Marvel Legends (Sauron Wave): Wolverine (Laura Kinney) by Hasbro

It’s time for another Marvel Monday and today is proof that I probably need to shake the box that holds my unopened Legends figures, because today’s random grab takes us back to the Sauron Wave! And I’m fine with that, as I’m rather excited to get the Sauron BAF assembled. But there was no cheating this week. Honest! So let’s go ahead and have a look at Wolverine!

And this is, of course, Laura Kinney as Wolverine coming hot (well, more like tepid) off the presses of another of Marvel’s sad and pointless gender-swaps. Then again, I’m one of those craaaaaazy people that believes strong female characters can sell books and don’t need to glom on to a male character’s identity to do it. But I will say that of all these recent identity-swaps, I actually didn’t mind this one so much. After all, Laura is one of those great characters that I just mentioned that doesn’t need to bogart Wolverine’s name to sell books. Not something I could say about Jane Foster or Riri Williams. Oh shit, my rant alarm is warning me that I’m getting dangerously close to going off topic, so let’s open this damn figure!

Whatever my feelings on the book, I sure as hell can’t deny that Laura looks amazing in the costume and this figure sells it big time! There isn’t a hell of a lot of new sculpting here from the neck down, as Hasbro lets the paint do the talking when it comes to the costume detail. There are, however, newly sculpted boots, which appear to be layered over the lower legs. It makes them a bit thicker, but not so much that it bothers me. The only other sculpted piece is the brown belt that hangs on her hips and sports the X-logo.

If you read my review of Bishop, than you know how much I love the yellow and blue deco of the 90’s X-Men costumes and those lovely colors are on full display here. The paint lines are pretty sharp, and the only nitpick I have here is the yellow paint on the arms and legs shows up darker than the the yellow paint on the torso because the blue is bleeding through. It’s not as bad as we’ve seen in the past, but still worth mentioning.

The figure comes with two heads, one masked and one unmasked. They’re both solid enough, but I can’t imagine not displaying her with the masked one. I love the classic design of the cowl and the way they sculpted her hair blowing off and to her left. It just looks amazing. Maybe if this figure shows up later on at a discount I’ll pick up a second to display both ways. The unmasked head looks fine on its own, but it’s hard for me to equate both as being the same person. The unmasked head just doesn’t look anything like the exposed part of the face on the masked head. But that’s OK, because I have another use for it…

It looks fantastic on the X-23 figure!

As with past Wolverine figures, the claws are slotted into the knuckles and they are removable, although I’m going to abstain from doing it. I removed one and found it really difficult to get back in. And unlike the X-23 figure from the Sasquatch Wave, this time Ms. Kinney is sporting her toe blades too! Now these blades tend to fall out pretty easily. In fact, I was positive I had lost them at least once.

The articulation here is standard stuff for our Legends ladies. I do like that they got the swivels in the lower legs, despite the sculpted boots. As for the rest, you get rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists. The legs are ball jointed at the hips with double hinges in the knees, swivels in the thighs and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. There’s a ball joint under her chest, and the neck is both hinged and ball jointed.

Hasbro has been killing it with the X-Men figures lately, and Ms. Kinney as Wolverine is just another fine example of that. And nope, I don’t need to love the book to appreciate this figure. While the identity swaps are mostly cheap gimmickry, if anyone was going to take over Wolverine’s tiger stripes, it always should have been X-23 and I’m glad to have this figure on my Legends shelves. Besides, she just looks so damn good in those colors!

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Marvel Legends (Sauron Wave): Bishop by Hasbro

It’s Marvel Monday and time for me to reach my hand into the big box of unopened Marvel Legends and randomly pull out a… oh, f’ck it, I just saw Bishop at the top of the box and I’m opening him!

Yup, I’ve been hoping to land Bishop in my random picks for a while now, and frankly I just got tired of waiting. I’ve been hoping that Hasbro would slip in with each new X-Men themed Wave and here we are at the Sauron Wave and there’s Bishop in all his classic Jim Lee costume glory. This is a figure that practically breaks out of the packaging and leaps off the peg. And as big and beefy as Bishop is, they still managed to get one of Sauron’s arms and wings stuffed in there behind him. Not too shabby!

Holy hell, this figure practically makes me giddy with joy. I’m a child of the 70’s and 80’s, so I don’t find a lot of nostalgia in the 90’s, but the X-Men of this era scratched a certain itch with me. I was in college, I was on my own, and I was probably looking for something familiar and comfortable and the resurgence of X-Men in both animated and comic book form was that very thing. Not to mention those original Toy Biz figures on those colorful cards! Take all that and now toss in a fantastic new character like Bishop who tapped into some of the that stuff that made the X-Men so cool and it’s no wonder he resonates with me. Even better, just look at how great this figure turned out! It’s a veritable symphony of sculpt and color. Hasbro took an appropriately beefy buck and wrapped some equally beefy web-gear in the form of a waist belt, a shoulder rig, and bicep straps. These are all sculpted with some great detail as well as all the ubiquitous pouches that we have come to expect from our 90’s comic powerhouses. Toss a chunky X-logo offset onto the belt and the trademark neckerchief, and you’ve got goddamn poetry in action figure form.

