Yes, it is that time to be of good cheer and spend your days with friends and family. BUT THERE ARE NEW MARVEL LEGENDS!!!1!!!!111!!! Yes, it is no rest for the weary as the old cliché goes, so here we are, back right away with a look at the balance of the later Spider-Man Legends series: Spider-Armor MK III, Superior Octopus, Shang Chi, and the Demogoblin Build-a-Figure.
Like I mentioned in part one of this look earlier in the week, this wave has been a real sleeper hit for me. Sure, I am not as much into the “Gamerverse” figures, but man, I have been waiting for AGES for new takes on Vulture and Demogoblin, and new-to-the-line figures of White Rabbit and Shang Chi represent the best this series has to offer. Hasbro has done a great job getting us the heavy-hitters of the Spider-Man Rogues Gallery, so now we have a change to see more obscure villains and allies, and hopefully some different takes on previous releases (I’m looks at you, Electro). Regardless, the fact that we will in a time when Shang Chi and White Rabbit are both in ML AND they are included in the same assortment is pretty awesome, so as far as I am concerned, Legends is heading into 2020 with the vim and vigor that we saw throughout 2019.
The armored up Spider-Man looks and figures are hot commodities right now, so I totally get the inclusion of the MK III here, and in a Spider-Man wave, well, you need Spider-Mans, right? Superior Octopus is not something I am familiar with from the comics, but while this Otto certainly does not have the physique I am used to seeing, the costume is really neat. The light grey and greens play off the black well, and the octopus symbol almost has a bit of a Hydra vibe to me. Something to note with this is figure is that it does, I believe, have a new ML upper body that not only includes the butterfly shoulder hinges, but also the ball-jointed rib cage articulation that allows for some pretty impressive omni-directional movement. I hope we see this base often (when appropriate) in the future.
Shang Chi is the real standout of this set for me, and also my runaway favorite for best of the overall series (White Rabbit takes the silver). I have been wanting Shang Chi in ML since early in the Toy Biz days, and while it always seemed like he was right around the corner, and has a very action figure-receptive look, he just never made it out until now. I daresay it was worth the wait as this figure serves as a table-setter for the upcoming MCU film, but man, this guy is AWESOME. He has all of the ML articulation you would want for the “Master of Kung Fu,” and while the number of hands included might teeter on the ridiculous, all of them look really great, so swapping them out is fun. The nunchakus (two sets) are nicely sculpted, but like others, I think having a real chain would have been cool. I won’t gripe about not getting a removable gi either, but although he has awesome new bare feet, I do wish there was a foot hole for a peg so you could easily keep him balanced mid-kick and the like. Those are tiny niggles though because overall, he is really awesome.
Finally, I get that some collectors are disappointed by Demogoblin being the BAF instead of a larger character, but I am not bothered by it. Hasbro had a chance to really do his glider some justice here, and the included stand (reused from the Star Wars Black Series line, I think) makes me wish the other Goblins had stands, too. The sculpt work on this guy (especially the new parts) is wonderful, and his face/head is a hideously glorious standout. The colors counterbalance the rest of the Goblins as well, and I like just about everything here better than the previous Demo we got in the old Spider-Man Classics days. This is a guy that was not at the top of my ML lists, but I sure am glad we got a worthy update.
SPIDER-ARMOR MK III
So yeah, I think the overall response to this wave will be varied, and that is okay, but I really dig it. Getting Shang Chi is an absolute dream for me, but White Rabbit isn’t far behind, and redos of Vulture and Demogoblin are most certainly welcome. Dorkside Toys has the entire wave up for order now, so while some of us were able to secure these in 2019, they are worth waiting until 2020 to get.