Marvel Legends: The Punisher War Machine by Hasbro

I was going to keep pressing on with the Wendigo Wave this week, and I probably still will next Marvel Monday, but for today I decided to take this detour and have a look at another one-off Exclusive. It’s Frank Castle wearing the Punisher-branded War Machine armor! I want to say this one was exclusive to Gamestop, but I grabbed it off of Amazon, so I wasn’t really paying attention. It’s a figure that I was not going to go crazy hunting down, but when it popped up in my recommendations at just a few bucks over retail, I took a bite.

The package is pretty much the same old stuff, but I particularly love the deco on this one. The art on the side panels looks great and the War Machine logo on the bottom front panel with The Punisher spray painted over it is just plain awesome. There’s not much of a blurb on the back, but the figure references The Punisher #218-220 where he adopted the War machine armor after Rhodey was killed in Civil War II. As a concept in the comics, the idea really tickled me, and as a device to sell a repaint of a figure, well it works for that too. But in all honesty, I don’t think you even need to be familiar with the circumstances to get a kick out of this one.

And yes, this is a repaint, but a repaint of one of the few Marvel Legends figures I don’t own. Yeah, I was shocked too, but apparently War Machine Mk III came in a two-pack with that garishly colored “Disco” Iron Man and I couldn’t see clear to dropping $40 on it. Hey, looks like sometimes I do exercise self control. Go me! Anyway, at least that means this figure is new to me, and it turns out that it’s pretty damn good! The Mark III armor looks a lot beefier than the previous Legends War Machine from the Hulkbuster Wave and I dig that. The bulk of the figure is cast in a dark gray with a little speckling to give it a pretty convincing metal look. Indeed, both the sculpt and coloring of the plastic conspire to make this figure look heavier and more substantial than it actually is… a lot like armor! Some basic paint apps on the body include silver brushed weathering, which looks quite effective, some silver accents, and bright blue paint hits to signify the blasters on his gauntlets. And then you’ve got the new stuff for The Punisher deco!

Yeah, this stuff looks great! It not only includes his iconic skull emblem on the chest, but also some kill counts in the form of tiny Punisher logos. He also retains the “000” on the right bicep. The head hasn’t changed as much, retaining the silver face plate and blue eyes. On the downside, repainting an MCU suit means that this guy doesn’t quite match the suit we saw in the comics, which had more of an organic design to it, particularly in the legs. But when the end result looks this good, I can live with that.

The figure comes with a fair number of accessories to mix and match. First off, he has twin machine guns, which can tab in under his forearms with hinged drop-down magazines. These can also be stored by tabbing them into his hips. Instead of popping out of the armor, I presume he just touches his forearms to his hips and they attach and equip. It’s a cool concept, but I’m not really in love with the designs of these things. They barely look like guns at all.

There are notches behind his shoulders for his other accessories, the shoulder cannon and the baton. There’s a cannon barrel that plugs in on the left shoulder to make it look like the cannon is retracted and just pointing up, while the right shoulder takes a piece that looks like the hilt of his baton where it is supposed to be stored.

By replacing the left shoulder piece with the fully articulated cannon, it can look like it’s been deployed for action. The cannon features a bright blue paint app on the edge of the barrel and it can rotate left and right.

As for the baton, you just pull out the partial baton piece and use the full one in either of his hands. Yes, there are two accessory-holding hands to replace the fists. The baton may seem silly when considering the awesome arsenal of the War Machine armor, but I like it. It’s one of Punisher’s trademarks and it’s addition helps drive home that this is indeed Frank Castle in the suit.

And just to try it out, the Castle head from my Retro Wave Punisher does fit, sort of. It doesn’t actually lock down and secure, but it looks fine balanced on that ball joint if you’re going for an unmasked look. I think it works great.

For a figure that I was content to skip, I found this one to be a really pleasant surprise. Maybe a lot of that has to do with the fact that I don’t own the original War Machine version of this sculpt, but I also think that it’s just a great idea and a fun figure, regardless. Sure, a few of the attachments could have used some refinement, but now I’m just nitpicking. Indeed, I like this figure so much, I may just circle back and pick up that original one in the two-pack.

Marvel (Iron Man) Legends: Iron Patriot (Rhodey) by Hasbro

It’s time once again for Marvel Universe Legends Monday! This has been a polarizing summer of movies. Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, Into Darkness… battle lines have been drawn in the Interweb forums and fanboys have been having at each other over these films. I quite enjoyed Iron Man 3, although I’ll admit one of the sticking points for me about the movie early on was the use of the Iron Patriot armor. It took me a little while to come around and concede that copyrights being what they are, there was no way we were ever going to get Norman Osborne and The Dark Avengers, so having War Machine don the paintjob and the name only made sense. I can (begrudgingly) see that now and have accepted it. Debates over the use of the character aside, I love the aesthetics of the War Machine armor in the movies, and I must admit it certainly looks sexy decked out in the Iron Patriot colors.


We’ve already looked at the three figures that make up the first half of this Iron Man Legends wave. There’s not much new here. The character art looks fine and the figure is mounted on his tray beside the Iron Monger BAF part.



Iron Man 2 had its own line of Legends scale figures, and I’m guessing that this release is based off that War Machine mold, but I don’t own it and the Jameson is making me too fuzzy to do proper research, so I’m only guessing. Either way, I confess that I really love this sculpt. It’s both curvy and angular in all the right places and there are plenty of little panel lines to spruce things up. What I’m not as keen on are some of the plastics being used here, particularly the bare red plastic used for the hands and arms. It’s a little swirly, and it doesn’t hold up to the beautiful metallic blue and silver used for the rest of the figure. The quality also doesn’t feel quite up to par. It’s hard to put my finger on what it is exactly. The seams are a bit uglier than usual as well.


