following is a guest review. The review
and photos do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Michael Crawford
or Michael's Review of the Week, and are the opinion and work of the
|I checked out the Hot Toys
Captaim America awhile back, but it's always good to get another view
point - Ryan checks in tonight with his guest review of the American
hero - take it away, Ryan!
Although “Captain America” wasn’t quite the theatrical phenomenon I
hoped it would be, it was nevertheless a good summer film that left all
us geeks looking forward all the more to the upcoming “Avengers” movie.
Hot Toys, of course, wasted no time in announcing that they’d be
releasing a sixth scale figure based on Cap himself, and, more
recently, his arch-nemesis Red Skull has been made available for
preorder as well and will soon be keeping him company on many
The Captain has been out for awhile now,
but has just recently started shipping to U.S. retailers. Fans were
getting a little impatient since the wait seemed to drag on forever,
but he’s finally begun shipping pretty much everywhere. Michael did a
review on this figure a while back, and mentioned quite a few issues
that shouldn’t at all be present with a figure that costs over $100.
Thus, I received mine fully expecting to encounter those same issues,
and was pleasantly surprised when I didn’t. Thus, since the issue with
Mike’s figure evidently don’t span all across the board (though several
folks have complained about that holster), I decided for fairness’s
sake to drop another perspective. I did have a couple issues of my own,
though, which I’ll get to later.
quite the stunning work of art that we’ve seen with other Hot Toys
packaging, but still practical, convenient, and well-decorated. This
time, as with many of the other HT Marvel releases, we get a
shoebox-style package where the lid lifts off to reveal a poster-like
covering with a photo and description of the character, underneath of
which is the figure and accessories embedded in a plastic tray. This
time, there is a separate tray for accessories on the inside of the lid
with narrow slits for the corners to fit into and tape on the top and
bottom to hold it into place. The tray can be easily removed and
replaced without damaging anything.
Sculpting - ****
just as bummed as the next guy that we didn’t get an unmasked Steve
Rodgers portrait. But I’ll nail them for that in the “Accessories”
category and just scrutinize what we DO have here.
looking at as many close-up stills of the masked Captain from the film
as I could find and comparing, I have to say that I can find no fault
with this. The Steve Rodgers likeness, as far as I can see, is there as
much as it can or should be under the circumstances. The mask covers up
the hair, forehead, ears, and part of the cheeks and nose as it does in
the film, and the mask-face combination that we get here seems to be
pretty spot-on. That being said, I never could find a perfect
photo of the masked character that allowed me to employ infallible
judgment. And I’ve only seen the movie once, which was months ago when
it was in theaters. But from what I can see, it looks like Hot Toys
nailed it. The mask, though not removable, is sculpted well enough that
it looks like it could be removed (a result of paint superiority as
well). The extra hands, boots, and accessories are all realistic and in
appropriate scale as well.
Hot Toys delivers the awesome in the paint category. As mentioned
above, the paint on the mask and face is so neatly done that they
actually look like they’re separable. The shield is a real work of
beauty, painted neatly and made to shine like the real thing. However,
at least on mine, the paint chips off very easily, which can really
screw up the overall appearance. The red paint on mine came off in two
places, and having no other tool at my disposal, I colored over them
lightly with a red sharpie. Yeah, not very professional, but as the
spots were pretty small and were not nearly as noticeable afterwards,
it got the job done. With a figure that costs this much, we have the
right to expect perfection, which includes not having the paint chip
off at nearly the slightest touch.
I didn’t have the problems with the wrists and neck joint that
Michael had. The head on mine can look any direction and has a great
range of movement without anything going awry. With the hands,
likewise, once I got them on (which the pleather cuffs extending onto
the ball of the peg makes for an aggravating process), they stayed on
without any problems. The legs also, considering the restrictiveness of
the outfit, have a great range of motion, enabling Cap to take some
pretty deep stances.
