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Friday, April 20, 2012

The Avengers Comic Series: Ultimate Hawkeye!

04.20.2012 – Counting down to The Avengers film is a few days away for its Philippine screening. Several movie houses have reserved their special midnight and block screenings. The toys and other merchandise has been sprouting all over the place with special promotional tie-ups that has kept the anticipation alive.

For some casual fan only a few knows about the key characters that will be in this summer blockbuster flick. You got Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and The Hulk as your heavy hitters. But what about second stringers like Hawkeye and Black Widow?

Black Widow portrayed by the lovely Scarlett Johansson who appeared in Iron Man 2 had a lot of participation to the movie but what about Hawkeye?

The skilled marksman had a cameo in 2011’s Thor but with minimal screen time as who he was and only was addressed by his last name “Barton” portrayed by Jeremy Renner. The movie version was less goofy with the familiar purple duds in Earth 616 (The Original Marvel Universe) which had that familiar mask describes him as a superhero not as a SHIELD operative in the Marvel Movie-verse.

In the Ultimate Universe his appearance was more modernized with the mask covering his whole face. Not to go through with the character’s origin we see a different Hawkeye not armed with the longbow but wielding two crossbows.

Marvel and Hasbro launched an assortment of action figures early in March to promote the upcoming movie and also include some concept versions as well as from the Ultimate Universe stamped as the “Comic Series.” When the toys came out some didn't notice how poor the figures where made. North American counterparts had the toys earlier after February 2012’s New York Toy Fair revealed the toyline.

When Playkit had a special toy launch in the Philippines last March 2012 the interest wasn’t as big as the previous toy releases such as Star Wars but there was interest slowly picking up. The toys first came out in the US were toy reviews on YouTube revealed about the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Articulation Revelation

The packaging is as colorful as the attractive toys themselves but once you open them you'll see the inconsistency of the product. Ultimate Hawkeye for all the cool factor and details of the figure had limited joints and most of the toys released in the line with the exception of The Hulk do not have torso joints for them to swivel. The Hulk has a torso joint which is still limited to only bending up and down. There's has no ability to rotate his upper body 360 degrees.

Appearance Can Be Deceiving

For all the details on Ultimate Hawkeye the paint on his hair tends to chip off revealing that he’s not exactly blond. This figure has been in storage for most of the time and in the previous movie figures released by Hasbro The Avengers toyline looked like it was made in a rush. The figures namely Ultimate Hawkeye when you look at it he lacks something once you get up close with the product.

Accessories and Gimmicks

When you buy these figures some has accessories based on their appearance in the comic books or in the movie. For Ultimate Hawkeye he’s got two pistols and a crossbow. In the comic books he has TWO crossbows. Yes TWO crossbows.

The figure released only had ONE. The pistol looks a bit off scale and they don’t fit snugly at the figure’s holsters it just sit there but easily gets lost if you’re not too careful.

The other part that really was a turn-off is the huge firing weapon that came with the figure. Back in 1992 Hasbro started packing their G.I. Joe figures with oversize weapons that fires huge projectiles.

It’s understandable that the toys are made for 5 years old and up that his two extra missiles for the huge projectile bow can be attached from the backpack. It was a brilliant gimmick but what’s not–so good about it is the figure can’t hold the weapon properly. Expect not to be disappointed about the added huge projectile launcher and its weapon, but to how it would work for the kids to play it if the figure can’t hold it.

Rate This One Up

The packaging was great but the figure was not what we expected. Ultimate Hawkeye got details but the articulation was poor that it was like made in the 1990s. The quality slightly as poor as the figure itself has paint chips off.

Overall its still one of the most decent figures that you can’t easily find in any department stores, and only the modern costumed movie version of Captain America comes second to be sought after as he’s basically common unlike Ultimate Hawkeye.

Ultimate Hawkeye can be seen in one out of five retail stores in one location which is retailed at PhP 549.75 pesos (Roughly $13.00 US Dollars) locally distributed by Playkit. He’s a bit rare for those who are casually collecting the toyline. The other place you can find this figure is through specialty stores, online forums or secondary market that is sold with an extra premium.

So if you see one on retail don’t make any second thoughts about picking up this figure. Unless you want to wait for the second wave to be released with the movie version as part of that assortment but I don’t think he would look like Jeremy Renner.

Marvel’s The Avengers opens in Philippine cinemas on April 25, 2012 from Walt Disney Studious and Paramout Pictures to be distributed by Columbia Pictures Philippines!

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