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Captain Toy/Michael's Review of the Week

Review of Ant-Man sixth scale action figure

Hot Toys
Date Published: 2016-05-09
Written By: Michael Crawford
Overall Average Rating: 3 out of 4

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Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Introduction

If you haven't yet seen Captain America: Civil War, go. Right now. Stop reading this, get off your phone, or your laptop, or your iPad, and get your ass to the local cineplex, preferably one that has the movie in IMAX, but any big screen well do (you'll want to go back and watch it a second time anyway, so you can make it IMAX then), and see the movie. Take a few friends if you can - you'll want to talk about it in great detail after the final credits (and yes, you should stay through the entire credits) - but get your ass to the theater right now. We'll wait for you.

Fantastic movie, right? I won't spoil anything for you (because I can't, because you've seen the movie, right?), but I will say that the way they paralleled the situation with the Avengers with Bucky's own experience, as well as connecting past events and providing no easy answers, makes this more than just a superhero flick.

Unless you're living under a rock, it's no spoiler that Ant-Man is in the movie.  Hot Toys has a second Civil War version of him already up for pre-order, but as I mentioned with Scarlet Witch a few weeks ago, I'm not sure that's the smartest marketing. Their first version from his own movie in 2015 just started shipping a few weeks ago, and putting a new version up for pre-order at the same time seems to be an obvious way to cannibalize your own sales.

I'm checking out the first version tonight, based on the film from last summer. That was another terrific movie in a long line of great MCU releases, and with the intelligent casting of Paul Rudd and the expert crafting of a solid screen play, they managed to create a cool character out of a rather lame concept. C'mon, you know it's true.

This Hot Toys release was originally around $235, but has sold out at many retailers. Guess you can't cannibalize what ain't there! As I mentioned, the updated Civil War version is already up for pre-order, and will run you about the same, although deals can be had.

Click on the image below for a Life Size version
Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Packaging - ***1/2
The overall package is pretty much same thing, different contents. There's the outer slip cover over a basic window box, with a single plastic tray to hold the figure and accessories.  It's all collector friendly of course, with no need to cause serious damage to anything when removing the figure.  I still hate how tight they wrap and tape the protective plastic gloves and booties, but it's a minor nit.

That would be a *** star box however, based on current standards. This one gets an extra boost with some terrific artwork on the outer slip.  I love the design, which is far more attractive and creative than the usual basic figure (or even character) shots.  It has a retro 70's vibe that resonates with me, for obvious reasons.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Sculpting - ****
You know the drill by now, so let's go through the breakdown:

Realism. Yep, this sculpt has it in spades. From the finely textured facial hair and eyebrows, to the slight skin texture, to the fine wrinkles and soft edges, this portrait looks like a real person, through and through.  I think this sculpt is also helped by a tremendously realistic job on the helmet covering most of the head, which fits neatly but believably around the face.

Accuracy. Yep, this is Paul Rudd as Scott Lang as Ant-Man. The eyes, lips and facial shape is an extremely good match, and while he does suffer a bit from 'average white guy nose', so does Rudd. He's a difficult likeness to capture, because there isn't anything extreme about his appearance, but they pulled it off nonetheless.

Life-like. Yep, this is what I've been talking about over and over.  It's not enough to make a realistic, accurate mannequin - it has to have life. Too many of the recent Hot Toys releases have a slack look, as though they are slightly stoned.  Not so here, and they gave him just the right squint and smirk to convey not only his attitude and personality, but his likeness. This sort of expression helps create an even greater accuracy, improving the entire look of the figure.

As I already mentioned, the work on the helmet, at least in terms of sculpting, is also solid. There's a few nits you can find to pick around perfect on screen accuracy (and to be fair, with the articulated jaw and removable mask, a lot is up to you), but the highly detailed, realistic appearance will blow most observers away.

Ant-Man/Scott Lang comes in at just a hair under 12" tall, and will fit in great with the rest of the Avengers.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Paint - ****
It's pretty rare for Hot Toys not to nail the paint, although some people complain about darker skin tones. I think this release is just about perfect, with subtle shading of the facial hair, amazingly realistic eyes, and a beautiful job of weathering on the helmet.

If I had one nit, it's with the lips, which are a little darker and oddly colored than I like. It's not quite a full blown lipstick look, but it's a bit closer than we usually see. Still, this wasn't a big enough issue for me to deduct from the full score.

I'm always impressed by well done weathering and damage.  Not enough, and it can look unintentional and cheap.  Too much, and it looks fake and unrealistic.  Getting just enough is tricky, and Hot Toys is one of the best in the business at pulling it off.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Articulation - **1/2
There's no real surprise here, but the tight suit restricts quite a bit of the mobility.  While the underlying TrueType body is just as articulated and poseable as ever, the suit keeps the arms, legs, and torso from doing a whole lot.

The neck is still reasonably good, although you should take care when moving the head around. With the small wires in back, the adjustable jaw in front, and the thin antenna on the sides, squeezing too tight in just about any direction could be fatal.

The ankles are also reasonable good, although not quite as mobile as someone like Quicksilver, for example. The boots are a two piece design, but the shoe section still has fairly high tops, making side to side movement a little more restricted.

