Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentinel Wave): Tri-Sentinel Build-A-Figure by Hasbro

If you stopped by last Friday only to find no new content, I offer my apologies. It was a busy work week, which flowed right into a working weekend. But now it’s Monday and I have a couple of days off to spend some time opening some toys! And it’s one of those Marvel Mondays, where I can sit back, have a pour of Jameson, light up a fine cigar, and reap the rewards of having dutifully purchased all the little plastic people in a Marvel Legends Wave. Sure, I was going to buy them anyway, but now I can finally assemble the Build-A-Figure, and in this case, it’s a three-headed mutant-hunting robot freak! Let’s take a look at the Tri-Sentinel!

While this guy’s design is a tad unconventional, he’s not all that different from most BAFs. You get a torso, four limbs, but in this case three heads instead of one. And yet with a total of eight pieces, they still stiffed Wolverine and gave him BAF parts at all! Tri-Sentinel goes together just fine right up until I got to those heads and then things turned into a nightmare for my pour thumbies. The heads are on ball joints and getting them into the sockets required a nightmare or pressure. At one point, I thought the problem was that each head was designed for a specific socket, but nope, I just wasn’t pressing hard enough. You’d think with all the video games I play, my calloused thumbs would have been better suited to the task, but apparently they are still soft and delicate. Anywho… As you may have already surmised, this isn’t Loki’s Tri-Sentinel, but rather the Theta Sentinel. Why’d they change the name? Who the hell knows! I’m pretty sure, this guy is original to the House of X/Power of X stories. At the very least I can say that it’s the first time I encountered the design.

And what a slick design this is! Like most technology (except for maybe televisions), Sentinel tech seems to get smaller as it gets more advanced. And while Theta Sentinel has some significant height on most regular Legends figures, it isn’t the towering, bulky arsenal-type Sentinels of old. Quite the contrary, this fellow has almost organic in his curves, and he’s super lanky in the limbs. I love me some spindly robots, because it just makes them creepier and more realistic when you know there’s no way it could be a guy in a suit. Unless it’s Doug Jones. I’m pretty sure that guy could fit into anything. This Sentinel does have some bulk in the upper torso, and those flared shoulders give him an aggressively stylish look. I also dig how the upper body tapers to such a narrow connection to his hips. He’s also got some seriously long claw-like hands, which are intimidating enough to make Lady Deathstrike take a second look!

I absolutely love the deco on this guy. The metallic purple and silver contrasts nicely with the matte black. It’s only a little bit reminiscent of the old Sentinels. Maybe just enough to get a whif of familiarity, while still looking new and fresh. It looks like all the paint lines are incorporated into the sculpt, which is always a good thing. Otherwise, there aren’t a lot of panel lines or other busy details in the Sentinel’s armor, which serves to drive home its advanced futuristic look.

The three heads are damn creepy, with what I can only describe as techno-skulls for faces. All three faces are identical with elongated mouth pieces and narrow, angry red eyes. Their heads are capped off with what could be considered a more stylized version of the old Sentinel caps. The heads all connect to an exposed area of the upper body, which is sculpted with some really nice detail, giving us a glimpse at the mechanisms under the purple armor. Ironically, as difficult as it was to get the heads in, they tend to pull out when I try to manipulate them. As a result, I find the ball joints they connect with to be too frustrating to use as a point of articulation. Instead, I tend to just turn the head where it connects to the stalk. It’s serviceable, but also a shame that I can’t get much use out of the ball joints.

And speaking of articulation, despite his rather unique design, Theta Sentinel has most of the usual points. You get rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists. There’s a swivel in his waist. His legs have rotating hinges in the hips, double hinges in the knees, swivels in the thighs, and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. He’s pretty nimble, and while it can take a little practice to get him to stand, he’s actually a bit better balanced than I expected him to be.

As far as Build-A-Figures go, this one was a real treat to finally get together. I kind of wish Hasbro released this figure as a Deluxe, because I wouldn’t mind having a couple more of them. Sure, we’ve seen Hasbro re-release BAFs as single packaged figures before, but somehow I doubt that’ll be the case with this one, so I’ll just be happy with the one I have for now.

And that wraps up this wave! It took me a while to get through it, but was worth it in the end. It was actually fun to be able to review some Legends that were based on a fairly modern book that I actually read for a change. As much as I can’t stand the direction Marvel has taken these days, Hickman will always bring me back to the fold. And this was a damn solid wave of figures. Indeed, the only one in the batch that I would consider a letdown is Marvel Girl, and that’s just because of her restricted leg articulation, which not only makes her no fun to play with, but she really can’t even stand up without looking awkward. And that’s a shame, because the sculpt and colors are pretty tight. I may be starting a new wave next Monday, or I may be detouring to check out something of the Hot Toys variety. We’ll see how much time I have on my hands, between now and then!

Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentinel Wave): Omega Sentinel by Hasbro

After some Marvel Monday meanderings, I’m finally down to opening the last figure in the House of X inspired Legends wave, and I saved the figure I since I was most excited for: Omega Sentinel! So, let’s check out Karima Shapandar…

I caught myself almost referring to Karima as a recent character, but holy shit, it’s been 21 years since she was introduced in the pages of X-Men Unlimited. God damn, I’m so old! One of the things that always fascinates and terrifies me is the blending of body horror and cybernetics, so it should be no surprise that I find her to be a compelling character, with lots of opportunity to explore the lines that divide human and machine.