But it’s equally the coloring on this figure that makes me want to weep tears of joy. The bright blue body suit, coupled with the yellow gear and double stripe, coupled with the red neckerchief and X-logo and you’ve got a deco that sings. I don’t know what it is about these colors that lights up all the pleasure centers of my brain, but it’s been that way ever since my first Toy Biz X-Men figures and that feeling has only grown with age. The blue and yellow in particular just go so well together and they even did a beautiful job printing his shoulder patches. It just doesn’t get any better than this.

And the magic that is this figure doesn’t stop at the neckline, because check out that mug! I’m overall very pleased with the head sculpts Hasbro has been serving up for their modern Legends line, but Bishop’s portrait here even manages to step it up a notch. It is absolutely superb. From the expression to the detail on his facial features to the sculpting in the hair and the perfect paint on his goatee, this is portrait that was crafted with love and reverence for the character. I don’t like to throw around the P-word all that often, but I’m going to do it here. This head sculpt is perfect. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Bishop comes with one accessory and that’s his big honkin’ shotgun-looking weapon. It’s a fairly simple sculpt, appropriately molded in black plastic with a pistol-style grip and a large slide that gives it a distinctive look. Naturally he has a big yellow scabbard behind his left shoulder to store it. He can actually hold it in either hand, as both have sculpted trigger fingers. The only issue I have here is how hard it was for me to get it into either hand, because his fingers are sculpted into a death grip. I know Bishop is an imposing dude, but damn buddy, loosen up them hands so I can get your gun in them! In fairness, it got a lot easier after I’ve had it in and out of the hands a few times.

The articulation here consists of the usual. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, with double hinges in the elbows and swivels in the biceps. The legs have rotating hinges in the hips, double hinges in the knees, swivels at the thighs and the tops of the boots, and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. There’s a swivel in the chest, an ab crunch hinge in the torso and the neck is both hinged and ball jointed.

Chances are by now you’re tired of hearing a 46-year-old man verbally jerk off to an action figure, so I’ll go ahead and wrap things up. Bishop is an example of a toy line firing on all cylinders. This figure takes a great character and absolutely does him justice in 6-inches of plastic. The extra sculpting, the amazing portrait, the colors… I don’t think it’s at all possible for me to gaze on this figure without a big dumb happy smile on my face. If you’re at all a fan of the character, or just the 90’s X-Men in general, this one is a must-have for any collection. And most of all, this is why Hasbro’s modern Marvel Legends remains one of my all-time favorite action figure lines.

Marvel Legends (Apocalypse Wave): Magneto by Hasbro

Marvel Monday is here again, and just to show you how far behind on Marvel Legends I truly am, today’s random selection brings me to another Wave that I haven’t ventured into before. It’s another X-Men themed assortment, this time with the one and only Apocalypse as the Build-A-Figure. There are some great characters in this wave and today I’m starting out with the Magneto!

I’ll confess, I haven’t read an X-Men comic in quite a few years. But that’s more a reflection of my general distaste for Marvel’s comics lately and not a specific rebuke toward the X-Men. Not to mention I have a healthy stack of back issues and trades that I can dip into when I need to show the Mutants some lovin. With that having been said, these characters are still near and dear to my heart, and it’s long past time we had Magneto grace the modernĀ Marvel Legends lineup.

I take it this is what Magneto is wearing these days? It’s far from his iconic classic look, but it’s OK. I’ll confess I dig the black and red a lot more than the black and gray short sleeve look. The body here gets by mostly with paint, so you’ve got a black buck with the red striping. The striping is a little hit and miss. It looks great on the torso, but the legs have some sloppiness and bleed-through. It’s by no means terrible, but could be better.

The new sculpted parts include his boots and wrist bracers, as well as the cape, which has a peg for his back, but seems to be just as happy to hang from around his neck. The shoulder armor and bolted cross-strap are a nice nod to his classic look, and the red inner lining of the cape compliments the snappy deco pretty well.

Magneto comes packaged with his helmeted head, which is excellent. The style of the helmet hasn’t changed much, it’s still a form fitting, medieval looking affair at it appears to be sculpted separately from the head and permanently attached, which adds a lot to the depth and realism of the portrait. Erik’s face sculpt is fantastic, and it depicts him with pupil-less eyes.

The alternative head is sans helmet, and definitely falls into the, “It’s so good that I feel bad because I’ll probably never display him with it.” Actually, this is one of cases where if the figure starts turning up cheap, I might buy a second, so I can display him both ways. This head features the same great facial sculpt and some pretty incredible hair.

