Wave 31 of Marvel Minimates doesn’t have much of a unified theme, being mainly but not exclusively X-Men, but does bring us some much-requested new characters. If there’s a theme with these two characters it’s a tenuous one. Captain Marvel is of the alien Kree race. Black Bolt is leader of the Inhumans, a tribe descended from the Kree who lived in isolation on Earth, then the moon, before becoming the ruling caste of the Kree empire.
Standard Marvel fare. The ubiquitous cardboard carton with a ‘j’ hook and windows which allow the figures within to be viewed. The back of the pack has the usual group shot plus character biography boxes.
White Kree warrior Mar-Vell was (to the best of my knowledge) the first Captain Marvel in the Marvel Universe. Sadly he was also the first Marvel superhero to die of cancer. What a horrible way to end such a great character.
The first thing I noticed about this ‘mate was the hair. It’s wrong. I think it’s too sculpted and too straight. Mar-Vell’s hair was very wavy and shaggy in that late 60’s/early 70’s style (think Jim Morrison). This hairpiece is too perfectly coifed and just doesn’t suit the figure. The mask is fine but the face is a bit too neutral and lacks pizzazz.
The costume is faithful to the look of the character, there are the usual issues with the paint apps on the shoulders not being perhaps as crisp as they could be, but that’s only upon close inspection. Everything else looks fine, barring the star emblem on the chest. The gold paint isn’t shiny enough for the emblem to stand out, and so the star become lost amongst the dark blue of the shoulders and the rich red of the main costume. I feel the emblem should have either been much bigger to make it stand out more, or presented in yellow rather than gold. Metallic paint is great when it works, but when it doesn’t it can spoil the figure.
I’m kind of annoyed because I’ve always liked the character, and really wanted to like the Minimate. I hate to say this, but there’s something just a bit ‘meh’ about this Minimate which is a crying shame as Mar-Vell deserved more but I can’t see us ever getting an updated figure.
Captain Marvel has no accessories.
In conclusion: Not as Mar-Vellous as it should be.
MMC Score – 6 out of 10
Another Minimate that fans have been clamouring for, Black Bolt is the silent but deadly king of the Inhumans.
Black Bolt’s cutaway mask fits well and lines up nicely with the eyes. There’s a touch of light reflection around the top of the face area but this is barely noticeable due to that whacking great tuning fork that sprouts from the middle of his forehead. From the front the fork looks great, though in profile it’s maybe a little too proud of the mask. Black Bolt has a fairly haughty expression as befits the ruler of an entire race. What I do like about the face on this ‘mate is the silver print on the eyes. It looks great with the mask on, but with the mask off the effect is staggering. A great looking Minimate. I’m not sure if Black Bolt has hair beneath his mask? The Minimate has no alternative hairpiece so I’m guessing the character must be bald.
Black Bolt’s costume is a simple affair and that perhaps is why it works so well at Minimate scale. The figure is fairly basic and all black (surprisingly), apart from the whitish-silver highlights to the chest, waist, wrists and thighs, and a touch of grey at the chest to suggest muscle definition. The prints are extremely crisp and the silver paint that’s been used is an excellent contrast to the black of the body.
Black Bolt’s wings are the obvious non-standard parts on this figure. You can see a hint of them when the figure is set to a neutral position, but when the arms are held out to the sides the wings can be seen in all their glory. The wings can be a little bit fiddly as they’re attached to the arms by a loop similar to that of Captain America’s shield but slightly more loosely, which can lead to the wings slipping down the arm when the arms are at the figure’s side. Nevertheless they look great when the arms are spread and the wings are in the correct position. The silver paint used is nice and bright, and the wings themselves have a corrugated texture that makes them appear suitably metallic. From the back the wings look a bit wrong as they’re supposed to fold up between Black Bolt’s arms and torso, but then, who’s really paying attention to the back?
Black Bolt has no accessories.
In conclusion: This Minimate is well worth shouting about.
MMC Score – 9 out of 10
Review and pictures by Rad Kerrigan