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Marvel Legends – Smart Hulk Wave – Loki (Comic)

I’m not super keen on Loki’s comic book look. He’s a little too, court jester in style for my liking. Still, he’s kind of a big part of the whole Thor and Asgardian world, being Thor’s brother and all, so not having a Loki to go with my other Asgardians was kind of a hole in need of filling. Plus, frankly, I kind of wanted everyone else in the wave.

I’m sure someone who keeps better track than I do would know which “buck” this is, but it’s pretty much just “Bulky dude in spandex”. The figure is honestly pretty basic overall, though it does match his look. The best part of this figure is the most unique part, specifically the head with the cheese eating grin. The face is goofy and fun. I do kind of hate how his pony tail is permanently swooshy in style.

Loki is the God of Mischief after all.

The only accessory he includes in a sword. I am kind of surprised he doesn’t have a cape or anything, I guess this costume design just doesn’t have one. Some extra hands could have helped flesh out the package as well.

I don’t have much else to say about this figure, he’s a notable character, but it’s just such a boring design.


S.H. Figuarts – Professor Severus Snape

I really enjoy Harry Potter. I have read the books a few times, I have watched the movies a few dozen times, each, I know a lot of the little extra tidbits of the lore and world. I am pretty excited for the idea of Figuarts doing a Harry Potter series. I have essentially one figure from these movies. Right at the end of the 1/12th line they did a sub line called Dueling Club, which was as close as we have gotten to having a set of good looking 1/12th Potter figures that had decent articulation. I have Harry Potter fromt his line, I think there was also a Malfoy, Lockheardt and a Snape, but I have never seen them.

I may be totally off on that assessment of 1/12th Potter stuff. Anyway, Figuarts has started with the three main heroes, and Professor Snape all based on their Sorcerer’s Stone likenesses. I’m honestly not super keep on the three kids, they look a little goofy, and I would much rather get the core cast in slightly older versions of themselves. Snape however, was already an adult, and didn’t really change much throughout the series, so I went ahead and picked him up.

I have to say, having him in hand, he is great. There are a few issues but he’s very nicely poseable and the likeness on the neutral face is a pretty dang good Alan Rickman likeness. Even if they never do the older cast, I can say I would be satisfied with just Snape. He reminds me a lot of why I liked The Rock and Bruce Lee, he is recognizable, which makes him fun to goof around with in ways you wouldn’t expect the character/actor to act.

So the downsides though. The alternate face is a little off, and I am not entirely sure what it’s meant to represent. Is he angry? Is he yelling? Is he sneering? It’s not real clear what he is supposed to be doing with his open mouth. It also looks a little less like Alan Rickman than the neutral face.

He is also pretty light on the accessories. I am not sure what he could have come with exactly, maybe some sort of book or a few potion vials since he is the Potions Master. He only has the alternate face, 3 sets of hands and his wand.

Lastly, the articulation overall is pretty good, even with the limiting skirt piece, but his arms seem to be missing a bicept swivel. This mean that it can be a little hard to get his arms looking quite right when he raises his arm up, in some poses. This one is kind of easy to write off since the design of his clothing looks like it would limit body movement quite a bit anyway.

Snape is still a really satisfying figure. He isn’t perfect but he is pretty much everything I had hoped for. I’m hoping he will scale alright with the upcoming McFarlane figures, though I feel like he will end up being a tad on the small side. Also, I’m not sure yet if I am going to bother with the McFarlane figures, as the likenesses are kind of iffy from the promo shots. Here is hoping we get Harry, Ron and Hermione from Goblet of Fire or Deathly Hallows in the Figurarts line. I’d also be game for some of the other teachers, Dumbledor and McGonagle, Lupin, and Mad Eye Moody would all be great with this line.

NECA – Heroes of the Storm Thrall

If there is one central figure in all of World of Warcraft Lore to pretty much everything going on, it’s the Orc known as Thrall. Some people suggest his is a Mary Sue stand in for Chris Metzen who was basically in charge of WoW for a very long time. Even when Thrall tries to take a step out of the story, it always brings him back to fix everything. He also has the Nickname “Green Jesus”.

Thrall has had a few different roles and looks over the years. This particular design, like The Lich King, is not from World of Warcraft, but from Heroes of the Storm. Maybe with the success of their Overwatch line we can get the somewhat more iconic Hooded Shaman look for Thrall, but for now, armored Warrior will do.

There are a lot of design ideas from the Lich King that are shared by Thrall. He is loaded with detail and little scuffs and his paint work is really well done. He is also very bulky, which hinders his articulation quite a bit. Like Frostmourne, Thrall’s Doomhammer separates into two pieces to allow it to be inserted into his fist.

He definitely looks pretty impressive, though he isn’t particularly dynamic in his pose ability. The look also pushes more of an Orc Warrior vibe than the Shaman design he is more known for. He captures the look of the character well though. Certainly better than those Warcraft movie figures we got. Thrall didn’t get a figure in that line but his father Durotan did.

