Unlike most Marvel Universe figures, Dr. Doom actually comes with an accessory and also...the Wasp! She's in her shrunken form so you'll have to squint to see her in the package pic. I think it's also a first for Wasp in this scale.
Does this mean that I'd readily chuck the Absorbing Man? Heck no! He comes with a ball and chain! A ball and chain, I tell you! Of the steel variety! Larger than a man's head! And he's one of the villains who actually thinks he can take down the Hulk (No one takes down the Hulk!) He'll make for a good fight scene companion for the Jolly Green Giant, him and whatever army of Hulk villains are made for the Marvel Universe line in the future. (We want the Leader! Now now now!)
So does this 2-pack live up to much much eagerly anticipated...uh..anticipations? More after the jump!
As for the Wasp, she's painted in flat colors which are accurate to her Secret Wars comics appearance, and I think the paint actually obscures some of the tiny detail on the sculpt. She just the right size for a MU sized figure to hold in their hand and if they ever make a 3.75 inch version of Janet Pym, this "accessory" will serve perfectly as her shrunken form.
One other piece of removable "equipment" is Doom's cape, but you'll have to pop of his head to get at it. (Which was easy form me seeing how the head was so loose it popped of right out of the package). The cloak's also got a peg and two slots so that he can stick it on his back like Secret Wars Thor.
Like: Doom's and Absorbing Man's head sculpts are as close to perfect as you can get. Doom's hood frames his face correctly (as opposed to his Marvel Select version), while his mask has the classic scowl and down-turned mouth that's Doom's trademark look. There's also some nice scoring/hatching of the hood to give it a "cloth-like" texture. It's really a beautifully done head.
Carl Creel's head is also superbly done, with a nice, smooth egg-shaped dome coupled with a low bow, large jaw, and a really evil look caught between and scowl and a smile. Special mention also goes to his pants and shoes. For standard prison wear, these don't look half bad!
Both these figures' eyes are painted--Doom's are yellow, while Ab Man has one regular and one painted yellow. I think Creel's are done better--their more visible. Doom's eye colour can best be seen only when he looks upwards.
Like: The paint! Both these figures have a nice job done. But where the Absorbing Man's got paint covering him from head to to, Doom's cloth parts (cowl, cape, tunic) have been sculpted in colour. His armor's matte metalized silver is smooth and uniform on his arms, legs and face. His belt, its buckle and the holster are also painted and pretty nicely with very minimal overlapping. But the cape clasp is probably the weakest in application, with the gold paint looking a little uneven over the green plastic.
Absorbing Man is even more amazing paint-wise. The first thing is his flesh tones--they've been sculpted in flesh, given a slight wash and highlighted with more flesh paint. It's easily the best flesh I've seen on a 3.75 inch figure I've seen.
Like: Their articulation. Doom has the standard Hasbro 22 points of articulation and Ab Man has 20. And even after being spoiled by a whole bunch of super poseable Iron Man 2 3.75" figures, I don't find these guys a let down at all. The lack of ball-joints at the hips prevents side kicks and really wide stances, but other than that these guys match up evenly and are really well painted to boot!
Dislike: Doom's head fell right off his neck peg when I was removing him from the package. Somehow the hole in his head is tad shallow, so turning his head would result it it coming off easily. I had to use the nail polish method to thicken up the neck peg ball so that his head wouldn't fall off at the slightest touch.
His head ball joint is reduced to swivel-only because of a thick neck peck. Thankfully, it was easily remedied by paring away some of the access plastic with an exacto knife. Doom now easily looks up, down and all around with the excellent head able to completely cover up any mods I'd done!
Dislike: That his cape is heavy and prevents him from fully using his chest pivot. But then a long heavy cape also allows Doom to balance better of the edge of the cloak, so i guess this is a minor, minor dislike. :)
Dislike: That Absorbing Man can only hold his ball and chain in his right hand, but his absorption effect takes place on the left side of his body. I'm not 100% sure, but I feel like his body's transformation into the whatever he touches should begin at the point of touch? Heh, I suppose this is minor too, but these figures are very well done so it's pretty hard to dislike anything. I guess Carl will have to touch his ball with a left hand form time to time...
Aesthetics: 9/10 - Simply magnificent. If they never come up with another version of him it wouldn't be a problem because this guy is just that good. From the armour to the head and mask, to the clothes and to his belt and holster--it's not just well tooled and sculpted, it's also very comic accurate.
Poseability: 7.5/10 - Two things restrict his movement--his little skirt and the cloak. But slits up the side of his tunic allow for sideways movement, though front-wise it's still a little blocked. The cloak, when pegged to his back firmly, will fall off if the shoulders are turned too far back. His head, just a swivel at first, is really excellent after a simple modification.
Fun: 9/10 - Doom = fun! Fun, fun, fun! He speaks in the third person, believes everyone other than himself is an insect and thus makes enemies of everyone! Doom's the kinda guy who has dominated the world, wants to destroy all the heroes, steal their powers, and ultimately become a god. He's a big picture kinda guy, and having a figure that really captures his arrogance and genius just serves to remind me of it every time I look at him.
Value: 8/10 - He's got a cloak and a Luger (for those he deems unworthy of dying by his inventions). He's also got an insane amount of tooling. His entire hood, tunic and cloak have been given texture, while his armour is all metalized silver. Bottom line: there's been plenty of work put into him and he comes with a couple of accessories, so he's good value.
Overall: 8.4/10 - Dr. Doom is too good to ignore. If you're a Marvel fan, it doesn't matter if you like him or not--you'll probably buy him anyway. He's the bad guy of bad guys, he steals Galactus' power in the Secret Wars series. And he defeats the Beyonder with it! Badass!
Aesthetics: 8.5/10 - Great flesh tone, great sculpt, especially the head, which is pretty distinctive in character as well as emotion (huge scowl). Him standing alone empty-handed looks pretty pedestrian. Put a ball and chain in his hand--now we're talking!
Poseability: 8/10 - He's practically a naked dude with painted on clothes and power, so he's got free range of motion from all his joints. Still, MU's ball and socket hip joints don't allow for the range that full ball-joints do. Also, he's missing and elbow swivel. So while Carl Creel can pretty much do anything he needs to do with his articulation, there's still room for improvement. Even so, he's poseable enough that I didn't notice he's missing the elbow swivel till just now.
Fun: 9/10 - This dude is a lot more fun than I realized, especially with the ball and chain in his hand. I had lots of fun posing him for pictures and with other MU figures. I just love how 'alive' his accessory looks in his hands He also proves extra fun for me because he's a Hulk foe!
Value: 8/10 - A great ball and chain and a tiny figure of Wasp almost instantly make this guy (along with Doom) worth it. But wait, he's also got a great sculpt and an excellent paint job.
Overall: 8.4/10 - This is a very satisfying two-pack to get because both Doom and Absorbing Man are superb. The characters couldn't be more contrasting--the evil genius Dr. Doom and the dumb brute Absorbing Man! The Ab Man has especially turned out to be a surprise and to think I almost didn't get this two-pack because I didn't fancy him too much! While he's not as badass as Doom in the series, he does score with Titania, so I guess that makes him cool? Haha ;P