And it doesn’t hurt that she just looks do damn cool! The towering robotic hunters have given way to compact elegance in Karima’s poetic female form! Omega Sentinel sports a form-fitting white and red suit with black trim, which gives a telling nod to the colors used to brand this wave’s packaging. Given the arms, I expected to get some fresh and original sculpting on this figure, but I was surprised to see that the entire figure appears to be new, which makes up for the fact that a number of releases in this assortment were done on the cheap with paint and recycled parts. In this case, every last detail in the paint on the figure is also reflected in the sculpt. That combined with the coloring makes this figure really pop!

While most of the body is all woman, Omega Sentinel’s technological side mostly manifests in her shoulder, arms, and neck, as well as the two plugs that appear down her front. I like the dark gray plastic, Hasbro used for the arms, you get some more black trim around the shoulder pieces, and some red paint hits on the shoulder nodules.

Omega Sentinel includes two portraits, but the one that comes on the figure is the synthetic head that reflects her appearance in the House of X. Hasbro did a beautiful job with this one, using more of that snappy red paint for the majority of the head. She has white panels, which are also part of the sculpt, and her eyes and eyebrows are painted with some crisp applications. It’s a great likeness to the character’s appearance in the comic panels.

The alternate and more human head is an absolutely amazing sculpt, and from a design standpoint I love it. She has a gray mask partially covering her face, but leaving the mouth and chin exposed, while a mane of wild hair splays out in all directions. Unfortunately, as great as it looks, this portrait is also a bafflingly huge missed opportunity to give us something comic accurate for the character. I don’t know why Hasbro chose to go with this rather specific look, nor can I comprehend the choice of skin and hair coloring, but it’s a shame they didn’t go with something more… correct? I’ve poked around a bit to see if I could come up with any answers as to what happened here, but I had no luck.

For the most part, the articulation here is pretty normal stuff. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, have swivels in the thighs, double-hinges in the knees, and hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. There’s a ball joint under the chest, which is standard for the female Legends, but this was an example where I really missed having a waist swivel. Maybe it was because I had a hard time putting her down and just kept playing with her. The neck is ball jointed and hinged, and offers a nice range of motion for either head. The big change here comes in the arms, and that’s because you can swap out Omega Sentinel’s fore arms for weapons. The shoulders and wrists have the usual rotating hinges, but the elbows are hinged pins, so you can pull the arms out at the elbows and replace them.

I don’t know what either of these weapons are supposed to be, but let’s just go with some kind of focused energy beam emitters. One has some paint apps to make it look like it has glowing bits, while the other is just a giant maw. You can use either weapon for either arm, or just double her up for extra firepower! It’s a great gimmick and it really adds to the fun factor of this figure!

Coming into this wave, I was excited to get Omega Sentinel and now that I have her in hand, I’m very pleased with how she turned out. Yes, I’d still say that Hasbro needs to serve up an apology head at some point down the road. Hell, I wouldn’t mind a re-release, because there’s nothing wrong with having extra Sentinels. It’s a shame, because they really did do a nice sculpt for that portrait, I just don’t know what they were going for when they colored it. It doesn’t really detract from the base figure, and I still love this one a lot. Next week, I’ll put this wave to bed with a look at the Tri-Sentinel!

Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentinel Wave): Moira McTaggert by Hasrbo


After meandering around a bit for the past few Marvel Mondays, I guess it’s time to swing back to my unfinished business with the Tri-Sentinel Wave! There’s just two more figures, and today I’m going with Dr. Moira McTaggert!

I’ve said my piece about the packaging for this wave over and over again, so let’s just say I dig it a lot and leave it at that. Moira seems to have been a polarizing character in House of X, thanks to some major (and heavily Hickmanesque) retconning. I actually had a pretty spirited discussion with one of my co-workers over it. It was admittedly weird to see such a major reassessment of a comic character that’s been around almost as long as I’ve been alive, but in the end I was pretty cool with it. It certainly wasn’t done out of hand, it was a major push forward in the X-Men story as a whole, and it’ll be interesting to see where it goes, assuming she ever decides to leave No-Place. Thanks to two sets of arms and two heads, you get a couple of display options, but let’s start with how she comes out of the box.

Dr. Moira, as lab-coated geneticist looks pretty good. She’s sporting a violet sweater with a maroon skirt and shoes. The coat is molded in soft plastic like a vest, with the sleeves sculpted onto the arms. It’s an old Hasbro trick and it works great, even if you can see the gaps in the shoulder holes in certain poses. Like any good nerd doing The Science, she has her coat pocket well stocked with pens. She also comes with two sets of hands. One is a pair of fists, the other features a right hand with the fingers splayed, which I believe is the usual powers-casting hand, and another to hold her accessory.

The scientist head sculpt is OK, but it’s definitely the lesser of the two. I don’t want to pick on the glasses too much, because it’s really tough to get those right in this scale. These don’t look too bad, but the paint on the frames is a little sloppy around the lenses. They also kind of look like Coke-Bottle Glasses, which makes this portrait unintentionally funny looking to me. But my biggest gripe here is that the painted lipstick does not match the mouth. Moira’s mouth was clearly sculpted with a dour, down-turned expression, while the lips are just painted straight on. It just doesn’t look good.

There are no surprises when it comes to articulation. Despite having swap-out arms, all the points function normally. I am happy to report that Moira’s skirt does not inhibit her articulation nearly as badly as Marvel Girl’s did. It feels like it’s made out of a softer plastic, and there’s a generous slit running up the right side. Not that I need Dr. Moira to be doing anything crazy, other than holding her Genetics Book, which is the only accessory she comes with. To change up Moira’s look, you basically pull out her arms to remove the lab coat and replace them with her sweater arms. Then you pop off the bespectacled head sculpt, put on her neckerchief, and pop on the second head. I should note that it’s really hard to pull the lab coat arms out of my figure.

