The Holiday Gift Guide AND Figure Friday? There hasn’t been a pairing this obvious since Bing Crosby tolerated David Bowie more than four decades ago! Let’s see what cool and nerdy toys are out there for the big ole l dork on your shopping list.
Marvel MAFEX No.143 Ben Reilly Spider-Man by Medicom Toy
Hey, remember the ’90s? Cast your mind back to a simpler time…before you had a mortgage, and responsibilities, and cats that are waiting to eat your face while you sleep. Yes, a simpler time of chromium, die-cut, embossed, holo-foil covers and shocking event comics designed to lure in new readers and excite the old ones.
Yeah, a lot of these comics were straight up craaaaaaap (I read Maximum Carnage for the first time recently and…hoo boy). My point, and I do have one, is that while you can’t mention The Clone Saga without putting the words “much reviled” anywhere near it you cannot deny that it gave us one of the best Spider-Man suits of all time.
As a Christmas gift to myself I recently got the MAFEX Ben Reilly Spider-Man figure and it’s pretty dang great. Long time readers will know that I’m a ride-or-die SH Figuarts collector and until now I’ve resisted the Medicom’s MAFEX line. There’s a lot of overlap with the Star Wars and MCU figures both lines produce and my personal preference goes with Figuarts on those. However, what Figurarts doesn’t do is figures based on comics.
The Ben Reilly caught my attention (along with another figure to be revealed at a later date) and upon receiving it I was pleasantly surprised. I’ll admit that I was somewhat hesitant to order the figure based on hearsay about the quality of the line from a trusted source, but I’m happy to report that I’ve had no issues with this figure. It’s solidly constructed, all the joints are tight, and it doesn’t feel overly fragile which is a common concern for most high quality figures.
One of the things that really sold me on this figure was the alternate unmasked head that looks exactly like it was drawn by Dan Jurgens (another legend, Mark Bagley, designed the costume). The figure comes with alternate heads, hands, web effects, and an articulated display stand.
Sure, the ’90s were cool and everything but what about something for a Spider-Fan born in this century?
Maybe you’re not hip to forking over a cool Ben Franklin for a premium figure and that’s totally cool. There are great figures out there at all sorts of price points! Also, maybe you can’t get your hands on a PS5 to save your life and that’s okay too! I’ve heard that the Spider-Man: Miles Morales game is pretty cool and that’s where this figure comes in!
Based on his appearance in the PS5 game, this Miles Morales figure would be a fantastic addition to your collection…which I can confirm since I also bought this one for myself. Admittedly, I’ve had a somewhat rocky relationship with the Marvel Legends line lately but with this figure all is forgiven.
For starters, this figure was designed with the newer “pinless” technology which means that all the joints (elbows, knees, ankles, etc) are held together without the benefit of plastic pins. I know we’re getting real inside baseball here but hang in there. A lot of the problems collectors have had in the past were things like bent pins or joints that didn’t peg together correctly. It could turn an awesome figure into a certified bummer by the time you got it out of the box. It’s something we’ve all encountered and I have passed on figures more than once due to wonky limbs I spotted in the box.
Since I’m completely enraptured with this new design element, I can’t really see a downside to it at the moment. Miles comes with a swappable head, multiple pairs of hands, and a build-a-figure piece that I do not care about at all. This Miles Morales is intricately sculpted and I have to wonder if they sourced the design directly form the video game’s characters files. The paint on the figure was great too which, given some of my recent experiences, was a surprise. For a mass market figure with a +/- $20 price point this one really feels like a premium figure.
This is a “definitive” version of the figure to get for any Miles fan. I don’t think it’s any great stretch to write that Miles Morales is probably the best addition to the Spider-Man mythos in the last 20 years. Also, I’ll allow myself a bit or irresponsible speculation here and say that I don’t think it’s outside of the realm of possibility that we may see him pop up in the multiversal shenanigans of Spider-Man: No Way Home in a couple weeks.