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Guardians of the Galaxy Marvel Legends - Gamora, Nova and Iron Man
Hasbro
07-23-14

Gamora Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro


About two weeks ago, I covered the first three figures in the Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy wave - Rocket Raccoon, Drax, and Star-Lord. I wanted to also cover Gamora, Iron Man and Nova, but when it came to finding them on the shelf, there was a hold out. No, not the chick...it was Nova! Not sure why he's popular, or if he's just very shortpacked right now, but I finally managed to dig one up yesterday.

I'll also cover the Build A Figure with this series, Groot, but I want to do him with the other two BAF's that Hasbro has released this year. I'll hit up all three shortly.

Back to these three. Gamora is obviously the one most folks will want asap, since she's a) a female action figure, a rare beast in the collecting world and b) one of the five members of the Guardians.  I have no idea what role Iron Man will play in this flick, if any, although we haven't heard much about end creidts. And Nova? We all know the rumors - he'll be played by none other than Nathan Fillion, making all the fanboy dreams come true. While it's unlikely he'll be wearing this comic book based costume, you never know - or at least if you're like me and you avoid spoilers, you don't.

These guys (and gal) are hitting stores like Target, Toys R Us and Meijers right now, and run about $20 each. Ouch.

Packaging - ****
I didn't give these packages enough credit last time. It's far too rare to see mass market packaging that is actually, truly, no lie, collector friendly. There isn't even a piece of tape to cut. You can easily slip the figure out, encounter nary a single twistie tie or rubber band, pop him out of the plastic tray, and pop him back in again, any time you'd like, easy peasy lemon squeezy.

It helps that they also show off the figure and BAF part very nicely, and have a shot of the entire line up on the back.
Click on the photo below for a life size version
Nova Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
Nova Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Iron Man Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Nova Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Gamora Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Iron Man Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Gamora Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Iron Man Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro
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Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro

Sculpting - ***
The sculpting is reasonably good, but each figure comes up just a bit short in one way or another. For those unfamiliar with Marvel Legends, these are done in a 6" scale, and should fit in pretty well with any other line in that same scale.

Oddly enough, I think I like Nova the best. It doesn't look anything like Fillion under the mask, but then, none of the figures look like exact matches with their actors, and this is a technically a comic book version. I do love the suit design and detail though, and his overall design creates the least interference with his articulation. Sadly, the very soft plastic (they are VERY soft this time) effects the star on his forehead, making it too easy to end up bent and misshapen in the package. You'll be able to fix it over time, but right out of the pack he'll look a little weird.

Which brings me to the only part of his design I don't like - the big super nova star on his forehead. How does this thing not make him cross eyed? Paint a symbol on the helmet? Great idea. Make one that looks like a dead starfish glued to his forehead? Not so good.

Iron Man has a unique look here, with some very funky shoulder armor. Have no fear, they can be popped off and on pretty easily.

The chest detail is particularly cool, and I don't remember the arc generator ever looking quite so much like a daisy.

Gamora suffers from the same problem all Marvel Legends ladies do - skinny, gangly limbs. The sculpt and articulation don't work together particularly well either, making it tough to find a pose that she can maintain.

She is pretty, but not as unique looking as on screen. She should be drop dead gorgeous, but as you can see in stills from the film, the funky cheek bones and ridges over the eyes give her an almost alien appearance -they didn't even try to sculpt this. Wimps.

Overall the figures are reasonable, but not exceptional. Too many short cuts on the sculpts, and not enough attention to detail.

Paint - ***1/2
The paint work is very nice, but it should be considering the price point.

Gamora is particularly well done, with very clean eyes and makeup. She is surprisingly realistic too - she's obviously a toy in a macro photo, but from a distance looks much better than most figures in this scale. Even the reddish tinge to her hair works.

They do slop it up a little on her costume, but it's not terrible work. Likewise, Nova and Iron Man have the occasional spot of bleed or sloppy cut line, but overall the work is clean and neat.

I really like the eye popping color of Nova's suit too, which could have ended up corny, but instead looks pretty bad ass. Drop the silly starfish, and this would be a great looking ensemble.

