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
|Jeff is checking out Spidey
tonight! I hit this guy up here, but now Jeff adds in with his thoughts
- take it away, Jeff!
Us geeks all tend to have our thang, the one character that kind of
defines us from an early age. And though I never developed super powers
I did share a surname with the forever misunderstood adolescent hero
Peter Parker. But that was just a bonus, because as a kid whose most
formative years were the 1970’s, he was my favoured super hero. Yeah, I
loved all the other classics from both Marvel and DC, but Spidey was
just different… he was mine!
For a start all other super heroes were adults. Kids or teenagers were
only ever seen as sidekicks or hangers on, but Spidey was a kid, well
Peter Parker was a teenager, something I aspired to be. Adults’
were/are just grey beings who made everything boring… without even
trying. And he was always struggling with his real world duties and
commitments while trying to keep a New York state of mind, and
protecting the metropolis from the clutches of a whole horde of
super-villains. Then add to the fact that he had just about the coolest
outfit. Minimal, but striking, and you had my childhood hero!
And so it is that to this day Spidey has remained a firm favourite.
Over the years I must have collected hundreds of figures, some lost to
the mists of time but some still in my possession. Even the desk in my
studio looks like a small shrine to this day,
and I have a small Spidey corner in my dinning room like this
as well. I guess what I’m trying to point out is that with my love of
all things Spider-Man, coupled with my love of Hot Toys figures, my
expectations were riding pretty high for this to turn out well.
So after what seemed like an interminable wait I finally got him a
couple of months ago, but Mike had his review up so quickly I decided
to sit on it for a while and just savour him. Give myself time to get a
real feeling for what I liked and disliked about him. And I’m pleased
to report there is very little that I actually disliked at all!
I’ve enjoyed the Sam Raimi movies, but have to admit that the third one
was a HUGE disappointment for me. Spidey 2 was almost perfect and the
first movie was solid, but boy was part 3 a mess. We all know that
Raimi didn’t want to feature Venom, but was pressurised into it by
Sony… and sadly it shows big time! That’s not to say I had a problem
with any of the character designs, as that was all note perfect… so
perhaps the less I say about the actual movie the better.
The good news is that the Spidey costume was virtually identical (apart
from a little battle damage here and there) throughout the movies. So
if you liked ANY of them, or were just a dyed-in-the-wool web-head (the
type that existed before the internet) then this might just be the
figure you are looking for!
I love this box. I’m often enthusiastic about Hot Tots graphic design,
but boy do I love this box!
It once again follows the now classic construction of all the Hot Toys
Marvel boxes that have come before, from Wolverine right up to the
oversized version for the Ghost Rider and Hell-cycle.
So it’s a lift off lid, the top half being made to look as if the chest
area of the suit has been stretched taut over it. The spider icon is a
separate matte black 3D die-cut piece stuck onto the front, and the
rest of the top half has a rather nifty blind varnished honeycombed
pattern to really make the mesh like appearance of the suit stand out.
Over this is a slightly embossed matrix of the iconic webbing design
that we all know and love. The rear has an image of the figure
alongside a full list of the production credits (letting us know this
beauty was crafted by TF Wong and Monster Jnr), and once the lid is
removed you will discover a full colour card overlay with both an image
of the figure and a brief biography.
Inside Spidey is held between three vac formed layers of plastic,
alongside his accessories, in a completely 100% collector friendly
package… I LOVE THIS BOX!
Sculpting - ****
There’s not actually a whole lot sculpted here… well, not in the
traditional sense of a detailed character head anyway! What we do get
is fine selection of ten hands consisting of -
- 2 fists
- 2 relaxed
- 2 fingers splayed
- 2 web slinging (‘El Diablo’ stylee)
- 2 web swinging grip
There are also the various webs and the ‘stonework’ plinth, but I’ll
cover those in accessories. All the hands are obviously specific to
Spidey because of the raised webbing design of his implied gloves, but
also because of the character specific poses they are in. I found they
swapped over fine and worked well for all the classic iconic poses you
The head beneath the mask has minimal detailing and just follows a
generic head-shape. The raised bump for the nose works well in pushing
the mask forward enough to look convincing beneath the webbing, I do
however feel the chin could have been given a little more definition.
In many poses it works fine, for example looking up, or if the head is
pushed forward. But when just standing in a neutral pose, with the head
in a relaxed position, it can be a little weak from some angles. I
don’t think it needs a full ‘Desperate Dan/Bruce Campbell’ extreme
protuberance, but a couple of millimetres more could have added even
more to his posing potential.
However, it is kind of me wishing for something between what I want
from a classic comic Spidey and what we saw on screen. As lets face it,
it wasn’t actually that well defined in the movie, as can be seen both here
and indeed here.
