Figure Friday: Back to the Cons and the 1990s with Scarlet Spider

By the time you read this it will be too late I will be on my way to Power Con with my Figure Friday counterpart, Josh Wallen. The natural progression of things being what they are, it was time for us to go on a road trip to an out-of-state convention and connect with the people

I haven’t been to a proper con in an age, and I’m a bit trepidacious about getting back to it. Fan Expo Toronto in 2019 and C2E2 just a few months later presented an excellent case for “Yeah! I’m going to do this EVERY YEAR!” But then the world went to shit. If I’m being honest, I had designs on getting back to Toronto this year but a myriad of factors prevented it. So, Ohio it is…

As a Michigander, I could do what comedians refer to as a “tight five” minutes dumping on our neighbors to the south. I may have to check the state charter because I think I’m legally obligated to do so. Heck, I don’t even follow sports but I think I’m genetically predisposed to hate THE Ohio State University’s football team. I can’t explain it. 

Josh and I should be able to pass undetected as long as no one sees us getting out of a car with Michigan license plates and I don’t make any snide comments about how I saw two Cheesecake Factory restaurants within five miles of each other last time I was there.

Check back here next week for a breakdown of our trip!

MAFEX Scarlet Spider

I’m now up to a total of four MAFEX Spider-Man figures and I’m hoping this guy will be the last one because they’re too damn good to pass up.

For the uninitiated, the Scarlet Spider springs from one of the more ridiculous periods of the Wall Crawler’s 60+ year history. A clone (yes? no?…maybe?) previously thought dead returns to fight crime alongside the real Spider-Man before becoming the new Spider-Man himself. Also, it was the 90’s and he had a cool ripped up hoodie as part of his costume and pouches. So many pouches. Well, they were positively restrained by traditional Liefeld metrics but there were still more than two by a few, depending on what artist was drawing the character.

The character was recently lampooned by Andy Samberg in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and I’ve got to say in the little screen time he had, it perfectly encapsulated 90’s comics and it kind of stung. If you ever listen to anyone in their 40’s talk about comics from that era it’ll go something like, “It was crap…but we loved it…because we didn’t know any better…but the art was great!”

On to the figure itself, it’s another top flight Spidey figure from MAFEX. One would think they could kick back and take it easy once they cracked the code on what it takes to make a near-perfect Spider-Man sculpt, but I get the feeling there are smaller, iterative improvements from figure to figure. 

I was quietly amazed with the web effects the figure was packed with when compared to the other versions I have. One of the webs is designed to fit inside of a slightly open fist but there didn’t initially appear to be a way to feed the webbing through the fist until I discovered the web pops apart so it can be gripped by the figure. Full disclosure: this may have been present on the other figures and I may just not have noticed until now. I’m not about to dig out my bins to retroactively make myself a dummy. I prefer to be stupid in the here and now.

Generally, I’m not a fan of action figures with softgoods (fabric) additions but they made the right choice by giving this guy a fabric (sleeveless) hoodie. It just works so much better than a molded plastic one AND the hood is wired so it can be adjusted to fit properly if you decide to have it up or down.

Scarlet Spider may not be everyone’s favorite Spider-Guy, and I don’t even know if he cracks my personal top five, but he sure does make for a neat figure and a reminder of how ridiculous and fun the 90’s were at times. 

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