So yeah, Casual Moira ditches the lab coat in favor of the white neckerchief and fashionable hat. Overall, I do like this version of the figure better, but I think a lot of that has to do with this second head sculpt.

The glasses are gone, the lipstick still doesn’t quite match the mouth, but I still think it’s a huge improvement. It’s like in those dopey comedies when the unpopular girl is obviously just a really attractive actress wearing glasses and has her hair up, only to have her get a makeover, which just involves taking off her glasses and letting her hair down. The hat could have used a bit more detail, but it’s fine.

Moira may not be the most exciting release around, but her Marvel Legends figure is long overdue. I really dig the extra effort they put into her. I mean, it’s only fair that a woman with an untold number of lives should at least get two display options for her action figure. And you can always pick up a second for Pyro to light on fire. That brings me to just one more figure in the wave before the BAF! So, next week I’ll wrap things up with Omega Sentinel!

Marvel Legends (Cap’s Wings Wave): Scarlet Witch by Hasbro

Today is another diversion from that Tri-Sentinel Wave. I hope to get back to it next week, but I today’s figure arrived and I decided to bump her up to the front of the line. I’m sad to say it, but Disney+’s MCU series experiments have lost their grip on me. I enjoyed WandaVision well enough up until it fell apart at the end, where it tossed aside a lot of cool psychological drama and mystery for a big dumb fight. I didn’t make it far into Falcon and Winter Soldier’s preachy meanderings before realizing I had better things to do, and it took me a few tries just to make it through the first episode of Loki. As a result, I was going to skip this Disney+ themed wave entirely, but since I really like MCU Wanda, I thought I’d at least grab her figure.

The packaging includes the WandaVision series logo and for the first time, Wanda can legit be called The Scarlet Witch, so that’s something! This wave does not feature a BAF figure, but rather the parts to build the wings for Sam Wilson’s Captain America costume. And yes, this is actually the second time modern Legends has done a Build-A-Wings wave and both times for the MCU. That’s crazy!

Wanda looked stunning in the solicitation photos, and I have to say she looks just as good in hand. I missed out on the Infinity War Wanda and Vision 2-pack, so this is the first MCU Scarlet Witch in my Legends collection since the Civil War release. Here Wanda is depicted in her final form (What? No sweat pants version? BOO!!!), which is very similar to her Infinity War look, only with a longer skirt and her iconic tiara in place. I like this costume design a lot and the figure executes it brilliantly. Her black trousers are dominated by her thigh high black boots, each with red stripes running up the centers. The top and skirt have a two-tone red design and some nice alternating textures to give it that extra punch for the TV screen. She has sculpted fingerless gloves and sleeves that reach up to her biceps. The bare shoulder look is nice, her top terminates in a snug collar.

I remember being pretty happy with the Civil War portrait, but it looks pretty primitive now when compared to this latest effort. I remember seeing some pictures of some MCU Figuarts recently and thinking that this portrait isn’t so far off from those expensive imports. The sculpt captures Elizabeth’s Olsen’s likeness beautifully, and the halftone printing used for her features totally seals the deal. There’s even some speckling to her skin, and the eyebrows looking uncanny in their realism. Her wild mane of hair is equally impressive, as it spills out from behind her tiara, and the tiara is sculpted from a separate piece and attached to the head to give it a nice dose of depth. And boy, it’s cool to see MCU Wanda finally get that tiara!

The articulation here is standard stuff for a Marvel Legends lady, which isn’t bad, but still not as good as the dudes. Rather than the double-hinged elbows and bicep swivels, Wanda gets by with just a rotating hinge in the shoulder and elbow. At least she can get a full 90-degrees out of those elbow joints. She has a ball joint under her chest, and the head is ball jointed and hinged. Her legs are ball jointed at the hips, have swivels in the thighs, double-hinges in the knees, and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. Alas, Wanda is sporting some small feet with slight heels, making her a difficult figure to stand. On the other hand, I’m happy to say that the long skirt didn’t really get in the way of having fun playing with her.

Wanda comes with two sets of hands, both are of the spell-slinging sort, with the second pair being translucent pink. She also comes with a pair of matching pink hex effect parts that snake around her forearms. These look really good when paired with the translucent hands. As some of you may know, a lot of the Legends effect parts are often lost on me, but I dig these a lot.

I can’t seam to say enough nice things about this figure! She’s beautifully crafted from head to toe, with some striking colors, a stunning portrait, value added effect parts, and she’s just all around fun. About the only thing more I could ask for would have been a second portrait with glowing hex eyes. I’m so happy with her, I’m even considering picking up the White Vision to go with her, if for no other reason, than because I don’t have an MCU Vision in my collection. Now if Hasbro would release a two-pack of Wanda and Vision in their Halloween costumes? Sold!

Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentenel Wave): Marvel Girl by Hasbro

After a detour last week, I’m returning to the Tri-Sentinel Wave from Jonathan Hickman’s House of X! Today I’m opening up my fifth figure in the wave, leaving just two more to go before I can assemble my Tri-Sentinel. And while I didn’t intentionally plan it this way, all the remaining figures are ladies! So, let’s go ahead and open up Jean Grey, aka Marvel Girl!

Once again, I love the package design for this wave. The futuristic stylings of the X-Men logo, the clean black, white and red deco, and the character name printed on the front in the Krakoan language. Every once and a while I’m tempted to save the boxes for a wave and this is one of those times. But I’m not. Because, no room! Jean looks absolutely smashing amidst this presentation, and as we’ll soon see, I might have been better off leaving her in there.