So I guess the answer for me is just to find a pose where the neck juts
forward and the chin is slightly raised… and let’s face it, there are
plenty of poses like that!
So, not a lot of sculpting, but what we do get is actually pretty
faultless when compared to what we saw in the movie, and I have to
admit I like this figure a little more every time I pick him up and
repose him, it’s a hugely tactile figure to play with!
Because of the lack of a portrait head sculpt the paint is also pretty
minimal. But again they make sure we get some stunningly observed
superfine detailing. First up are the iconic lenses on the suit (which
I think I’m right in thinking were developed by Oakley for the movie
worn costume), they have the black frame and the white/silver matrix
effect beneath the polished smooth lens. These are handled nicely, nay
perfectly and the texturing of the mesh is beautifully realised for the
However the thing that actually made me sit up and look is the work on
the hands. Of course they have picked out the webbing, and yes of
course it is super accurate with no slop, but the amazing detail is the
micro ‘honeycombed’ mesh design that covers the whole of the surface.
How many companies would have gone that far… not many, I can assure
The application here is of course mechanical, but it is also faultless…
This tiny detail alone deserves the highest of accolades… well to me
The plinth is also given a stone effect paint job, but I’ll cover that
Under that skin-tight all in one is a classic True-Type, and we all
know how versatile and poseable that is! However as I mentioned in the
outfit section, the ‘potentially’ fragile nature of the fabrication
does mean you should exercise caution when attempting any of the more
extreme or deep stances. That said, I did put him through his paces;
after all, what’s the point of having Spidey if you can’t pose him?
I found that the suits webbing was hardier than you might fear and I
had no problem getting him into the poses for the photos you see here.
Of course I have no way of knowing how it will fare should I pose him
repeatedly for months on end, or how the passage of time will impact on
the materials it has been made of, but right now it looks great and
seems to be holding up perfectly… it is however very early days!
So in a nutshell, the only restrictions are from the outfit, and even
then it’s more to do with me not wanting to push the figure to his
limits rather than the outfit hampering his actual ability to strike a
pose. And as such he gets about as close to perfect as I could
realistically expect. And trust me, with care, you’ll have a ball
getting this guy into just the right pose for your display.
Spidey was and indeed ‘is’ all about getting the suit right! As I
mentioned above I have collected a lot of Spider-Man figures over the
years, with a special eye on the 1/6th variety. I did however never
bother with the Medicom ones from Spiderman 3; I just thought they were
plain ugly! I loved the comic version they made (I own 2) but the
pleather clad ‘shiny’ gimp Spidey was never going be troubling my
So when I first saw the Hot Toys proto pics of this version my heart
did skip a rather massive beat. Of course I’m not stupid and I could
see there was room for improvement… most notably those distressing
rubber boots. But the actual outfit looked like the ‘classic’ one I had
always been waiting for.
But then fast forward to the figure I now hold in my grubby mitts and
even the boots have been re-designed and tailored to be a completely
fabric and rubber mesh construction… That’s why we love you Hot Toys!
I mean, seriously, I never thought it could… let alone would be
executed this exceptionally at 1/6th scale. The whole body-glove fits
tightly and snugly to the base True-Type, and the seams and edging are
almost invisible to all but the most scrutinous of eagle eyes. Both the
red and blue areas have the tiny honeycomb effect running over the
entire surface, and the raised silicone/webbing is just a marvel to
behold (pun intended). Both the black and the red spider icons on the
chest and back respectively are raised-relief ‘stuck-on’ items, but
they are welded fast to the fabric, in much the same way as the
webbing. I don’t how they did it… but they freakin did it!
Of course this is just me waxing lyrical about the figure of a
character I have loved since childhood, so maybe I’m seeing it through
rose tinted specs, but I don’t think I am… this really is rather
But keeping it real, I would imagine the main concern for most of us is
just how long is that webbing mesh on the suit going to last… and for
now I can’t answer that! But after posing this figure repeatedly over
the last few weeks there is no sign of any problems developing yet, and
I haven’t held back in my choice of poses!
Whenever pertinent, I always like to name the creative people that are
responsible for the product we end up with, and on this occasion I
think it’s fair to say that Lim Young Jin and his team are the most
important people in getting this to look just right. He also helped
developed the skin-tight stealth suit that came with the Bruce Lee
DX04, so I guess when Hot Toys need skin tight, he’s the ‘go to guy’,
and here he has shown some truly exceptional work.
All I can say is that as of this moment, I hold in my hands a more
accurate 1/6th scale facsimile of the movie worn costume than I ever
thought I would own. And that has just got to be praised to the high
To start with there are lots of hands, which I pretty much covered
above. Then there are the webs, which are of course essential for the
red and blue guy, and luckily we do get a comprehensive selection.
