This set was an AFX exclusive, released in time for the summer convention season in 2008. I know, this review is a about 2 years late, but better late than never, right? Plus, as the world gears up for the release of Iron Man 2, it’s worth a look at what came before.
This is the normal Marvel Minimates 4-pack packaging, not much else to say about it really. If you’ve seen one of the more recent sets you know it does a good job without taking up a massive amount of space. A big picture of Iron Man sits proudly at the top.
Each side of the box has portraits of all 4 Minimates, and the back has bios for each figure. The last sentence on Raza’s bio has been cut off abruptly. Note that nowhere on the box does it actually get called the “Hostile Takeover” set.
Battle Damaged Mark III Iron Man
As discussed many times on this site, battle damaged variants are a mainstay of the Marvel Minimates line. This boxset is designed to complement the selection of Iron Man movie Minimates featured in wave 21, so the Mark III armour gets another run out, this time battle damaged.
The battle damage on this Minimate has been excellently done. Cracks and scratches appear all over the armour, especially on the chest plating, where bullet holes make an appearance. The faceplate is also very scuffed. The arms and legs have that “sooty” type of battle damage so favoured by the Cylons and Terminator endoskeletons in this scale. So, no sculpted damage then, but what’s here has been well implemented.
Remove the helmet and you can see Tony’s busted-up face. He’d obviously taken a bit of a beating inside the suit. He gets the disheveled hairpiece from the Mark I armour Minimate. Remove the chest armour and the chest block is the same as the wave 21 version, also the replacement, non-armoured legs are the same too.
There are some additions to this figure, though. He gets the straight-fingered gauntlets, back “wings” and flame stand seen in the TRU exclusive Stealth Iron Man, this time all done in the usual red colours. These add a great deal of fun and playability to this figure, and of course they can be used with the normal Mark III armour as well.
In conclusion, the battle damage looks good, and the extra accessories are more than welcome, meaning that this Minimate stands out from the normal wave 21 version.
MMC Score – 10 out of 10
Playboy Tony Stark
Did we really need another suited Tony Stark, after we got a perfectly good one in wave 21? Probably not, in all honesty.
This Tony Stark is from the high-flying gambling sequence from the start of the film, complete with cheesy grin and ludicrous-looking sunglasses. Oh Tony, little did you know how much your life would change! Not sure where the hairpiece is from, but a betting man would say it’s a re-use.
Playboy Tony has a really nice jacket and suit on. Whereas the wave 21 version was a more formal business suit, this one is all high collars and fancy buttons. The overall look is pretty swish, with some good detail work.
Playboy Tony Stark has no accessories. Really needed to come with a female reporter Minimate accessory!
In conclusion, this is well designed but non-essential. In a line where the armours really are the focus, figures like this will struggle to compete.
MMC Score – 6 out of 10
Raza is one of the key villains in the film, the man undertaking the kidnapping of wealthy arms industrialist Tony Stark in Afghanistan. This set is the only place you can get this character, he never appeared in wave 21 or the TRU exclusives.
The facial detailing looks pretty close to the actor who portrayed Raza, this is him from early on in the film. As a bald headed person, he doesn’t have a hole in the head block. Good work on the stubbly beard, that looks very nice at this scale.
As head of a militaristic terror cell, Raza has a camouflaged jacket with good paint work on the chest block and the arms. Sadly, the neckerchief is sculpted to the chest block, that means no easy X-Men Bishop customs. The belt piece is lined with silver, which again is nifty detail work. His articulation is marred by the long skirt piece which is also attached to the chest block and hinders movement of the legs.
Raza comes with a rifle, it looks a bit futuristic in nature and probably is one of Stark Industries best-sellers. He has trouble holding it because the stock gets in the way of the handle, this has been an issue with action figures since the days of 1977 and Star Wars figures!
In conclusion, this figure has been well executed, some nice touches elevate this figure from the average.
MMC Score – 6 out of 10
Battle Damaged Iron Monger
As the villain in the final battle showdown, Iron Monger was initially a part of wave 21, and appears here in battle damaged form.
This figure is huge! He’s got so much mass to him with the rounded chest piece, the gauntlets and armoured boots. So impressive, and yet the battle damage here isn’t quite as good as on the Iron Man in this set. The bullet holes are not done with the same panache – possibly because the grey outline wouldn’t show up on the grey armour – and so he is limited to some cracks and scrapes, and the inky black spots.
The battle damage underneath the armour is much better. Obadiah Stane has been beaten up in the same way as Tony Stark, shown by his grimace of pain. The facial detailing on the original figure was already top-notch and this just adds to it. His clothing has also been ripped and torn, and with the drab grey it looks almost like a prisoner outfit, or perhaps someone in the future fighting the war against the machines.
This time Iron Monger gets both hands and feet to change into the non-armoured version of Obadiah, correcting the oversight of the original pack.
In conclusion, the Iron Monger is a titanic behemoth of a Minimate, but comes off worse in comparison to the original because the battle damage isn’t quite as effective, and doesn’t get any really cool extra pieces.
MMC Score – 8 out of 10
With just one new character in this set, this is not an essential boxset to own, however the two armoured Minimates are well worth a second run-out (especially for DST when justifying the costs of the new molds). If you struggled to get hold of wave 21 (as I did when I was after it months after release) then this is a more than acceptable subsitute. If you have all of wave 21, then it’s really up to how much you want Raza, and/or how much you like battle damaged Minimates.
Review and pictures by Danny Mills