Hello, and welcome to my first review here at Cardedheroes.com! I figured (get it?) I’d start strong, because I’m probably going to get into some oddball figures later. So without further ado, I present to you… the Marvel Universe Greatest Battles Gambit & Mr. Sinister Comic Pack!
Let’s start out with Gambit. You all know him, I’m sure, as the smooth-talking Cajun of the X-Men. I remember him most fondly from the 90′s X-Men cartoon series. You know, the good one. It’s mostly the same figure as the 2008 X-Men Origins: Wolverine release, except for a new head and a scarf. I don’t have the XMO figure to compare it with, but hey, that’s what Google image search is for. Accessories include a removable jacket (but the sleeves are his arms. Price of nice detail at this scale), battle staff and a scarf, which I think brings the figure’s look together somehow, compared to the previous release. I do wish they had included the kinetic energy-soaked playing cards. But hey, you can’t have everything. Where would you put it all?
Articulation is a bit limited here. Just like the XMO release, it’s missing wrist articulation completely, which in my opinion is a poor choice for a figure with a staff as a weapon. Also like the previous release, there is no ankle articulation, which limits the possibilities as far as dynamic action poses go. It has the standard ball and socket head, but the socket is rather deep inside the head, which limits head movement to side to side, with maybe a millimeter or two of up and down. But hey, when you’re dealing with figures on this small a scale, and especially if you take close-up pictures of them, even the tiniest bit of movement can add a ton of character. Moving on, we have the standard swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel/hinge elbows, chest rocker/swivel, ball hinge/swivel hips, and double hinge jointed knees.
The paint job is very nice on mine, at least, (Marvel Universe figures, as has been greatly maligned in the toy collecting community, tend to be… inconsistent with their paint applications). The purple torso armor is a vibrant pinkish-purple, but is toned down by a nice matte finish. There’s a very minimal black wash on the coat, which is molded in brown plastic, that just settles into the creases and folds, which brings out the detail very nicely.
Overall, it’s a better figure than the old one, and a worthy addition to your X-Men team. And who needs pink blobby playing cards anyway, when this comic pack also includes another figure! (There’s also a comic book, but this is a figure review.) Get ready for…
Mr. Sinister! This… this is the real reason to get this set, I’m not going to lie. Why would I, when this is my first review, and I need to gain your trust, so that later, I can implement my devious plan to… *ahem* Moving on! This figure is made up of the single carded Marvel Universe Colossus body, with newly sculpted upper legs, upper torso, a plain red belt buckle to cover the X-Men logo, and a new head. The big plain brick they decided to use as a belt buckle to cover Colossus’ X-Men logo is a bit clunky, but it does its job well enough. I think it looks like a belt buckle a guy as big as this would use. The only accessory Mr. Sinister comes with is his cape. But what a cape! Comprised of hundreds of “blades” and an angular, tall, vampire-like collar, it lends a real sense of size and majesty to the already tall base figure. He’s big, he’s mean, and he looks like a vampire. What could be better?
How about really well done articulation? Because Mr. Sinister can pull off some great poses. The articulation here is exactly like Colossus, and that’s a very good thing. We have a hinged ball & socket head, swivel hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, hinge elbows, swivel wrists, chest rocker/swivel, ball pin hips, swivel thighs, double hinge knees and swivel hinge ankles. The cape helps support some poses, and hinders others. It’s a very heavy cape, and it just sits on his shoulders, there are no real anchor points, such as a back peg. Still, Mr. Sinister is very limber, and it’s no trouble at all to make him look all cool and evil and menacing.
And speaking of looking cool (and evil and menacing), the paint job really brings it all together here. Stark white contrasts black with brilliant red accents on Mr. Sinister’s head, making him seem very intimidating and vampirish. The body armor is a beautifully deep metallic blue. Pictures don’t do it justice, you need to see it at home, out of the package and in your hand. This hypnotic base color is set off by a red chest diamond and red belt.
Overall, Mr. Sinister is a must-have if you love big, crazy, hyper-evil, larger-than-life villains. And let’s face facts here, if you like Marvel designs, that’s you.
It’s a great comic pack, and I feel it was actually worth the almost $20 I paid for it at Target. Any chance to add a best-yet interpretation of a character, like Gambit, into my collection, and especially to my X-Men team, is a welcome one. Add a fantastic new villain, and I’m all over it.