The real issue with this figure is that it was, and still kind of is, pretty hard to come by. The only store in the US I recall ever seeing these was Toys R Us, which went out of business. Amazon has them but they are pretty marked up. It’s a nice looking piece that would work well for general fans of the series and not just toy people, which makes it kind of a shame they were so hard to come by.

Marvel Legends – Smart Hulk Wave – Beta Ray Bill

As a fairly popular secondary character of the Marvel universe, it’s kind of surprising that Beta Ray Bill doesn’t have more figures. He has a neat design that lends itself pretty well to being a “cool toy” and his outfit could easily be made from reusing most Thor figures. If you are unfamiliar with the character, you may notice that he looks a lot like Thor. His origin and history is very much related to Thor and the hammer Mjolnir.

He was one of, if not the first character, besides Thor, to be worthy enough to wield the hammer in the comics. His creepy evil looking design was done intentionally to throw readers off. Basically, just because someone is a creepy skull horse man, doesn’t mean they aren’t worthy of wielding the hammer. After some battle with Thor he was given his axe Stormbreaker by Odin. Stormbreaker also being the Axe forged by Thor during the Infinity War movie to kill Thanos. The point I guess is that Beta Ray Bill being included in an Endgame themed wave of figures isn’t as random as it seems, certainly not as random as say, Union Jack.

This costume isn’t quite his standard fare, which usually has the larger, more centered circles like Thor has. This has a lot of fans kind of upset at this figure. I don’t personally care enough about the character to be that concerned about it, but it’s something that I’ve seen complained about enough that it’s worth noting. If i am going to complain about something here it’ll be the shoulders, which are pretty limited by the way the shoulder pauldrons hand. It’s extra annoying because the ones on War machine in the same wave are similar, except the ones on War Machine aren’t nearly as inhibiting.

I do like the way the cape operates with the pauldrons however. The cape has little rings that pop over some larger mushroom pegs sculpted onto the front of the pauldrons. It’s a design that I don’t recall seeing used before in Marvel Legends. It certainly holds much much better than other solutions I’ve seen, like pegs in the front of the shoulders. Plus, no ugly peg holes if you remove the cape.

The head is also pretty nice. Beta Ray Bill’s jaw is articulated, which is great for being able to give him a bit of change to his expression when posing him.

All in all, he’s a pretty neat figure, and his design makes him pretty unique among Marvel figures who are mostly just dudes in spandex suits.

Nendoroid D.Va (Hana Song)

One thing I really like about the Nendoroid line is that they are hitting essentially all of my “Mains” in Overwatch. Tracer, Sombra, Mei, Lucio is coming, and D.Va. These are my top five, in some sort of order. I suppose that probably just says I prefer the mainstream heroes over some of the less popular heroes.

Not surprisingly, Nendoroid D.Va is just Hana Song, aka “Baby D.Va”. In game she rides inside her giant MEKA robot, collectively they are known as “D.Va”. After taking some damage, Baby D.Va pops out and the robot is destroyed. It’s a fun mechanic in game. It doesn’t work too well for toys. A working Nendoroid sized MEKA would really bump up the cost and while cool, wouldn’t really add much to the figure.

She does come with a mini sized MEKA figure though, which is fun to use with the larger regular D.Va. The small MEKA even has swivel arm articulation. If you really want a larger MEKA that mostly works for the scale for display, the Funko POP! D.Va comes with an un-articulated larger MEKA. The style isn’t perfect and the Nendo doesn’t fit inside it at all, bit it looks alright next to her on a shelf.

Aside from her mini MEKA, D.Va comes with the usual assortment of alternate hands and faces, as well as her pistol, a cell phone, a bag of chips and a soda. It probably would have been too much considering it’s “non canon” but I would have loved some sort of cheese covered “Gremlin D.Va” face to go with the food accessories.

The hands are really great. She can make a lot of her fun emote poses from the game, like her D.Va bomb selfie or the heart hands. The chips and soda fit well in her hands as well using little pegs. The stand has an extra accessory bit to attach Mini MEKA to.

D.Va also shares the pose-able articulation that all of the Overwatch Nendos have. For anyone unaware, a lot of Nendoroids don’t really have knees or elbows, but they often will instead have alternate arms for different poses. Occasionally there will be some, like the Overwatch line up, that have regular articulation, despite the small size.

All in all, D.Va works really well in this style. I will say though, next to other Nendos like Mei or Junkrat, she feels a little light on the parts and accessories. I’m not sure what more they could have given her though really.

Game of Thrones – Arya Stark (McFarlane)

After enjoying Jon Snow and The Night King, I decided to keep up on the Game of Thrones line with Arya Stark. For what it’s worth, I probably won’t pick up Daenerys, the likeness is just too off in the face and she is overall too large. Maybe if I found her for cheap but at the moment, I don’t plan on it. I am looking forward to potential future waves of these figures, despite the disappointing series finale.

There isn’t really anything to add about the line in regards to Arya that hasn’t been said already about the previous two figures I’ve talked about. She shares most of the same high and low points. The detailing is really nice on her sculp and accessories, though, her likeness is a bit off on the head sculpt. Jon, Arya, and Dany all have this weird slightly squished look going on and the noses all seem a little too large. John fares the best, Arya is ok, but it really shows on Dany, which is why I am skipping her.

