By Miguel Acuña
This week’s review is to commemorate the arrival of the long awaited Defenders show on Netflix. The Defenders will be composed of the invulnerable Luke Cage, the fearless Daredevil, the unstoppable Jessica Jones, and everyone’s favorite martial artist, the Immortal Iron Fist. Marvel Legends has come out with a few different Iron Fists. They had a traditional costume one in green and red under Toy Biz and have come out with a green updated suit and a white costume version recently. With the hype of the Defenders show, Marvel also announced at SDCC that a new set of all Defenders is coming out soon. For this week though, we’ll be looking at the most recent classic colors but slightly more modern Iron Fist from the Dormammu Build-A-Figure Wave.
Round One – Packaging & Accessories
Packaging – Packaging is the norm for modern Marvel Legends. The box showcases the figure while also allowing you to see all of the included accessories and the build-a-figure piece. As always, the packaging is perfect for displaying the figure in-box or taking it out for display and returning to the box if you plan to sell again. The sides have great Iron Fist artwork. The back features a dynamic pose, the other figures in the line, and the corresponding piece of Dormammu. Nothing too divergent from most Marvel Legends packaging, but still fairly good when compared to the packaging of other figures. 8/10
Accessories – The accessories that come with the figure are good, but not great. Iron Fist has a pair of glowing fists, a pair of bandaged hands, two attachable flames for either set of fists, and the shoulder/chest portion of Dormammu. The reason why it’s not great is that the white version of this Iron Fist figure comes with 4 pairs of different hands as opposed to flame effects and glowing hands. The hands with the white costume include a karate chop hand, gripping hands, and open fist hands. While the glowing/flaming effects are awesome, it would have been nice to have a variety of different hands that reflect his skills as a martial artist. While we’re going for what would have made the accessories perfect, I also would have liked an alternate head for a screaming or yelling look. All in all, the accessories included are not bad. 7.5/10
Round Two – Paint, Sculpt, and Articulation
Paint – Iron Fist has a relatively simple color scheme and costume. This does not mean that Marvel phoned it in when it comes to painting. There are extremely well-defined lines and paint detail on his mask, bandaged hands, dragon mark on his chest and even the boots. The green color of the body suit itself does seem a bit more muted when compared to the traditional much brighter green. This isn’t a huge point against the paint job, but it would have definitely helped the figure stand out a bit more. Another point that could have helped the figure more would have been a black wash or some shadow tones to help give more depth to the costume. As it is done with no shadowing or highlights, it ends up feeling a bit flat. 7/10
Sculpt – Not surprising anyone, Marvel does reuse the body sculpt from another figure. In this case, it’s the body from the fan-favorite, Pizza Spider-Man (review coming soon). There is not a lot of detail in the sculpt as again, it’s mainly a body suit costume. There is an added sash/belt which can be positioned on either side of Iron Fist to give the look of motion, but the knot on the back of his mask is not articulated. This is a minor gripe, but as it is seen very commonly with any hero or a martial artist with belts or bandanas, it would have helped. The bandages on the wrists and hands are incredibly detailed and are a nice realistic touch. The mask is also done cleanly and fits with the head, but it does lean towards the slightly “too big” end of the scale. Nothing horribly sculpted, nothing too spectacular, but that’s not the figure’s fault, there’s just isn’t much to work with. 6.5/10
Articulation – Danny Rand does show us why he is the Immortal Iron Fist through the amount of articulation. Again, this is mainly thanks to the use of the Pizza Spider-Man body, but it’s a perfect fit for this figure. Iron Fist has a hinged ball joint on his neck and head. Slight side to side tilt but allows Iron Fist to look up and down very far. There are ball joints in the shoulders, butterfly joints in the chest, bicep swivel, double jointed elbows, forearm/wrist swivel (depending on the hands put on), ab crunch, ball and socket hip joints, thigh cut swivel, double jointed knees, and ankle swivel on a rocker. All of these are the key ingredients to pull off the moves of a TRUE martial arts master. I pulled off some great poses with the articulation and the main hindrance I had was that my table wasn’t very level. I even pulled off some of the moves of the Dance of the Dragon from Avatar: The Last Airbender! 9/10
Personal issues aside about the Netflix character, this figure is awesome. I would have loved to have gotten the original costume design with the modern articulation, but this is a very close second. The figure has a simplistic paint job but there’s not much to paint. And what it did paint, Marvel Legends got very clean lines and crisp design. This is a great piece for anyone who is a Marvel fan, wants to recreate scenes from Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, or wants to act out how they feel Netflix’s Iron Fist should have gone. In my case, I had to pit the actual Dragon versus the protector of K’un L’un. Bruce Lee has the one-inch punch, but Danny Rand channels the power of Shou-Lao the Undying. This is an amazing figure, but my money’s on Bruce Lee. 7.5/10
So, until next time, and there will be a next time, enjoy the hunt!