Marvel Super Hero Squad Review: Danger Room Debacle 5-Pack

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I find it funny that I can pin point the exact breaking point for me when it came to Super Hero Squad. My friends insisted that the toys were childish and would be a waste of money. But I have a background in marketing and have one weakness when it comes to products: excellent packaging. So when I first saw the Danger Room Debacle in stores, I immediately bought it because the packaging was that good.

The package is half a cylinder about a foot long. The open window shows four X-Men facing off against Magneto in the Danger Room. The Danger Room is done simply: two ramps while the rest is various shades of light blue. It looks pretty much exactly how I think the Danger Room should look while it is inert. Plus the packaging is designed to let all the figures be removed without damaging the backdrop! It is excellent design work and clearly a precursor to the display that came with Slave I.

The Danger Room safeties have failed, and the X-Men are forced to face off with a dangerous, holographic version of their most dedicated enemy – Magneto! Luckily, the uncanny team of super heroes has trained for years just for a days like this, and they work together as a team to defeat any threat they meet!

It’s great that the package gives a bit of story as to why the X-Men are fighting Magneto in the Danger Room. But this 5-pack contains one repack, a very minor repaint and three more repaints – all of the figures come from Wave 1 of the Super Hero Squad.

Wolverine is the straight repack. It’s the exact same figure that came paired with Sabretooth (and very close to the one that came with the Sentinel). The figure just isn’t good. The sculpt has many issues, like the chubby face, beady eyes and claws like rods. There’s nothing new in the paint at all either, Wolverine is just in his yellow and blue suit that is so close to his Astonishing X-Men uniform but not quite. He still moves at the neck and arms and is still a subpar figure.

The minor repaint is the lord of magnetism: Magneto! A solid light construct made by the Danger Room, Magneto is identical to his first release with one ever-so-minor change: the ball he is perched on is bronze instead of silver. I would have preferred something more unique, either a shade of blue to match the Danger Room or a clear base so he looks like he’s floating.

The figure is still very well done with Magneto floating above. He’s dressed in his classic costume of a red body suit with purple detailing. What little you can see of his face shows dull blue eyes and gray eyebrows showing his age. The articulation is the same too with him moving at the shoulders and waist.

The field leader of the X-Men got a new paint scheme. Cyclops is based off his Jim Lee redesign but instead of painting the figure blue and yellow, all the blue has been replaced with black. It’s not a look I have any recollection of ever seeing, but visually it works well (and remarkably avoids looking like a bumblebee).

Cyclops still suffers from two big issues: his face and his arm. Cyclops is still sporting a slight smirk that seems very out of character, unless he just blasted off Wolverine’s face. As for his right arm, it’s articulated but only looks right when up against his head. Cyclops moves at the waist and shoulders.

The Russian strongman is present in the pack: Colossus! He’s identical to his first release with one exception: all of the paint used on him is metallic and shiny. Colossus is not vac metalized, just painted with a shiny coat of paint. The sheen on his metal skin looks good, while his metal costume seems a little weird.

But Colossus still suffers from all the flaws of his first release too. His legs are lacking the sculpted lines. The figure feels undersized in terms of height and width. Colossus moves at the shoulders and waist.

To provide air support, the pack includes founding member of the X-Men: Angel! Angel’s repaint makes the most sense of any figure in this pack. He’s dropped the red costume in exchange for his blue outfit that he’s worn off and on over the years. It’s a minor repaint that is mostly accurate (though it still lacks the head gear portion). The wings still look a little too much like his Archangel wings but they work well enough. I would have loved if this figure had been given blue skin to be Archangel. The decal on his chest is a little off center though.

Angel’s base that makes him a head taller than the average Heroes figure is a whoosh of wind. It has green leaves whirled about in it that look much better now that they are painted. Angel still moves at the shoulders.

For the casual collector, this pack is great as a jumping on point. For the completist, there isn’t much here for excitement beyond Angel and the fantastic packaging. For kids, it’s a solid set. It contains four of the big names in X-Men and their arch nemesis! Sure, there are better versions of Colossus, Wolverine and Cyclops but Magneto and Angel are the best there is.

Written by jestergoblin

May 11th, 2010 at 12:00 am

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