Now don’t get me wrong, this is a fantastic looking figure. House of X sees Jean return to her classic Marvel Girl outfit, and I do dig me some classic X-Men costumes! Naturally, I was excited to get this figure and I was quite pleased with what I initially saw. While the soft plastic skirt is cast separately from the torso, it’s pretty damn convincing as being all one dress. And it’s a simple one at that, especially when you consider that every damn superhero costume these days are made out of colored basketball skins! The green is perfectly matches from the skirt to the upper body, and on to the sleeves. That simplicity is only broken up by the textured black belt with green belt loops, and an old school rectangular X-branded belt buckle. The yellow boots are painted on the legs, but some sculpting for the modest heels on the feet, while the yellow gauntlets have sculpted flares to give them that cool buccaneer style! Going strictly by looks, I love the way this costume turned out and the coloring on this figure is very striking!

The portrait is equally solid. The yellow mask appears to be sculpted separately and attached to the head sculpt, which gives it a lot of depth. The face is pretty, and they captured her flowing red hair particularly well. OK, the hair is more orange than red, but I think it adds to the overall coloring here nicely. The hair parts at each shoulder, and it hovers a bit to not inhibit the neck movement too badly. While Hasbro has been employing halftone printing for their faces lately, this one appears to be painted, but that’s fine because the paintwork is pretty sharp. I had to get in pretty close to notice any imperfections.

What could possibly drag down such a great looking figure? Terrible articulation! Despite having a bit of a slit running up the right side, the plastic skirt renders the leg articulation above the knees pretty much useless, and that really limits what you’re going to want to do with the knee and ankle articulation, other than make small adjustments to try to keep her standing. Unless you just want her flat out kneeling, those double hinges in the knees just aren’t going to help. The legs are also a bit rubbery, and mine were slightly warped out of the package.

The normal ball joint that we get under the chest in the female figures has been moved down to her waist, which feels weird all by itself. And finally, the elbows hardly allow for even a 90-degree range of movement. Tally all of this up and you get a recipe for a figure that is absolutely no fun to play around with. I’m doing full slits on each side of the skirt to free things up a bit, but I’m not sure yet. Look, I do understand that a lot of these problems are trade offs for the costume’s aesthetics, but it doesn’t change the fact that it makes for a rather boring figure.

As far as accessories go, Marvel Girl comes with two sets of hands: One pair of fists, and one pair of the old powers-slinging hands. She also comes with a Krakoan Flower, fresh from Mars or perhaps The Savage Land. It’s an excellent choice, since these flowers played such a major role in the book. The purple bulb comes sprouting out of a gray spherical flower pot. Jean can sort of hold it in her powers hands, but because there isn’t a lot of room for leg adjustments, she frequently wants to fall forward when carrying it. So, don’t ask her to be the Flower Girl at your wedding!

Wow, this was a quick in and out as far as reviews go, but truth be told there just isn’t a lot more that I can do with poor old Marvel Girl here. She looks outstanding on the shelf, and the fact that Hickman brought back the Marvel Girl costume gave Hasbro a great excuse to give us this classic costume in a figure. I would imagine that even collectors who aren’t a fan of the House of X series would want this figure for their display. It’s just too bad that articulation had to take such a hit here and there’s only so many pictures I can take of her standing straight and waving her arms about. Sure, I’m still happy to have her, but I wish she was more fun.

Marvel Legends (3 3/4-inch) Retro Collection: Wave One by Hasbro


As promised last Monday, I’m taking a break from my cruise through the Legends Tri-Sentinel Wave to have a look at Hasbro’s new Retro 3 3/4-inch figures. Because The Great Lord Galactus knows I really need another Marvel line to collect, right? Well, these are similar to the ReAction figures I collect, in that I bought them to keep carded. But, I did buy a four doubles out of the six for openers, so we will at least be getting a feel for a few of them out of the package and in hand.


And yes, technically, these are Marvel Legends, it says so right on the card, which seems really weird to me. It’s doubly confusing when you consider that Hasbro is already doing a sub-line of Retro-Carded 6-inch Marvel Legends. So what the hell are these? Well, they’re retro-style 5-POA figures designed with old 80’s Kenner-style figures in mind. It’s kind of a What if Kenner did Marvel? Hasbro really did their own thing with the presentation, since they probably didn’t want to copy the look of their competitor Mattel’s Secret Wars line from the 80’s, or the chunked out proportions of Toy Biz’s 90’s line. The first wave is comprised of six figures, and there doesn’t seem to be a lot of rhyme or reason to the character selection here. As expected, these packages are not collector friendly, but at least the figures are set on trays inside the bubbles, which keeps them from rattling around in there. Also, I’ll note that these cards are made of some pretty sturdy and seemingly durable cardboard, and all the ones I bought online came unpunched, which is pretty cool. Let’s have a look at each one, starting with the two I didn’t get as openers.

Magneto represents the X-Men, and I thought him a strange choice for the first wave, but that doesn’t make him any less welcome. The card features the Uncanny X-Men logo at the top left with Magneto’s character art dominating most of the right side. Everything is just about perfect here, especially the coloring. The figure looks like a solid effort. He’s sporting his traditional red and purple costume, just as it’s depicted in the card art, and the paintwork seems pretty clean. Articulation for all of these figures conforms to the usual standard 5-POA, which includes a T-crotch, swivels in the shoulders, and a rotating head. I do find it interesting that they didn’t drive the Kenner homage all the way home by giving him a vinyl cape, but I’d certainly argue the sculpted plastic cape looks better.

