The paint work is mostly well done with just a little slop here and there (primarily the fingers), but the paint on the face is enough to convince me that Hasbro is ready to take Marvel Legends more seriously than they once did. In addition to that, the straps, buttons, and ornate detailing on the gloves and belt are all painted well. I’d still like to see something done to add a little texture to that large surface area on his chest, but it’s a minor quibble. Visually, the figure is very satisfying. The problems happen when you open him up.
My first problem with this figure is that it’s getting a little too Mattel up in here. The pieces in-between the joints – inside the double-hinged elbows and knees, inside the ball ankles and wrists are extremely soft plastic. It’s almost like Hasbro called up Mattel, asked for the formula, and then made it even softer. It’s not the biggest deal in the world. In fact, the soft joints in the arms hardly bother me at all, but the soft pieces in the legs combine with another problem and the figure really takes a hit.
Since this figure reuses Doc Samson’s buck, it also inherited some flawed articulation. Above the waist, the figure is about as good as it can be. I hate the one-piece ball-joint on the neck, but you can kinda increase the range by having it in various stages of popping off, so I’ll let that be for now. The arms are great with ball-jointed shoulders, bicep swivels, double elbows, and ball-joints wrists. And the ab crunch has great range.
Beneath the waist is a different story. There are ball-jointed ankles and double knees, but they’re rendered almost ineffective by the hips. They’re a simple ball-joint with no swivels – the thigh is one piece, the calf is one piece. The pegs go into the body at an angle, giving the figure what’s essentially a v-crotch with some side movement. Turning the leg at the hip will always put it at an odd angle to the body – and with no swivels to correct for it, posing will become difficult. Factor in the soft ankle and knee joints, and the figure quickly becomes a figure that you prefer to just have stand there over trying to get a cool action pose. It’s frustrating.
Also of note, this figure lacks any accessories. He was $14.88 at Wal-Mart and I would’ve liked to see a sword, goblet, something to help with the value. I still bought him without hesitation, but being accessory-less (including BAF or C&C pieces) should be outlawed.
Overall, I’m cool with the figure. I was thrilled to find him at the store and I was super-satisfied with him right up until I got him open and discovered the horror that are Doc Samson’s hips. During the photo shoot, he was driving me nuts when I was trying to get some poses out of him. I really had to clear my head to write the review since I’d had two such extreme reactions to him within hours of discovering he’d been released. Visually, he’s awesome. If you’re the type of collector that lines these guys up – he’ll be great for you. If kids want to play with him, I think there’s sufficient articulation to keep them happy too – he can get his leg up and kick Thor in the chest should the need arise, but he can’t pose like that, and that bugs me more than a little. If you’re a Loki fan, like me, the figure is still worth picking up though – just don’t expect too much out of that leg articulation.
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