The arms, however, are another thing. The
elbow joints on mine are VERY stiff, and the first time I tried to move
them I had to put so much effort into it that I was afraid I’d break
something. I had similar problems with DX Indy. After messing with the
figure awhile and moving the elbow joints back and forth several times,
they’ve loosened up a bit, but not a whole lot. Also, as the directions
say, the arms can only move slightly above the chest, which is at least
in part due to the outfit. Thus, if someone gets the drop on Cap and
tells him to reach for the sky, he’s screwed.
comes with all the main stuff: pistol, rifle (both painted and sculpted
with excellence, though no moving parts this time), nine hands total
(two fists, two gripping, two slightly open, two completely open, one
gun-holding/pointing), extra wrist and ankle pegs, display stand, and,
most importantly, his shield. (I’m counting the shoulder strap and
S-hook as parts of the outfit).
That’s a decent number of
extras, but the reason for my score is not so much quantity as quality.
My biggest gripe is the shield. The pleather strap which is meant to be
gripped in the hand broke loose in two places on mine, and I had to
superglue it back into place. Also, as mentioned before, there’s the
problem of paint chipping off on the shield way too easily. Should I
really have to use superglue and a red sharpie on a figure that costs
this much? Also, the strap on the rifle came loose on one end. It can
actually snap back into place and hold for a little bit, but stare at
it too hard and it falls right back off. *Sigh.* Superglue again.
for the most part the accessories are cool and plentiful; if we had
just gotten that unmasked Rodgers head as an extra then I probably
would have seen my way to adding another full star in this category.
we’re talkin’. Cap had a pretty awesome-looking outfit in the movie,
and Hot Toys has replicated it to near perfection. The look and feel of
the clothing, down to the last detail of staining/weathering, is
spot-on. As Michael observed, the pants come right down to the boots
and no further, making it look as though they go down into the boots
while avoiding the inconvenience that comes with that in this scale.
Too many times have pants come out of boots on other figures, forcing
me to try and cram them back in and make them look right again. Kudos
to Hot Toys for bypassing that issue this time. Additionally, we
get a shoulder strap with two pouches that goes across his torso
(though mine seems a little too loose) and an S-shaped hook that
enables you to connect the shield to his back.
As incredible and
amazing as this outfit looks, I have a couple issues that hold it back
from a full score, and they all come down to the same thing: the cheap,
too-thin pleather that is used for several aspects of this
outfit. Many people have complained about issues with the holster
where the hole and peg weren’t able to connect and close the holster
without tearing and thus eradicating any possibility of ever being to
close the holster at all. Fortunately, I didn’t have that issue; the
holster on mine has been able to open and close over the pistol several
times without anything tearing, though I always make sure to take care
when opening and closing it. However, as I already mentioned, I didn’t
have the same luck with the shield strap.
The main problem,
which I’m fairly certain is universal, is said cheap pleather covering
up the wrist pegs. Since I can pull it back out of the way with my
thumbnail while shoving the hand down onto the peg, for me this is
merely a minor nuisance. But take this minor nuisance over the other
minor nuisances I’ve experienced already with the shield and we’re
talking one nuisance too many.
preordered this guy at $153, and I’ve noticed several other retailers,
as well as sellers on ebay, that have him at or around that price. It’s
a breath of fresh air when Hot Toys gives us a figure in that old $150
price range these days when many of their figures, even plain ordinary
ones, are creeping closer and closer to $200. Even if you got him at
Sideshow for $170, they offered free domestic shipping, which is a big
deal these days. However, if you paid anything above the $150 +
shipping range I’d knock off a half star. This figure simply has too
many issues to justify anything beyond that.
Factor - ***
Makes a great toy, remembers its action figure roots, but not for kids, too expensive…..you know the drill.
Things to Watch For:
shield looks amazing, so do your best not to put any scratches on it.
I’m not sure if mine acquired the small scratches prior to shipping or
if it happened while I was messing with that freakin’ strap. That’s the
next thing: anything like the straps and holster that’s made out of
that cheap pleather needs to be handled with kit gloves to avoid
tearing. Also be careful when moving the arms—make sure you don’t
move them up too far.
fair price, great sculpt and paint, and outstanding outfit, I’m not
letting my issues with the shield affect my overall score too much. Hot
Toys has set the bar so high for themselves that a figure like this
won’t come close to being their best, but it’s certainly on par with
the level of quality we’ve come to expect from them while doing
adequate justice to the character.
This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer.
Photos and text by Ryan Kelly.