As for accessories, Magneto comes with two pairs of hands: Regular fists and a pair of translucent purple hands to go with the pair of translucent effect parts. I actually dig the purple hands a lot, even if I’m not really sure that they convey magnetism all that accurately. The same goes for the effect parts, which look more like your standard Force Lightning from Star Wars, rather than magnetic powers. Still, it’s hard to quibble about extras and he does look damn cool wielding them.

There are no surprises here where articulation is concerned. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, the knees are double-hinged, the ankles have both hinges and lateral rockers, and there are swivels in the thighs and at the tops of the boots. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, the elbows are double-hinged, and there are swivels in the biceps. The torso features a waist swivel and an ab crunch hinge, and the neck is both hinged and ball jointed.

I’m sure I’m not being original by saying that I’d rather have had a classic Magneto, but with that token disclaimer out of the way, I really do like this figure a lot. It may not really be my Magneto, but this is a costume design that I can get behind, and there’s just the right amount of new sculpting here to make it work. Toss in a couple of fantastic portraits, and I do believe this will hold me over until we can get Erik in his red and purple duds. Either way, this is a great start to what is sure to be an incredible wave!

Marvel Gallery: Savage Land Rogue by Diamond Select

This week is one of those rare Marvel Mondays where I stray from Marvel Legends and look for some Marvel lovin’ elsewhere. And the only reason I’m doing that is because I’ve had this Marvel Gallery Rogue from Diamond Select sitting around and waiting to be opened for a couple of weeks now. So even though it’s going to put me further behind, we’ll set aside Legends for the day and have a look at this statue instead!

For the unfamiliar, Marvel (and DC!) Gallery grew out of Diamond’s Femme Fatale line of 9-inch scale PVC statues. The name may have changed but the packaging has stayed more or less the same. Rogue comes in a colorful box with windows on the front, side panels, and the top. And for some reason, DST persists on referring to these as Dioramas, which I suspect is some kind of licensing stipulation. Either way, everything is collector friendly and the statue comes nestled between two plastic trays. There’s no assembly required and she comes right out of the box all ready for your shelf.

And… WOW! Rogue stalks the wastes of The Savage Land with her spear at the ready and wearing the remnants of her X-Men costume, which happens to be torn away in all the right places. Yup, the bulk of the body sculpt here is just skin, but DST did a fine job not only with Rogue’s shapely form, but also with the subtle hints of musculature here and there. As for the costume, she features a dainty pair of green boots, a ragged green bikini bottom partially covered with leaves, and the top half of her yellow X-Men outfit with a green shredded undergarment peeking out beneath it. Short green gloves and some yellow wraps on her thigh and bicep beautifully round out this lovely make-shift costume.

They also put in some nice work on the crude dagger, which she wears on her belt. It’s got sculpted wrappings around the hilt and a makeshift brown sheath hooked onto her loose belt.

The composition is a nice mix of museum-style and cheesecake. She has one leg drawn up at the knee, with her left toes resting on the raised rock of the base and in her hands she holds a spear, ready for action. I like the pose a lot, it looks like someone just snapped a shot of her stalking the land in search of her prey. There’s a hint of imminent action, but overall this piece casts aside a strong sense of energy and just lets Rogue’s majestic and sexy form do all the talking.

And that brings me to the portrait, which is strong and overall quite well done. There’s no playful side glance here, Rogue’s gaze is straight on, maybe looking over toward the horizon, and her slightly narrowed eyes and tight lips dominate what is a confident and powerful likeness. Her coif of brown hair casts off to the side slightly, with the iconic white highlights and a green strip tied around her hairline. The sculpted bone necklace is a great touch too!

The paint here is overall pretty good, but it does show a few rough patches. The lines between skin and clothing are not all as crisp as they could be. There are a few areas around her mid-riff where the sculpted lines of the jagged top are flesh colored where they should be green. These are issues that would surely irk a perfectionist, but I think they’re well within the expectations of a budget statue line like this one. The skin tone is quite smooth and warm throughout, although it does have a bit of a glossy sheen to it, which is most noticeable to me on her face. Normally, this is something that bugs me, but hey, it’s pretty damn humid in The Savage Land, and Rogue is probably sweating buckets. On a QC note, my statue has a few scrapes in the flesh paint, the most notable of which is on her right shoulder and is clearly visible in the pictures. In the past, I’ve had some luck cleaning up these sorts of marks out with a magic eraser to smooth out the paint, but I probably won’t bother here and just write it off on dirt from the inhospitable environment.

The base is fairly simple, but it does the job of not only holding up Rogue, but also giving us a slice of her environment. It consists of a lump of pouris brown rock with a shock of vegetation growing out of the side. It looks good and it doesn’t take up too much real estate on the shelf, and those are two of the highest compliments that I can pay to any statue base.

