Updated: Aug 26, 2019
In 2018, to celebrate the first ten year of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Hasbro released ten set of Marvel Legend figures covering movies from this first decade of the MCU. The fourth set was based on the 2013 Iron-Man 3 movie and gave us our first MCU Pepper Potts. The Hall of Amour was extended a little further with the Mk22 "Hot Rod" and the previously unreleased Mandarin / Trevor Slattery figure got an airing. The set was exclusive to Amazon, but as of the summer of 2019 started to also show up at discount retailers in the UK.
The packaging for the First Ten Years MCU sets moves away from the usual scooped side Marvel Legend packaging and goes with a standard box. The colour scheme remains black, but with scenes from the MCU built into the backdrop. The predominant header is the MCU First 10 Years logo, with the Marvel Legends logo reduced in size and positioned top right.
The figures are displayed in a window, which is bordered in red and carries the character names bottom left. The bottom of this border is broken with a circular icon of an Iron-Man mask. Beneath this and to the right sits the movie logo.
The right hand side piece carries part of a larger art piece that connects with the other 9 sets to make a full montage. The left hand side carries some short text about the Iron-Man 3 plot as well as confirming this as set 4 in the range.
"SUITED UP AS IRON MAN, TONY STARK DISAPPEARS TO RURAL TENNESSEE TO INVESTIGATE GLOBAL TERRORIST ATTACKS AND DISCOVERS THAT THE RADICAL SOLDIERS ARE AFFLICTED WITH EXTREMIS, A VIRUS THAT CAN ENHANCE HUMAN STRENGTH AND DURABILITY, BUT CAN ALSO BE FATAL TO ANYONE INFECTED BY IT."
On the back of the box we have a small version of the Iron-Man 3 movie theatre poster and next to this panels dedicated to each of the three figures in the box - with a circular header and an image of the character from the movie.
"As the Ten Rings criminal organisation begins to terrorize nations around the World, Tony Stark looks to shut down its alleged leader, the Mandarin, as Iron Man."
Once opened the figures sit in a standard inner tray which itself sits in a cardboard backing piece. Like the box, this backing section carries a lot of MCU scenes from the First Ten Years, all taken from various movies and assembled like a comic book layout.
Paint & Sculpt 3/5
While this box set is a 2018 release, the Hot Rod Iron-Man figure is based on an original Iron-Man 3 release from 2013 and has been seen a number of times over the past 5 years as the base for the Age of Ultron War-Machine and the Disco Iron-Man released around the time of Civil War.
This is not a bad thing as the sculpt is a good one and of course Hot Rod was based on the War Machine armour anyway. The sculpt is chunky with well defined panels and joints. It is a touch smaller than the more recent Iron-Man figures, but not noticeably so on display.
The paint job is adequate with a dull grey base colour that is glossy, but not overly metallic. Over this is painted some silver highlights which are neat. The next layer of the Hot Rod red is applied to look to be fading as it works up from the arms and feet. And the final layer is the yellow flame effect around the feet - this looks more like a decal than hand painting.
the criticism of the figure goes back to its original Iron-Patriot / War-Machine base - the figure still has the two holes on the reverse for the shoulder cannon. As Hot Rod doesn't have this I'd have preferred to see these plugged rather than left in situ.
There are no accessories included for Hot Rod Iron-Man. It would have been great to see Hot Rod come with an alternative set of repulsor firing hands and a pair of those oft used Iron-Man repulsor FX pieces.
The articulation on Hot Rod is starting to show its age - so while we have 18 points of articulation in total, the knees are single jointed and the ankle rockers quite restricted
Head - ball joint with pivot
Body - mid-torso ball joint
Arms - ball joint shoulders, bicep swivel, double jointed elbows, pivot wrist
Legs - ball joint hips, thigh swivel, single joint knee, ankle rocker
Like Iron-Patriot, and War-Machine, and Disco Iron-Man this all adds up to a restricted set of posing. The arms come out nicely in shooting poses - although of course the figure only has fist hands, with no palm out repulsor firing options.
The legs will stretch to wider stances, and you will have no issue getting Hot Rod to stay standing. Flying poses are restricted also with the lack of movement at the ankle to point the foot down.
With a wider range of Iron-Man armour options to choose from, Hasbro have chosen a visually impressive armour with Hot Rod - but one that saves cost as it uses an existing sculpt. The issue with this re-use is that it cheapens the set which has an RRP via Amazon in excess of what you'd pay for three new single figures. And Hasbro have not thrown in anything to sweeten the release such as extra hands or FX pieces.
With more recent armoured figures showing what Hasbro can do with the articulation for an Iron-Man, this one does feel restricted and a tad disappointing.
Taking into account the slightly undersized figure, lack of accessories and the restricted articulation - I score the Iron-Man Mk22 "Hot Rod" a just above average 3 out of 5.