The X3 (or X-Men – The Last Stand) wave was intended as a stand-alone set and should have been released around the time the movie was released. Unfortunately for reasons unknown that didn’t happen and some months later they ended up as Marvel Minimates Wave 14. As is usual with Marvel waves there is a set of six figures and the variant figure packed one to a case. X3 wasn’t as well regarded as the prior X-Men films and these ‘mates are a bit hit and miss too. This set features the movie versions of Hank McCoy (Beast) and the Juggernaut, both of whom have been released in their comic incarnations before.
It’s all change on the packaging front. This is the third major packaging change the Marvel ‘mates have had. First there was the much lamented blister pack, then the more familiar compact carton. Now we have a much larger box (approx 1″ wider and 2″ higher) with a ‘J’ hook at the top of the card. The layout is different to the older packs too. Instead of the characters depicted in signature action poses we’re presented with static head and shoulder shots against a background of the X3 Logo. The side flaps of the box feature the ‘mates in more dramatic poses.
The back of the packaging has also changed. This is where the new size box really comes into it’s own as it shows off a large picture of all the figures in the wave. Overall, I think I preferred even the compact carton to this new style. Though like most Marvel Minimate fans I’d rather see the blister style pack return.
Juggernaut (X-Men 3: The Last Stand)
The first Minimate in this set is Juggernaut, as played in the movie by Vinnie Jones (should this be a Vinniemate?). This is the third Juggernaut in the Marvel line, with Cain Marko appearing previously in wave 5 as well as the Darktide boxset.
This figure really looks like Vinnie – it’s clear that the designers have had a lot of fun and put a lot of effort into both the face and the costume. The likeness once the helmet is removed is dare I say it… Uncanny. A top notch job on the face.
As for the costume, it makes up for all the mediocrity of the rest of the costumes in the wave. There’s his signature helmet then the new chest piece, as well as gloves, a belt, boots, and torqs on the upper arms. These all combine to create a stand out Minimate. The new boots and belt add height to the figure while the chest piece adds bulk, correcting one of the major issues with the original Minimate.
Juggernaut doesn’t have any accessories but with so many original costume parts it would be churlish to complain. Unlike most of the wave, he doesn’t have C3 feet because of his big chunky boots but he does sport the peg hole in the head.
In conclusion, the best Minimate in the set. It really does the movie character justice. It’d be nice to see DST apply this level of design to future waves.
MMC Score – 8 out of 10
Beast (X-Men 3: The Last Stand)
The second figure in the set is the Beast, who we only just got as part of the last wave, the Astonishing X-Men wave. This version of Beast is a bit of a let down after Juggernaut, but only just. If Juggernaut wins the race then Beast is second by a whisker (see what I did there?). For a 2″ inch block figure the resemblance to a pensive Kelsey Grammer is amazing.
Unfortunately the level of detail the designers have strived for has led to a couple of problems. Beast’s head movement is very limited due to a combination of the over-jacket and the beard part of the hairpiece. Also the hairpiece tends to turn independently of the head. These are minor grumbles as there really is no other way they could have captured Beast’s signature look from the movie.
The costume and body are well executed. Black highlights on the blue chest accentuate Beast’s furriness and the lighter blue on the face and hands also mirror the movie Beast. The hands are original parts that have molded ‘fur’ on them. I’d have rather they’d added normal hands or at a stretch Venom’s clawed hands than create this new piece as without the darker blue of the arm fur continuing down the ‘fur’ looks a bit silly. Another complaint would be Hanks feet. Yes they should have been bigger but these are block figures and that kind of thing can be overlooked. However it would have been nice to have a right and a left foot. Look closely at the feet and you’ll see Beast has two left feet. Maybe that’s why he’s such a bad dancer? A minor niggle but still one that detracts from the figure.
Like the rest of the wave Beast comes without accessories. He has the standard C3 feet, and a hole in the head block.
In conclusion, a great minimate but not the best. Attention to detail keeps Sadie McCoy’s favourite grandson fairly high up in the rankings.
MMC Score – 7 out of 10
Review and pictures by Stewart Kay