Rogue here is exactly the reason I keep coming back to Diamond’s Gallery statues, despite the fact that I ran out of display room for these four or five statues back. Normally, I pick these up on Amazon after they’ve been released, but I actually pre-ordered this one back when it was first solicited. Sure, it means running the risk of paying more than I have to, but it only took one look at this figure to make me certain I wanted her in my collection. And with a retail of $40, Diamond’s Gallery statues continue to be some of the best values I’ve found in the collectible statue market. Or at least that’s the case now that Kotobukiya has been hiking up the prices on their Bishoujos. Sure, a few minor QC issues are bound to rear their ugly heads, and for that reason, I always recommend picking these up from a comic shop where you can inspect what you’re getting, but even though I got mine sight-unseen, I’m still perfectly pleased with the one I got.

Marvel Legends: Magik by Hasbro

No random review for this week’s Marvel Monday, as I picked up the Walgreen’s Exclusive Magik last week and was so excited that I bumped her to the head of the line. And to truly appreciate how excited I am, you have to realize that I’ve been jonesing after this figure since 2015 when she was released as part of the SDCC Exclusive Book of Vishanti boxed set. I missed the window to buy that set and wasn’t willing to pay what secondary sellers were asking for it. I had basically written her off, but thanks to this unlikely partnership between toy-maker and corner drugstore, I’ve finally got my mitts on this magical minx.

Magik is actually the third figure in that set to get a regular retail release, as we eventually got Brother Voodoo, and Dormammu turned up as a Build-A-Figure. That just left me missing the comic version of Hela and the Astral version of Doctor Strange, and I guess I can live with that. The package features the X-Men logo on the front and a Walgreens Exclusive sticker on the front. And one look at the tray shows that this box is crammed with goodies, so let’s get started!

And here’s Illyana freed from her cardboard and plastic Limbo, and what a great looking figure she is! The costume is comprised of a mix of paintwork and sculpted detail, with the paint making up the sleeves and glove on her right hand, the upper part of her thigh-high stockings, and her shorts. The top is sculpted with some raised lines and a Power Girl-style boob window, the goth boots each feature a brace of straps and buckles, and her left arm and shoulder features her Eldritch armor that appears via the Soulsword. The ensemble is tied together by a wide black belt with silver painted buckle and eyelets. I’ve got to say, both the sculpted detail and paint on this figure is especially sharp. It’s worth noting that there are a few differences between this release and the one packed in the SDCC set. Most notably, the boots were simply painted on the SDCC version, whereas this Magik is borrowing Nico Minoru’s footwear.

The portrait is every bit as impressive as the rest of the figure. Again, the detail is sharp and the paint on the eyes and lips is immaculate. I especially dig the black added to her lipstick. He hair sculpt features a rather pronounced set of bangs with strands of hair falling forward over her shoulders, a third falling back over her left shoulder, and the rest cascading down her back.

And if a great figure wasn’t enough, this tray also comes packed with extras, including two swords and a passel of magic effect parts. The obvious accessory here is The Soulsword and it is indeed a cool piece of magical cutlery. The extended grip allows for two-handed use, and the extremely broad blade is made of translucent yellow plastic with black lines running through it from the hilt.

She also comes with this blue energy sword, which I can’t place from the comics, but that doesn’t make it any less welcome. It’s got an extended silver grip with not much of a guard, giving it a distinct lightsaber-y vibe. The translucent blue blade is thin and straight, and you also get a blue energy effect part to snake around it.

And if you dig that effect part, you’re in luck, because Magik comes with no less than three more! These are all similar blue lightning magic-energy pieces, and if you collect Star Wars figures, you’ll likely find these similar to the Force Lightning pieces that Hasbro sometimes likes to include with the Dark Jedi characters. You get two small ones, which are perfect for her hands, and a longer sleeve, which can go over either arm. I’m not usually a big fan of these pieces, but I’ll confess I’m having some fun with these.

I’m at a total loss for explanation over the red repack of Kitty Pryde’s Lockheed. I thought it might be some reference to the link between Shadowcat and Magik in Limbo or just something I never came across in the comics. Or maybe it just looked magical and Hasbro wanted to get some more use out of that rather particular sculpt. Either way, this little dragon is cast in a translucent red gummy-like plastic and actually features some paint applications, including some gold to bring out his scales and some black for his horns. He’s neat! I dig him!

Finally, Magik also comes with a flaming skull, and it doesn’t take an astute student of Marvel Legends to recognize this as one of Ghost Rider’s noggins. Why the skull? Eh. It’s creepy and magic-y and who’s going to complain about getting a burning red skull as an accessory? And yes, the jaw is also articulated and there’s still a ball socket up in there if you want to use it as a head on one of your other figures.

If you’re like me and you missed out on the SDCC version, than this release of Magik is a real treat. Not to mention that as far as I’m concerned, I think this one is actually the better figure. It was really weighing on me that I missed out on this figure back then, but this is one of those cases where everything worked out for the better. She’s an amazing little figure, with a great inventory of accessories, and a welcome addition to my X-Men Legends!

