Marvel Universe Toys "R" Us Exclusive 3-Pack
Item No.: Asst. 93359 No. 93360 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:Spider-Man, Firestar figures Action Feature:n/a Retail:$24.99 Availability: Summer 2009 Other: A clear comic Iceman was released in the Wolverine movie line
Depending on where and when you looked, the "Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends 3-pack was quite hard to find-- and your only (so far) Marvel Universe-branded Iceman exists in this boxed set. The good news is he's cartoony, with an affable big smile and a snow-like look. The bad news? No gear. No snowballs, no ice "sled" thing, nada. It's a little disappointing, but these sets are often designed to be cheap, and as such cost cutting has resulted in the set being slightly less than it could be.
Depending on who you talk with from the Hasbro teams, you get some pretty interesting intel into how they design (or over- or under-design) their figures. The Joe team, for example, didn't design the 2007 relaunch with vehicles in mind-- so things like sitting were not a priority. The same seems to be true with some Marvel Universe figures, as this highly articulated figure is packed with joints but is unable to sit due to the hip construction. Like many of the Marvel figures, it's designed to look good standing up and/or fighting-- "play" was not a high priority. The ball-jointed shoulders, swivel biceps, bending elbow, and swivel wrist allows you to do all sorts of fun stances which makes it look like Bobby Drake is about to conjure up some ice, but as stated above there's no ice in the box. So get thee to the freezer if you want that kind of accessory, he's only good for standing around.
While not a bad figure, it's certainly unremarkable-- the Toy Biz X-Men Iceman has fewer points of articulation, but more in the way of play features as that ice surfboard really does bring him to life. As it is, he's just going to stand there, look good, and remind a generation of Saturday morning cartoon watchers of their first exposure to Spider-Man from the NBC series Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends. Die-hard Marvel fans will probably buy the set for Firestar (or even Iceman), but he falls short of being "great." He does push the nostalgia button, though, and this 3-pack is a great set for boxed collectors to display as you get an entire team in one nice neat little package.
One design flaw-- and I do think it's a flaw-- is that Hasbro printed a date stamp in black ink on the figure's thigh. (Spider-Man has this as well.) It's ugly, and it just makes the toy look bad-- Hasbro has been printing and carving markings like this on their figures, which are often not as subtle as the traditional copyright markings as these new date stamps are clearly visible and colored in a way so you can't miss them, rather than being tucked away somewhere.
If you're lucky enough to find this, scan it-- it might be on clearance. My sample was on clearance and on sale, plus with a coupon I just happened to have, it was under $10 for the set. It's totally worth picking up for $15 or less, higher than that should depend on just how much you love your memory of Saturday mornings.
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