Packaging - ***
The boxes do the trick, with good photos of the bust and a sturdy design.
The best thing about Diamond Select packaging though is the excellent
Certificate of Authenticity that comes with each bust.
Sculpting - Hobgoblin ***; Wolverine ***1/2
I'm basing this score on technical expertise and style - I'll pick on the
design factors in a later category.
Both have lots of detail, but Hobgoblin simply doesn't stand out well with
the many other busts in his size and style. The roughness to the sculpting
style doesn't work as well here, and I couldn't help but feel that the overall
effect of the piece was rather boring.
Wolverine is anything but boring. Here we have a ton of detail, and it
works perfectly with the style. Now, if you hate Sam Keith's artwork,
you're going to hate this bust - but that's not the fault of the sculptor, who
has done an excellent job of capturing the Keith style in a well known
Paint - Hobgoblin **1/2; Wolverine ***1/2
The paint ops on Wolverine are excellent, with a nice use of shadowing and
color to give a greater impression of realism. The application is also
very clean and neat, with no bleed or slop, even between tough colors like the
yellow and blue, or yellow and black.
Hobgoblin has a matte finish to his orange cloak and gruesome face, and it
looks chalky, lacking visual punch. I much prefer the higher gloss
appearance, or at least a semi-gloss.
Quality/Design - Wolverine ***1/2; Hobgoblin **1/2
Combine the technical talent of the sculpt with the overall design and pose,
and you'll find that Wolverine is a real stand out. IF, I say IF, you like
Keith's style. I love the pose that was selected, with Wolverine glaring
at you through the extended blades of his right hand. The over emphasized
muscles, over exaggerated ears on the cowl, and extreme scowl might be more than
you appreciate, but for the big fan, it's perfect. I am a little confused
by the tree branch, but I'm sure there's a good reason it's there. Right?
Hobgoblin has a relatively decent pose, but the tilt of the head makes me
think he's putting very little oomph into that throw. The overall pose
just doesn't jive for me, and instead of strength and action I see weakness and
frailty. And I'm willing to say that most of that is a result of just the
backward tilt of the head.
I also think I've been spoiled by the exceptional Green
Goblin that was recently released by Diamond Select.
Value - Wolverine ***; Hobgoblin **1/2
At forty bucks each, these are on par with other current licensed
mini-busts. You won't feel like you're getting a steal, but you won't feel
ripped either. I'm hitting up Hobgoblin a little more here though, since
at this price I expect a bust that wows me, and jumps off the shelf. Not
literally of course - I've busted enough busts on my own.
Overall - Wolverine ***1/2; Hobgoblin **1/2
The Green Goblin bust really did spoil me for this one. There's no way
I can look at Hobgoblin and not compare, and he simply doesn't stack up.
He's not a terrible bust, and if you're a big fan I'd say shop around to see if
you can get a good deal.
Wolverine is a different story. If you're into Sam Keith's art, then
pick this up. If you're not, stay very far away, because you certainly
won't like it.
Where to Buy -
Your best bet locally is a comic shop, but there's some on-line choices as well:
- Alter Ego Comics has both of
these in stock for $36 each, and they've also listed the Black
Cat statue I reviewed at Poop Shoot this week for $120.
KEEP SCROLLING DOWN FOR MORE PHOTOS!