The timing for this Mezco One:12 Collective Black Panther release really worked out nicely.
As is customary, I pre-ordered Black Panther back in March of 2018. One of my favorite Avengers finally got a chance to show his stuff on the big screen, and it was pretty damn fun. I hadn’t really got my fix for the character since the Christopher Priest (and especially Doc Bright) days of the late 90s, and more on that later. And while I usually treat events like the Oscars like a biohazard, this year they did okay and showed some of these excellent comic movies some love. Including, naturally, Black Panther, and his awesome costuming! Which, of course, Mezco nailed. So that’s some nice synergy.
Getting this figure in the One:12 is really a big deal. Panther essentially kicks off what might hopefully become a legitimate movie Avengers roster (no, Ragnarok Hulk and Thor don’t really count), and man, he does it in style. There’s some really impressive work from head to claw on T’Challa, from the Spec-ops style texturing, so the nearly seamless blend of mask, gloves, and boots that would make even the pickiest of Robos happy.
But let’s do something a little different this time. I’m going to hand the wheel over to longtime Fwoosher (and one of my best friends) Lestat, for this review:
My love of Black Panther goes back to when I was five or six. I first discovered the character through the Official Handbook of The Marvel Universe. I was immediately struck by how cool his costume looked and the fact that he (not Moon Knight) was essentially Marvel’s version of Batman. Once I found out he was an African king, I was hooked for life. There weren’t many black super heroes back in the day and most of them were awful. Back then Luke Cage was an anachronistic joke and John Stewart seemed to be written by writers who may have seen a black person once in a movie. Fast forward to the nineties when I discovered Christopher Priest’s Black Panther. For those of you that don’t know, Christopher Priest was one of the first African American writers in comics. In my opinion, Priest is to Black Panther what Frank Miller is to Batman. He made T’Challa the dangerous tactician and warrior/scholar that Stan Lee and Jack Kirby intended when they created the character back in 1966. Most of the popular aspects of the film, from the Dora Milajae to Kimoyo cards/beads to the creative use of vibranium, were all created by Cristopher Priest and Mark Texeira. So if you loved the movie, go buy his run on Black Panther right now!!!!!
So if you have no intention of reading any further, know this: This figure is awesome and you should buy it. If you have the Mezco Batman Beyond, then you have an idea of the intricate level of detail associated with this figure. Mezco loves to redesign costumes but I feel they are at their strongest when they do direct translations of movie costumes. The outfit is perfect in my opinion. Mezco managed to recreate the movie look without sacrificing movement.
T’Challa comes multiple hands and one separate unmasked headsculpt. The headsculpt doesn’t look exactly like Chadwick Boseman but it’s probably the best version out there. I feel that Mezco could have done a little more in the way of accessories by at least giving us something that demonstrates how the suit looks when it’s powered up with kinetic energy (even if it was just another headsculpt). He also comes with the weapons that he used when he fights M’Baku in the movie. At first I thought it was kind of a weird choice but he doesn’t really have a ton of weapons in the movie.
Mezco, if you are listening, WE NEED VARIANTS!!!!!! I want a Killmonger (tactical and as king), T’Chaka, and Classic Panther. Basically, I will pretty much buy any Black Panther figure you make. Yes, I’m that guy. There is a reason my subnic on the Fwoosh is “Wakanda or Bust”!