I’ll show off the back of the card for Magneto and then leave it at that, since they’re all pretty much the same. You get a character card that can be clipped out and saved along with the figure. You also get a single sentence blurb about the character. I was hoping this was going to be a little more descriptive, but it’s just the same thing in multiple languages. The bottom third or so of the card is just jumbles of legalese. Man, I miss the days when toy packaging didn’t have to be littered with all this crap!

Next up is The Incredible Hulk, and this is the second of the two figures that I have yet to get an opener of, but I’m still looking. Hulk is bigger than the others, but not crazy big. He seems fairly size-appropriate, but best of all, they were able to do him without having to make a bigger card, or throw off the uniformity of the presentation. The Incredible Hulk logo features the brick pattern in the lettering, and the character art is fabulous. I also really dig the deep blue backdrop and the action lines fanning out to the borders. It’s exciting and colorful, and everything a comic book superhero action figure package should be! As for the figure, I think this is a really strong sculpt, especially the portrait. They did a nice job sculpting his muscles, and the vibrant purple paint on his pants looks snappy!

Third out of the gate is Captain America, and here’s where I start to have doubles to open! If pressed, I’d say this is probably my favorite card in the wave, or at least maybe tied for first. The character art is just fabulous, and I love that they have him throwing his shield right out of the card and into the viewers face! It’s exciting, and the star spangled deco is absolutely perfect! If I had one little gripe, it would be the color of the bubble’s backdrop. The blue matches Cap’s outfit and the figure sort of blends in a little too much. But that’s me really nit-picking.

Out of the package, Cap looks and feels great in hand. If you’ve handled any of those Funko ReAction figures, you’ll be happy to know that the quality of the plastic here is just so much better. And while Cap maintains a bit of a simple style to him, there’s still plenty of fresh sculpting to be found in the buccaneer boots, and flared gauntlets. The portrait looks great, and the paint lines are fairly sharp for a figure in this size and style. Cap happens to be the only figure in this wave that comes with an accessory, because…. well you can’t have Cap without his shield. The shield has a clip to attach it to either of his wrists and he looks good holding it. There’s a hole on his back, but no peg to attach the shield, which is a tad disappointing. Still, a great figure that will be sitting on my desk for a long time to come.

The fourth figure is a bit of an odd choice for this initial wave, and it’s Ms. Marvel herself, Carol Danvers, wearing her Warbird outfit. I really love the character art on the card, but I thought it was a little odd that they went with The Avengers logo and don’t actually refer to her as Ms. Marvel on the card. It’s kind of weird, but not a deal-breaker to me. I’ll concede that I would have preferred her red, blue, and gold outfit, but I dig this one too.

Out of the package, she’s looking fine! This figure relies a little more on paint than for her costume than the previous ones, but I think they did a fine job. The fronts of her boots are a little uneven, but the lightening bolt on her chest looks sharp! I also love that they sculpted her waist scarf as a separate piece and it’s worn by the figure, kind of like an accessory, but not really. The portrait here is really good as well, with her domino mask actually part of the sculpt.

The fifth and penultimate figure in the wave is Johnny Storm from The Fantastic Four, and this one had me super excited, because I can’t wait to hang a full set of Marvel’s first family in this retro-style on my wall. The card includes The Fantastic Four logo over the NY City-Scape with The Human Torch in full flame on! They even did his flamed “4” logo in the sky behind him. Excellent!

I didn’t think this would be an easy figure to do in this style, but Hasbro absolutely nailed it! Johnny is cast in translucent orange plastic with some yellow flames sculpted onto his legs, arms, and head. The effect is quite striking, especially when it’s properly lit up. Dare I say it? Hot damn, I love everything about this figure! Sue Storm is coming up in the third wave, and I do hope they finish up the Fantastic Four sooner rather than later!

Last, but certainly not least is your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, and if you haven’t guessed it Spidey is tied with Cap as my favorite figure in this wave. The card art features The Amazing Spider-Man logo set against the backdrop of the city with Spidey himself swinging right out of the card at you and framed by webbing.

Out of the package, this figure just pops like magic. The combination of blue and red is a feast for the eyes and the web pattern looks great. I also dig that they have his arms spread a bit and gave him two thwippy hands. Like Captain America, I just want to carry Spidey here around all day in my pocket at work, so he can have adventures on the desk when I’m bored to tears in meetings. I am really excited to see all of Spidey’s villains turn up in this series. Electro is actually part of Wave Two. Now bring on Gobby!

I’m really interested to see how this line does at retail, but I’m definitely hooked. I’m a sucker for the retro style, and there’s something to be said for these clean sculpts over the somewhat wonky results of the highly articulated Marvel Universe figures. I didn’t have time to dig out any of those to do comparisons, but it’s something I might look at doing in the future. Am I going to be buying doubles of this entire line. Nah, highly unlikely. I’ll mainly be collecting these to keep carded, pop into clamshells, and hang on the wall. But at about ten bucks a pop, I may go for doubles of the ones that I like the most! I already have a set of Wave Two, and maybe I’ll wrap up a look at these next week. Then again I’ve also got a new Marvel Hot Toys figure that I’d like to spend some time with. I guess we’ll see what I have time for!


Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentinel Wave): Wolverine and Cyclops by Hasbro

Howdy, Toyhounds! This week I’ve got Marvel Monday right back where it belongs… on a Monday. I had a fairly relaxed weekend and plenty of time to open some toys, so let’s jump right in with two more figures from the House of X-inspired assortment of Marvel Legends X-Men figures! Last time I had a look at Professor X and Magneto and I came away a little lukewarm, if I’m being honest. Let’s see how we make out with Wolverine and Cyclops!

