Kraven from Marvel Universe

January 4, 2013
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Kraven from the Marvel Universe ends the short week at CardedHeroes. How does he stack up?

The early Marvel Universe figures were kind of guilty of using the same bodies over and over again. Sure, variations were here and there, but for the most part, it was either a small, medium or large male or a female body. Granted, you don’t need to really reinvent the wheel each time when most of the characters are in spandex, but still, it was getting a little boring. Later waves attempted to correct this, and with Kraven, you can see some of these nice details and changes that they’ve made. And oh look, a Marvel Universe figure with accessories!

What you get with Kraven is a unique looking action figure. Even any parts that are reused are hidden and disguised well enough to make the figure look unique. The head on Kraven is nicely detailed with a determined look in his eyes. The eyes are shaded with a brownish color that gives the appearance of deeper eyes. The goatee is nicely painted, but there’s faint paint error on the left cheek and the hairline is a touch sloppy, but otherwise a great sculpt, and nicely painted. The muscular bare chest has his iconic lion vest, that is both well detailed and looks sharp. The glued on vest is molded in the tan of the mane, with the lion’s face painted in multiple colors. Ears are painted around Kraven’s collar bone area, and do a nice job of breaking up the solid mane. One of eyes on the lion face are kind of botched, but the other is really solid. The lion’s nose and whisker spots are painted in black for a nice touch of detail. The bare arms have painted on details, that, while sculpted on details would have been better, the painted-on apps get the job done. The orange arm bands are spotted with tan and black, and are extremely clean and precise, while the painted on wrappings around the hands and forearms are fuzzy and blotted at points. What I was surprised to see is that while Kraven has a trigger style hand, it’s a closed hand, meaning the thumb and fingers are joined. The other hand is a normal C-style hand, but the closed left hand just struck me as odd. The belt is detailed, and layered with different sized pouches and straps. Also, buckles and buttons are painted for a great touch. Hard plastic “fabric” on the front and back is attached to the belt, and breaks up the brown skin tight pants. Skulls and fur on the kneepads look really cool, and doesn’t hinder movement. While the boots are all the same color, the straps that go up and down the feet are very detailed, and look great.

The articulation for Kraven is what you’d expect from the Marvel Universe line. The head rests on a ball, the shoulders have a ball swivel, with a swivel at the top of the biceps, and ahinge joint at the shoulder. The wrists do swivel, but no advanced movement. The articulated mid torso joint allows for swivel and bending, the jacket doesn’t prevent movement at all. The crotch has a T-bar giving the legs some great movement, and the knees have a double hinge joint. Finally, the ankles have a ball swivel that all for some movement, but the sculpting on the boots do block movement. My figure was pretty loose. Not floppy loose, but the torso and legs could have been a little tighter to stand a little easier. This is an issue with Marvel Universe figures, though. Every once in a while, you’ll get a figure that has some looser joints than others. I wonder if the soft plastic has anything to do with it, as the figure is made of pretty soft plastic.

Rare is it when Marvel Universe figures have accessories, but Kraven comes with a few. A tribal looking spear, a knife, and a necklace. While the spear looks nice, it’s so soft and long, that it gets warped very easily, and is nearly impossible to get back in a straight line. Feathers and beads adorn the spear, and the tip is painted as well, while the staff’s wood grain is detailed. The knife has two colors on it, a soft brown handle, while the blade is painted silver. The necklace is a solid dark brown, and is SMALL. This will be one of those accessories lost over time, for sure. Fortunately, you have to pop Kraven’s head off and on to put the necklace on him, so as long as you put it on him, it’ll be a little harder to lose. He can hold his spear two-handed, but you have to force the spear through the closed hand, which is a tight fit.

Overall, I’m impressed by the detailing and amount of paint apps on this guy. The sculpt is excellent, and even though some of the paint apps are a little botched, it still looks like a great figure. He’s a nice, imposing figure with some nice accessories and accents.

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