REVIEW: Hot Toys SPIDER-MAN (Black Suit Version)
Spidey's Back In Black and He's Bringing The Sandman With Him Too...
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Despite the new Spider-Man movie reboot in theaters, Hot Toys continues to produce figures from Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Trilogy, mainly pulling from Spider-Man 3, which still rings pretty rotten in my mind. But even with Spider-Man 3 not living up to my expectations, figures and characters in toy form can become whatever you want them to be. With their Movie Masterpiece Series #165, Hot Toys gives us Spider-Man in his black symbiote suit that is excellently made and they also sweeten the deal by including a Sandman diorama base and a alternate portrait of Peter Parker as played by Tobey Maguire.
The packaging for this Spider-Man is very similar to the original Red & Blue Spider-Man packaging design with the Spider emblem embossed over a webbed box. It’s attractive and simple, exactly what you’d expect from Hot Toys. I also love the fact that they credit many of their lead artists that brought this collectible to life.
Once you remove the top lid, you’ll find layers upon layers to remove. The figure and the many accessories are in one self contained tray while the Sandman base is broken down in another. The trays stack upon each other nicely while keeping all of its contents visible and easy to find.
Upon first impressions of holding this figure, you might suspect that it’s the same as the previous Spider-Man but colored black. While this is mostly true, this particular figure has a removeable head at the top of the neck unlike the previous release, which is wearing a full body suit from head to toe. Where Hot Toys succeeds here is that the Spider-Man head is wrapped in the same fabric costume as the body suit, retaining the same aesthetic overall. This is an issue Sideshow has failed time and time again with their 12” G.I.Joe line, releasing figures with plastic masks that don’t match the rest of the costume.
The Tobey Maguire / Peter Parker portrait fits above the neck and is sculpted incredibly well with a very stern expression. Thankfully, this is not the emo Peter Parker that we’ve grown to hate in the film, but rather a more serious looking Peter Parker. If there’s a minor complaint is that the head fits over the neck, making that transition a tad odd looking. But still, I prefer the ability to swap heads more so than not and it’s a crying shame that we can’t use this head on the previous Spider-Man (you still can but will need to destroy the costume to do so). For those with extra money, you’re more than welcome to buy another Hot Toys body and create your own Peter Parker figure.
The fabric Spidey costume is a real highlight of this figure and may be the most unsung hero of this figure. The detail is impeccable with the webbing and Spider logo popping off the fabric like it does in the film. Look even closer and you’ll find the web pattern going throughout the costume that reflects in the light, making this a pretty dynamic looking figure. It may not be from the best Spider-Man movie but all is (almost) forgiven with this figure. Even in the Spider-Man head optics you will find a pattern, just adding to the authenticity of it all. It really is impressive.
The poseable figure underneath is much of what you’d expect from Hot Toys; TrueType body with plenty of points of articulation to hold the many poses you’d want with Spider-Man, although the costume is rather delicate and I’m afraid to move the figure as much as I’d like, in fear of ripping and tearing the costume. It’s pretty sturdy for common poses but I’m just paranoid.
Black Suit Spider-Man comes with many of the same accessories that the earlier Spider-Man did, including the five pairs of interchangeable palms and five strips of web. Swapping the hands on this figure seemed to go pretty well on this figure but product could vary from figure to figure. Hot Toys also included an extra pair of pegs in case your hands do get stuck.
The various webs are a pretty neat addition but will take some tender loving care to get set right. There’s a hoop in the web shooters that go inbetween the wrist and the hand. Another web plugs into the grip hand for the standard swinging position.
The beauty of Hot Toys of course is the ability to decide how you ultimately want to display your figure. In this case, they provided a standard display base with the movie logo as well as a massive Sandman diorama base. The arm can be repositioned but rather limited, as well as the fist. As a Sideshow exclusive, an interchangeable meteor hammer can be used in place of the fist.
The detail in the Sandman diorama is really well done, showing a muddy and sandy texture all over. All you need now is more sand surrounding it and you’d have an amazing display! The paint and weathering also add much of the depth and texture of the piece. There’s also an invisible post with a clip to plug in and display your Spider-Man figure over the base. I personally feel it’s in an odd spot for Spider-Man to be but it works. But since this particular Sandman seems more like the final battle Sandman, it’s probably more appropriate to stick the traditional Spider-Man or even New Goblin on this display (Black Suit Spider-Man fights Sandman in the sewers).
Hot Toys has so far released three figures in the Spider-Man 3 collection: Spider-Man, New Goblin, and now Spider-Man Black Suit Version. With an Amazing Spider-Man figure next, it’s not certain if there will be more from Sam Raimi’s trilogy but it’s certainly possible. If they’re only stuck with the third film there’s still Sandman and Venom to get the Hot Toys treatment as well as a more improved regular Spider-Man with interchangeable heads.
For Spidey fans, this Black Suit version will fill the void and it does it well. For those on the fence, it really is an amazing figure and base, regardless of the film. If you love Spider-Man, this is as good as it gets.
Review and Photography by David Yeh
Spider-Man Black Suit Version Courtesy of Hot Toys