Once again I really dig the packaging this time around. The boxes are perfectly branded to the books, complete with the futuristic X-Men logo on the front and the characters’ names in the Krakoan language beneath it. The figures themselves also look quite stunning against the backdrop of the red and white illustrated panel behind the clear tray. And if you lift your eyes to the top, you can see that when all is said and done we’ll be building a Tri-Sentinel, although Wolverine does not come with a BAF part. Let’s go ahead and start with him!

Wow, do I love this figure! The design takes the classic coloring of Wolverine’s brown suit and mixes it up with the tactical accents of his X-Force suit, and the result is something rather spectacular. Now I’m not saying I prefer brown and mustard to blue and yellow, but I still dig it a whole lot. Gone are the flared boots and in their place rugged combat boots with matching heavy gauntlets. I’m pretty sure this figure just recycles all the body sculpt from the Wendigo Wave Wolverine, which in turn borrowed a lot from the Juggernaut Wave Wolverine. Damn, I’m really terrible about keeping all these Wolverines straight! There sure have been a lot of them!

At least the belt looks new! It’s a simple brown belt with a leather-like texture and a red and yellow X-branded buckle. The belt is sculpted separately but fits the waist quite snugly and stays in place. Also worth mentioning are the beefy battle claws! We’ve seen some rather frail and anemic claws on Wolverines in the past, but these are just great. They’re nice and straight, not too bendy. Sure, you only get the one pair of popped-claw fists, but that’s all I need!

Only one set of hands, but two heads! You get a younger Wolverine portrait with Logan grinning a broad and toothy grin. I dig this portrait a lot as it looks like Wolverine is smiling as he’s imagining what he’s going to do with his adversary’s entrails, but he’s not letting anyone else in on the joke. The paint around his skin and the cowl could have been a little tighter here, but the sculpt is top notch stuff. Just look at how deep the eyes are set! Awesome!

And you also get future Wolverine where he’s sporting a beard and looking a lot more grim, dour, and crotchety. Hey, Mother Mold… Come get your damn Sentinels off my lawn, bub! Everything I said about the paint and sculpt on the previous head rings true here. The paint around the cowl could have been a little sharper, but everything else is fab. They didn’t go nuts on the beard, but I think it looks good. And yeah, this is likely the head I will be using to display on the figure most of the time.

Here at FFZ we recognize that Legends Wolverine Fatigue or LWF is a real syndrome, but it’s just not one that I happen to suffer from. Wolverine always makes for a fun figure, especially since he’s always got those extra shoulder crunches. Whenever I get a new one, he usually hangs on my desk for a while before getting retired to a shelf or tote. I just love playing with them, and this figure is no different! Let’s move on to Cyclops!

Cyclops’ costume got a rework in this book as well and while I wasn’t especially impressed by it in the comic panels, I have to say I’m really liking the way it turned out on this figure. The dark body suit has very little in the way of sculpted detail, but those bright blue stripes look really spiffy. Cyclops is also sporting a pair of silver arm bracers and an X-branded belt with some pouches. I never really think of Scott as a pouch kinda guy, but the belt looks good and I guess he has to carry around his smug self-righteousness somewhere. The tiny snaps on the brown pouches are painted silver and the buckle is red and silver. Like Wolverine, Cyclops only comes with one set of hands: A right fist and a left visor activating hand. Which brings us to…

A pretty solid head sculpt! There’s nothing crazy going on here, but the lower half of his face looks great. Unlike Wolverine, there are sharp lines between his face and the cowl, and the visor looks like it might be sculpted separately from the head.

Cyclops comes with a second head with gritting teeth, some effect parts around the corners of the visor, and a slot for the really big effect beam. I dig the way this looks, and despite being pretty substantial, Scott can still stand just fine with it inserted into his head. Pretty damn cool!

I really wasn’t expecting too much out of this pair, but once I got them opened and in hand, I fell in love with them pretty fast. Neither is my favorite look for the characters, but they do make for some cool variations. And besides, it’s nice to have figures from one of the best Marvel books that I’ve read in quite a while. Yeah, that’s not exactly high praise, considering my stance on Marvel’s offerings these days, but it was meant as a compliment! As for next week’s Marvel Monday, I may be taking a slight detour of the 3 3/4-inch variety before getting back to the Legends and the rest of this wave…

Marvel Legends (Tri-Sentinel Wave): Magneto and Professor X by Hasbro

That’s right… Welcome to Marvel Monday on a Wednesday! As I’m fond of pointing out in some of my Marvel Legends reviews, I stopped being a regular reader of Marvel Comics a while back when they decided to stop focusing on things like decent art, good stories, and respect for established characters. As always, there are exceptions to the rule, and I did poke my head in a couple years back to read Jonathan Hickman’s House of X because… well it was Jonathan Hickman and the art looked pretty good. I enjoyed it enough to eventually pick up the collected hardcover edition, and naturally I was pretty thrilled to see the book getting a full wave of Legends. Enough so that I pre-ordered this one, instead of hunting them down individually. So here we go, embarking on this wave with the two heavy hitters first… Magneto and Xavier!

