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Hasbro: Marvel Legends Monster Venom Series Venom, Poison, and Scream

You get a Symbiote! You get a Symbiote! YOU get a Symbiote! With the new Marvel Legends Venom series, EVERYBODY gets a Symbiote!

Even with the folding in of Fox to the House of Mouse which includes the Fantastic Four and X-Men coming home, there are still some movies being released that fall outside of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Tom Hardy is taking up the Venom reigns for Sony, and the new movie is out very soon, so Hasbro is chasing down the exposure with an entire Marvel Legends series devoted to him and his adjacent characters. Our good pals at Dorkside Toys are shipping this series now, so we wanted to take a look at a series that features a lot characters getting their debut bows in the Legends line, and of course, lots and lots of Venom.

Now, I will admit, this series features a couple characters who are a bit outside of my wheelhouse. Of course, I know Venom and Carnage (even though the Symbiotes are not my favorite corner of the Spider-Man mythos) and Typhoid Mary and Spider-Ham are two that I definitely hold dear, but since this is a Venom-focused wave, it gives guys like Poison and Scream a chance to get into ML when they might be challenged to get into a standard wave otherwise. Collecting all six standard figures in the series will afford you the chance to build up a “Monster” Venom Build-a-Figure, so you even get a couple of different options for the titular character in the wave. I am going to split the efforts up into two different looks, so today we will be focusing on the (standard) Venom, Poison, and Scream. 

VENOM

The new flick is slated to hit US cinemas on October 5th, and with Tom Hardy’s handsome mug, Eddie Brock has never looked better than in the trailers for the new Venom movie. We are getting ready to hit the sweet spot in terms of the marketing blitz (so if you have not been exposed to the previews yet, prepare your body), and I have to admit, it is kind of nice to have the action figures leading the way. Of course, Venom is no stranger when it comes to Marvel Legends releases, but this new figure builds on some logical reuse from the previous figure, while offering us a very distinct Eddie Brock head, something that is new for ML.

This new figure is built on the same large base as the previous Venom figure (but with fists instead of open hands), which has become pretty difficult to find. So, even if he was not getting his own series, and as he is a popular character, it was time to get a new version anyway. As I mentioned, this figure gets you an Eddie Brock head, but also a Venom head (open mouth) that is different from the previous (mostly) closed mouth and tongue wagging heads included with the previous version, as well as some symbiote tendrils about the neck. The latter are removable and a pretty nice touch for some mid-transformation displays with the Brock head, but it is nice to have the option to keep it on the figure or leave it out.

The new heads are most certainly the focus, and this new Venom head is by far my favorite of all that we have gotten from Hasbro thus far, and will be the one I keep in my display. The mouth is open, which is appropriate for Venom, but it isn’t over the top or gross like the one with the tongue and slime from the last release. More than any, this feels very “McFarlane” to me, so I am willing to bet that a lot of the 90s kids will be in for this one. The Eddie head, I am a bit more split on to be honest. I have to admit, even though I don’t like stylized or artist specific takes for most of my Legends, this head is VERY Brock to me. The strong, bullish feature, especially the eyebrows, the flattop, and the expression all show off Eddie very well. My nitpick is that the head seems pretty big, even for EB. I know the dude has a large noggin, but this one feels especially big. Maybe it is the break from all the black into a human visage, and it is actually proportionally correct, but I am not sure I will be displaying this one. I don’t hate it, and as I said, it is very much Eddie Brock in appearance, but your preference will vary on this part, likely more than any other aspects of the figure.

POISON

Yeah, so, Poison is a Marvel character, apparently. I am always ready to admit when I don’t know much about a specific character from any universe, but this is one of the rare cases in which I did not know of the existence of the character prior to the announcement of the Legends figure. That is okay though, I miss the days of being introduced to new guys via toys. That seems so rare these days, so I don’t feel remorse or an air of being unprepared for a figure by not knowing because it helps take the figure on its own merits, and introduce it via my preferred medium and hobby. Now, I know of the Cecilia Cardinale version of Poison, but not this version. So, if you are uninitiated like me, Poisons are actually a race that feeds on Symbiotes in the Venonverse, and this one in particular is a raised from the dead version of Peter Parker himself. See? Not weird or convoluted at all…

Anyway, despite his placement in the Marvel Universe at large, Poison has a ton of new tooling, and his color scheme fits the “Anti-Venom” look which, I suppose is appropriate. This figure has organic qualities like most host figures in the tendrils and whatnot, but there is also a good amount of tech detail in the body, too, something that I was not expecting and did not even notice until I had this figure in hand. This combination seems weird on paper, but it all comes together nicely to make for a striking figure. Sliver accents and a slight bit of sheen pulls all of the details out and gives him a look that is unique on my shelf. That is a cool aspect about action figure collecting, and my display in general, and while I usually have a prior affinity with a character of a figure on my shelf, that doesn’t always have to be the case, and this new Poison will certainly look cool in my ML collection.

SCREAM

Unlike the version of Poison in this wave, I DO have prior affiliation with Scream, and while she is another in the now long line of Symbiotes, the fact that she is female, and her brash color scheme alone makes her a standout in that arena. Plus, it looks like the character (at least Donna Diego) will be in the upcoming Venom movie, so this figure’s inclusion in this assortment makes a lot of sense. Scream got a piece of the symbiote from Venom himself, but as you can see, aside from the black and white in the face, the colors are very different, so the yellow and dark reds make Scream stand apart from most of the color schemes consistent across this wave, and even in the symbiote arena itself.

While Scream uses her powers for disguise, more often, in fight situations, she is pretty much the symbiote equivalent of Medusa in that she uses her “hair” tendrils for weapons and defense.  This is highlighted in the figure with a dynamic sculpt for the hair. She has a bit of a “ketchup and mustard” effect with the streak in her hair, but as those two colors offset from each other well, the colors pop and it puts emphasis on it. The dark red/brown breaks up the wall of yellow in the of the figure, and Scream’s hands match the typical symbiote form with elongated fingers and claws. Much like Poison, Scream has a “pearlescent” effect as a bit of a topcoat throughout the figure, and it adds just a touch of extra effect for the figure. Hey, this is a character that would never even sniff a top 100 most-wanted ML for me, but Scream has a dynamic look, and I am happy to welcome her to the collection.

Hey, I was originally only looking forward to getting Typhoid Mary and Spider-Ham in this series (since I had a Venom and Carnage already), but getting an updated Brock, and new characters like Poison and Scream is a pleasant surprise – I really like these two figures. I have saved the rest of a later feature (so check back in a couple of days), but you should get in on this assortment, and Dorkside has got you covered, so head there. Thanks for looking, and more to come!

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