stand out all the more.




The sculpted work on the interior of his shield is also damn amazing. It has a large harness attaching it to his arm and circular bars running around the interior circumference. I’d like to think these are some kind of shock absorbers to give that vibranium a little extra cushion and prevent Cap’s arm from shattering under those particularly hard hitting attacks. Either way, it’s a nice change up from the more traditional straps and it gives the impression that a lot more modern tech went into the design of the shield. I like it!



I’ve already talked a little about Cap’s expression, but it’s worth noting that the head sculpt is all around excellent. The helmet is made to look as if it’s separate from the hood and there’s some great detail in the chin strap. The wings and the “A” are not part of the sculpt, but rather just neatly stamped onto the helmet. There’s a tiny bit of transfer of the flesh tone paint around the chin strap, but it’s very minor and it’s the only notable flaw in the paint on the entire piece.


While the coloring on the statue is naturally limited to red, white and blue, the paint uses various tones to make things more interesting. The pants, for example, are matte blue whereas the chest and shoulder armor are slightly more metallic. One of my favorite little touches on this statue is the way the material that the form fitting hood is matte and contrasts nicely with the metallic finish of the chest armor and helmet. It goes a long way to demonstrate that while the statue is all plastic, the costume is meant to be made of different materials. The white and red used for the midriff and the white on the sleeves are all a simple matte finish as is the brownish red used for his boots and gloves. You get some additional silver paint hits for the buckles on his gloves and the back of the shield. Of course, the front of the shield makes use of high gloss red, white and blue and the paint is flawless. Lastly, the star on his chest and back feature a nice pearlescent white.


The base is a simple square black slab of metal that works with the magnets in the statues feet to hold him firm, but then if you own any of Koto’s ArtFX+ statues then you should know what to expect here. You can position Cap anywhere on the base that you like or even combine the bases with the other statues and have them overlap and straddle multiple bases if you want the figures displayed in a tighter formation.



While I would easily recommend this piece to any fan of Cap, it’s really perfect for that statue collector on a budget. If you fancy a collection of comic based statues but don’t have the funds to drop $250+ on each piece and don’t have the room for a bunch of Premium Formats, the ArtFX+ line is a perfect solution. While I think the MSRP on this is around $50 you should be able to find it in the $40-45 range if you hunt around online. Either way, you get a lot of quality and craftsmanship for your buck, but then that’s been what Kotobukiya has always been all about. And while Cap is a wonderful stand alone piece he looks particularly good displayed alongside Hulk and Natasha. Yup, Koto’s Avengers are certainly shaping up nicely. I’ll give it another week or so and then I’ll swing back to this line to check out Hawkeye!

The Avengers: Black Widow ArtFx+ Statue by Kotobukiya

Some of you may know that I’ve spent 2014 building my team of Justice League ArtFX+ statues and that I’ve really been enjoying this line. I finished off that team last month, but I still plan on picking up some of the stand-alone DC statues here and there. Of course, that’s not good enough for Koto. They need all my monies and so they’ve embarked on assembling The Avengers in the same format. The Hulk was the first amazing release in this line and now I have the second release in hand… Black Widow! I’ve had this statue on my receivings pile for a couple of weeks now and I’m more than ready to get her open and check her out!



Widow comes in a standard fully enclosed box. While some have enjoyed the artsy-fartsy packaging used for the DC line, I’m actually quite pleased Koto has returned to the more serviceable and storage-friendly boxes. The deco is exciting and it gives you a good idea of what’s in store for you inside. The statue itself comes suspended between two plastic trays and requires some assembling. Widow is comprised of four pieces (top half, bottom half, and arms) plus her two pistols. The statue just takes a couple moments to put together and didn’t require any scary pressure or force to make everything fit nice and snug.



First off, I’ve got to say how happy I am that Koto is going for the current comic versions of these characters, and that’s doubly the case with Black Widow. Not that I have anything against Scarlet Johansson as the movie Widow, but I really dig the character’s more traditional comic look here and it’s refreshing to see it portrayed in this series. Natasha is donning her gold disc belt and gold bracers, two aspects of her comic costume that I’ve grown particularly fond of over the years. No detail has been missed from her low drawn zipper and pistol holsters to the Black Widow emblem on her belt buckle. The gloss used on Widow’s suit is subtle enough to set it apart from the highly metalized deco on the Justice League statues, but still bright enough to make it snap. It contrasts great with the more matte gold used on the belt and bracers.