Articulation - Nova, Iron Man ***; Gamora **1/2
The biggest problem here is not the number of joints - all three are reasonable. But the plastic is almost rubber, especially on Iron Man and Nova, making them feel cheap and susceptible to damage.

They have all the usual Marvel Legends joints, including a ball neck, ball shoulders, cut biceps and thighs, double pin elbows and knees, cut waist, ab-crunch, pin and rocker ankles, and ball hips. I was a bit surprised that none of them - not even Gamora - had any wrist articulation. EDIT: I'm told Nova does, but mine seem paint stuck. The soft plastic throughout makes it risky to break them free.

She also lacks the cut waist, and her ab is not a crunch, as it can only turn and tilt very slightly. She has the ball neck (less restricted by the hair than I expected), ball shoulders, ball/pin elbows, cut thighs, double pin knees, and pin/rocker ankles. The hips look like balls, but are much more restricted than other figures, and make it difficult for her to take deep stances.

In fact, it's hard to get her to even stand for more than a few seconds. The small feet don't help, but the overall design of the articulation just isn't very compatible with the figure's center of gravity.

Both Iron Man and Nova have one other area of articulation - their shoulder armor. As I mentioned, not only can you move Iron Man's, but you can easily pop it off and on again. Nova's isn't supposed to come off, but it does move up and cleanly out of the way of even high arm poses.

Accessories - Gamora ***; Nova, Iron Man **1/2
Every figure comes with a part for Groot, the Build-A-Figure.  My standard score for a figure with just the BAF part and nothing else is **1/2, hence this score for both Iron Man and Nova.

Gammie gets a bit better score because she comes with her funky interstellar looking sword. Unfortunately, she can't hold it particularly well in either hand, but futz with it enough and you'll eventually get it to stay.  That's what they make poster tack for, isn't it?

Fun Factor - ***1/2
I gave the first three the full four stars here, but the softer plastic on Nova and Iron Man, along with Gamora's inability to stand on her own very well, knocks the overall play value down a half star. They're still fun, but a smidge more frustrating than the earlier three.

Value - **
Twenty dollars each? Double ouch. While I'm happy to still be getting Marvel Legends, particularly movie based ones, and the BAFs are always a nice addition to the collection, the price point is really becoming a killer.

Things to Watch Out For -
The soft plastic can make some of the joints particularly susceptible to breaking or ripping. I thought this was particularly true for Iron Man's elbows, but you'll want to take some care across the board.

Overall - *** (*** out of 4)
I'm looking forward to this movie quite a bit. Yes, it's going to be really silly, but from what I've seen so far, they do the humor right. They don't take themselves too seriously, and there's nothing wrong with that. In fact, if you're going to have a talking raccoon, you better not take yourself too seriously.

The figures aren't quite as nice as I'd hoped, although they are pretty consistent in terms of the Marvel Legends brand. I'm betting Gamora ends up on the Poppies ballot for best female in this scale, simply because the head sculpt is so attractive, a rarity in the female action figure world. Nova and Iron Man may end up critical to your collection...or they could end up forgotten. 

Rather than review Groot with the other six, I decided to pair him up with the Green Goblin BAF from the Amazing Spider-Man ML series, and Mandroid from the Captain America series. Since I never covered either of the earlier BAF's, and I know we'll be discussing them come Poppies time, I figured I'd kill three birds with one stone. Look for that next week, after my SDCC coverage.

Which reminds me - this will be the last review for about a week, as I'll be covering the 2014 San Diego Comic Con. I'll have my photo coverage here, and I'll let my Twitter followers know right away when new photos go up. It should be an interesting Con!

Score Recap:
Packaging - ****
Sculpting - ***
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - Nova, Iron Man ***; Gamora **1/2
Accessories - Gamora ***; Nova, Iron Man **1/2
Fun Factor - ***1/2
Value - **
Overall - ***

Where to Buy 
These are just starting to hit in force at major retailers, like Target, Toys R Us and Meijers. Expect to pay $20 each.

Related Links -
I recently covered the first half of this wave, including Rocket Raccoon, Star-Lord and Drax.

Discussion:
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Nova Marvel Legends Guardians of the Galaxy action figure by Hasbro


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

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