Well, this set came completely out of left field. I don’t believe there was ever a press release by DST about the sets existence? Yet suddenly fandom was abuzz with accounts of finding not only Wave 23 Minimates at Toys R Us, but also an exclusive Iron Man set. Minimate collectors naturally went nuts at this news.
Incredibly we finally see a change to the Marvel Minimate carton. Window boxes. What a fantastic idea. This means casual buyers can have some idea of what they’re buying. To accommodate the windows the photographs of the figures have been moved to the centre of the pack. There’s also a very nifty looking foil stamp on the pack which proclaims its status as a TRU exclusive.
Pack sides have the usual one character per flap photo and the back of the packaging features the Minimates from Wave 21, which makes sense as they are also Iron Man-related.
Packed in the back of the internal tray is a mini poster which is supposed to feature every single Marvel Minimate so far produced. It’s a lovely little pack-in but the more observant fans have already pointed out a few discrepancies on it.
Gauntlet Tony Stark (Iron Man)
Essentially Tony Stark wearing an armour gauntlet. The difference being that this gauntlet rather than featuring a Minimate hand is shaped as if Stark is aiming a repulsor ray. This is taken directly from scenes in the movie when Stark is working on the armour.
The ‘mate itself is standard fare. In comparison to the Wave 21 ‘mates this Tony Stark appears to have a slightly sardonic expression, Other than that and the gauntlet itself there’s really not a lot to this figure. It’s a bloke in a grey vest. Admittedly he does have a blue chest thingy sticking through the vest but it’s still not all that spectacular.
That’s not to say it’s a bad ‘mate – it’s well made, the paint apps are all clear, heck the vest straps even go over the shoulder, which is a nice bit of detailing that we rarely see on a Minimate, but, well, it’s a bloke in a grey vest who’s wearing a posh glove. Whoopee!
Gauntlet Tony Stark has no accessories, though he is packed with an alternative regular Minimate hand in case you wanted to take the gauntlet off.
In conclusion, an unecessary figure.
MMC Score – 6 out of 10
Stealth Iron Man (Iron Man)
Now this is more like it. The stealth armour has been seen in the comic books (and also inspired wave 6’s Stealth Iron Man variant) but didn’t feature in the film. Maybe we’re going to see it in a sequel?
This is pretty much the same figure as seen in Wave 21’s Iron Man Mark II and Mark III armour Minimates. The obvious difference being that it’s now painted a very nice shiny blue/black. I can vouch for the paints stealth attributes. This figure was an absolute bugger to photograph! Another more subtle difference is that the cool blue glow of the eyes and chest thingy on the previous movie Iron Men has been replaced by a sinister looking red. Quite why this should be is beyond me? The chest thingy supposedly keeps Stark’s heart beating. Why should it change colour according to armour? That’s me just nitpicking though. It does make for a very cool looking Minimate.
Also worthy of note are the wings on Iron Man’s back. I remember seeing these on the film but can’t recall the purpose of them. I really must get around to watching that DVD! At least with the inclusion of the wings we now know the reason for the holes in the back of the chest piece. There’s some nice silver contrast on the backs of the wings though I’d imagine that would negate the stealth aspects somewhat.
Remove the chest piece and you’ll find the same print on the Minimate chest block as was found on the Mark II armour version, though the sides of the block have been painted in the same bluey/black as the rest of the armour pieces so as not to stand out.
As with the previous versions of this armour, Stealth Iron Man is packed with a Tony Stark hair piece as well as alternative regular hands and legs. The legs have the same colour scheme as the armour. This ‘mate is also packed out with a pair of gauntlets that are the same as worn by Gauntlet Tony Stark. Again these are painted bluey/black with the gun contrastingly painted silver. Swap the regular gauntlets for these alternate pieces and the figure looks amazing, especially when coupled with the included flight stand. The stand itself is the same as featured in the Invaders, and Iron-Man: Through The Ages box sets, but this time it’s been cast in an eerily translucent blue plastic and it does look very cool indeed with the figure placed upon it.
In conclusion: As with all the other movie Iron Man figures, this stands head and shoulders above most other Marvel Minimates. Superb!
MMC Score – 10 out of 10
Review and pictures by Rad Kerrigan