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Review – Marvel Legends – Gladiator Hulk Wave – Loki

Apparently, in order to get a proper figure, the Loki had to turn into the Hero.  Ok, I have not seen Ragnarok, but it sort of feels like Loki was working with his brother again in a few spots int he Trailer.  Maybe I’m completely misreading it.  Also, that low blow probably isn’t warranted since Hasbro has been pushing out a lot more figures of MCU villains lately.  We get Hela in this very wave, Vulture was a pretty cool Build A Figure, and even Ego got a figure.  Maybe the voice of the people is finally being heard, maybe they will go back and pick up Trevor or Ronin.

Anyway, there was a figure released years ago for Avengers of Loki but it was kind of mediocre and the likeness wasn’t super good.  Thor Ragnarok is getting pretty good treatment for a movie line, a few new Thors, Hela, Valyrie, the new Gladiator Thor, and of course Loki.  He definitely has a better likeness from the previous Loki, Hasbro is doing something new with it’s movie lines because all of the heads are looking really good lately, with a good resemblance to the actors.  He’s not wearing his older gold armor anymore, so he’s not necessarily a great straight replacement for Avengers Loki, depending on what you want from an MCU Loki.  The new armor is still pretty decent and matches his new look for the new movie.

It’s not perfect though.  His cape is really funky.  A lot of the capes in Marvel Legends are kind of meh, but they tend to at least stay attached.  Traditionally there’s a peg hole in the figure’s back and a post on the cape, and you just stick the cape on.  Often there are little shoulder bits that curl around and provide at least a little bit of friction based hold to keep the cape attached.  Loki does something new.  Instead his cape has a pair of pegs on the shoulder bits.  In theory this actually kind of makes things look cleaner.

Except the pegs are a pain in the ass to get into the peg holes and don’t stay in the holes very well at all.  This isn’t helped by his hair getting in the way at every opportunity.  So the cape at best kind of looks off because it isn’t pegged in properly.

The other problem with poor Loki is that he has no accessories apart from his crown.  A couple of knives, maybe his staff, even though he doesn’t have it anymore, some sort of weapon would have been nice.  Especially since every other figure in this wave got something.  Things have been getting better on the accessories front with Marvel Legends, which is why it’s so disappointing that Loki has nothing.

Loki, as a basic figure isn’t a bad figure, he looks good, the sculpt is there and the paint is there and he is a character desperately in need of an update, but he ends up catching a couple of the traps that Marvel Legends have been plagued with on the way.


Marvel Select – Age of Ultron Hulk

As part of my quest to assemble a really solid set of MCU figures, I found that I was really wanting for a Good Hulk figure.  The Marvel Legends version is pretty small and kind of all smooth and wimpy looking.  The Figuarts Hulk kind of suffers from the same issues to a worse degree.  Enter Marvel Select.  Marvel Select is a separate Marvel line from Marvel Legends, that tends to be more available in specialty shops and is put out by Diamond Distributing.  The main difference between Marvel Legends and Marvel Select, is the scale, which runs in the 7″ range as opposed to ML’s 6″ range.  The Marvel Select figures also tent to have slightly more limited articulation, but better sculpts.  The larger scale means a lot of the “normal” character don’t fit in with Marvel Legends at all.  I have the Hawkeye MS, which is a great figure, but he’s be 8 foot tall in the ML world.  Figures like The Hulk however, who are ambiguously large, work really well along side Marvel Legends figures.

Which is why I picked up the marvel Select Age of Ultron Hulk, as my Hulk.  There are several different Hulks int he MS line, this one is specifically “from” Age of Ultron, though it’s a repaint of the earlier MS Avengers Hulk.  I find that the paint apps on this release to be superior to the original version,  the pants are a different color and there is a lot more shady sort of detail going on.

The sculpt is also really nice which is a lot of the reason I wanted this Hulk over the Marvel Legends Hulk.  He’s got a lot of nice veiny angry detail going on all over his body and the face as a particularly great grimace going on.  The joints used on the Marvel Select can both work in favor and against the sculpt, when in their resting postitions, everything looks nice and smooth, but when out of position they do look a little ugly.  Mostly this is an issue in the legs.

The other primary driver was the sheer size of this Hulk.  He towers over the Marvel Legends characters.  His massive size makes him perfect to face off against the Marvel Legends Hulkbuster BAF from Age of Ultron as well.  He’s also very solid, you can definitely feel the weight when posing and moving the figure, which really helps with stability when posting.

The posing is pretty good, though as I said, ML does have some limitations on it’s joints.  I’m generally not a fan of the sort of hips used in this line, DC uses it on almost all of it’s figures, and it usually looks ugly as hell.  On a larger character like Hulk, it works pretty well however, and it a bit less noticeable.  The range on the elbows and knees isn’t amazing, he isn’t going to be kneeling very well anytime soon.

If you’re looking for a good solid Movie Hulk, the Marvel Select is definitely the way to go.  The best part is that the Marvel Select line isn’t really that much more expensive than their mass released Marvel Legends counterparts, especially given how much larger and better painted they are.  The Age of Ultron version is harder to find at the moment but I can’t imagine it won’t get a figure re-release for Infinity War.  Also, just to beat a dead horse, this kind of touches on my wish that Marvel Legends would ditch the BAF gimmick and just make nicer figures.