My biggest disappointment was with the torso. Getting some lean and bend in the upper body can really improve just about any pose, and add a natural flow.  The suit makes that pretty much impossible, reducing the number of ways you can display him on the shelf.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Accessories - ***
While he isn't packed to the nines, he does have a fair number of extras.  There are four additional right hands and two additional lefts to go with the relaxed pair he comes wearing. One of the rights is in a 'push the button' pose, preparing to shrink down, while the other is in a fairly tight grip, perfect for the smaller accessories.

He also has four vials, two blue and two red, that fit neatly in his belt. These are the Pym Particle vials, with the red intended for shrinking, the blue for enlarging.  There are also two of the particle discs, one blue and one red, that act as 'bombs' of a sort, causing the thing they strike to enlarge or shrink. There are also two more traditional bombs, but sadly, no ants.

Perhaps the most interesting extra is the tiny version of Scott Lang, which is just about an inch tall.  It isn't articulated of course, but there is a tiny base that will keep it upright.  The feet fit inside two depressions in the base, but it isn't a particularly steady or reliable fit.

There is the usual display base with the Ant-Man logo and name, as well as the support rod.  There's also a few extra wrist pegs, just in case, but like I said, no ants.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Light Feature - *1/2
Hot Toys has been striking out in a major way with their light up features lately. Ant-man is another swing and a miss.

The battery compartment and switch are underneath a cover on the top of the head. That's not a problem for the battery compartment (and they include the three batteries you need), but it's a massive pain for the switch. Getting the cover on and off is made more difficult by the small, breakable sections of the helmet, and it's not something you'll look forward to doing with any regularity.

Even if the switch was in a more convenient spot, you'd be mighty underwhelmed.  The marketing photos show the light brightly emanating from the eyes and sides of the helmet.  That's not the case.  The light is in the center of the forehead, and with the mask in place, is barely visible. You might call it subtle - I'd call it a waste of money.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Outfit - ***1/2
I've already mentioned that the outfit is restrictive - that's a done deal. However, the actual materials, stitching, and tailoring are excellent, and the added details look fantastic.

There's the pack on the back, attached to the helmet with two tiny wires.  This is my one complaint, and the one area that pulls it down slightly.  They do NOT want to stay attached, and re-attaching them is an activity fraught with peril.  I was constantly concerned that I'd damage them, and while I considered just gluing them in place, if you ever want to remove the head that will cause problems. So I left them as they are, and suffered through.

I already sung the praises of the helmet, but the wiring, texturing, embossing, and detailing on the suit itself supports that same level of realism and accuracy. The belt is really the only removable piece, and it snaps tightly in the back.

The helmet is articulated along the jawline, which allows the mouth piece to be placed low or high.  The face plate itself is separate and can be 'opened' by putting it over the forehead where a magnet will keep it in place.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Fun Factor - ***
The fun factor takes a bit of a hit due to the restrictive suit, but with the various looks you can get with the helmet and swappable hands, you can still create a nice number of different poses on the shelf.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Value - *1/2
This figure costs $235, more than the recent Scarlet Witch, Princess Leia, or Quicksilver. While the costume is more intricate, the big difference is in the light up feature, as none of those three had one. I was originally going to go with a ** score here, but I decided it was worth making a point about the light up feature and its inadequacy.  They could have easily skipped it, saved us $25, and given us a figure well worth the price.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Things to Watch Out For -
When handling the helmet - posing the head, moving the jaw section, or working with the face plate - take some care where you squeeze and how tightly.  There are enough small details that can break that you should pay extra attention.

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Overall - ***
This is a terrific head sculpt and portrait, with excellent work on the details of the helmet and outfit.  While the articulation and posability are restricted by the tight suit, that's not a deal breaker.  Had that been the only issue here, this would still be a ***1/2 star figure.

But once again we got an almost worthless light up feature, and we paid for it. This design was inadequate, and at $235, you deserve better.

Once you get past that disappointment though - and you will - you're gong to love how this guy looks on the shelf.  I don't know that I need the Civil War version, a positive sign for the overall quality here.  The only real selling points with the new release are the  secondary unmasked Paul Rudd head sculpt, and the potential that because there's a second head they were able to better implement the light up feature.  I have my fingers crossed...but I haven't pre-ordered yet.

Score Recap (out of ****):
Packaging - ***1/2
Sculpting - ****
Paint - ****
Articulation - **1/2
Accessories - ***
Light Feature - *1/2
Outfit - ***1/2
Fun Factor - ***
Value - *1/2
Overall - ***

Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- has him at $220. He's selling out fast, so if you want this original suit, you should act quickly.

- doesn't have this version, but does have the Civil War version for $225.

- has sold out of this guy, but has the Civil War version for $235.

- Sideshow is also sold out of this version, but has Civil War for $235.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
The most recent Hot Toys Avenger I reviewed was Quicksilver, with Scarlet Witch not far behind. Before that we had Pepper Potts and the MK IV set. Other related characters include Maria Hill, AoU Captain America, the Winter Soldier, Red Skull, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Nick Fury, Agent Coulson, Hulk, and Bruce Banner. I've also covered a ton of Iron Man releases, and one of my favorites is the die cast MK43.

You should also hit the Search Reviews page, in case any other applicable reviews were done after this one was published.

Discussion:
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Marvel Ant-Man sixth scale action figure by Hot Toys

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This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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