I honestly wasn’t expecting the portrait here to wow me as much as it did, but the pictures I’ve seen just didn’t do justice to Natasha’s gorgeous face in person.  Her eyes are beautifully shaped and rather hypnotic and the paintwork used for both her emerald eyes and her crimson lips is absolutely immaculate. Widow’s hair has a bit of flow to it, but they went for something a little tamer than we usually see on the Bishoujo statues and I think it works wonderfully here.



The composition of this piece is equal parts action and seduction. Natasha is poised with pistols ready and her hip thrown slightly to the side. I love it. The pose is designed to put her form slightly in profile with her face turned off to the side. Having the pistols as separate accessories was an interesting choice, as it seems totally unnecessary. Her hands are sculpted to hold them and so if you display her without the guns, she looks a bit weird. Plus, they can’t go into the holsters, so I’m not sure why you would want to take them out of her hands anyway. I’m not really complaining, just puzzled.




As with all of the ArtFX+ line, Black Widow features a metal base that works with the magnets in the statue’s feet to keep it secure for display. You can position her anywhere on the base you want and you can even have them straddle combined bases when displaying multiple statues.



Widow set me back about $55. It’s fairly more than I was paying for the Justice League statues, but I still think it’s a pretty solid value. At 1/10th Scale, Widow is a bit bigger than your average Marvel Legends figure and thus offers a nice compromise between detail and economy of display. What’s more The Hulk looks absolutely…. Smashing… when displayed beside her and I have no doubt this team is going to look fantastic when they’re finally all assembled together. Ah, but even if you aren’t planning on collecting a whole set, I’d still recommend this one as a fetching stand-alone piece. She’s a red-head, she’s hot, and she’s wearing leather… what’s not to like?

DC Comics: Cyborg ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

Well, it took a while, but my OCD finally got the better of me and forced me to complete my collection of Justice League ArtFX+ statues. I make it no secret that I was against Cyborg as part of the Justice League back when The New 52 was launching. I wouldn’t say I’ve come to eat those words, but I will say that I have enjoyed what they did with him and I no longer feel that he diluted the greatness of the team as much as I thought he would. His ability to assimilate the power to create Boom Tubes was probably alone worthy of his addition to the roster. So why drag my feet on buying this statue? I’m just not crazy about his New 52 design and this statue seemed to accentuate a lot of what I didn’t like about it. Nonetheless, I crumbled and bought him anyway. Let’s see if it was a good idea.



It’s been a while, so let’s talk about the packaging. These clear plastic boxes were a neat concept, but ultimately I don’t like them. The plastic is flimsy, it scratches easily and they don’t store well. I like the idea of assembling all the art panels together behind the statues as a display option, but I don’t have that kind of display space available, so that leaves much of the appeal here lost on me. Ultimately, I save my statue boxes in case I move or I need to pack them away because they’re being rotated out of display for a while. These boxes don’t really fit the bill for that purpose and so I’ve gone and pitched them. Suffice it to say I’m happy that the Avengers statues will come in proper cardboard boxes with styrofoam trays.




Cyborg features a very museum-style pose. He’s standing at attention with his chest out and his arms are hanging at his sides. Appropriately, Cyborg has the most complex sculpt of all the ArtFX+ Justice League statues. He looks magnificent! His cybernetic armor is replete with panel lines, overlapping plates, and beautiful contours. He’s bulkier than the other statues and while I’m overall happy with the proportions, I do think the feet are a little big when compared to most of the comic art… they look rather Mega Man-ish to me. Now, I’ve got no problem with The Blue Bomber, but I don’t necessarily need those aesthetics in my Justice League statues. I’m writing it off to the anime-style of these pieces. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nothing that ruins the statue for me, but I thought I’d mention it anyway.


One of the main attractions on this piece is his sonic arm cannon, which is delightfully complex. It’s got all sorts of bits coming off of it and great texturing. The red paintwork on the lights is a little uneven, but that might be intentional to create a light effect. The contoured backpack is another really nice feature of the statue. It has a retro-vibe to it that adds plenty of character to the design.