Marvel Legends (Sasquatch Wave): X-23 by Hasbro

Welcome to another Marvel Monday! I’m used to posting these early in the morning right before I go to work, but now I’m posting them early in the morning right after getting home from work. Yeah, in case you missed the earlier disclaimer, I’ll be working nights on a project that will last until sometime in October and while I hope this will not effect content here, it’s certainly possible. But for now the show must go on and today the Wheel of Legends landed on the Sasquatch Wave for the second week in a row. Let’s check out Laura Kinney… X-23!!!

I have to say, this wave has been pretty great. In fact, there’s only one figure in this assortment that I wasn’t excited to get and I’m saving him for last. Oh, I mean… the totally random Wheel of Legends just hasn’t landed on him yet. Phew. Nice save on my part. Anyway, X-23 comes in a Deadpool branded package, which is a bit odd. In the past, Hasbro has changed up the branding on themed waves, and I’m not sure why they didn’t do that here, but I’m just going to throw the package out so it really doesn’t matter to me. A quick glance tells us there’s nothing in the way of accessories, but to make up for that, she does come with the giant Sasquatch torso Build-A-Figure part.

And here’s X-23 out of the package and the first thing I’ll say is how genuinely surprised I am that they didn’t go for Ms. Kinney in her Wolverine costume. Not that I’m complaining. I’m not a fan of that book, or Marvel’s bizarre insistence on replacing established characters. I am, however, a fan of her in the costume, so I wouldn’t mind getting that figure down the road. But, for now, we get X-23 in her X-Force Spec Ops outfit, which isn’t that far removed from what she’d been wearing before taking on the blue and yellow spandex. This is also fairly similar in design to the 4-inch figure we got a while back in the 2011 Marvel Universe line.

The bulk of the outfit is achieved through paint alone, although she does have some nice sculpted detail on her tall boots, including the straps that run up the sides, each with its own silver painted buckles. She also has a separately sculpted belt with the X-emblem on the buckle. The crop top is synonymous with several of her modern looks, but the gray bits really call out the X-Force look. The paint lines are overall pretty clean with a few minor flubs here and there. Unfortunately, there is a rather unsightly seam running up the side of her exposed midriff. Too bad they couldn’t have concealed this better.

I really dig this head sculpt a lot. It feels maybe a tad big for the body, but that might be because of the copious blowing hair. I’m not always a fan of the windblown look with sculpted hair, but I do like it here and I haven’t found too many poses where it gets in the way or looks out of place. The expression is pure rage with her teeth gritted as if she’s about to plunge her claws into someone, and I’m certainly cool with that. I will admit, I’m not a huge fan of the grey stripe on her mask, but that’s more an issue I have with the costume design than with the actual figure. All in all, really nice work here.

As with previous Wolverine figures, X-23’s claws are simply slotted into her hands, so they can be removed and added to allow for both display options. They’re pretty stiff and not too bendy, which is always a good thing. But what about her other claws?

Yeah, clearly the most obvious misstep here is that she doesn’t have her foot claws. I’m only mentioning it now, but it was the first thing I noticed when I took her out of the package. I hadn’t seen any reviews of this figure and since her feet are obscured by the Deadpool logo, I honestly expected them to be there. Even after I got her out of the package, I was looking in the tray to see if they had fallen out, but nope… she just doesn’t have them. Now, I’m not up on my X-23 funnybooks, so maybe there’s a reason for this in the official canon, but my guess is that Hasbro just didn’t include them on the figure for some inexplicable reason.

The articulation here is pretty good, but I have a few minor complaints. The arms feature those weird rotating shoulder hinges, which just don’t look all that natural. Otherwise, you have the regular rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists. The legs have ball jointed hips, swivels in the thighs and at the tops of the boots, and double hinges in the knees. The ankles have both hinges and lateral rockers. There’s a ball joint under the chest and the neck has both a hinge and ball joint. Ms. Kinney is generally a pretty agile character, so the articulation here isn’t quite up to the task of all I’d like her to be able to do, but as far as the Legends line goes, it’s acceptable.

And so, X-23 takes her place as another really solid figure in a really solid assortment. I wouldn’t mind getting a few repaints out of this one, maybe Hasbro can whip up a striped top variant to take another $20 away from me. Whatever the case, I was happy to see them dig a little deeper here rather than go with a current comic that I’m just not into at all. Then again, I’m sure I’m going to buy the Laura Kinney Wolverine whenever they get around to it anyway. And that leaves just one more figure in this wave before I can build Sasquatch. But next week, I’ll be tossing randomness to the wind and taking a look at one of the Marvel Studio: First Ten Years figures!

