Review : Marvel Select Thor - Thor, The Mighty Avenger (Diamond Select)
When I was planning my Avengers setup I chose to go down the Dark World Thor route for my collection. Having now been dragged into filling in all the gaps on the Movie Select figures I found myself with a difficult job tracking down the original Thor figure, but finally here he is. Thor was released in 2011 along with the much sought after Loki, with the two of them being released with a connecting Bifrost base to bring them together in a display. Thor arrives in the standard Select packaging, with a nice panel on the side of Thor "The Mighty Avenger". On the rear is a stock image of the figure, along with a paragraph about the character and an image of Loki. Once out of the box Thor stands a touch over 7 1/4" high and comes with Mjolnir and the gold circular bifrost base. I think Thor suffers from being difficult to photograph and he is one of those figures that is actually a lot better in hand than any image. The face is a very good likeness of Chris Hemsworth and their are plenty of detail in the armour, the chest being particularly impressive. The arms are done in chain mail and this is a little soft in terms of sculpt but is passable. The legs, like Loki, are a bit plain but there are some sculped knee armour and decent boots. Thor's cloak is done in soft plastic, and hangs pretty well off the shoulders. Mjolnir itself is a bit of a let down as its also done in some soft plastic and the handle is bent on mine, and the strap is then not soft enough, or moveable like it is in on the DW Thor, so hangs at an odd angle in a lot of poses. Paint is crisp and with no obvious paint bleeding. The face is nicely painted with Thor's piercing blue eyes. The hair is a little basic but is shaded and with highlights - although this is a bit amateur and could be done much better. The armour is nicely done in silver, but not too bright to detract from the detail and there is evidence of some darker wash on the chain mail. The red is bright on the cloak and on the trim on the arms and legs. All good so far. But then we talk about articulation, and it is here that Thor loses points in a big way. Starting with the head, it is clearly on a ball joint and can rotate a full 360 degrees. The hair however stops any movement forward or backward to allow Thor to look up or down. The arms are terrible, with a ball jointed shoulder that doesn't allow the arms to go anywhere close to being flat at Thor's side. Nor do they go up very far so you can either get a wierd "chicken impression" pose or the arm being 90 degrees from the side of the body. The elbow is then jointed and can swivel, as can the wrist - but without a full range of movement in the shoulder you absolutely can't get Thor into the lightening summoning pose many collectors would love. Like most early Select figures there is no torso joint, but there is an articulated waist. The waist however cannot move more than a few mm due to the armour. Hips are ball jointed but barely move, even with a significant amount of force - the joint is just too small to move the legs any distance. The knees are meant to bend, but don't, and the best movement is on the ankles which pivot and swivel. So without any movement in arms or legs, you aren't going to be able to do much with Thor other than a neutral pose. And that is where the biggest design flaw comes in as the cloak hangs down longer than Thor's feet. This means the cloak pushes him forward and stops him standing. You could trim the cloak, or drag the cloak back a few cm away from the body - which looks a tad odd but allows him to stand. Onto the base which is pretty plain. It is simply a 7 1/2" gold disk, with a smaller 5" disk on top. The dais is in what looks to be 4 pieces, but as far as I am aware it comes assembled in the packaging (mine was bought loose). Without the Loki piece (and you try finding that) the base is irrelevant and doesn't add much to the figure - I would have preferred Select to do something like a stand-alone Asgard base for the figure - but I do appreciate that as a business DST are using the interconnectable bases as a selling tool for collectors to get all the figures, a business model that continues today with the 2015 releases. So let's not beat about the bush. Thor is a nicely sculpted piece, but is more statue than figure with almost zero practical articulation. The cloak is an oversight which is a shame and the base is a bit boring until you can get Loki's piece to go with it. DST certainly massively improved Thor with the Dark World version, which is bigger and bulkier but perhaps not as good a likeness for Hemsworth, I am going to risk the wrath of Asgard and award Thor a 2 out of 5.