And speaking of paint, it’s worth noting that my figure has some stray paint on the face mask. If I was buying this guy off the pegs, I probably would have passed and tried to find a better one, but I got him sight unseen online. In retrospect, it sort of looks a little battle damage-y, so I can live with it. I am, however, really happy with the way the little tampo marks came out, particularly the Lt. Col. James Rhodes on the breast plate. It’s just a nice cool touch.


Patriot comes with a detachable shoulder mounted gun. There are two peg holes in the back so it can be positioned over either shoulder, but it really only looks right to me over his left shoulder. The gun features a swivel, as well as a hinge so that it can fold up or retract entirely behind his back. Of course, you can also just pull the whole thing out if you prefer.



Let’s roll out the articulation… The head is ball jointed and hinged as well, which gives it that little extra bit of movement that I love. The arms feature ball joints in the shoulders, swivels in the biceps, double-hinges in the elbows, and hinges and swivels in the wrists. The legs are ball jointed in the hips, swivels in the thighs, double-hinges in the knees, and hinges and swivels in the ankles. There’s also a ball joint in the torso that features a really nice range of motion. It’s also worth mentioning that the shoulder armor is soft, rubbery plastic so as not to impede the range of arm movement. What does bother me is that the sculpted armor on the wrists won’t let the left hand bend back to bring his palm repulsor to the ready unless you cock the arm at the elbow.


Despite my issues with the plastic and a couple of paint flubs, I still really like this figure. He’s far from perfect, and that’s a shame because he could have been a homerun if not for some of the niggling little issues. That having been said, he looks damn fine on the shelf and he really is fun to play around with. It’s too bad the QC guys were asleep on the job and let this one slip out the way it did. Not a terrible figure, but he doesn’t live up to some of the better work we’ve been getting out of the Marvel Legends line.

Iron Man 2: (Comic Series) Iron Man Mark I and War Machine Figures by Hasbro

Marvel and Hasbro continue to blitz the toy aisles with their Iron Man 2 toys. I was really impressed with the first two figures I picked up, so I was eager to grab a few more while out shopping this week. Walmart had these things stuffed all over one of their action figure aisles and it took me an eternity to sort through the same three figures over and over again before I found the ones I was looking for, War Machine (#23) and the original Iron Man (#22). These are both from the Comic Series, although I would have been happy finding either these or the Movie Series versions. They also had Iron Monger, which looked nice, but I passed on him because he’s not in scale with the other figures.

Yep, once again, I love the packaging on these figures.

Let’s start with the original Iron Man. Hasbro really nailed the retro, primitive look of the original armor that Tony Stark cobbled together from spare parts. The sculpt obviously isn’t as detailed as the other figures in the line, but that just adds to this figure’s backwards charm as well as the fact that this design is from the comics and not the film. A lot of his rivets are sculpted into the mold, but apart from that and a few panel lines, most of the detail from this figure comes from the excellent paint apps. The figure is molded in matte gray and its scattered with silver and rust colored scratches giving the armor a nice worn and weathered look.

Despite the intentionally clunky sculpt, Hasbro worked most of the normal articulation into this figure. He has a ball jointed neck, as well as ball joints in his shoulders, elbows, upper legs, ankles and upper torso. He also has double hinged knees and his wrists swivel.

This version of Iron Man comes with a sculpted clear orange repulsor beam effect that fits over his closed fist. I’m not a big fan of these simulated fire accessories, but so long as it can be tossed aside, they don’t really bother me. He also comes with the three armor cards and a stand with a peg for the figure and a slot for the three armor cards.

Next up is War Machine, and this is definitely my favorite figure in the line so far. The sculpt is absolutely fantastic. This figure is part of the Comic Series, so the figure is a lot less angular than the film version of the suit with the upper arms and legs retaining a more muscular organic look. Besides a ton of detail in the sculpt, this figure has some nifty features like flip up shoulder plates to free up his arm articulation and two shoulder mounted weapons (a gatling gun and a rocket launcher) that swing up from his back into firing positions. He also has a pair of guns molded into his right forearm. The coloring on this figure is also pretty sweet. He’s a mix of matte silver and dark gray with some blue wash that gives his heavily plated parts a gunmetal blued finish.

War Machine’s articulation is the same as the other figurs in the line, featuring a ball jointed neck, as well as ball joints in his shoulders, elbows, upper legs, ankles and upper torso. He also has double hinged knees and his wrists swivel. While his flip up shoulders give him greater arm movement, some of his other sculpting inhibits articulation a bit, but not enough to spoil the figure.

War Machine comes with the three armor cards and the same exact stand as Iron Man. He also comes with two clip on pieces for his shoulder weapons to make them look like they are firing. I’ve already mentioned that I’m not a big fan of these, but I have to admit the one with the tiny rockets molded into it looks pretty cool.

Unfortunately, my fears over the assortments on this line is playing out, but I probably shouldn’t complain since I was able to find the exact two figures I set out to get. I just don’t know how many less determined people are going to flip through dozens of the same couple of figures before finding what they want. And even then, there is going to be a derth of the same figures hanging on the pegs once the less common stuff has been mined out. That having been said, this overall line continues to impress me.