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Iron Man Mark IV (Iron Man 2)
Kotobukiya ArtFX Statue

Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya


The summer movie season starts out with a bang on May 7th with the release of the much anticipated Iron Man 2. The first film was one of the best superhero movies to date, so the second film has very big shoes to fill. Thankfully, the trailers and clips released so far look very promising.

Kotobukiya will be producing three new statues based on the second film. One is the subject of tonight's review, the ArtFX Mark IV version, due in the next month (this is an early review). The second is their Fine Art statue of the Mark VI, while the third is another ArtFX statue, this time of War Machine. Both of these are due in August.

Kotobukiya did an excellent job with their ArtFX and Fine Art statues based on the first film, making these new statues hot properties even at pre-order time. Both styles have light up features as well, making them a bit more interactive than the usual Koto statue.

The ArtFX versions are slightly cheaper, made from the durable, hard polymer, sturdier and less likely to break. These are also the versions that you get as 'kits', where you put them together. It's not a traditional kit though - the Iron Man Mark IV I'm looking at here comes as a pelvis and legs piece, a torso and head piece, and two arms. The assembly is quite easy, and shouldn't be a detriment.

The Fine Art statues are a more traditional style, made from resin and fully assembled. They are also more expensive, and more likely to break.

This is an early review of the Mark IV, and the statue should start shipping sometime in the next few weeks. You can expect to pay just over $100 for him, depending on the retailer.


Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya

Packaging - ***1/2
I really like this box, and I think a lot of that is because it reminds me of something Hot Toys would produce. Yea, that's not fair, but it's true.

It's very sturdy, has great graphics, and lots of background text on the back. These aren't a numbered limited edition, so there's no Certificate of Authenticity, but I wasn't expecting to see one.

Sculpting - ***1/2
The sculpt is very similar in quality to Kotobukiya's original Iron man ArtFX statues. The cuts are sharp and clean, and they've managed to create the look of metal in the hard polymer material.

These statues used to be advertised as 1/7th scale, but you'll notice that this one says 1/6th on the box.  I'm still thinking this guy is a little small though for true 1/6th, standing just 11 1/2" tall.

I love the stance, particularly the upper body. I do think that the right leg should be turned out slightly further, both at the foot and at the knee, but that's a very minor nit.

The internal scale is good, with limbs and extremities about the right size. No alien fingers here! Some folks will probably say he looks skinny, but not any more than just about any other rendition of Iron Man, including previous Hot Toys versions. I prefer the svelte appearance, but your mileage may vary.

More important for most folks is the similarity to the Mark III costume. While there are differences here, they aren't major, and this might be the toughest issue any of the IM Mark IV collectibles have to overcome.

Paint - ***1/2
The paint quality is good, and the new gold sections look terrific. Things are a little sloppy on some of the black lines, and the gold edging on the mid-section 'ribs' isn't as obvious in person as I think it should be. You can see it in photos, but the light has to hit it *just* right to see it in person.

Articulation - Bupkis
Just in case you aren't familiar with the Kotobukiya statues, I included this category. No, there isn't any articulation, although the arms do pop on and off. The posts are designed to only go on one way, and they do not turn. I knew that going in (I have quite a few Koto statues) so this won't effect my Overall, but I thought it was worth noting for those not yet familiar with their work.

Accessories - ***
Normally, statues don't have accessories, but since Iron Man comes separate from the base, AND he can stand on his own without it, I'm counting it here as an 'accessory'.

It's a fairly cool one too, designed to look like his power supply in 1:1 scale. It's about the right size for a costume, if you were looking to do some IM Cosplay.

There are plastic foot posts for both feet to hold him in place. The fit is tight, but not so tight that you could damage it.

I'll get into its overall light feature (along with the statue's) in the next section, but suffice to say that it works extremely well.

Light Feature - ***1/2
The light feature is extremely well done, with bright LED's at the chest, both palms and eyes.

These are powered by three small batteries inserted into the large post that holds the torso to the pelvis. The back of this post has the battery compartment, and on the top is a metal connector. There are also metal connectors at the shoulders, allowing the current to flow from the batteries to all the lights.

The switch is extremely well hidden - maybe a bit too well hidden. The left plate on his back pops completely off, revealing the small black switch. I was a little nervous the first time I popped it free, as it's a pretty tight fit. But once I'd done it a couple times, it worked much better, I was less concerned about breaking the plate, and the snug fit was more appreciated. This is a case where if you don't know where this switch is, you wouldn't be able to find it.

The metal connectors between the various body parts fit well, but if at first you have an issue with the lights (or a particular light) working, double check to make sure everything is nice and tight and properly aligned. If that doesn't work, re-check the placement of the batteries - upside down means no workee.

That's not the only light feature though. The base also lights up very brightly, with a switch on the back and a larger battery compartment in the base. This time it uses 3 AAA batteries, and these (like the smaller batteries) are included with the statue.

Value - **1/2
Most of the Kotobukiya licensed ArtFX statues in this scale retail for around $100. I've been trying to find one of the damn version 2 Boba Fetts for less than that, and haven't had any luck so far. This guy is just north of that, but has the very cool light up feature, making him a decent value in comparison. Don't forget - you'll pay $80 - $90 for a DC Direct Cover Girls statue. They have big headlights, but that's not the same as a light feature.

Things to Watch Out For -
Get the batteries in his back the right way the first time to avoid the hassle of taking it all apart. It's not a major effort, but better to avoid it anyway.

Overall - ***1/2
I have a minor quibble with almost every category, but it's important to note that they are exactly that - minor. 

The biggest problem this statue has is the same one any of the Mark IV collectibles will have, no matter who they are from. The suit isn't THAT much different than the Mark III, so some folks may decide to skip this release for the V or VI.  But if you're looking to have a cool display across all the suits, this one makes an excellent transition. It's also a great pose, complimenting the earlier (and future) releases.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***1/2
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - Bupkis
Accessories - ***
Light Up Feature - ***1/2
Value - **1/2
Overall - ***1/2

Where to Buy -
I suspect these will be very popular, and some online shops are already sold out of their pre-order numbers. Online options include these site sponsors:

- Big Bad Toy Store has him at the pre-order price of $100.

- Alter Ego Comics has him on pre-order for $108.

- Things From Another World has the pre-order up for $112.

- Entertainment Earth has him at $130.

- and you can hit up ebay looking for a deal.

Related Links -
I haven't checked out any other Iron Man 2 products, but they'll be coming - there's no way to avoid it!

Discussion:
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Iron Man 2 Mark IV statue by Kotobukiya


This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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