I saw the Flame Warrior and my first reaction was "This isn't Pyro from X-Men." It's close though. It wouldn't surprise me if the fact that it has flaming orange skin may result in it being repurposed for politically charged custom figures, but as-is it's a winner. If you have a black light, this is Lord God King Reactive Agent - the fire figure shines so brightly I initially thought my black light LED bulb was replaced by a bright white one that shoots out dreams and starlight. If you have a room with a black light, or know someone who does, get them this figure immediately.
Playmobil figure construction owes much to what has come before. The figure has a bat-like collar armor piece with pegs on the back which have hooks on it, very much like the Space Warrior [FOTD #1,618]. Instead of weapon hooks, here they serve as flame storage. Dual-color injection molded flames are absolutely beautiful, and Playmobil stuck two on his back and a third in the barrel of his blaster.
The figure itself is a mishmash of pieces you've seen before - note the ripped sleeves and pants used frequently in the Pirates theme. You may not realize at first glance that the figure is actually barefoot - the slightly enhanced big toe is really the only hint of this, so if you don't catch it in the right light odds are you'll never even realize it. This is why you take showers, because if your skin is orange but your feet are black something terrible must have happened. The blindingly bright yellow shirt has the Guy Fieri-est flames you could hope for and it really ties the whole figure together. How can you not love this much fire on one figure?
The head is nothing too special, retaining the traditional dual-injection eyes covered in paint. If you pop off the spiky hair, inside you'll see what appears to be a ring of brown plastic - rather than paint eyes and a mouth on their figures, Playmobil injects plastic in the mold so you can't scrape them off. I like this. Figure longevity in the toy box and beyond rarely seems to be considered by toy manufacturers, so anything like that which shows some foresight in keeping these figures going after you bury them in the sandbox for ten years makes me happy. (I doubt it'd be very good for the color, though.)
When I saw this figure in the store, I bought it because it's ridiculous. "Man on fire" is something you really can't do wrong. The supervillain vibe works well, and I hope we see some more heroes in this line down the road. As this gets published I'm probably en route to Toy Fair in New York to see what - if anything - Playmobil might do to follow Ghostbusters and How to Train Your Dragon which I have to assume will eventually include Marvel or DC. This figure makes me hope Playmobil might give us their own take on the genre before the soulless minions of licensing dictate the colors, powers, and characters of their future. I admit this may be contradictory with other things I've said, because while I'm incredibly excited to pick up their Ghostbusters offerings I'm equally excited to see new animals and weird figures from the license-free reality in which we all live. I have a Playmobil collection because I was so enamored with one figure in my early 20s that I picked up the line after abandoning it when I was "too old" around the age of 8 and was moving on to more 8-bit, Nintendo-shaped pastures. (I still love those pastures.) I love their original ideas, and I'm sitting here really hoping we'll see many more of them for years to come - and hopefully they won't subsume the creativity that clearly flows through their design offices.
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