- 1 long shooting web with ‘umbrella’ end.
- 2 medium classic shooting webs
- 2 long swinging web ropes
- 2 short web rope ends
I found attaching all of them to be reasonably straight forward and all
worked well in conjunction with the relevant hands. The shooting webs
have disks/washers that fit between the hand and end of the wrist by
simply putting the peg through them, and the swinging webs have narrow
tips that simply push into small pre-made holes in the ‘swing-grip’
The one item I’m not hugely keen on is the stonework plinth, modelled
to look like some semi-gothic out-cropping from a New York tall
building. I mean, it’s OK, but the sculpting is a little non-descript
and under-defined which is exacerbated by a dull generic paint app. I
think it’s meant to mimic this image,
and in all fairness it does its job insomuch as it’s a nice little
bonus, but it doesn’t truly inspire any great feelings of worth and I
certainly won’t be using it as a display piece!
The biggest omission for many was the lack of a Peter Parker head
sculpt, but for this version it really was an unrealistic expectation.
The reason being, that Hot Toys went all out to do a complete fabric
costume. Something that no mass-produced manufacturer has ever pulled
off before! And in doing that (and doing it well) they ended up with a
situation where the suit is a one piece garment that the figure is
physically sewn into… so there is no way you could use the head anyway.
That’s not to say I’m not hoping for a variation in the future, perhaps
a battle damaged or a DX version, but for now I can see why we didn’t
get one. And I’d personally much rather have this state of the art
interpretation pushing what Hot Toys can do with 1/6th tailoring,
rather than a half-baked compromise purely so we could swap over the
Factor - ****
I love Spidey, have done for a long, long time, so for me this is
without a doubt the best articulated version of the character ever! I
love the old Toy Biz 18” super-poseable version that came out with
Spiderman 2. I even have 2 of them as well, one for work and one for
home (yes I went through the pain of removing him twice from the
packaging… anyone out there who owns one will probably still have
nightmarish ‘flashbacks’ of the two billion twisty-ties they used). And
yes he does pose like a dream… but he has two things against him
1- He’s 18” not 12”… 1/6th beats ¼ scale like rock blunts scissors or
paper wraps stone- FACT!
2- He’s sculpted. No fabric outfit!
Meaning this new version of Spider-Man takes the crown…YES!
Of course if this did end up in the hands of a junior web-head, he’s
gonna look like crap in a matter of hours. But in the hands of an adult
Spidey fan, he will put a mile wide grin on your face.
for money - ***1/2
At $150 he’s at what is increasingly seen as the low end of high-end
prices, well, for Hot Toys anyway. True, it doesn’t come with what at
first might appear a great haul of accessories, but what we do get is
pertinent to this character.
However you can see where all the money has been spent here, and it is
on the R&D for that amazing outfit. I defy anyone to fully
appreciate just how well executed this is, and how competently this
complex outfit has been made to look at this scale, without actually
having it in your hands. So at $150 it’s hard to give a full score… but
I was sorely tempted.
If Hot Toys do get round to an improved version further down the line
that’ll be an even bigger bonus for us web-heads. However, if this
turns out to be the truest and most faithful ‘fully fabric’
interpretation of the classic outfit they make, unencumbered by visible
joints, or a need for any awkward head swaps. Then there’s a chance
this just might end up being a much sought after grail piece by many
people… of course it might not. But what ever the outcome I am oh so
glad I have it in my collection right now.
It is arguable that he is not 110% perfect. But with my fears allayed
(based on the photos that were shown of the prototype figure) I am
completely knocked out by this figure. I know we are in heady times for
1/6th collectors, with so many cool new figures coming, not only from
Hot Toys but a whole raft of new companies that have an eye on their
crown. But with this single figure (that may look simple to the
uninitiated) they have once again thrown down a gauntlet that will be
difficult to challenge!
Here we have a fabric dressed 1/6th facsimile of the screen seen
superhero. The suit is an absolute work of art, the poseability is
better than I feared and even though I would have liked a Maguire head
sculpt, I can see why we didn’t get one and we still have a fair amount
of accessories anyway.
If Hot Toys do manage to better this with a DX in the future I will be
orgasmic… but I’m ecstatic as it is! And I know there’s stiff
competition… but this is probably gonna be my favourite figure of the
year, all kinds of AMAZING Spider-Man!
Where to buy
Sideshow did have this up for the RRP of $149.99, and of course even at
that price he sold out quicker than the proverbial streak of
light. Many of Mike’s sponsors did carry it, but all have now
gone, so I’m sorry to say your best option is probably eBay,
where prices range between $190 to $350.
Did you enjoy
the review? Plus 1 it!
This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer.
Photos and text by Jeff Parker.