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Medicom: MAFEX Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman is the class of the DC Comic cinematic universe. Yes, that is an opinion, but I would think anyone would be hard-pressed to make a case otherwise. It can also be stated that that is not really saying much, but in dark and dingy sea of mediocrity, Wonder Woman stands on her own as a character, and as a solo superhero blockbuster.

So, when I say that I really enjoy both the movie, and the Wonder Woman character Gal Gadot has created, I mean that without pretense, and they both hold up well against ANY comic movie currently out there — that includes the MCU. Now, I am not a Marvel homer, in fact, I have always swayed DC for most of my life, but Marvel is wiping the floor with their DC counterparts overall in the cinemas, so I am VERY glad Wonder Woman is working as successfully as she is. It looks like Aquaman might be on his way to being a great movie character too, and it is delicious to me that two characters who have been seemingly doubted for years by WB in their ability to carry a movie are moving to the forefront.

I normally do not get into movie-based comic book figures, and especially in the more expensive import category, but I like Wondy so much that I decided to grab this MAFEX release when it was solicited last summer. I popped for MAFEX because a Bandai figure had not been announced at that point, and frankly, if Bandai has anything that is typically wonky with the S.H. Figuarts line, it is scale, and I wanted to make sure my Wonder Woman was appropriately tall. The downside to that is, while Medicom has gotten into using the face printing technology to help with likenesses, it is generally not as strong as Bandai’s offerings, so I knew it would be a bit of a trade off. So, in the end, I think I got exactly what I was expecting from this figure, both with the strengths and weaknesses.

 

The good news is that the strengths definitely outweigh the weaknesses, and overall, I like this figure. MAFEX used to be a consistent crapshoot when it came to overall execution, especially with the articulation and joint engineering. MAFEX figures have never lacked in terms of points of movement, but I have older offerings that are riddled with loose joints and untextured pegs that allow parts to simply separate with very little contact. Wondy, however, continues the current trend of reliable jointery, and all of her articulation points are fluid but strong, and the pegs are well-seated and have just enough friction to keep everything together without concern.  She can achieve just about any action pose within reason, and matches up well with my other “premium” import figures.

In terms of accessories, this release is successful, but not much more than formulaic. Like most other MAFEX releases, you get several sets of swappable hands, and included here are fists, open “splayed” hands, as well as “loose” grips, and “tight” grips. I love the options that come with swappable hands, but ultimately, I usually stick with mixing or matching sets that are utilitarian and most accommodating to what I want to aching in terms of posing on the shelf. You also get two different heads: one more neutral and placid, and one with more of an in the moment intensity with open mouth. I want to like the latter, but I just do not, it is not really successful in achieving the expression I think they were going for, and it ends up looking more comedic than anything.

The other head is definitely better, but the likeness is probably the biggest weakness overall with this figure. I think Bandai and the Marvel team at Hasbro have been spoiling us as of late with some amazing likenesses, so the bar is pretty high. The Gadot likeness is not bad, and as an overall look for a Wonder Woman figure, it is perfectly acceptable, but it is just not “scary” realistic like some of the others. The MAFEX Rey is a good comparison (as it should be) in that, while the essence of the character is there, the likeness is just a bit off. I am anxious to see how the Bandai WW turns out, and if they nail the Gadot look, but this one is just good enough to keep me from double-dipping. I do hope MAFEX continues to improve here, though, and the printing still gives the face a bit of “fuzziness” or out of focus look, even when not under a magnified lens.

For the rest of the accessories, you get her requisite weaponry and the standard MAFEX figure stand. I am going to take this chance to hate on the latter just a little bit because, while I always appreciate a stand, this model is so much of an afterthought. Unless you are just going to give a pretty vanilla standing pose, which any figure should be able to achieve without a stand, the arm is not strong enough to hold a jumping pose or anything of that sort for very long. The one picture I took with it had to go fast because it was already sinking under the weight of the figure, so I would really like to see Medicom improve this.

The rest of the accessories are great though, and it will be a tough choice to display the figure with her sword and shield, or her more iconic lasso. The sword and shield both match the movie references well, and with the included grip hands, Wondy can wield both of them naturally. I really like the details on both of them, and they are on par with he intricate detail in the outfit and boots of the figure. The leather straps the make up the sheath for the sword are pretty unremarkable, but the sword can be stored nicely when not in use. You get two versions of the lasso, one coiled to hang at Diana’s waist, and the other extended for battle use. It think the action lasso is my favorite accessory overall because it is cast in a very flexible plastic and is very bright yellow to help convey the glowing effect from the movie. I was very pleasantly surprise with just how versatile it is, and it is fun to pose, so I will likely go with it on the shelf.

If I was going off of a tradition grade scale for this figure, I would award it a solid “B” to “B+” for overall execution. It is most certainly one of the nicer MAFEX figures I own (with the Rogue One Darth Vader still being by far the best), but the “still getting there” facial printing throws the likeness off just enough to rank among the upper echelon of my import figures. I will be interested to see how the Bandai version turns out, but since I am kind of building a scattershot import DC movie shelf anyway, I pretty happy overall with this release. You can get the figure here if you want to add a nice Wonder Woman to your collection.

3 thoughts on “Medicom: MAFEX Wonder Woman

  1. I think the problem with the likeness, at least on your sample, is the eyes. They’re not quite where they should be. Something I’ll look for if I run into this one. (I once ran into their release of Harley in an EB Games. So I might see this there.)

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