Sunday, December 31, 2017

Marvel Legends Capt. Britain & Spider-UK

Captain Britain and Spider-UK are characters I'm completely unfamiliar with, my interest purely aesthetic and particularly as a pair. They were not the most popular Marvel Legends figures, Spider-UK the running change with the very popular new Spider-Man 2099 from the Sandman BAF series, and Captain Britain the running change with Wonder Man from the Abomination BAF series.

Spider-UK has a simple deco in some respects, but lots of line work that was executed with relative precision, regardless of my careless nick in the white line over the left pectoral. He's a lot beefier than we normally see on a typical Spider-Man buck, this medium build being a new body type for Hasbro. It is well articulated, and seems to avoid the abdominal hinge gap issues seen in the Bucky Cap. I like the anatomical proportions of this figure immensely, as well as the sculpted fabric folds in the outfit, and the articulation meets all expectations of modern action figure construction. 

Billy Braddock was a member of the Captain Britain Corps and fugitive from the now extinct Earth-833, who teamed up with the other web warriors to battle the Inheritors in Spider-Verse. My experience with that series is very limited as I mostly stopped buying the new monthly books at the end of 2014, a gap in my readership I'm currently trying to fill with my new subscription to Marvel Unlimited.

Captain Britain was created exclusively for the British comics market in 1976, but now fights among the main Marvel continuity wearing this, his latest uniform. The pectoral "shelf" of this buck, used previously on Sentry, is a little weird, but I do like this action figure. I literally have no reading experience with Captain Britain/Brian Braddock, but I'm sure that will change with the aforementioned Marvel Unlimited subscription. The painted buckles on his boots and shoulder insignia are nice details, and I like the forearm wraps.

 For comparison, below are Spider-UK with my All-New Amazing Spider-Man, and Captain Britain with my Marvel NOW! Captain America...

While there's nothing in the way of accessories, and both characters are C-grade heroes in the Marvel Universe, I like them a lot as a pair. I'm a little more excited about Captain Britain due to his more interesting deco with the painted buckles and all, but Spider-UK is sporting a new buck that I feel is closer to an anatomically realistic. You should be able to pick either one up loose at half the retail price on eBay...

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Saturday, December 23, 2017

Marvel Legends Capt. Marvel & Ms. Marvel

Back to Marvel Legends, my renewed interest for which has inspired an ongoing hunt for some figures that caught my attention upon their release, but did not fit into budget, space, and time constraints at the time. Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers was released in 2015, and Ms. Marvel more recently in 2016. Serendipitously stumbling across some of the New Marvel Generations issues after avoiding the racks for an extended period, I picked up the Ms. Marvel book featuring these Carol Danvers and Kamala Khan, which I found quite satisfying story-wise. There has been a lot of feedback on Generations, some of it negative, but as what was basically my introduction to these two characters, I had no expectations. I'd recommend you give it a shot, just try not to pay five bucks for it- it may hold it's value due to it's more favorable reception, so good luck with that.

As seen in the pics above, Captain Marvel included a Carol Danvers head accessory which has a lot going for it, but the masked Mohawk head is far more interesting. I love this outfit of this character, very neatly applied in the figure's deco- some incised sculpt in the uniform, even if only cuts at the glove or boot tops, could have made it stronger . A flame accessory in translucent pink also came with Captain Marvel, which fits neatly over the figure's fist. She's quite poseable, the limited forward tilt hinge at the ankles my only real complaint, and I love her floating sash and contrasty color scheme. I knew I'd eventually cave in and pick this figure up, and since I wasn't interested in the All-Father BAF, picking her up on eBay at less than half the original retail price was a cinch.

Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel shares a similar color scheme, in reverse, and sports a delightful little head sculpt- she's really a cutie, and I love the hero mask! From the 2016 Sandman BAF wave, she came with alternate hand sculpts that complement her Inhuman ability to grow in size and stretch her proportions. The paint deco is nearly flawless on this sample, including gold monogrammed scarf that can be rotated on the neck to suit her pose. Kamala is a figure of a character more relevant than ever, daughter of Indian immigrant descent, and it is my hope this new character of diversity survives. Hat's off to Marvel Comics and Hasbro for gettin' behind this girl.

Pictured below, Ms. Marvel with Kid Nova, another "juvenile" buck in the Marvel Legends stable, and Captain Marvel with Ashley Barton Spider-Woman from a couple posts back- a somewhat underappreciated Marvel Legends female I love...

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Sunday, December 17, 2017

Imaginext DC Super Friends Series 2 Kingdom Come Superman

I'd swore off Imaginext figures because it's too easy to collect too many of them, but caved in on this Kingdom Come version of Superman, a favorite version of the caped, Kryptonian. Kingdom Come (1996) is one of my all-time favorite DC Comics stories, making a very big impact on me, returning to reading comics and collecting action figures seven years ago. For awhile now, Imaginext have been delivering some really fun action figures among their line of blind bag offerings, and have dug deep into the DC mythos with some fan favorites like Martian Manhunter, Plastic Man, and Red Tornado.
Series Two continues this trend with characters like Emperor Aquaman form the Flashpoint storyline, and Sinestro in his traditional black and blue outfit. Wonderful!

Kingdom Come Superman comes with kryptonite chains accessory, which is appropriate, but does not seem to fit onto him all that well. Perhaps I don't have the arms properly situated...

Below, Imaginext Kingdom Come Superman with New 52 Superman, who shares the same body sculpt. See my 2011 post on the DC Direct JSA Series Kingdom Come Superman for a more conventional look at this incarnation of Superman!

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Thursday, December 14, 2017

Marvel Legends All New Amazing Spider-Man & Ashley Barton Spider-Woman

I've had a renewed interest in Marvel Legends figures, picking up several within the last six months while unloading as many older figures from the collection on my eBay store. I sold off most all my loose 3.75" Marvel Universe figures as well, and will eventually get around to selling the humongous tote of carded samples as well, my focus narrowing more toward 6" or larger as I downsize. I picked these Marvel Legends All New Amazing Spider-Man and Ashley Barton Spider-Woman loose on eBay, Spidey originally from the recent Spider-Man and Mary Jane 2-pack, and Ashley Barton from the Space Venom BAF wave. Why settle for Mary Jane, when I can have Spider-Woman?

Spider-Man came with a generous two extra set of hands, and a Peter Parker head. I put Amazing Spider-Man down after the Superior Spider-Man arc, but this outfit is styed after Parker's return from swapping bodies with Octavius. As you can read in the link above to my 2013 post on the book, I thrilled at this very unusual take on Spider-Man. I've read that the "All-New" Spider-Man's suit is enhanced by tech developed by Octavius during his reign as webslinger, funded by money the criminal mastermind raised founding Parker Industries, hence the glowing effect around his chest insignia. I've heard the complaints, but it doesn't bother me at all- I love the vibrancy of this action figure, and his articulation is up to modern standards. Coincidentally, I recently found the retro-packaged "Pizza Spidey" (pictured) with a more classic deco, but will likely display him on card.

My flight stands fit into the peg hole on Spider-Man's back, making him particularly fun!

The obvious comparison would be with my new Homecoming Spider-Man, who also came with a Peter Parker head. I guess in the spirit of Spider-Verse, these two could possibly meet, banding together to fend off the Inheritors! 

I have yet to read Old Man Logan, so my knowledge of Ashely Barton is limited, but I bought her purely based on aesthetics. I love her outfit, and the head sculpt is great with tiny painted hoops in her right ear. She came with no accessories or extra hands, but I am just in love this somewhat underappreciated figure, most among this line of "Web Slinging Heroines" outshined by the popular Silk figure. Ashely has her own thing going on though....

