So, after being so disappointed by the Hydra Soldier, it was a bit of a surprise to be so…surprised by the Silver Surfer, part of Hasbro’s “Marvel Legends: Fantastic Four” wave, which features comic-inspired versions of the recent movie stars.
To help limit my spending, I’ve tried to buy only Marvel Legends versions of figures I owned as a kid. I owned Toy Biz’s first Silver Surfer (whom I later painted into a custom Constrictor), as well as the original Marvel Legends version from a few years ago. I was disappointed by that figure–it had a strange, too-alien facial sculpt, massive shoulders, gawky articulation, and was nearly impossible to pose on his board.
While Hasbro hasn’t pleased too many collectors with their Marvel Legends offerings, this is one case where they’ve improved on Toy Biz’s work. Unlike the Hydra Soldier, Norin Radd features the full range of articulation that ML fans are used to, including a bicep swivels and double-pin joints at the elbows and knees.
What’s more, I like the sculpt. It’s much more sleek and streamlined than Toy Biz’s previous offering, and actually resembles Jack Kirby’s art. The facial sculpt actually looks like a face, though there is one problem: he has a wee noggin! It definitely seems to be a bit too small for his body. I can’t help wondering if perhaps it’s the head of the 5″ Surfer from the movie line stuck on a 6″ body.
The paint is also good, though it’s hard to screw up a simple silver finish. Still, I like the choice of silver paint more than the less reflective silver used on the earlier ML version.
Of course, that first Legends Surfer had a few touches this one doesn’t. Rather than pegholes in the feet, it had magnets, allowing the figure to stand on his surfboard (which had a metal plate inside) in any conceivable position. It also came with a clear stand and a base, so you could actually put the Surfer in the air. And finally, it came with one of the greatest accessories of all: Howard the Duck.
Hasbro’s Surfer only comes with his surfboard, and it has a big ugly peg on it for his foot. However, I like the surfboard itself better than the Toy Biz one. It’s very long and narrow, and looks like it might actually be a cosmic form of transportation rather than a shined-up boogie board. The board is done in chrome to mirror-reflectiveness, which looks really cool (although it’s prone to fingerprints).
While the Hydra Soldier could have been a lot better, I’m satisfied with the Surfer. He looks great with my BAF Galactus.