While this is the first time these are appearing here on FFZ, I have been collecting the Retro Carded Fantastic Four figures since they first started hitting the toy aisles. But, since I originally set out to collect these mint-on-card, I haven’t actually reviewed any. Well, now that these are turning up on the cheap at some online retailers, I have been buying doubles to open. I don’t know that I’ll get a complete second set, but for now I thought I’d open up two of the baddies of the assortment: Psycho-Man and The High Evolutionary!
Oh, I do love me this packaging! You get the beautiful Fantastic Four logo at the top with the team depicted just below the 4. The large bubble showcases the figure and also has some personalized character art at the bottom of the bubble. The card is made of decently hefty stock, so as not to easily bend or tear, making them perfect for mint-on-card collectors. I got this set from Amazon and even with their firm belief in using zero packing materials whenever possible, they arrived in great shape. The cards also featire both a J-hook and a balanced bottom surface, so these beauties are at home either hanging on the wall or standing on a shelf. Let’s start with Psycho-Man!
Encased in his suit of armor, the microscopic Psycho-Man features a deliciously distinctive character design that manages to be retro and yet still pretty fresh. The white suit consists of heavy rumpled leggings and stocky boots, which look like they’re straight off an Apollo Astronaut. These are encased in a framework of metallic green rods and rings. His torso is clad in a white sculpted tunic, with a partial green-paneled belt, a green gorget, and green gloves that run all the way up to his armpits! The simple deco looks amazing thanks to the beautiful metallic green paint contrasting with the bright white. It’s all so delightfully Kirby, no wonder I freaking love it! Alas, there’s a little bit of rubbing on the green paint at the bottom back of my figure’s tunic, but better there than in the front, I guess.
When it comes to Psycho-Man’s portrait, it’s hard not to be reminded of one of Kirby’s major DC creations, and I am of course referring to Darkseid. I think it’s the way the face is nestled in that hood, and the harsh contours of the face. The gold brings the only reprieve from all that green and white, with almost circuit-like lines protruding down his forehead. The two pupil-less white eyes gaze straight through my soul, and he looks decidedly displeased. It’s wonderful!
Despite the chonks of his armored suit, Psycho-Man sports the usual Legends articulation. Granted, you don’t have quite the same range of motion in the elbows and knees as you might with the leaner figures, but it’s still not bad. The tunic does impede the hip articulation ever so slightly, but the framework on his legs do not, which is pretty impressive. It’s worth noting that some of the joints are built on hinged pegs, which I found a bit odd. Maybe he was originally designed to be a Build-A-Figure.
You get one accessory with Psycho-Man, and that’s his Control Box. It’s a pretty simple sculpt, but a nice looking piece of kit, with the emotions, HATE, DOUBT, and FEAR clearly labeled on it. His right hand is sort of designed to hold it, but it’s a little snug. OK, let’s move on to The High Evolutionary!
Another banger of a Kirby villain with a batshit crazy past, The High Evolutionary really transcends The Fantastic Four, but it’s still nice to get him in this style packaging. Wyndham comes sporting his silver exo-suit, which is characterized by tight horizontal ribbing and some fine muscle tone. He has bright crimson gauntlets and boots, and a matching tunic and sash with a wide and spiffy belt, all decked out in silver studs and some pointed shoulders to look extra imposing. I do like the subtle variety found in the matte plastic used for the tunic and the glossy stuff used for the boots, but I’m not fond of the creases we get from the molding process with this particular plastic. Still, overall this guy looks great!
The head sculpt is solid, but is ultimately let down by the quality of this plastic. It does have a nice glossy sheen, but it doesn’t hold the sculpted details very well. As a result all those lovely panel lines just end up looking rather soft. We also get some more of the molding creases. On the plus side, the yellow eyes look decent, and I love the silver painted panels on the top of his head and the cut-outs in his mohawk. The close ups hot here also shows off some of those unfortunate creases in the tunic’s plastic. It’s certainly not as bad to the naked eye when you’re just holding the figure in hand, but it still somewhat mars what would otherwise be a gorgeous figure.
And as long as I’m piling on the criticism of the plastic, the jointing in the knees and elbows here is kind of mushy. Otherwise, the articulation is solid, and the slits on the sides of the sash help to not inhibit the hip articulation too badly. Herb does not come with any accessories, but he does have an extra pair of hands, giving him one set of fists and one set of open relaxed hands. He actually comes out of the package with one of each equipped.
I really dig both of these figures a lot! The coloring on this pair is gorgeous, and I’m very excited to add them to my Legends lineup. I think Psycho-Man comes out on top among the two, and that’s partly because I love his design so much and partly because Hasbro did such a fine job with it. It may sound like I came down pretty heard on The High Evolutionary, but even with his flaws, he’s not a bad figure, and one that I have had on my Legends Wanted List for a long while now. Both of these fellas are available right now for pretty cheap through some of the big online retailers, and I’m glad I was able to get doubles to open!