Marvel Legends (Sasquatch Wave): Cable by Hasbro

Hello, Toyhounds, and welcome to another installment of Marvel Monday. The day where I try to ease the pain of the worst day of the week by opening up a new Marvel Legends figure. I know, I’m supposed to be randomizing my Marvel Legends reviews, but this time I’m sticking with the Sasquatch Wave because after lamenting Deadpool’s lack of accessories last week, now I think I found where they all went. Let’s take a look at Cable!

Of course, the politics of business are keeping us from getting figures based on Deadpool 2, but that hasn’t stopped Hasbro from cashing in with another wave of comic-inspired Deadpool figures. You may remember that we got a more modern version of Cable back in the Juggernaut Wave, but now Hasbro’s coming at us with a more classic version and I couldn’t be happier!

Cable may be from the future, but this figure looks like he jumped straight out of the comic panels of the past! The same pages that I used to flip through in college while waiting for class to start. Ah, the 90’s! I was an adult off on my own for the first time and yet clinging to the youth I left behind me with comics. As you can see, Cable is a beast of a figure, thanks in part to the large buck, but even more so to the ridiculously (I mean that in a good way) bulky gear that’s strapped to him. Most of that stuff is on his torso, but that doesn’t mean Hasbro skimped on him below the belt. The boots alone feature some wonderful attention to detail from the sculpted laces, and all the little lines of stitching to the thick treaded soles. Cable’s trousers also include sculpted knee pads and of course a brace of pouches strapped to each of his thighs. They even sculpted in his back pockets.

Cable sports a heavy-duty belt with a great weathered leather look to it, and guess what? More pouches!!! They come in all different sizes, flanking the manly and industrial looking belt-buckle. His blue shirt is dominated by the two gigantic shoulder pads and straps. The shoulder pads are sculpted in brown plastic and have a padded look, while the straps themselves are green with more pouches front and back. Seriously, how does he even get to those ones on his back? His right shoulder pad features a strap of grenade rounds, each painted gold, and the left strap has a row of brown leather pouches that look like they’re probably for extra magazines. If he were a videogame boss, these would be the targets to aim for! His hands feature large gauntlets and his mechanical left arm has a nice coat of metallic silver paint.

The portrait here is killer. Cable features a shock of white hair, which is molded separately from the head to give it that extra little bit of dimension. His teeth are clenched in his best patented Cable Battle Grimaceā„¢ his right eye is pupil-less and scarred and his left eye has an effect part to show it shining. I was not sure how well that eye piece was going to work for me in person, but now that I have the figure, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. It’s just perfect. Of course, Cable is also sporting the giant communication device attached to the left side of his head and he also has the high padded collar with that giant X-branded travel pillow hanging off of it.

Now, as it is there’s enough extra plastic and tooling here to put a strain on the cost of this wave, but I haven’t even got to the extras yet, and as I said earlier, this is probably where all of Deadpool’s guns went. For starters, Cable comes with his stupid-big pulse rifle. This thing is so obnoxious and ridiculous that he can’t even fit the stock against the inside of his shoulder. I mean, this figure ain’t no wimp and the gun is still too big for him. Keep in mind, that isn’t a complaint, because this gun is a celebration of everything that was EXTREME about 90’s comics.

So, yeah… the pulse rifle is just a big hunk of sci-fi killing hardware. It’s cast in a dark blue plastic and has some nice detailing on it, as well as some sculpted scrapes. The hand grip and trigger guard look almost comically small compared to the rest of the weapon, and the shoulder stock is just a massive slab of plastic. It also has a hole on the side so it can peg onto Cable’s back for carrying.

If the Giga-Pulse Rifle is a little too overstated for your tastes, Cable comes with two smaller weapons, both of which are designed with a nice sci-fi flare, but still manage to keep a bit of realistic flavor. The first is kind of like a gatling-handgun. It’s not a petite gun by any means, but he can wield it a lot more comfortably than the rifle.

The next weapon in Cable’s arsenal is a double-barreled handgun. I really dig the design on this one, as the back half looks a bit like the old 19th century black powder pistols. I’m not sure if Hasbro got these ideas from any particular comic, but if they’re original designs my hats off to them, because they’re both pretty cool. Cable also has a loop on his belt that works like a cross-draw holster for this gun, but it’s the most awkward holster I’ve ever seen. Maybe it’s not the holster, but just how bulky Cable is with all his gear. It looks like it would be hard to draw the weapon when the shit hits the fan. Still, at least with this holster, the back peg for the rifle and one free gun hand, Cable is capable of carrying all his weapons at once. Which brings me to one nitpick. I really wish they had given him a gun-holding left hand instead of the open hand.

Oh yeah… the articulation here holds no surprises. The arms have rotating hinges at the shoulders and wrists, double-hinged elbows, and swivels in the biceps. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, have double-hinged knees, and swivels in the thighs and tops of the boots. The ankles have both hinges and lateral rockers. The torso has a waist swivel and an ab crunch hinge, while the neck is both hinged and ball jointed. Of course, despite all the usual points, Cable’s bulk and extra gear makes him a little less agile than your average Legends figure. Indeed, he feels more like a Masters of the Universe figure, but I still find him to be loads of fun to play with.