Arya does have a few issues not as present with Jon though. Her skirt isn’t as forgiving as Jon’s long coat, so her hip articulation is pretty useless. This also means all of her leg articulation is pretty useless. I may run some slits up the sides or something on mine just to let her legs have some freedom. Jon Snow’s outfit has opening and some layering going on so it allowed motion. The Night King also had slits up the sides of his skirt piece by design.

Arya also has nowhere to store her weapons. None of the figures do, actually. Some scabbards would have been nice on Arya and Jon. Jon sort of got away with this because his dagger could be slipped under his belt. the Night King barely uses his weapons in the show and seems to just pass them off to lackeys when he isn’t using them so he didn’t really need anything. Arya doesn’t get the luxury of a belt or any sort of scabbard or a zombie follower to carry her sword, so she has no way to just stand in a neutral pose while still armed.

If you are a fan of this show but not really super into the figures, Arya isn’t awful but she would be an easy pass in favor of Jon or the excellent Night King. Like I said, I am still looking forward to more from this line, but I worry the much hated finale will kill any chance of more being made.

Overwatch Ultimates – Lucio

Today’s figure is Lucio from the Overwatch Ultimates line by Hasbro. I feel like Lucio could make a pretty cool Figma, but there are a lot of other factors that make me feel like Figma will never get around to doing Lucio. Of all the figures shown off prior to the line’s release, Lucio was the one I was the most worried about. Ana had her obvious flaws in the promo photos, so she is expected to be a little disappointing. Lucio basically had one photo going around, where he was standing stiff upright with his little effect parts attached.

Basically, I was really worried Lucio would be a complete brick. Fortunately, he is quite the opposite. His upper body is loaded with joints, including some neat butterfly joints in his shoulders, similar to ones often seen on Spider-Man figures in Marvel Legends, except hidden inside his vest. Even his ponytail is articulated, which is a nice bonus. His Sonic Amplifier has a little cord that attaches to his arm which also holds on pretty well without really hindering articulation.

The lower half is… mostly alright. The hips have a pretty wide range of motion, the ankles have a LOT more than expected. The real problem, and only real problem with this figure, is the knees. The knees have barely any range of motion, somewhat because of the bulk of his legs hindering things, though it also just seems to be limited. I posted a photo demonstrating the entire range of motion, but basically it’s like 20 degrees of bend.

This does kind of really suck for posing him in any dynamic jumping poses. He also can’t make a proper Sound Barrier pose since he can’t completely bend any knees.

The knees issue doesn’t completely ruin the figure, it’s just really disappointing. You can sort of fake some more dynamic range with his ankles and hips, but it’s not quite the same.

Aside from the Sonic Amplifier, Lucio has 2 extra hands (4 total). Oddly, 3 of the four hands are for his left hand while he only has one hand for his right hand. There is a hand to let him hold the Sonic Amplifier on the left but there isn’t anywhere to plug the little cord in on the right. He also has a couple of green swooshy effect parts to look like his speed boost skating. The effects are pretty good aside from the rubbery plastic on mine was bent and distorted out of the package. I could probably boil and reshape them if I wanted to.

All in all, Lucio is pretty satisfying. he could use better knee articulation but otherwise he’s a nice figure. He has a lot of dynamic style going for him too which makes him generally fun to mess with.

Figma – Genji

The second release in the Figma line for Overwatch was Genji. Tracer being the poster child for Overwatch made sense for release number one, Genji kind of makes sense for release two. He is a pretty bad ass ninja, his robotic design lends itself to being highly articulated, and he looks like a sentai warrior. I don’t really know how popular Overwatch is in Japan, but Figma IS a Japanese toy line, so that audience is sort of the primary audience.

Genji actually is quite a departure from Tracer. I mentioned how his cyborg design works for the articulation, and it definitely shows, he is quite a bit more articulated than Tracer. Almost too articulated if that’s possible (side note, it is, look at any AY Revo). He neck and shoulders in particular have a sort of double ball set up going that let them extend quite a bit. It actually makes his shoulders look odd at times and his neck definitely feels too long if you are looking at it from the wrong angle.

Genji also has a lot more interesting accessories than Tracer. Tracer got a couple of guns and her pulse bomb. Genji has his Dragon Blade, his smaller dagger weapon and a neat effect part of his stars being thrown. There are also scabbards for both blades on his back, though neither actually holds a blade. Instead they each have removable handle bits, for when the blade weapons are being held.

He looks great holding his swords. His articulation allows you to do all sorts of sword wielding poses as well, both single and dual wielding. The ninja star effect part is neat, but the weight and looseness of some of the joints make it tricky to pose at times. Plus it kind of vanishes into the flatness of itself when looked at straight on.

He is quite a bit larger than Tracer as well. The added weight and larger feet allow him to stand pretty well even without his stand, something that’s kind of a problem for Tracer.

Despite his wonky joints, Genji is probably one of the better releases for the Overwatch Figmas so far (as of this post). Aesthetically Widowmaker is a bit nicer but in terms of pose-ability and fun factor, Genji is better than Widowmaker.