Friday, February 4, 2022

Wishlist 2022: Marvel Legends Part 1

Of all the lines I currently collect, Marvel Legends is the one I buy the most of every year. And like many collectors, my Legends collection is two fold, one based on the comics that I grew up reading, and the other on the ever growing Marvel Cinematic Universe. And each collection has quite a number of missing characters that I’d like to see in the next 12 months. So while this may seem like a cop out, I decided to make separate lists for let's get going with the first part.

So let’s start with where it all began for me, the comics, where it’s all about completing my favorite teams. And to be fair, Hasbro has been pretty good at building up the teams that I followed back in the late 80’s/90s. But I guess the negative result of this is that I’ve grown spoiled. Seeing how they have gone and released such obscure characters such as Frogman and White Rabbit, it seems like anything is possible.

I’ll say it now, there are just SO MANY characters I would like to see done, but again to keep things simple, these are the top ten that I am hoping will see the light of day in 2022.

10) Valkyrie (Brunnhilde)

Nowadays when you mention the Asgardian hero “Valkyrie” most people think of the MCU version played by Tessa Thompson, or even the newer Jane Foster comics version. But what I want is the original one, Brunnhilde, who I feel has not really gotten her proper recognition as one of the oldest female superheroes in the Marvel Universe. And given that Marvel has a sore shortage of iconic female superheroes in the same level as DC’s Wonder Woman, I feel that that is such a wasted opportunity.

Instead of being given her just due, she has been unceremoniously killed off and replaced with a more modern and in my opinion more token/cliche character meant to appeal to a more “woke” audience. While we have received a Brunnhilde figure a few years back, it’s not one of the best and is based on her more recent stint as a member of the Secret Avengers. With a classic version of Dr. Strange finally released this year. I am hoping to add an original version of Brunnhilde to get me closer to completing a definitive Defenders lineup.

9) Vanguard

The Winter Guard was an obscure Soviet Super team that I didn not know I needed in my life. But when Hasbro surprised us with an Iron Man wave that gave us two main members of the team, I knew that this was a lineup I needed to finish. While the team membership has changed through the years, for me, the core always consisted of Ursa Major, Darkstar, Titanium Man, Crimson Dynamo, and Vanguard. Technically, we already have all five members. Dark Star and Ursa Major were released in that aforementioned Iron Man wave. We also got a fantastic Marvel Selects version of TItanium Man which fits in perfectly. And finally we have a more modern version of Crimson Dynamo and Red Guardian, which was the alias Vanguard eventually took up himself.

If you haven’t guessed by now, as an older fan, I am a stickler for the classic looks for my Marvel characters. And while I can wait a little longer for a proper Crimson Dynamo, I would really love to get Vanguard to round up my super Soviets. Unlike the Red Guardian who is obviously meant to be a Russian version of Captain America, Vanguard has got a very distinct look with weapons (a hammer and sickle) that are more fitting with his Russian heritage.

8) Scalphunter (Marauders)

I have no idea how the Marauders have been sorely overlooked by Hasbro. How can we be so close to finishing up the Reavers and aside from Sabretooth, not have any other member of this mutant villain team on the table? These guys in my opinion are possibly one of the most dangerous enemies that the X-Men have ever faced. And their impact on Marvel mutant history cannot be overlooked. Thanks to their killing spree in the Morlock Tunnels, they inflicted major injuries to key X-Men members that led to the transformation of Angel into the deadlier Archangel, as well as Nightcrawler and Kitty Pryde ultimately leaving the team to form Excalibur.

While the dream would be to get a Marauders box set, I’ll initially settle for their leader, Scalphunter, who would possibly need the most unique sculpting and a shit ton of weapons. His release (and a promise of more to come) will keep me satisfied for the next 12 months.

7) Box (Alpha Flight)

Alpha Flight is one of my favorite Marvel superhero teams, period. And in 2019, Hasbro made my dreams come true when they released an Alpha Flight box set. That was two years ago and now I want another box set. But seriously though, I think it’s high time they give us more Alphans. While the box set almost completed the classic line up, there are two key members that I feel we still need (of course I really want more than two, but you steps).

The first is Box. Now there are actually two different Box characters with two very distinct designs. The original was Roger Bochs whose robot had a more bulky frame that looked like a sumo wrestler. The second is Madison Jeffries who is actually my favorite member of the team, before Marvel messed up his character and made him crazy. Anyway, while my heart says to wish for Madison Jeffries’ Box, it’s the original Roger Bochs version that would fit the classic lineup more. So if I had to choose one, I’ll go with the first version. They can give me Madison Jeffries (along with a Wanda white recolored Sasquatch) in 2023.

6) Doug Ramsey (New Mutants)

The New Mutants have always been my number one mutant team, even more than the X-Men. And while we are so close to completing the 90’s X-Force team that the New Mutants eventually evolved into, I feel we have barely scratched the surface on the original group. And yes I know I keep saying “box set”, but in this case, that seems to be the most logical way to get these guys out. A classic set consisting of Sam, Dani, Ilyanna, Bobby, Rahne and Doug (I can wait a little longer for Karma and Magma) would require close to zero new tooling. Aside from Rahne and Bobby whom I would prefer to get in their respective powered up forms, you could just use the same male and female teen bucks with the same paint apps for everyone else. Make it another exclusive, I don’t care….just make it!