Next to Domino, Cable was my most anticipated figure in this wave and I have to say he does not disappoint. The sculpt is fantastic and the weapons are plentiful. Sorry, Deadpool, but it looks like Cable got all your extras. Now, I will admit that I would have been just as happy if Hasbro had given us his blue-and-yellow costume, like we got in the 4-inch Marvel Universe line, but here’s hoping that Hasbro delivers that one at some point down the road. In the meantime, I promise next week to detour out of the Sasquatch Wave and hit one of the others that I’m woefully behind on.

Marvel Gallery: Phoenix by Diamond Select

It’s that magical time for Marvel Monday, when I’m between waves of Marvel Legends and I can take a brief moment to look at something else Marvel-related before diving into another Legends Wave and chipping away at my huge backlog. And as it so happens, I just got in one of the latest releases in Diamond Select’s Marvel Gallery series of 9-inch scale PCV statues. Let’s have a look at Jean Grey!

DST has done a great job streamlining the package for this line while still giving each one a bit of character. Jean comes in a collector-friendly window box with windows on the front, top, and side panels, allowing you to get a great look at the piece you’re buying. Provided, of course, that you aren’t picking them up online, like I have to. The box deco is blue with some green speckles of energy and the X-Men logo under the window and above her name. Diamond has been calling these “PVC Dioramas,” but they’re really just statues with specialized bases. I can’t help but wonder if that has something to do with licensing issues.

And with Jean out of her box, I find myself suitably impressed! Jean stands with her right toe suspended in the center of a fiery phoenix and her left leg bent up at the knee. She turns at the waist toward her beholder with her right arm out behind her and her left arm reaching forward. The composition here really resonates a lot of energy, while still retaining something of a cheesecake pose, which would have been right at home in Kotobukiya’s Bishoujo line.

All the details of Phoenix’s costume are incorporated as part of the sculpt. Her boots and gauntlets are thicker, making them actually look like they’re worn over the suit. Even the plunging black triangle on her chest with the phoenix emblem are separate sculpts. The belt also features the two tied off loose ends fluttering behind her. Beyond that, you get some lovely muscle definition sculpted into her skin tight suit.

The paint on the costume is damn near flawless. The suit features a striking metallic green finish, the triangular cut-out is in matte black, and the rest of the costume is kitted out in a yellowish-gold with a nice shimmer to it. Very nice!

The portrait is clean and beautiful, but like the pose, it leans toward the previously mentioned Bishoujo camp. It’s not that she’s had an anime makeover, but rather her smiling expression makes this look more like a glamour art commission one might get done at a comic convention. I actually love it, but some might have hoped for something a little more serious and in character. Either way, the paint applications for the eyes and lips are all crisp and fairly precise. The only issue I have is that the mascara under her left eye is a little lower than the right, but I’m really nitpicking here. The hair sculpt is absolutely extraordinary.

The fiery phoenix base is cast in a translucent orange and yellow plastic. and works beautifully. I love the balance of the piece and how it looks like Jean is almost defying gravity. I’ve really been warming up to statue designers using unconventional bases like this.

I have to give major props to DST for this beautiful statue. The quality on this piece is exceptional and I’m ever impressed that they can deliver something that looks this good in what is basically a budget line. I pre-ordered this one when it was first solicited at $45 and I couldn’t be happier with my purchase. Indeed, she’s so good, she can definitely hang with some of the more expensive statues in my collection. It’ll be back to Legends next week, and with the Blu-Ray release of Spider-Man: Homecoming coming in just a few weeks, I thought I might as well hit that wave next.

Marvel Legends (Warlock Wave): Wolverine by Hasbro

After an abbreviated week due to epic storm complications, I’m back and ready to return FFZ to regular operations with Marvel Monday, and today I’m checking out the final figure in the Marvel Legends Warlock Wave with Wolverine! I’ve been on this wave for what seems like forever and Irma has already cost me enough time, so let’s just jump right in and check him out!

The package is beat to hell, but here’s one instance where it wasn’t from shipping. This figure has been kicking around this place for a while and got hastily packed away with a bunch of other stuff before the storm. It’s OK, I don’t save these boxes anyway. And yes, the package says Wolverine, but this figure will be better known to fans as Old Man Logan. It’s hard to believe it’s been almost a decade since this version of the character debuted in what was a truly memorable comic. It’s also sad to see how far Marvel has fallen since then. I can’t imagine them putting out a book as amazingly creative and well-written these days. Ah, but let’s pretend to be this Logan living in a hellish future and look back on happier times.