The portrait here is quite good. The face is a tad soft, but I think that works well when contrasting with the cyborg part of the head. He has a determined expression and a distinctive broad nose. Cyborg’s likeness is definitely the least anime-stylized of all these statues. The paint lines around between the skin and metal are all sharp.




Speaking of paint, there’s not a lot paint operations on the statue, but that’s because Cyborg is mostly silver. I love the finish they used on this piece. Ironically, despite intended as metal, it seems slightly more matte than the other statues’ costumes, but it looks spectacular. The only other paint worth mentioning besides the head and the red lights on the arm cannon are the red discs on his chest, belt, and backpack.


As with all of these statues, you get a black square metal stand with the “Justice League” logo on it. Cyborg has the magnets in the feet to help him stand, although I was surprised that even with such big feet he’s a little wobbly.



In the end, I’m glad I picked up Cyborg. At about $36 he was one of the more expensive statues in this line, but that’s still a crazy low price for such a wonderfully crafted piece. I can’t say that my Justice League display felt all that incomplete without him, but he sure looks great on the shelf with the rest of the team. I’ve certainly grown to accept the character as part of the team in the comics so why not have him in my display as well? And that wraps up the Justice League ArtFX+ line. I still have a couple of the stand-alone DC Comics ArtFX+ pieces to pick up, but next time we visit these statues it will be to look at Black Widow from The Avengers!

DC Comics: Catwoman ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

If you haven’t heard by now, Koto has officially launched their Marvel line of ArtFX+ statues and if you missed it, you can check out my review of their first offering The Hulk. Nonetheless, I still have some unfinished business with the DC side of things, so today I’m stepping back to check out a piece that’s been sitting on my shelf for a while and yet has managed to elude the spotlight. It’s New 52 Catwoman!


While not part of the Justice League series, Catwoman comes in a box that matches the JL statues. You get a translucent and somewhat delicate plastic box with some nice artwork on two sides and two sides that offer a more or less unobstructed view of the statue. Of course Catwoman comes wrapped in plastic, so you’ll still need to bust her out to get a good look at her. Let’s do that now…



In case you’re still unfamiliar with the ArtFX+ line, they are in the 1/10 Scale, which puts them a bit bigger than your average 6-inch figure and yet not quite big enough to be in scale with Koto’s Bishoujo line. I find it to be a great scale because they don’t take up that much room and yet they’re still big enough for plenty of detail. In this case, however, Catwoman features her tight and sexy, shiny black catsuit, which doesn’t require a lot of intricate sculpting and instead lets Selina’s beautiful curves speak for themselves. The high gloss sheen looks great, and there are some strategically placed rumples, along with some satisfying details to the boots and gloves.



Since the catsuit doesn’t require all that much attention to pull off, the sculptors went all out on the portrait. I love the way her collar splays out and the giant ring for the zipper is pulled down just enough to get a peek of kitty cleavage. I might add that the painted skin tone contrasts beautifully with all the black. Selina is wearing a tight choker and she has her goggles on with her beautiful painted eyes clearly visible behind the yellow tinted glasses. The paint on the face is quite flawless and her bright red lips are ever so slightly hinting at a smile. You do have a few display options here as well. The goggles are removable, although the sculpted strap that’s supposed to hold them in place is still there. You also get a second pair of goggles with larger and more opaque glasses, and these I don’t care for at all. I’m pretty sure I’ll be sticking with the stock goggles to display her most of the time.




The composition of the piece goes for pure seduction. Selina stands with her right hip jutting out ever so slightly and her left foot arching to the ground. She has her right hand resting on her hip and her left hand is drawn slightly behind her and holding her whip. The whip is made of string with a handle that splits apart so you can put the base of the handle into her hand from the bottom and peg the top in from the top. It works quite well and you can drape the whip through her right hand and coil it around her feet at the base for a very nice effect.



As with all ArtFX+ statues, Catwoman comes with a simple metal square base that works with the magnets in her feet to hold her securely. Catwoman can actually stand surprisingly well on her own, but it’s nice to get that extra bit of stability provided with the magnets. Unlike the Justice League bases, this one is left completely black with no logo or lettering.


