Monday, February 27, 2012

Toy Review – Marvel Legends: Hope Summers By Hasbro

Yes, Marvel Legends are back, and with them comes a great character that I have come to like a whole lot and that I’m afraid Marvel is dangerously, stupidly close to killing, vaporizing, or eliminating in some way.
I don’t just like Hope Summers because she’s a redhead. That would be ridiculous. I like her because she’s a petite redhead.

Ha! Just kidding. I like Hope because her story is fucking cool and because she gave Cable a purpose and I always secretly, deep down inside, really liked Cable.
But Cable died saving Hope (except he’s all better now and declaring war on the Avengers, which I would love to be reading except Ed McGuiness is doing the art and I cannot stand Ed McGuiness) and she ended up leading her own team of mutants. Until her title got cancelled, anyway. Now she’s playing with the big boys on Cyclops’ team in Uncanny X-Men. There’s actually kind of a weird, flirty thing going on with Namor that’s pretty hilarious because Hope is the one that initiates it. Those saucy redheads.
First Glance: Hope is a visually strong character anyway, so Hasbro had a good starting point. And it looks like they’ve definitely hit this one out of the park.
Sculpt: Like Constrictor, Hope uses her gender’s basic buck from Hasbro. This buck eliminates the waist swivel in favor of a joint just under the chest and I totally agree with that decision. The waist swivel has always been problematic on figures, more so on females, what with the hips. The higher joint is unobtrusive and basically allows for the same mobility, leaving much nicer lines on the lower torso.
The rest of the points of articulation are nicely worked into the form. Ball joints at the neck, shoulders, hips, wrists, and ankles. Double jointed knees, pivot elbows, pivot ankles. There are also swivels at the top of the gloves.
Hope’s head sculpt is absolutely awesome. The hair has a lot of form and does not interfere with the movement of the head very much, even with the big scarf thing. Her face is very distinctive and the sculptor really worked the character’s determination into the figure.
The additions to the basic female buck make all the difference in the body. Hope has armor/wrappings on her wrists and calves. They have a great shape and look and do not interfere with the figure’s movement. The scarf/cape thing looks really good, as well. It fits nicely on the figure and despite being somewhat bulky does not interfere with movement.
My only real issue here is that Hope cannot quite hold the giant, two-handed rifle that she comes with. You can just barely manage to make it look sort of okay, but she can’t properly grip it with both hands.
Design: Hope has a very nice paint job. The metallic green costume looks great and the yellow striping is solid and tight. The extra pieces – her forearms, calves, and scarf – have very nice textures and clean apps. Her hair looks very good and has a nice mix of colors to create cool-looking, highlighted hair. It’s not just a solid chunk of red. Her face is excellent as well, with the eyes and lips placed accurately and very subtle shading that doesn’t look to made-up.
Accessories: Packed in with Hope are Terrax’s head and axe (which comes in two pieces), her rifle, and a one sheet page that is a portion of a story meant to make you give a crap about Terrax.
Terrax’s pieces look nice, but I still don’t give a crap about him. I kind of wish his axe had a little paint detail, but I do think it’s pretty great that Hope can hold it, because she looks super cool doing it.
Hope’s rifle could also use a little more detail, but it looks fine.
Packaging: Honestly, I’m not a huge fan of the new packaging. The art looks a bit simple and generic. Granted, that might have been a good way to go to preserve the uniformity of the line, but maybe you want to use something a little snazzier. But the graphics on the package are very eye-catching and the size and colors do stand out at retail.
Overall: This is a great figure. Not as perfect as Hasbro’s Rachel Grey, but very, very good. I can’t give her a perfect score because of the rifle thing, but I wish I could.
4 out of 5

Time will tell, but Hope may end up being my second favorite Marvel Legends figure. Rachel Grey is my first. And not because they’re redheads. At all.
-Phantom

5 comments:

  1. I was on the fence about Hope, but once I decided to get her I was only two figures (or as I saw it, $30) away from completing Terrax.
    I really like hope. Her rather generic costume is nicely spiced up with the armor on her legs and arms, and the cape, cloak, poncho, whatever around her neck. I do wish she held her gun better, but I can get her into decent stances with it, I'm just not sure how long she'll hang on to it.

    Overall I really like all the ML figures. I never was a ML collector when toybiz had them, because I thought all the extra articulation made them ugly, then the few Hasbro ML figs I picked up the first time around were disappointing. But they have upped their game. Retaining all the articulation toybiz introduced, with much better sculpts.

    I particularly love the Wave 2 Capt America which I picked up last week. He is completely awesome, I can't wait to get US Agent, and I really hope Hasbro releases a Steve Rogers Cap based on the same body.

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    1. I just found Klaw over the weekend. Hopefully Mr. Rogers is in my near future (the shield one, not the sweater one).
      I overlooked the fact that Hope is too tall, but whatever.
      I am super-jealous that you have found Wave 2. I cannot wait to own Diabolik... er... Fantomex. And ARNIM. FUCKING. ZOLA.

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    2. That Arnim Zola looks freakin awesome. Only problem is, unlike wave 1 where the only figures I wasn't interested in were Klaw and Constrictor (and after some wikipedia research decided I'm excited to have Constrictor too), Captain America is the only figure from wave 2 that I want.
      TRU had all of wave 2 (variant case) and really none of the others interest me. Fantomex looks interesting, but I don't know anything about him so he's an easy pass. I don't need Spider-man in whatever outfit he's wearing. I would like a dark wolverine, but don't think the body they used works well for him (I think it's the same body used for Constrictor).
      So I think I'm going to have to go to eBay to get Arnim. Prices will probably be very high for him for the next couple of weeks, but if I can get him for around $40 I'll be happy.

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    3. I'm going to have to slightly amend my earlier comment. I took Constrictor and Klaw out of their packages when I got home from work this afternoon, and I have new thoughts on them. Constrictor is really cool, and I might like the Dark Wolverine after all just based on how well he poses.
      Now we get to Klaw, a character that I really give two flips about, and yet he is kind of a neat actions figure. Dynamic face, fun sonic blaster right hand, great articulation, kind of a really creepy skinny build. I don't feel like I wasted my money on either of them.
      Also, I'm starting to think that $40 would be two much for Arnim. I took out the right leg that came with Bucky Captain, and it's very rubbery. Also I didn't realize that he didn't have any waste articulation, and he is no taller than a normal figure (which I know is correct, I just thought he would be a little taller), so now I'm thinking $30-ish? We'll see, I just saw one go for over $70 on the bay, but I'll be patient until I can get mine.

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    4. Fantomex is the only Wave 2 figure I was really stoked about, but now that Spidey and Bucky Cap are looking pretty good. Seems like this is going to be a line where the figures' coolness outweighs how much I like the characters. Except Klaw. He's dumb. A solid figure, but totally dumb.

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