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Marvel Universe #21:
Commander Steve Rogers Review

If you’ve read IAT for awhile, you know I love alternate costumes. Symbiote Spidey. Electric Supes. Black Batsuit. War Machine. Hooked Aquaman. I could go on… There’s just something I find neat about the tried & true looks being experimented with, but what I really like is when they get figures.

I don’t get to read as many Marvel comics as I would like. I love a lot of their characters, but the post-toy budget I have for comics is usually eaten up quickly by following along with DC characters I’ve loved since I was a wee tot. And, if you factor in that I tend to enjoy comics most when the status quo is temporarily thrown off kilter (DCnU is really testing my limits though), then what ends up happening, and has for years, is that I tend to read more Marvel when something crazy is going on: Spider-Man’s Symbiote Costume, Morrison’s New X-Men, Exiles, Annihilation, Marvel Zombies. And, of late, Journey into Mystery, Future Foundation, and the various issues spotlighting Steve “Not Captain America” Rogers. I really loved Steve’s new look and was particularly glad to see it getting a figure so early… though I almost didn’t buy it.

I swear I once wrote a Truetorial on “To Legend or To Universe”, but I can’t find it. It was probably one of the eleventy billion articles I write up and end up not doing. It might have been a post on the forum… either way, my addled, middle-of-the-night brain doesn’t remember. Anyway, as my toy reviews prove, I’m mostly a 6″ figure collector. I have (& enjoy) my fair share of 1/18th stuff, but given the choice between a figure in 4″ or 6″, I’ll take 6″ just about every time. That presented me with dilemma here for Steve Rogers, Super-Soldier, because he’s one of the very first figures to be released in next year’s new Marvel Legends line.

So, my calm, controlled self instructed my impulsive, collector-self, “we’ll wait for the 6″ Steve and put him with our Legend, with our DC Classics; it’ll be cool.” Collector-self agreed and it was decided… right up until I found the 4″ Steve Rogers at Wal-Mart last week, that is. What’s that old saying? A Steve Rogers in the MU line is worth two in next year’s planned Marvel Legends line? Well, something like that…

With my purchasing dilemma averted by means of surely buying both, let’s take a look at what we have here. Steve Rogers is the best kind of “buck” figure. That is, the buck figure does the basic work and a handful of add-on pieces are added to get the overall look right and leave the collector without having to make compromises about the little details. I should probably go track down a pic of Steve her to make sure, but the only detail I’m not seeing is that this costume tended to be drawn with some texture, a weave, similar to the Trek shirts from the last movie or the movie Spider-Man. I don’t mind it’s exclusion one bit, as that textured look would likely be “overdone” at this scale.

The new pieces that make this figure look so great are mostly add-ons like the shoulder harness, the belt, and the gaiters over his boots. I always enjoy the add-on pieces, particularly the gaiters, because they add real depth to the sculpt. Those along with the new gloved hands and a terrific head sculpt make the figure a great 3-D rendition. The head sculpt was what really sang to me on the pegs at Walmart when I found this figure. It makes me want to snag an extra figure to customize an unmasked Captain America (When Hasbro finally makes a good Cap figure. Some great movie ones, but they’re on the small side.)

The paint work wasn’t as stellar as I would’ve liked, but I don’t have too much cause for complaint. A lot of the little details are painted well: the fingers, the buckles, straps, and the red/white line running down the legs. The two areas that had me sorting through all the Cap figures at Walmart though were the symbol and the eyes. There were more than a few Caps that had the whites of the eyes being a bit enlarged and hurting the integrity of the head sculpt while other Caps had great paint on the face, but the symbol was scratchy. I ultimately found one that was a decent balance, but there were better eyes and symbols in the pack, just not on the same figure. Continue to Page 2…

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8 comments to Marvel Universe #21:
Commander Steve Rogers Review

  • Shadow_Contact

    Another great review Noisy! One question though, Does this figure have the back pack hole so I can plug a shield on his back?
    By the way I agree, I wish Hasbro would make all the figures MU scale regardless of if they are a Movie Line. My Red Skull Looks like hes either a Cosplaying teenager or has a severe growth problem next to Dr. Doom.

  • Battle Catman

    The balljoint hips annoy me too, but I found a way to fix them.

    I picked up MU X-23 a few weeks ago and really wanted her to be able to use those wonderful rocker ankles to get into deep stances. So I popped off the legs and carved a gap in the plastic over the top of the socket so make the hip look more like a GI Joe’s.

    Now she’s got a great range–she can crouch low and even pull of a high kick that would make Chun-Li proud.

  • dayraven

    this is a costume i’m very much looking forward to in legends.

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  • Braystreet

    I like six inch figures, some of my favorite figures are in that scale range or slightly bigger, but my collection will always focus on 1/18 for simple reason: Accessories. I have a good sized collection of TB Marvel Legends, I never got any of the big name people beyond Reed Richards, primarily because I didn’t follow them when they got round to redoing characters or they were so hard to find that I never found them. Captain American burns a particular hole in my collection as he is my favorite superhero (primarily due to the times when he is written as a representative of the American dream, as opposed to some sort of neo-conservative flagpole) and while I got some of the larger stands, such as The Punisher’s. I never really was able to get anything to display them with or around. I looked into dollhouses, but they either required construction (I once tried to build a 1$ balsa wood airplane and the court records are still sealed) or were so decidedly Dollhouse-ian that not even Ma Gnucci would live in them.

    Plus, what would Werewolf By Night want with Ma Gnucci? That’s just silly.

    Now that I’ve followed Hasbro and switched over to 1/18, I’ve got twice as many characters, SHIELD has a forward operating base on my dresser. The Avengers are pinned down in Iraq while liberating some P.O.W.s from a bombed out building with a flipped over humvee.

    It’s just nice to be able to support your figures in such a way, and it just isn’t really possible without a huge budget for six inch figures.

    Of course, Hasbro will never release a 1/18 Werewolf By Night, so there’s that too.

    Thanks for the review, it was an entertaining read, and you’ve tempted me to pick this up. I am hesitant because I know that it will just make me weep more for a proper Marvel Universe Captain America.

  • LV

    The Heavy Artillery Cap from the International Heroes three-pack is definitely my default Cap now. Good mold, big enough for me, and maybe most importantly he’s an actual dark blue that’s at least sort of something like the blue in the flag he’s supposed to be dressed like. I have no love for the light blues the toys (and comics) like to put him in.

    Wouldn’t mind a more modern utility belt, though.

  • da man

    Sigh…no sheild Hasbro? And they release the clear one in a 5 pack. They know what they are doing to get our money. Can’t wait to see him in 6 inch form.

  • Clutch

    Never thought I’d see Steve hanging out with the Joes in the MCC! So awesome. I think he swiped Updraft’s gloves, btw.

    I’m still on the lookout for this figure so that I can have an unmasked Cap. Wish Hasbro had included his energy shield. Looks like not even Destro could help him there!

    Excellent dio pics and commentary as always, Noisy.