Summer movies and the toy isles are loaded with fun, well in some cases. However this time around I am tacking a couple of stragglers, at least to my collection, from both Thor and Captain America toy lines. This is what happens when you collect, you get a group of figures from a line and either A. you decided to go back of a figure you weren't going to get or B. you get lucky and catch that one "Must have" figure from the next wave. The above two characters fit each category, Winter Soldier and Destroyer respectively. Fun, in many ways yes, but also a couple of guys who are hard to fit into any another reviews so here they are.
So first why not start off with the mightiest non-character of the two:
Right off I want to get to the scale of this figure, I saw a few reviews of him that claimed he was one of the tallest Marvel figures in 1:18th scale ever. Well looking at a comparison shot does make some of that claim a bit hard to believe.
As you can see, he is about equal to World War Hulk back there. He is just a hair taller than Juggurnaught and Cable, but he is taller than Rulk and Hulkbuster Iron Man. Point being he is a pretty tall glass of water, but he doesn't tower over the other figures in the Marvel Universe.
There has been a great deal said about Destroyer's scale being off. While that is a fair statement, I don't think it is fair to say the 6 inch version is necessarily more accurate. As you can see from the comparison shot, while Destroyer needs to be a bit taller to be accurate, it's not that much of a margin. As such something between the ML scale and smaller scale would be workable here. Really though it's not a huge deal because as we can see:
The comic rendition of Destroyer can change size. He can be equal to Thor or the Celestials (Who measure around the 2,000 ft. tall mark). With that in mind this Destroyer can be easily used as a smaller one.
The figure itself is ok. My major knocks to the figure would be the fact that the arms are lacking a bit of articulation in the shoulder. While I wasn't expecting Destroyer to do any ninja moves, I would have liked to have some more reaching and punching movement. You can get some ok poses still, but having Destroyer being able to reach to the side would have been nice. The other knock I have is the translucent like head. I realize this is for the glow effect in the chest to reach up to the head, but honestly I think it takes away from the overall figure. It kind of makes the head look like it's made of a different substance than the rest of the figure taking away from the overall look. The light effect for the face to glow is barely noticeable in the head unless you are in a very dark area. In other words the reason for the change in the head is kind of negated by normal room light. That's not saying everything is bad, but it could be better.
A minor knock to the figure is the spikes being reduced to nubs. Not sure why this might be, but I don't like it. It makes the figure look a bit off and less menacing.
Still with those negatives there are plenty of positives, including the fact that this Destroyer really resembles the one in the comic. That can be given credit to the movie designers who probably felt that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. The design could have really gone in a bunch of bad directions but the designers were swift enough to realize this is one area of the Thor movie that needed little alteration from the comic. As such even though he is from the movie line he fits into the MU line with little effort. While the movie designs of the Warriors 3 is debatable, Destroyer jumps between movie and comic versions easy. Yes there are differences in the movie and comic versions but not so bad that anyone can gripe too much (well unless they are a jerk who complains all the time as some say I do ;-) ).
My verdict, if you are a fan of Thor at all this is the no-brainer of the year. Even if you aren't, The Destroyer is a menacing foe for any Marvel fan. One could argue it even works as a foe for Superman. Sure, in the comic Destroyer needs a driver, but there are 1,000 scenarios that the Destroyer has run amuck, making him a really good threat to every hero out there. The Destroyer's movie appearance was diminished by Thor's easy victory in the film, but it has long been a great battle point for the mightiest of Marvel's heroes and can fit in easily to a collection, even those avoiding the movie figures. Get him, he's cool.
Next up Winter Soldier:
So now comes the time I get on my "mean streak to characters" as it's been called by some. Truth is I have never been a huge fan of Winter Soldier, here's why.
Truth is that the cliché' for comic characters constantly coming back has had 2 exceptions, Bucky and Robin (Jason Todd). Part of me really likes that idea cause if those two are brought back any other comic death will never have impact (and at this point it doesn't anyway even before they did come back). It's a sad reality that death is treated with little to no reverence and is only used to give a character a "time out" of sorts. Really, bad injury has more impact any more (Think about it, it rarely happens any more and the long term effects can be played with, I doubt anyone remembers when the Thing broke his arm and a handless Deathlok shocked him with the wires still delivering electricity. Very cool moment when it looked like Thing was going to be trounced by a c-list villain).
Back to death, the other part of those two returning was the fact they came back at nearly the exact same time, became threats to their mentors who died at nearly the same time as a lame afterthought of a big storyline and then each tried to take up their mentor's mantels (However they diverge here since Bucky did so reluctantly and Robin was kicked out of it and the Batman Mantel was taken up by Nightwing). For a time I thought the same writers were handling both under different names or something, it was really weird. Then again I am reviewing a figure, not a storyline.
As one of the few non-Captain America figures in the Captain America line, Winter Soldier does stick out a bit. However, the major problem is he was already done in the MU line. This is especially agitating when you consider one of the arguments for not having a Thor comic line is the fact that Thor was apparently taken care of in the Marvel Universe line. Yet the Cap line is loaded with figures done in the MU line. Captain Britain, Comic Cap, Ultimates Cap, Modern "Bucky" Cap, Winter Soldier, yeah why do some better Thors, right? Sorry had to get the "Hatorade" out.
The inevitable comparison to the MU figure has the two coming out even ultimately. Sure the rifle Winter comes with is better, but the pistol is worse in my opinion. The major strengths of the Cap line version are the improved cybernetic arm and the face sculpt (which really lacks detail in the MU version). In the vast scheme of things the Cap line version does come out on top for those reasons, but only by the narrowest of margins.
There is also a jet pack that honestly I could take or leave. I have seen better jet packs with other figures and while this one is ok, it is far behind others I have seen. In addition, the pack has a hard time staying on the figure.
The verdict, if you missed the MU version, yeah go get him. He has many uses even if you don't like the fact Bucky came back (In my universe he is a clone, ohhhh). Otherwise this is an easy pass for someone needing a reason to save a few bucks on the Cap line. That is an easy argument to make with the current state of the economy, sure some will blame Obama, some will blame Bush, some will blame demographics. Truth is that this review isn't to reason why the economy is in the shape it's in, it's to say "Hey, here's what I see, take that and make your own conclusions" rather than telling you what to think. Just giving a new perspective on things rather than Xeroxing the exact same crap over and over and over, and isn't that what America was built on.
Yeah, I'm such a hater.
Until next time-SPOOOOON!