When the figure listings came out for Marvel Legends Series 3, I just about crapped myself when I saw Dani Moonstar of the New Mutants on the list. Then I saw the case assortment and learned that each case would have either Dani Moonstar or Mystique in it, and I was immediately certain that (my luck being what it is) I’d draw Mystique in my Marvel Legends Series 3 case and have to chase after a Danielle Moonstar figure.
As I expected, I was right–Mystique was the sole female included in my fresh Marvel Legends case. What I didn’t expect was that as soon as I had this new Mystique figure in hand, I came perilously close to falling in love with it…
I was one of the nay-sayers bitching that we didn’t need another Mystique Marvel Legends series after the classic Mystique in Toybiz’s Marvel Legends Series 9. I was wrong. In the last decade, Mystique has gone through a number of attire redesigns, most notably the black leather-clad look from her (underrated) solo series. If ever there was a Mystique design I’d want in my collection beyond the classic white dress, this is unquestionably the one.
The paint choices by Hasbro are dead-on. I love the silky dark blue selected for Mystique’s skin, and her red hair looks vibrant and authentic. As a huge bonus, thanks to much-improved paint applications, Mystique’s face is luckily not nearly as ass-ugly as Madame Hydra’s.
One of the best parts of the Marvel Legends Series 3 Mystique action figure is her extensive assortment of included guns inherited from The Punisher/Blade and Madame Masque/Madame Hydra. The Uzi is a favorite of mine, although I’m pleased that Mystique came with a more realistic-painted version of the sniper rifle than The Punisher himself came with. The pistol from the Madames returns for subtle assassinations, but Mystique also has a heavy assault rifle for more action-packed escapades. I also really appreciate the working holster on Mystique’s belt, although the belt itself drives me to endless frustration.
In addition to the guns, Mystique also comes with a figure stand which is eerily similar to the ones that came with the 6″ Avengers Movie figures (and you can find all those reviews in the toy reviews index). I’d have rather had a Build-A-Figure–even a small one like Rocket Raccoon–but I don’t mind the stand, and many of the figures in Marvel Legends Series 3 can definitely use them.
I utterly despise this female mold that Hasbro has developed and taken to using. The hip articulation is unacceptably restrictive and far, far too difficult to work with when posing. Trying to get Mystique to kneel, crouch, ninja kick, and anything else beyond a basic stance is annoying as hell if not impossible. The ankle joints are largely useless as well and make a bad situation worse. In short, the terrible lower-body articulation makes this figure no fun.
In addition, I can’t express how much I hate the way Hasbro has implemented the belts on Mystique and the Madames. They’re too big, and as a result they flop all over the place whenever you move the figures around. It’s hard enough to get Mystique into a pose to begin with, and absolutely infuriating to get her posed and then realize her belt has come loose and won’t stay in place. Hasbro has been making figures with belts for years and never had these problems, so I don’t understand why they can’t figure out how to do them right in the 2012 Marvel Legends line.
I got my Mystique in the case of Marvel Legends Series 3 I pre-ordered from BigBadToyStore. Mystique is packed at either 1 or 0 per case, depending upon whether or not the case is a Mystique case or a Dani Moonstar case. Various other online sellers also have Mystique available right now. Other than that, I haven’t heard about these figures being found in any local stores yet, although there’s always eBay.
Overall: It’s really too bad that the female mold Hasbro favors for the 2012 Marvel Legends line has such obnoxious articulation, because it really holds back what is otherwise a totally kick-ass Mystique figure. From the paints chosen for the figure to the surprisingly substantial arsenal of guns she comes with, this Mystique figure looks downright excellent. But awful articulation makes this Mystique figure fall a little bit flat. Marvel Legends Series 3 Mystique will look great on your shelf packing her Uzi or sniper rifle, but don’t expect to have much fun getting her into any dynamic poses. Mildly recommended.