And here he is in all his geriatric glory. He comes out of the package with his claws popped, but they are the same removable type that we saw with the last Wolverine release, so you can recreate Logan’s refusal to use them by just pulling them out. The fact that they leave behind holes in his knuckles isn’t ideal, but at least we have the option. Just be sure to put those claws in a safe place if you take them out, because I’ve almost lost one already! As far as the buck goes, this looks all new to me and I love how short and stocky it is. Logan sports his retired civvies in the form of brown trousers and a red shirt with a sculpted button collar.

The bomber jacket is the usual “vest with arms sculpted to look like sleeves” trick and it looks great on the figure. The fur-lined collar has some nice texturing and the zipper tracks are neatly painted. Even the belt buckle is beautifully detailed and painted with a nice gold finish. It may not be the most striking costume around, but Hasbro did a wonderful job recreating it in a buck that I doubt will ever get much re-use.

And just check out that head sculpt! I love the crotchety expression and all the little wrinkles and age lines sculpted into his face. This portrait is just packed with detail and oozes character. The gray mutton chops look great, as do the very expressive eyebrows. You can practically hear him yelling at the Hulk Gang to get off his lawn.

This Logan may be old, but he’s still nimble, as evidenced in the articulation. The arms feature rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, double hinges in the elbows, and swivels in the biceps. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, have swivels at the thighs, and double hinges at the knees. The ankles have both hinges and lateral rockers. There’s a swivel at the waist, an ab crunch hinge in the torso and the neck is both hinged and ball jointed.

If I were a betting man, I would have bet against ever getting this figure. The sculpting required for the buck seems like a dead end, and we all know how Hasbro needs to weigh each new sculpt against possible recycling down the road. It’s also a version of the character that was more or less promoted in a Fox Film and not tied to the usual MCU. The last time Hasbro promoted one of the non-Disney Marvel films was Amazing Spider-Man 2 and I got the feeling that the wave didn’t do so well for them. Nevertheless, here he is and Hasbro did a beautiful job with him.

And opening Old Man Logan last places a very tasty cherry on the top of what was an amazing assortment of figures. Sure, I could have come up with a bunch of better characters for the BAF, but I’m certain that there are New Mutants fans out there who are happy to have Warlock, and I’m not going to begrudge them that. All I can say is, keep these X-Men themed Waves coming, Hasbro, because you’re absolutely killing it with them! Next week, I’m going to take a brief detour from Legends figures to check out another one of Diamond Select’s Marvel Gallery statues and then I’ll start digging into another Legends Wave on the following Monday!

Marvel Legends (Warlock Wave): Sunfire by Hasbro

It’s Monday folks, and I may or may not be under water. While waiting around for Hurricane Irma to come have her way with me, I finished off and scheduled a couple of reviews, just in case I’m running on candle power and no Internet. The show will go on, if only because writing about toys takes my mind off of things. Today, I’ve got a quick one-two punch for Marvel Monday, but since I probably won’t be up and running tomorrow, I’m saving one in place of Tuesday’s normal content. So… today let’s check out Sunfire! This is one of the figures I picked up loose online, so we’ll forgo the packaged shot and jump right into the figure…

And hot damn, do I love this costume! Shiro sports his full red bodysuit with white striping radiating out from his circular red belt buckle, all appropriately very reminiscent of the Japanese flag during WWII. I’m all over the way the design of this costume reflects the spirit of his backstory so perfectly, as few comic book heroes can make that boast. I’m also pleased to report that the white paint looks bright and clean despite being painted over the snappy red plastic buck.

The belt is a separately sculpted piece that hangs around Shiro’s waist and has twin flaming white stripes running around its circumference. The costume’s deco is rounded out by some sharp gold flame patterns on his lower legs and arms.

The head is beautifully done with the somewhat complex mask that leaves just the lower part of his face exposed. It forms two horns sweeping out from his eyebrows and the rest of the mask has always given me a bit of a Universal Monsters Gillman vibe. The large eyes are painted orange and you get more printed gold around the eyes and on the top of the hood. It’s an intimidating look, to be sure!

The articulation here i fantastic, thanks to the use of one of the Spider-Man bucks (2099?), which includes the “butterfly” shoulders. The rest of the articulation includes rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, double hinges in the elbows and knees, swivels in the biceps, waist, thighs, and lower legs, hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles, an ab crunch hinge in the torso, and both a hinge and ball joint in the neck.

Sunfire comes with a pair of flame effect parts that fit over his fists. We’ve seen these before, but they look great on him. And that’s coming from someone who is seldom all that keen on the effect parts.

I like this figure a lot, despite the fact that Sunfire and I don’t have a long history together. Shiro is a great character with an extremely interesting backstory, but he just doesn’t happen to appear in a lot of the books I read, and sadly he wasn’t even a major player in the X-Men cartoon either. Nonetheless, Hasbro did a great job on him and he’s another Mutant that I can cross off my list. Come on back tomorrow, and we’ll check out the Build-A-Figure of this wave… Warlock!