Catwoman retails for around $40, but if you hunt around you can probably find her in the mid to low $30’s. I may sound like a broken record, but I find Koto’s statues to be some of the best values on the market. They’re particularly great if you can’t spare the monies or the display space for the big high end stuff like Bowen or Sideshow. Catwoman is a beautiful stand-alone piece and also a very nice companion to the Batman or Nightwing ArtFX+ statues.

The Avengers: The Hulk ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

Yes, it’s time to give more money and attention to the wizards at Kotobukiya. Having done some amazing work with DC’s Justice League, they are now branching out their ArtFX+ line to include Marvel’s Avengers and for the first release they’re bringing in the big guns: It’s The Hulk and this statue is… dare I say it? Incredible!


The Hulk comes in a box that absolutely dwarfs the packaging used on most other statues in this line. Standing at a little over 12-inchs tall and nearly as wide, this is one epic box. Of course, The Hulk is a big boy, so this piece still conforms to the usual 1:10 scale of the ArtFX+ line. The box features some shots of the statue and a nice piece of artwork on the back featuring all The Avengers. It’s a nice teaser of the forthcoming releases. No offense to the artsy boxes Koto used for the Justice League, but this is the kind of box I like to get my statues in. It’s attractive, it’s collector friendly, and it’s durable for long term storage. The front of the box declares that this piece is a “pre-painted model kit” and while the Justice League statues didn’t require any assembly, it’s not uncommon for other ArtFX+ statues to require you to plug some pieces together.


Inside the box, The Hulk comes in three pieces all sandwiched between two clear trays. It’s not unlike the Iron Man ArtFX statue that I looked at last week. All you need to do is attach the two halves of the figure at the waist, pop on the head and you’re good to go. You also get two of the standard black metal square bases, because The Hulk is way too big for just one.



So, before I start gushing all over this piece, let me deal with the drawbacks. Because there are some seams that didn’t show up in any of the pre-production photos. Yes, The Hulk is a kit so seams are to be expected, but the arms come already attached, so the fact that they are running across his biceps is unfortunate. On most pieces, these wouldn’t be a problem, but since Hulk is mostly skin, the seams do stand out. I just have to keep reminding myself that as far as statues go, this one is a fairly low end piece.



And apart from those seams, it is indeed easy to forget that this is merely a $60 statue because the rest of it looks like something far better. I adored the metallic snap and relative simplicity of the Justice League statues, but there’s so much more opportunity to shine in a piece like this one. Koto went wild reproducing The Hulk’s muscles, veins and tendons, which all conspire to give this statue a feeling of pure power and rage. Even the composition, with one foot in front of the other and a fist winding up to smash, is just totally out of sight. This Hulk feels like a much higher end piece that has been shrunken down to the 1:10 scale range. And even in this scale, The Hulk stands at about ten inches tall! The portrait is every bit as stunning as the rest of the statue. The powerful furled brow, the broad nose, and the exposed teeth is indeed anger personified. This likeness is pure iconic Hulk through and through.



As wonderful as the sculpting is, it wouldn’t succeed without the proper coloring and this statue has the paintwork to make it work. The green skin tone looks perfect to me and with just enough wash to bring out the detail in the muscles. For a statue that is mostly green skin, there’s a ton of depth and variety to the coloring. The same goes for Hulk’s iconic purple shredded pants. Simply exceptional!


The bases work the same as previous ArtFX+ statues. They are simple black metal squares and they work with the magnets in the Hulk’s feet. You can slide them around to decide how you want your statue to sit on the shelf.


I’ll confess, I thought it a bit odd for Koto to lead with The Hulk, I would have bet on Captain America or Iron Man. But when you’re sitting on a piece this impressive, it doesn’t hurt to get it out at the front of the line. And everything about this piece is indeed just so goddamn impressive. What’s really great about this statue is that it totally succeeds as a stand-alone display piece. And that means he won’t look out of place waiting for the other statues to be released. Indeed, even if I had no interest in collecting a full Avengers line, I’d still happily grab this guy up and at the $60 price point, he feels like a bargain.