House of X is full of all the standard Hickman-isms that I’ve grown to love. You get high concept stuff about evolution, the rise and fall of empires, secret knowledge, time travel, and lots of great nuggets of world-building, sometimes leaked between the pages of the actual story. I get that some people don’t dig his style of story telling, but I do. It keeps me invested in the story and getting the most out of it means my reading has to be less passive and more aggressive. The package branding looks great and even includes the characters’ name scrawled in the Krakoan language! I really wanted to keep these boxes, but in the end, space is too much of a limited commodity around here so into the bin they went! Let’s start with Professor X…

Cards on the table, Xavier’s appearance creeped me the hell out in this story. He’s out of his wheelchair sporting a lanky body in a tight body suit with the latest version of Cerebro worn pretty much all the time and covering most of his head. The combination of lanky body and giant head piece makes him look like some kind of cyborg-meat-lollypop and I just find it unsettling. And yeah, considering what Xavier gets up to in this book, that’s probably exactly what the look was going for. And while this figure conveys that look pretty well, it also means there’s really not a lot to it at all. From the neck down you get a completely generic black buck with no paint apps or detail at all.

At least they used one of the more articulated bodies, complete with those lateral crunches in the shoulders. You also get an extra pair of gesturing hands: One regular pointing hand and one “I’m pointing at my head because I’m concentrating” hand. On the downside, the joints on my figure are extremely soft and gummy, especially in the knees. It took me a bit of time to straighten them out enough so he would stand.

And while Hasbro banked a ton of time and effort on the body sculpt, the Cerebro head sculpt is quite excellent! The bulbous silver head piece includes a mess of wires and gizmos on the back, and a giant blue X-branded visor on the front.

You also get a head without Cerebro and with some psionic effects radiating from Xavier’s head. It’s a nice bonus to add some value, but it doesn’t do a lot for me. Ultimately, this figure accomplishes what it needs to do, but unless you’re a big fan of this story, I’m not sure it’s going to be worthy of a pick up. Sure, Cerebro looks awesome, but the rest of the figure is so drab and generic. I’m happy to have it, but I’m curious to see if it’ll be a peg-warmer around these parts. Moving on to Magneto…

Unlike Professor X, Magneto retains a lot of his classic costume design in this story, but he trades in his darker colors for a white-and-black outfit. And just as Xavier saved Hasbro the cost of a lot of new sculpting, much of Magneto here is just a repaint. I was, however, surprised to see some new stuff here. The boots and wrist bracers are different from the previous Magneto releases, and he also has a new belt with an X-branded buckle and some pouches. The cape, however, is a straight repaint from the his appearance in the three-pack with Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver.

I was expecting the head sculpt to be a straight repaint from that three-pack version as well, but it looks like it’s been reworked here. His Barbute-style helmet has been reshaped in a few areas, but unfortunately the paint on mine is pretty sloppy. It’s not too bad when viewed with the naked eye, but the closer you get, the worse it looks.

Magneto does not come with any effect parts or an un-helmeted head, but he does come with three pairs of hands, which I thought was oddly excessive. The token fists and power-casting hands are to be expected, but the third pair of accessory-holding hands seems pointless, since he comes with nothing to hold. Whatever the case, I found this figure to be a lot more photogenic and fun to play around with than Professor X. Sure, his look is a lot less imaginative than Xavier’s, but as an action figure, Magneto gets the nod as the better figure.

I was extremely excited for this wave, but I’ll confess that it feels to be off to a rocky start. I want to like the Professor X figure a whole lot more than I do. I can’t fault the design, as it looks just like his appearance in the book, but it just doesn’t make for a great figure. Magneto, on the other hand, at least isn’t a total quick-and-dirty repaint, and I’ve found that I like this look for him a lot. Next week, I’ll keep the reviews on this wave rolling along. I doubled up today because I knew I didn’t have a whole lot to say about these two, and I’m not sure if next week I’ll tackle another two figures or just focus on one!

Marvel Legends (Mr. Hyde Wave): A.I. Tony Stark by Hasbro

Last week turned into a shit-show with work, so I wasn’t able to make it back with Friday content. The first half of this week is going to be no better, but I’ve managed to eek out a little bit of time for Marvel Monday. I needed to find something quick and easy, and the figure calling out to me from my pile of backlog was this very recent release of A.I. Tony Stark, a figure that I absolutely love for what it isn’t even meant to be!

Behold, the first, and probably last, figure that I’ll be reviewing in the Mr. Hyde Wave! I actually really do want that Hyde Build-A-Figure, but I have zero interest in the Shang-Chi movie, and I’m sure as heck not buying all those figures for the BAF parts. Based on how they’re clogging the pegs at Target here, I may get the opportunity to scoop them up on clearance for the BAF, but for now I’m sadly writing Mr. Hyde off. And while we’re on the subject… Why is A.I. Tony Stark even in this wave? It’s kind of weird because we’re actually getting Riri Williams in another wave, so why not put them in the same assortment?

And speaking of Riri… I’ll go ahead and clarify that I bought this figure as beautiful classic Iron Man and not as A.I. Stark from Invincible Ironman, a book which is a prime example of why I don’t read Marvel these days. I tried the first couple issues to see if I was missing anything, but it was pretty damned insufferable. But don’t get me started on that… look! Look at this beautiful figure! The smooth contours, the sexy curves, the immaculate look. There’s no complex panel lines or impossible sequences of shifting plates! Oh, I still dig Tales of Suspense Iron Man, but to me, this was the look I was first introduced to, and for me it will always remain his most iconic design.

We got a Classic Iron Man back as part of the 80th Anniversary releases, and this one looks to be a lot of the same figure. I’m ashamed to say that I have that one, but still haven’t gotten around to opening it. That previous release has extra effect parts, two variant helmets, and an unmasked Stark head, but what it doesn’t have is this lovely ketchup-and-mustard paint deco. Yeah, they went for gold instead of yellow on that one, and it’s certainly a great looking figure, but I’m always going to favor the yellow here. Besides the one-two punch of condiment colored deco, you also get the baby-blue arc reactor and a little more of the same on those upturned restraining-bolt-looking nipples! This figure is quite simply a feast for my eyes and takes me back to my childhood.