But, if I had to choose just one member, let’s start with Doug Ramsey as he will pair up nicely with the BAF Warlock that we already have. With Doug out, Hasbro will have zero excuses to make the other members sooner rather than later. Again…close to zero new tooling required. They can do this in their sleep!

5) Longshot (Outback X-Men)

Of all the various X-Men lineups through the years, the Australian outback team is my all time favorite. Aside from heavy hitters like Colossus, Storm and (sigh) Wolverine, it also featured established but rarely used members like Havok and Dazzler along with some new faces, the originally British Psylocke and my number five most wanted character, Longshot.

Initially I wasn’t a big fan of Longshot, I thought he looked rather weird but the more I read the comic, the more he grew on me. Despite his extremely comical 80’s influenced look (hello spiky hair poof and mullet!), Longshot is actually a real cool and fun character. He had luck powers and a shining eye when his powers activated long before Domino and Cable made them cool. And with the Reavers team almost complete, it’s about time we get the Outback era X-men on our shelves, starting with Longshot and the next character on my list.

4) Armored Psylocke (Outback X-Men)

At the risk of sounding like a snooty know-it-all geek, I’m pretty sure that many new casual X-Men fans might not be aware that Psylocke wasn’t always a deadly Asian ninja assasin. If her name didn’t give it away, Elizabeth Braddock was originally a British mutant and sister to Brian Braddock aka Captain Britain (you don’t get more British than that!). Anyway while I wouldn’t mind her in her original pink costume, my ultimate preference would be the look she sported in the Outback, which was her hooded and caped armor look. Aside from it being the costume she wore during the majority of the Outback era, I think that it’s just more visually interesting and would display better on the shelf.

3) Marrina (Alpha Flight)

As I mentioned earlier, even with the release of the box set in 2019, I still felt that my Alpha Flight display was missing at least two key characters. Box was the first, and now the Plodex hero Marrina is the second. Even if I prefer Box as a character, I feel that Marrina would be easier to do. And if we only got ONE more member of Alpha Flight ever from Marvel Legends, I feel Marrina should be it. I think that she would properly round out the classic lineup of Alpha Flight more than Box.

My only hope is that when they do eventually get around to her, they will not skimp on the details and have a properly sculpted scaled swimsuit. I understand that that may be asking too much for a rather obscure character, but you could easily reuse the mold for another aquatic superheroine that we also desperately need to complete another team, the New Warriors’ Namorita. So how’s that for a perfect two for one? Come on Hasbro! Do it!

2) Dr. Pym (West Coast Avengers)

Dr. Henry Pym has had many superhero aliases through the years. He’s gone by the heroes Ant Man, Giant Man, Yellowjacket and even the Wasp for a time! But what I really want is literally Dr. Pym, the “alias” he used during most of his time as a member of the West Coast Avengers.

Early in the series run, Dr. Pym suffered from depression. And he came within seconds of killing himself if it weren’t for the timely interference of an Avengers ally named Firebird who was then going by the name La Espirita. Anyway, with La Espirita’s help, he slowly builds his life back together and decides to take a more active role on the team but this time under a new alias of *just* Dr. Pym. And instead of making himself grow and shrink, he would use his power to keep various shrunk down contraptions, weapons and even vehicles in his various pockets and return them to normal size when needed. I thought this was a smart way to add a new twist to an old character. And since the West Coast Avengers are my favorite line up of Avengers, I need Dr. Pym to complete it.

We already have the Ghost Rider/AIM soldier buck which basically gives us 80-90% of the parts needed. So all we need is for Hasbro to throw us Wacko fans a bone!

1) Mockingbird (West Coast Avengers)

Finally we have the number one want on my list. Bobbi Morse aka Mockingbird and one time the wife of my favorite Avenger, Hawkeye. We already have a more modern take on her which is nice and all, but what I really want is (surprise surprise) a more classic version…more specifically the costume she wore the most as a founding member of the West Coast Avengers. After getting a much needed Tigra last year and “West Coast” repaints of Scarlet Witch and Vision this year, I feel it’s only a matter of time until we get a proper Bobbi, the one with the large flowing sleeves and bare legs. Ok so I know that last detail makes me sound a little pervy…but I’d be lying if I said that this aspect of her costume didn’t appeal greatly to my teenage self. As it is, I think a classic Mockingbird would need very minimal tooling! We already have the sleeves thanks to Lady Deathstrike. So I am hopeful that we won’t have to wait too long for Bobbi.

Now I know I said in my previous post that I wouldn’t include characters that I feel have a 99.99% chance of being released this year, I really really really want to complete my classic Wacko team. So yeah this makes Mockingbird my number one for my comics based Marvel Legends.

to be continued...