DC Comics: Green Lantern ArtFX+ Statue by Kotobukiya

Ok, kids, we’re in the home stretch. I’ve got five Justice League statues under my belt and Hal Jordan makes six. I’ve been in a bit of a mad dash to complete this collection before Koto starts shipping the first in their Avengers ArtFX+ line and that should be any day now. [Oh shit, The ArtFX+ Hulk statue just dropped into my Pile of Loot as I am editing this!] I’m so close, but I have a feeling I’m going to fall one short what with Cyborg still looming out there and a lot of other things vying for my dollars over the next couple of weeks. Anyway, let’s jump right in and take a look at Koto’s treatment of Hal Jordan Green Lantern!



Once again, the window boxes that Koto developed for this line look really nice. There’s a panel of character art that links up with the character art on the other statue’s boxes so you can make a nifty backdrop. Also, two sides are transparent and if you unwrap the statue inside and put him back in, you can totally display them in these boxes and still get a pretty good look. As I’ve said all along, the only problem with this packaging is it feels rather fragile and susceptible to dings and scratches. I save all my statue boxes in case I need to move them or put them into storage, but considering I don’t have the room to display these boxes on my shelf, I’m not sure whether I’ll be bothering to hang on to them. Right now the boxes are all lined up at the tippy top of a bookcase, out of sight, and not hurting anyone, so I’m in no rush to make that decision. The statue comes nestled between two clear plastic trays with the base below it. There’s no assembly required so Hal is already for display.




For the most part, Koto has kept the composition of these statues pretty similar to each other and Green Lantern toes that line. He’s more or less sporting what I would call a “museum style” pose, as opposed to some crazy action scene. It’s a triumphant stance that let’s you take in the details of the individual character design, but it was also clearly designed to work well in the “group shot” scenerio for those collecting and displaying the entire line together. That’s not to say the composition is boring. With cocked elbows and clenched fists, there’s definitely an implied sense of energy at work here and I like it a lot. As one would expect, Hal’s power ring is displayed quite prominently on his raised right fist.


The portrait here is excellent. It certainly conveys the more youthful nature of the “New 52” Hal Jordan. While several of these statues have had a strong anime, and some would say Asian, influence in their faces, Hal is masked so it really isn’t as obvious here. The sculpted detail of his coif is also nicely done and I really dig the ever so slight cocky smirk on his lips. In terms of the costume, Green Lantern’s new digs doesn’t play up the panel lined armor effect as much as say Batman or Superman. In fact, the only place it’s present at all is in the shoulders. Nonetheless, the musculature is well defined, particularly in the back and abdomin. I also like the way the tops of the boots are sculpted to appear separate from the rest of the costume. This piece is certainly one of the simpler sculpts in this line, but that doesn’t make it any less striking.





Green Lantern deviates a bit from the other Justice League statues in that his costume showcases some matte paintwork as well as the metallic high gloss that has characterized these pieces. In the past releases the matte finish has been largely confined to the capes and skin tones, but here it’s also used for the black portions of the costume. I think the contrast works well and the metallic emerald green finish on this figure is absolutely gorgeous. Another wonderful touch is the very faint green paintwork applied to the white gauntlet around the power ring that makes it look like it’s glowing.



Hal includes a stand, and by now you should know the deal. It’s a simple square black metal base with “Justice League” lettered in silver on it. The metallic base works with the magnets in the statue’s feet to hold him up and it also allows you to position him anywhere without unsightly pegs. I’m really beginning to appreciate this feature, as I will likely be condensing the statues a little closer together to save some shelf space for when the Avenger’s start shipping. You can do this by using less stands and having some of the statues share. It’s worth noting that Green Lantern is a tad wobbly on his feet, but the magnets do a fine job securing him to the base.



Obviously I’ve been enjoying the hell out of this line from the get-go and Green Lantern lands me the last of the heavy hitters. Yeah, Cyborg has been a pretty important character in the book and I honestly like what they’ve been doing with him, particularly his acquired ability to create Boom Tubes, but right now I don’t feel a biting sense of urgency to pick him up. Sure, I will add him to the lineup eventually, but I may wait for a dry spell or possibly when I need to toss something extra into my Pile of Loot before shipping it out. What’s that? Will I be buying any of DC’s non-Justice League members in the ArtFX+ line? Oh, I already have. Next time we revisit this line, we’ll check out Catwoman!