The helmet sculpt is excellent, with the face plate being sculpted separately from the rest of the helmet. That not only makes it look like it could come off, but it adds some wonderful depth to the eyes and mouth, which are painted as part of the head beneath it.

The A.I. Stark head is pretty nifty for what it is, basically a previous Stark head sculpt cast in translucent blue plastic. I don’t know that I’ll get any use out of it, but given MCU Stark’s pension for using armor as puppets, I kind of dig that I can use this head to retcon that into this suit design.

You do get a couple of repulsor blast effect parts, also cast in translucent blue plastic. These are actually four pieces, with the projection being separate from the blast. Naturally, you also get two extra hands to work with the effect parts. My only gripe here is the repulsor hands aren’t hinged at the wrists, which feels kind of cheap on Hasbro’s part. But, whatever!

The 80th Anniversary Iron Man can be a bit pricey these days, so if you missed it, this release should be a welcome one. It’s not as complete as that one when it comes to extras, but I can’t fault the figure for that, because it’s based on a very specific version of Tony from a modern book. And hey, if you happen to be a fan of Invincible Iron Man, then you’ll definitely want to pick this one up to go with your upcoming Riri Williams. Not judging! As for skipping this wave, I fear that may be happening a bit more frequently in the years ahead. I know that Hasbro has an Eternals wave coming down the pipe, and I’ll likely be skipping those too. Unless, they decide to mix them up with comic versions, and then I’ll be all over those!

Marvel Legends (Dude Thor Wave): Iron Patiot by Hasbro

Today’s Marvel Monday figure may seem like I dug deep into the backlog, but I actually just got him last week. The only figures from the “Dude Thor” Wave that turned up in my area were the Cap and Iron Man, and I decided that I didn’t really need another MCU Cap or Iron Man in my collection. I also wasn’t really all that interested in this Build-A-Figure either. As for the rest of the Wave, they were going for well over retail when I could find them online, and so I decided I was just going to sit out this Wave entirely. It was possibly the first time I skipped any Marvel Legends releases.

Well, fast forward to a month ago and pre-orders for Iron Patriot started showing up on some online retailers. Not the whole Wave, mind you, just Iron Patriot. Now, I don’t know if this was found stock or an actual re-issue, but I didn’t ask questions. Instead, I plunked down my pre-order and I’m so very glad that I did. So, I’m just going to go ahead and say it. I think this may be the most gorgeous Marvel Legends figure yet. If not, it’s certainly in my Top 5!

I mean, just look at this amazing amalgamation of piece of plastic! After Iron Man 2, I certainly didn’t expect Iron Patriot to show up again in the MCU, so it was a pretty cool surprise when Rhodey rearmed for the final battle. The Endgame Iron Patriot Armor shares some parts and design elements from the War Machine armor, which is reflected in this figure. There are a lot of common threads in the design, but they aren’t all recycled parts. As a result, this one feels pretty fresh! And while I was a big fan of the War Machine figure from the Banner Hulk Wave, I think I’m even more smitten with this one!

For starters, I love the bulked up look of this suit. Iron Man is all about better and better tech with a lot of the suits getting slimmer and more advanced, to the point where they are almost like a second skin for Tony. That’s not War Machine! This guy is literally a walking tank and he looks it! I particularly dig the larger upper body and those big forearms. I’d also swear I see some nods to MechWarrior design in the torso. About the only thing I’m not so keen on here is the redesign of the feet, which are smaller. Maybe they’ve been redesigned with flight in mind, but I think they should be big and clunky like we saw on War Machine. But enough with the negativity… back to gushing! I can’t deny a big part of what makes me tear up with joy here is the coloring. There’s something to be said for the cold and utilitarian military black and gray of the original War Machine, but when you recolor in this drop dead gorgeous metallic red, silver, and blue, I just lose my shit, because the result is so damn beautiful! To me, the quality of the coloring here is just above and beyond for a $20 mass produced figure.

Of course, Iron Patriot is sporting some major weaponry, even when he isn’t powered all the way up. His forearms feature static machine gun barrels, which are a lot more elegant than what we saw on War Machine. He also has rocket launchers mounted on each of his outer thighs. These are actually removable in case you want to display him with them retracted, but they don’t really get in the way so I prefer to leave them armed. On a side note, the articulation here is pretty decent, in that he can make some nice wide stances and point them guns in any direction. With that having been said, the bulky nature of his armor means that his range of motion in some of those articulation points aren’t as good as what we’re used to seeing in Legends. But I have no complaints!

If you really want to gear up Iron Patriot for battle, he comes with two sets of additional weapons to attach. These include additional guns and rocket packs, which position over his shoulders. In the movie, through the magic of CG, these deploy from inside his suit, but here they simply peg into holes in his back. They’re each separate pieces so you can deploy one set or the other, or one of each, or whatever you like. These added weapon pods are ridiculously awesome and stay put pretty well too! I’m just not sure how he fires those without falling over.

While I’d eventually still like to pick up Heimdall and Valkyrie from this Wave, Iron Patriot here was the one figure in this assortment that I wanted the most. And I’m damn glad to have had a second chance without having to pay double or triple. He is an absolutely gorgeous figure and a worthy addition to my collection, even if this particular Stark Armor didn’t have a big presence in the film.