I also thought Ashley and Peter would make a great pair! I love to collect this way, cherry-picking two or more figures from a line that I like together. The semi-gloss finish and webbed red and blue outfits on these figures dazzle me together.

Below, Ashley Barton with my Marvel Legends Superior Spider-Man...

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Sunday, December 10, 2017

Hot Toys Artist Mix Avengers AOU Ultron Sentry- Series 1

Following up on my post the Hot Toys Artist Mix Avengers AOU Deluxe Set- Series 2, both variants of the Series 1 Ultron Sentry I picked up around the same time at the end of this summer passed.  I said about these before that while their bobble heads gave me mixed feelings initially, Japanese vinyl artist Touma's wonderful designs eventually won me over. Check out the video:

There is an Ultron Prime available among the Hot Toys Age of Ultron Artist Mix Series, but I preferred the Sentry head sculpt, designed more in keeping with Ultron's classic look. The blue "Version A" figure has a little red in his paint apps, "Version B" decorated as precisely only in red. These are a bit more expensive that your typical Funko POP! vinyl, which I also love, but the craftsmanship is exceptional. Shop for your best deal always, as I paid less after prices came down on these- not the case for every figure in the series I've found.

Below, Hot Toys Artist Mix Series 1 Ultron Sentry with my Series 2 Vision.
See more comparison shots in the video above!

While I'm mad for these Touma figures, I'm not sure I'll buy any more- you can see in the picture below, my Age of Ultron corner shrine below seems complete! I'm a big fan of the heroes lineup I have, though I've seen a pretty cool Falcon and Ant-Man .... a Red Hulk would put me over the edge, but these are movie-based, so I'm probably safe! Beautiful figures!

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Friday, December 1, 2017

Marvel Legends Homecoming Spider-Man/Iron Man Sentry 2-pk & Vulture BAF

I loved Spider-Man: Homecoming, finally catching it on blu-ray months after it's silver screen debut, and began to look more closely at some of the merchandise thereafter. The Spider-Man/Iron Man Mark XLVII Sentry 2-pk was found from a seller on e-Bay at a discounted price, containing two of the action figures I was most interested in, but I had to pay more for the totally awesome Vulture BAF from another seller. There were lots of complaints about the web wings on Spider-Man and Iron Man's limited hip articulation, and rightly so, but the alternate Peter Parker/Sentry heads in the 2-pk make it a must-have. And the Vulture BAF is a triumph of modern action figure design, with it's highly articulated 22+ inch wingspan. Check out the video:

I would have liked a taller display stand for the Vulture's wings, but it's hard to deny this may very well be the best Legends BAF Hasbro has produced in recent years. The wings are an entire thing unto itself, but the figure is nothing to sneeze at either, with the level of sculpt and paint detail we've come to enjoy on Hasbro's best movie figures. Just amazing...

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Monday, November 27, 2017

Rewind: Marvel Universe Silver Samurai & Wolverine

After reading about Silver Samurai in the Wolverine #150 Giant-Sized Special from May of 2000, I was reminded of the Marvel Universe Greatest Battles Comic Pack I sold on my eBay store, which included the only Kenuichio action figure I've ever owned. And if you only had one, this was a good one to have- his detailed sculpt, flashy metallic presentation, and extra size among Hasbro's 3.75" line made him a standout! While I've successfully sold off most of my loose figures in this scale, I'll eventually put my carded samples up for auction- keep an eye on that if you live in the continental U.S. For now I've listed all my 2.25" DC Action League collection, as well as my 4" JLU figures.

The Wolverine included with Silver Samurai in that Greatest Battles pack wasn't that spectacular, but the Astonishing Wolverine I sold with his Marvel Universe Wave 16 counterparts was! I don't know if he's the best Wolverine in my collection, as the are so varied in make and scale, but I kinda hated to see him go   :D  Be sure to follow the Super-DuperToyBox on Instagram to see more of the toys in my collection revisited as I put them up of sale!

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